Arman Cole | Made in Michigan Juror | VTFF2018 Filmmaker Alum
Arman Cole is a director, writer and producer from Ann Arbor, Michigan. His University of Southern California MFA thesis film Small Arms, shot in various locations across Southern Michigan, premiered at the Creative Artists Agency Moebius showcase and currently has over 2 million views on Youtube. Arman also served as a producer on the Warner Bros.-financed proof-of-concept short film Rise directed by David Karlak, which is currently being developed into a full-length feature film. Arman is a strong supporter of Michigan film and is currently developing several projects he plans to produce and direct in his home state.
Taylor Stanton | Made in Michigan Juror | VTFF2018 Filmmaker Alum (Best of Fest Winner)
Taylor Stanton is a director and cinematographer from metro-Detroit. His work has screened at numerous festivals, including the Austin Film Fest, Aspen ShortsFest, New Orleans Film Fest, DOC NYC, and the 2018 Vidlings & Tapeheads where his stop-motion short was honored with the “Best of Fest” award. A former tuba player at the University of Michigan, he now works in an eclectic mix of film genres — among them stop-motion animation. He was thrilled to serve on the jury for this year’s Made-in-Michigan Award.
Xizi “Cecilia” Hua | Documentary Juror | VTFF2018 Filmmaker Alum (Honorable Mention Documentary Winner)
Xizi “Cecilia” Hua is an artist working in photography, film, video and new media. Born into 90s China, Xizi moved between cities of a fast-developing China before moving again to the U.S. at the age of fifteen. Living between countries, cultures and realities, Xizi encounters the world with a camera with the privilege being both an insider and outsider. With celluloid film and digital videos, in screen-based work and video projections, Xizi questions the existing methods of image production while experimenting alternative ways to expose and un-expose. She explores the flow and migration of people in revisiting one’s individual and collective memories as well as changes when encountering new social and political realities. Her works showcased at festivals such as 2018 Slamdance Film Festival, 2018 Seattle Asian American Film Festival, 2017 Central American International Film Festival and 2017 NY Indie Doc Fest. Her other video works were featured on NBC Asian America, Flaunt Magazine, and the Broad Museum #infiniteLA site. She is currently pursuing her MFA at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Breven Angaelica Warren | Documentary Juror
With a passion for supporting artists, Breven’s unique experience combines ages of work in independent film, and nonprofits, with more than a decade of accomplished festival directing, programming and curating. Her own nonprofit, Angaelica, is founded in arts and ecology, hosting film mentorship programs, a community building festival, and urban farming initiatives. Breven is currently developing the artist support programs and creative educational initiatives for content creators at Breaker, a blockchain entertainment studio. She recently received a Masters in Art Education, focusing on nontraditional filmmaker education programs and continues to pursue higher education to challenge her understanding and practice of how to best support artists. She believes in making a sustainable and positive impact on all that she does and continues to pursue projects and work that made a difference. Her festival resume includes Sundance, Film Independent, Outfest, AFI Fest and Slamdance.
Chantal Feitosa | Animation Juror | VTFF2018 Filmmaker Alum
Chantal Feitosa is Brazilian-American multidisciplinary artist from Queens, NY. Her filmmaking practice combines video documentary and experimental collage techniques to dissect issues of racial identity and beauty standards. Her work has screened at film festivals across the country including Vidlings & Tapeheads, Scout Film Festival, Harlem International Film Festival, the Every Woman Biennial, and the 2019 Contemporary and Digital Art Fair (CADAF). She has been awarded residencies at the Anderson Ranch Arts Center (Snowmass Village, CO) and Residency Unlimited (Brooklyn, NY). Chantal is currently an artist in residence at Smack Mellon’s Studio Program (Brooklyn, NY) and is a recipient of the 2019-2020 New York Community Trust, Van Lier Fellowship.
Catya Plate | Animation Juror | VTFF2018 Filmmaker Alum (Spirit of V&T Winner)
Catya Plate, born in Barcelona, Spain, and raised in Germany, is a Brooklyn based award winning filmmaker, writer and multidisciplinary artist. Catya is a Fulbright Alumna and has been exhibiting internationally since the mid-1980’s. Her work is in public and private collections worldwide, like the Brooklyn Museum and the Museum of Modern Art Library in New York City. Articles, interviews and reviews about her films and projects have appeared in Film Threat, UK Film Review, ReelRomp, Directed By Women, We are Moving Stories, The New York Times, The Independent, and others.
Her critically acclaimed multi-award winning stop motion animated films have screened worldwide. She’s been jurying animated and experimental films for festivals like the Brooklyn Film Festival and Vidlings & Tapeheads. She has worked as a mentor for the Visual Narrative program at School of Visual Arts in New York and given a stop motion workshop at renowned Animac in Spain.
She’s currently working on Las Nogas, the last in the animated ecological thriller shorts trilogy with an expected release in 2021 after which she plans to create the feature.
Skinner Myers | Fiction Juror | VTFF2018 Filmmaker Alum (Best Fiction Winner)
Skinner is an award-winning filmmaker who resides in Los Angeles, California. Skinner’s made his feature film debut as the writer and director of the 2011 documentary, Drinking From The Well, which screened in film festivals domestically and internationally. Skinner wrote and directed four short films: Chimera, The Last Supper, Obscured, and Nigger, while studying film at USC School of Cinematic Arts. His sixth film, La Tierra Del Exodo, released in 2016, played in over 90 festivals worldwide and garnered a ton of awards and Best Screenplay, and Best Short Film. His film, Frank Embree, took home the Grand Jury Award at the 2017 Hollyshorts Film Festival and was in the Oscar competition for Best Short Live Action. His film, Nightmares by the Sea, premiered in 2018 at the Art Film Festival in Cannes. He is currently in post production on his 9th film entitled Things of Beauty Burn. Skinner is the co-creator along with his partner, Scott Lasser, of The Misconception of Mike Concepcion, a show about the life of Mike Concepcion, a former member of The Crips, turned music producer and anti-gang advocate. Warner Brothers Television is currently in negotiations to pick up the show with Mark Canton, Top Dawg and Kendrick Lamar producing.
Megan Seely | Fiction Juror | VTFF2018 Filmmaker Alum
Megan Seely is an award-winning filmmaker exploring life through dark comedy. Beyond writing, directing, and acting in My Loyal Audience, she co-wrote The Mad Whale, starring Camilla Belle, Summer Phoenix, Dominic Rains, and James Franco. As an actress, she can be seen in the upcoming musical feature Nanay Ko and with Helena Howard in Twist (2019 Tribeca Film Festival), on which she also served as co-producer. Megan received her M.F.A. from USC and is currently prepping her feature dark comedy.