For too long, the film industry has been dominated by a narrow range of voices and perspectives. Historically, the LGBTQIA+ community has been underrepresented in mainstream cinema, with limited opportunities to tell their stories and showcase their talents on the big screen. However, as we move forward into a new era of entertainment, it's time to take a closer look at the filmmakers who are challenging the status quo and paving the way for a more inclusive and diverse industry.
As we celebrate Pride Month, Made In Her Image is proud to spotlight 5 filmmakers who are changing the narrative and inspiring a new generation of storytellers.
Lena Waithe is a trailblazing figure in entertainment and the founder of Hillman Grad, which is dedicated to empowering underrepresented artists and amplifying the stories of diverse, historically marginalized communities across all industries. Lena is known for her exceptional work on acclaimed series such as "Master of None," "The Chi," and "Twenties." She was the first African-American woman to win an Emmy for Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series.
"Queer black characters have been the sidekick for long enough. It's time for us to finally take the lead." - Lena Waithe
Ava Berkofsky is an esteemed cinematographer and filmmaker who has won Emmy and ASC nominations for their work on "Insecure." They advocate for LGBTQ+ representation and have worked on award-winning films like "Share" and "Free In Deed." Their latest film, "The Sky is Everywhere," is produced by A24 & Apple.
"Our goal is to make films unlike anything that’s been seen before as well as including LGBTQ+ community in a way that doesn’t revolve around them being queer." - AVA Berkofsky
Alice Wu is a trailblazing director and screenwriter known for her groundbreaking films "Saving Face" and "The Half Of It." Her work has inspired a new generation of Asian-American and LGBTQ+ filmmakers. Wu's journey and experiences coming out inspired her heartfelt screenplays, which explore themes of familial love and traditional expectations. She was named one of Queerty magazine's 50 LGBTQ heroes for her significant contributions to the industry.
"I take a character who would never think she’d be a main character … I make her front and center." - Alice Wu
Emma Seligman has gained recognition for her impressive film "Shiva Baby," which centers around a bisexual Jewish college student attending a chaotic shiva. She is determined to challenge perceptions of female directors and establish herself as an auteur beyond the dramedy landscape. Seligman and Rachel Sennott have once again joined forces for their second feature film, "Bottoms," which debuted at the prestigious SXSW film festival.
"You have to keep rolling and not let it make you question your work. Don't think small, but especially when it comes to making your first thing, think about what's achievable and try to go after that." - Emma Seligman
Fawzia Mirza is a writer and director who creates work based on her experiences as a queer, South Asian Muslim. She co-wrote and starred in the acclaimed film "Signature Move" and made history as the first queer Muslim romance on network TV. Fawzia has been recognized for her talent and honored as a White House Champion of Change. She co-founded Baby Daal Productions with her wife, Andria Wilson Mirza, to promote inclusive storytelling and amplify underrepresented voices.
"The more we tell those stories, then we get to hear about them. It's not just about gay people; it's about seeing all kinds of other people populate our worlds." - Fawzia Mirza
Join us as we celebrate these five LGBTQIA+ filmmakers who are reshaping the narrative and challenging stereotypes!