Alliance of Women Directors Announces 2024 Rising Director Fellowship Class

The Alliance of Women Directors (AWD) today announced the Rising Director Fellowship class of 2024. This year-long intensive fosters directors who have achieved substantial success in the short form space and have yet to direct a narrative feature film. The program will support these directors through educational and networking opportunities, mentorship, and the opportunity to create a Proof of Concept for their feature projects. The program will conclude with an Industry Screening of the shorts.

The directors chosen for the 2024 cycle are Josie Andrews, Christianna Carmine, Angela Cohen, Julie Herlocker, Jessica Liu, and Morgen Whiteman. Learn more about the directors’ projects below.

In this inaugural year of the program, AWD RDF is made possible by sponsorship from Panavision, ShotDeck, Peerspace, Final Draft, Coverfly, Chemical Wedding (the makers of Artemis Pro and Helios Pro), Scriptation, Line 204, Scriptation, and Wrapbook.

Each of the candidates for the program underwent rigorous vetting and were chosen from a finalist pool of 19 candidates. Finalists were interviewed by AWD Icon Members Hanelle Culpepper, Rosemary Rodriguez, Marta Cunningham, Rachel Goldberg, Kelly Park, Morenike Joela Evans, Deborah Kampmeier, and Lisa France, and Advisory Board Members Karen Horne and Wendy Mericle.

“The Rising Director Fellowship is an exciting addition to our current slate of Member Programming,” says Kylie Eaton, Co-Chair of the Board of Directors, and spearhead of the RDF program. “These six deserving directors are at an inflection point in their career. They have done the hard work and preparation to get to this point; AWD is proud to offer them this opportunity for the exposure and guidance needed to become the next groundbreaking feature directors. As with all of the work we do, our goal with this fellowship is to get women and nonbinary directors hired and get their projects made.”

“We are thrilled to welcome our inaugural class of talented and ambitious women directors into our Rising Director Fellowship program,” said Melanie Mack, Executive Director of the Alliance of Women Directors. “These women are the future of the industry, and we are committed to providing them with the support, resources, and mentorship they need to thrive in their careers. We are excited to see the incredible work they will create this year.”

MIRIAM, Josie Andrews
Set in the 1980s, MIRIAM follows what happens when the girl chosen to be the first Bat
Mitzvah of her orthodox community develops a secret passion for skateboarding and
the lengths she must go to be her true self. (written by Levi Alexander)

FLOWERS FOR IZZY, Christianna Carmine
After suffering a massive stroke, a promising young artist must overcome her physical
limitations and emotional scars before she can step into her light and evolved purpose.

A troubled children’s author travels to Ireland to settle her estranged father’s affairs,
hoping to heal her grief, only to have her reality stolen by Celtic spirits.

After his pregnant wife aids a law student on a road trip, a Tennessee pastor decides to
abduct the young woman when he discovers she’s headed to NYC to have an abortion.
The couple’s actions create a community-wide spiral of horrific consequences. (Written
by Cecile Callan)

Shirley is a banana (yellow on the outside, white on the inside) – she hates boba, fears
MSG, and only dates white guys – until she gets entangled with a new immigrant Asian
man who challenges her to confront her past and present.

AFRICAN.AMERICAN., Morgen Whiteman
A young, Black marketing executive is sent to Ghana for a work trip and finds herself in
an alternate dimension where her ancestors were never taken and enslaved in America.

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