Directors put Women in Focus


A half-dozen of Hollywood's most notable female directors will convene April 17 for the ninth annual Women in Focus conference at Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts in Orange, Calif.

Martha Coolidge ("Valley Girl"), Catherine Hardwicke ("Twilight"), Jocelyn Moorhouse ("A Thousand Acres"), Kimberly Peirce ("Stop-Loss"), Sanaa Hamri ("Something New") and Penelope Spheeris ("Wayne's World") will be the guests of honor. Kira Davis of 8:38 Prods. will moderate the panels.

This year's sessions, which focus on directing, encourage dialogue between emerging and established women in the industry. The first panel, "Career Paths," will include clips from the directors' films and discussion about what it takes to break into the industry. The second, "Directing the Vision," will entail the panelists examining the challenges of directing.

"The directors for this year's conference are stellar players in their fields," Dodge professor and conference organizer Alex Rose said. "These women in film inspire both students and community members alike as they enlighten us with details of their professional experiences, insights, career tips and behind-the-scenes revelations."

There also will be a scholarship presentation and an informal networking mixer. All events are free and open to the public. (partialdiff)