Chicago Independent Producers Lab selects 5 producers | Chicago coil
Full Spectrum Features, the Chicago-based nonprofit committed to increasing equity capital in the film industry, has announced the five producers selected for its second Chicago Independent Producers Lab, a project incubator of a year designed to cultivate Chicago’s vibrant independent film industry.
In partnership with the Independent Film Initiative of the Chicago Film Office, the Lab offers personalized mentoring from industry professionals as well as the development of practical projects through immersive workshops held quarterly.
The Chicago Independent Producers Lab (CIPL) was launched in 2020 with the founding principle that producers are the creative entrepreneurs who make possible a thriving independent film industry. Seeing a gap in the number of feature film productions –– especially narrative films –– produced in Chicago by Chicago-based crews, Full Spectrum Features designed the Lab to increase the number of independent producers working in the city and to greatly deepen and broaden their professional networks and generate expertise with the aim of guiding producer-led projects towards production sustainability.
The five participating producers, selected through a competitive application process earlier this year, stood out for their experience and commitment to community and fair storytelling. Each producer will grow and apply their skills to the development of their respective ongoing feature film. Although another key creator from each team is invited to attend the lab’s activities, the lab’s primary investment remains in producers.
“They are accomplished and ambitious producers,” said Eugene Sun Park, Executive Director of Full Spectrum Features. “They are invested in telling relevant and important stories and we look forward to supporting them in this effort.”
Kwame amoaku, director of the Chicago Film Office, added that “Chicago independent film producers need the tools to build their own table instead of asking for a spot at someone else’s house.”
Funded in part by a scholarship from the National Endowment for the Arts and a scholarship from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, CIPL will host its first two-day quarterly workshop in May, led by a local filmmaker and mentor. Kyle henry (Rogers Park). Upcoming sessions will feature representatives from Lawyers for the Creative Arts, as well as national producers and mentors, Mollye asher (Nomadland) and Josn Penn (Beasts of the Wild South, Wendy).
The participants of the Chicago Independent Producers Lab 2021 and their projects in development are:
Anuradha Rana’s immigrant roots are at the heart of her films, creating the lens of a curious intruder, where everyday characters push conventional boundaries. She is an Associate Professor at DePaul University and responsible for the creation of the Kartemquin Films Diverse Voices in Docs Fellowship and the Community Cinema Workshop. She was named one of Chicago’s 50 Screen Gems in 2017 and 2019 and an esteemed DCASE artist in 2021. Anu’s project The Punk Show in Chicago is a comedy about a pregnant Kansas City teenager that convinces her best friend going to a punk show. with her in Chicago.
Bridget Botchway Bradley
Bridget Botchway Bradley is a Ghanaian-American film and video producer based in Chicago. Bridget has produced a variety of work spanning documentary, storytelling, and advertising. She was selected in 2017 as Diverse Voices in Docs Fellow at Kartemquin Films and holds a Masters in Film Production from Columbia College Chicago. The Bridget Bucket Boys project follows an impressionable teenager on the cusp of college who witnesses a crime and is forced to reconcile his past and reassess his future.
Christina Shaver was born and raised in Chicago and attended Northwestern University and the Harold Ramis Film School. She recently produced her feature debut, Cecily and Lydia at The Waypoint, is a member of the Chicago Media Angels and sits on the Creative Cabinet of the Independent Film Alliance Chicago. Christina, You, Me and Monica Lewinsky’s Project tells the story of a journalist who, after receiving the career assignment to interview Monica Lewinsky, is haunted by the affair she had with her teacher. English in high school.
Eseoghene Obrimah is a writer and producer from Lagos, Nigeria, committed to telling stories that imagine what freedom is like. Her films center black women and analyze social issues through the genres of fantasy, magical realism, Afro-surrealism and African-futurism. Ese’s project, Second Sunday, follows the Halloway family, who stop attending church in order to protect their transgender son only to find themselves harassed by the church’s possessive new pastor.
Peter Lyngso grew up in the northern suburbs of Chicago. As a creative producer and media strategist at Studio Sankara, Peter has high ambitions to bring radical stories to audiences around the world. He is passionate about organized work, revolutionary history, kindness, coffee and intrigue. Peter’s project Goodnight Goodnight Goodnight follows a ten-year-old black girl as she sets out through the snowy streets of Chicago in search of her missing mother.
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