Midwest Independent Film Festival Packs Them In For Female Producer Panel

A great time was had by at Midwest Independent Film Festival’s Female Filmmakers Night with panelists Julia Reichert, Xan Aranda, and Christina Varotsis.


Julia Reichert, Co-Director, The Last Truck,
Ms. Reichert has been called a godmother of the American independent film movement and is a three time Oscar nominee. Her film GROWING UP FEMALE (with Jim Klein) was the firstfeature documentary of the modern Women’s Movement. It was chosen for inclusion on the National Film Registry. Her films UNION MAIDS and SEEING RED (with Klein) were both nominated for Academy Awards for Best Feature Documentary, as was THE LAST TRUCK, which will be making its Chicago Premiere this evening. Her film A LION IN THE HOUSE (with Steven Bognar, pictured together right) premiered at Sundance and won the Primetime Emmy for “Exceptional Merit in Nonfiction Filmmaking.”

Xan Aranda, Director, Andrew Bird: Fever Year
Ms. Aranda is an award-winning independent filmmaker affiliated with Kartemquin Films since 2007. Her directorial debut,ANDREW BIRD: FEVER YEAR, had its World Premiere at Lincoln Center as part of the prestigious New York Film Festival. The film is described by The Hollywood Reporter as “a gently illuminating look at a brilliant maverick musician… captured with grace and delicacy.” Also with Kartemquin, Xan is currently directing her next project, MORMON MOVIE, inspired by religious educational films her mother starred in while a student at Brigham Young University during the 1960s.

Christina Varotsis, Producer, Firefly Films
Producer credits for the Chicago-based Ms. Varotsis include the Sundance Film Festival selection THE MERRY GENTLEMAN, directed by and starring Michael Keaton, and the debut feature from Michigan-based TicTock Studios, TUG. Line producer credits include the SXSW selection THE PROMOTION, written and directed by Steve Conrad, starring John C. Reilly.

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