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Quendrith Johnson

Quendrith Johnson is Los Angeles Correspondent covering everything happening in film in Hollywood... Well, the most interesting things, anyway.
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Welcome to Stories Matter, Leslie Zemeckis' Cure for Lockdown

by Quendrith Johnson, Los Angeles Correspondent

Leslie Zemeckis is a filmmaker known for bringing lost voices of burlesque into the world with her film BEHIND THE BURLY Q, but she is also a champion of women who tell stories not just with their bodies in dance. Based in Santa Barbara, she’s a multi-hyphenate actor, writer, mentor, and more who has created "Stories Matter" as a way to tap under-heard voices.BurlyQLZbk

In 2020, Leslie was awarded the Ellis Island Medal of Honor for “sharing and preserving stories of women who were once marginalized and stigmatized," and for highlighting them so that "these women are now celebrated for their independence and personal agency.”

The Ellis Island Medal is sanctioned by both Houses of Congress as among the nation’s most prestigious awards. For 35 years, this award has honored a variety of thought leaders, politicians, artists and more.

President Joe Biden is the 8th honoree from 1992. Past recipients also include Clinton, Reagan, Elie Wiesel, Sen. John McCain and H.S.H. Prince Albert II of Monaco (son of Grace Kelly).

Before she introduces her “Stories Matter” program, here is a quick look at Leslie Zemeckis in WELCOME TO MARWEN, a recent release. She plays a role in the film, but contextualizes Steve Carell's lead role here.

All Dolled Up: Leslie Zemeckis Unpacks “Welcome to Marwen”




Stories Matter is a program of professional female writers nurturing and supporting the next generation of storytellers through mentorship. A program geared towards under-served young women ages 18-28 in Santa Barbara.

Stories Matter is in co-sponsorship with the Santa Barbara International Film Festival (“SBIFF”) will host the inaugural event in 2021, online for 6 women who want to explore biography and memoir.

Some of these completed works will be published online in ENTITY Magazine which has a readership of over 1 Million.

Our goal is to advise, inspire and help these young women find their voice, tell their story (or the story of someone around them) and show them their story matters.

Mentees will be chosen on their ability and desire to learn how to tell a story, their commitment and a commitment to then give back to younger girls. (We will provide them with the resources to find their potential mentees).

The emphasis is on inspiration, empowerment of others, sharing and love of the written word.

Our Board of Champions is made up of philanthropist and entrepreneurs, and include Susan Rockefeller, philanthropist, producer and CEO of “Musings Magazine, ”Karine Ohana of Ohana & Co, international investment bankers, Kara Ross, entrepreneur, founder of the nonprofit media organization UNLEASHED, Jaclynn Brennan, Fashion Influencer and Branding Specialist, Jennifer Schwab, CEO of “Entity Magazine,” and Kerri Murray President of ShelterBox USA, an international disaster relief charity. StoreisMatter logo2021

Stories Matter aims to become a national event with small mentorship events supporting untold storytellers through poetry, songwriting and the written word.

Come join us, or add your voice now.

-- Leslie Zemeckis



[Contact to participate.]

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About Quendrith Johnson

Johnson Quendrith

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