Glamour Magazine and Girlgaze Announce Winners of #NewView Film Competition

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Cindi Leive, left, and Amanda de Cadenet

The jury included HBO's Sheila Nevins, writer-producer Shonda Rhimes, actress Chloe Grace Moretz and more.

This year, Wonder Woman’s Patty Jenkins broke the glass ceiling for female directors, for the best worldwide opening of a film in history helmed by a woman. But unfortunately, she’s in rare company. 

Which is why Glamour magazine joined forces with the Girlgaze Project (whose mission is to close the gender gap for women behind the lens) on the #NewView Film Competition, announcing five winners today. Chosen by an esteemed jury that included Netflix vp content acquisition Bela Bajaria, actress Chloe Grace Moretz, president of HBO documentary films and family programming Sheila Nevins,Conde Nast Entertainment president Dawn Ostroff, writer-producer Shonda Rhimes, actress Tracee Ellis Ross, writer-director Jill Soloway, actress/recording artist Zendaya and more, five winning directors are being recognized for their three- to five- minute films out of 800-plus entries.

The films, which are being shown on Glamour.com and Girlgaze.tv, are Party Dress, directed by Molly Fisher; Q.U.E.E.N., directed by Brittany B.Monet Fennell; Pocket Sized Feminism, directed by Valerie Schenkman; The Black Mambas, directed by Jess Colquhoun; and The Looking Ceremony, directed by Fany de la Chica.

“We are here not just to bring you stories about women, but to bring you stories by women,” says Glamour Editor-in-Chief Cindi Leive, explaining why she teamed up with Girlgaze founder Amanda de Cadenet on the project, which aims to not only bring visibility to women filmmakers, but also to get them work.

Each winner will receive $3,000 in prize money, an additional $5000 from the Utah Film Center for supporting diverse voices of women in film, and perhaps most excitingly, a production budget to direct a short commercial video for Glamour or partner brands Birchbox, South Coast Plaza, LuMee and The Outnet.

For de Cadenet, a photographer/filmmaker who has hosted interviews with influential women on her multimedia platform The Conversation, and recently released her memoir, It’s Messy: Essays on Boys, Boobs and Badass Women, the film competition is the culmination of a longtime dream. “One thing I learned from being a part of many initiatives is that you don’t just want to talk about a problem, you want to offer a solution. We wanted to create something that made a tangible impact at the end of it, not only by providing a financial prize, but by allowing women to create a branded piece of work that anoints them as a branded director. That’s a great revenue driver.”

“We didn’t want sponsors just to throw names and logos on filmmakers, they had to go on to employ them,” adds Leive.

Getting the impressive jury together wasn’t actually too difficult, they say. “There are a lot of women who want to help women right now. And the fact that they are not just names, you know, but also influential women in the Hollywood power structure, that raised the level of the entries,” says Leive.

“I was blown away by the level of talent. I sat there at my kitchen table watching the finalists, after seeing numerous early rounds, and I’m laughing and crying," she says. The Looking Ceremony is about a young gypsy woman who lives in Andalusia (southern Spain) who must go through this ceremony where older women inspect her vagina to confirm her virginity. It’s a fascinating narrative film from a filmmaker who has roots in that area. Party Dress is about a tomboy who needs to put a dress on for the first time for a party. Q.U.E.E.N. is about a young woman dealing with emotional, mother-daughter issues and her mother comes to a poetry slam. Pocket Size Feminism is a film about this moment in time we are in for feminism, with a lot of women talking about their experiences and found footage of the Women’s March. And The Black Mambas is a true story about a group of women in South Africa in an antipoaching unit.”

Adds de Cadenet: “The stories that are being told are from the heart, and you can clearly see they are told through the female gaze. That's powerful.”

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