Meet the Festival jurors for the GGA shorts, mid-length, documentaries, and new directors competitions. Also, a hearty thanks to our screeners, listed at the bottom of the page.
Additional Jurors are still being confirmed.
66th SFFILM Festival Jurors
Cristina Costantini is an Emmy award-winning director. Most recently, she co-directed The New Yorker animated film, The Originals. Her feature documentary Mucho Mucho Amor, about famed Puerto Rican astrologer Walter Mercado, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and on Netflix in 2020. The film was nominated for an Emmy and a Critics Choice Award. Her first feature film, Science Fair, won the Sundance Festival Favorite Award, a SXSW Audience Award, a Critics Choice Award and an Emmy. She is currently working on a series inspired by the feature film for National Geographic and Disney+. Cristina is a partner at Muck Media, a Los Angeles-based production company.
Emily Cohen Ibañez is a Latinx filmmaker based in Oakland who earned her doctorate in Anthropology at New York University. Her film work pairs lyricism with social activism, advocating for labor, environmental, and health justice. Her feature documentary debut, Fruits of Labor had its World Premiere at SXSW 2021.
Professor of Spanish & Portuguese and Film & Media. Her work focuses on photography, film and contemporary art, critical theory and aesthetics of both Spanish America and Brazil. She is the author of two books on photography. The first, Fotografia e Império. Paisagens para um Brasil Moderno (Cia das Letras, 2012) is a study of 19th Century photography in Brasil in its relationship to modern state formation, nationalism, modernization and race. The second, Depois da fotografia. Uma literatura fora de si (Rocco, 2014) is a study of contemporary literature in an expanded field, looking particularly at the relationship between current literary practices and photographic languages, techniques and materialities. With Jodi Roberts she has written two books, Photography at its Limits (OneEditionBooks, 2019) and The Matter of Photography in the Americas (Stanford University Press, 2018), as part of exhibition projects they co-curated. She has also curated NO SÉ (El templo del sol), a solo exhibition of Brazilian artist Nuno Ramos at the Parque de la Memoria in Buenos Aires in 2015, and is currently preparing an exhibition on the work of Waldemar Cordeiro with Rachel Price.
Jason Alarcón is a bilingual, queer, Latinx film editor from San Francisco. He discovered his passion as a teenager while producing a short documentary about his Peruvian father. Since graduating from Columbia University, he has assisted many series and films, including Oscar-nominated How to Survive a Plague, and Emmy Award-winning Independent Lens on PBS. While at Goodby, Silverstein & Co, he worked on multiple campaigns, including the “Not A Gun” initiative against systemic violence. Jason was an additional editor on CHASING, about a team of rowers, and an associate editor on Low Country: The Murdaugh Dynasty. He was a 2020 Sundance Art of Editing fellow and is currently a 2023 Karen Schmeer Editing fellow. At the Video Consortium Bay Area, Jason is a co-president where he champions local, diverse filmmakers. In the edit room and beyond, he continues to advocate for queer, women, trans, non-binary, disabled, racial minorities, and other underrepresented voices.
Chloe Gbai is an Emmy-nominated producer and creative exec on the Original Documentary Films team at Netflix. She joined Netflix from IF/Then Shorts at Field of Vision, a program that identifies and supports original, standalone short documentaries made by filmmakers working in and representing their communities. Previously, as the POV Shorts and Streaming Producer, she launched POV Shorts, which in its first season earned a documentary short Oscar nomination, two Emmy nominations, and an IDA Awards nomination for Best Short Form Series. She is a proud member of Brown Girls Doc Mafia, a 2020 Impact Partners Producing Fellow, a DOC NYC New Leader, and a member-in-residence of the Meerkat Media Collective. She’s into silly skincare fads, food fermentation, and is a lifelong New Yorker.
Landon Zakheim is a short film programmer for the Sundance Film Festival, the interactive curator & short film programmer for Denver Film, and the co-founder and co-director of the Overlook Film Festival, a four day celebration of all things horror held annually in New Orleans. Among a myriad of additional festival organizations for which he’s worked, he has been a core programmer for AFI Fest and the Philadelphia Film Festival, associate programmer for Tribeca, and was formerly both director of programming for Aspen ShortsFest and head of shorts for the now-defunct LA Film Festival. Many years ago, both of his short films screened at SFFILM. He is always ready to head to the nearest escape room.
Jason Ishikawa is a Senior Executive and Co-Head of Sales at Cinetic Media where he oversees worldwide distribution strategies for the company. Since joining in 2015, his responsibilities include working in across Cinetic’s financing, corporate and project consultation, and domestic sales arm for feature narrative and documentary films. Prior to joining Cinetic, Jason worked at The Film Sales Company where he was the Senior Director of Acquisitions, Financing and Sales. Jason is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and holds a BA in Cinema Studies.
Kyle Martin is an independent film Producer. His latest documentary project Descendant was recently shortlisted for a Best Documentary Oscar. He’s currently in production on a feature documentary about psychics with Director Lana Wilson, and Pink Soil with animation director Dash Shaw. His 2021 Dash Shaw’s animated feature Cryptozoo, won the Jury Prize in the Sundance Next section and was nominated for an Independent Spirit Award. Previous projects include the Independent Spirit nominee Donald Cried; the GKids 2017 release My Entire High School Sinking Into The Sea; and Lena Dunham’s Tiny Furniture (Independent Spirit Award Winner 2011). He is a recipient of the Sundance Institute’s Mark Silverman Producing Fellowship, the San Francisco Film Society’s Kenneth Rainin Foundation Fellowship, the Cannes Marche Du Film Producer’s Network Fellowship, the Sundance Institute/Rotterdam Cinemart Producing Fellowship, and was named one of Variety magazine’s “Ten Producers to Watch.”
Kathryn Everett is co-founder and head of film at premium non-fiction studio XTR. She is an award-winning filmmaker interested in the intersection of politics, philanthropy, and entertainment, and has raised, donated, and invested over $40M into documentary films and series. As an executive producer of both feature-length and short documentaries, Kathryn’s projects have been nominated for Oscars, and have won Emmy and Peabody awards. Kathryn is best known for her work as an executive producer on the Academy-Award nominated Ascension, the AppleTV+ docuseries They Call Me Magic, National Geographic Documentary’s The Territory, produced by Darren Aronofsky, and IFC Films’ critically acclaimed upcoming feature Lakota Nation vs. United States. Kathryn serves as a board member for Iqra Fund, a non-governmental organization that provides girls’ education by establishing high quality, self-sustaining school systems in the remote, mountainous regions of northern Pakistan.
Hillary Good has built her career discovering all corners of kids media. She currently produces content for the Minecraft franchise. Previously, Hillary led creative development for an award-winning interactive kids app, and got her start working on the Education team at SFFILM! But her favorite work has been collaborating with students in the classroom as a teaching artist. She cares most about using creativity, arts, and media to help children thrive.
Shakira Refos is an educator from The Netherlands who joined the California Film Institute’s Education Department by way of the Sarasota Film Festival, Sundance Institute and is additionally programming documentaries for 2023 Tribeca Festival. With a deep passion for storytelling Shakira attributes her drive for community, justice and common sense from the cultures of her Mother and Father hailing from Suriname and Trinidad respectively. Her career has been dedicated to empowering young independent thinkers through the exploration of art history and creative expression—prioritizing equitable praxis through engagements with film as well as demystifying the path for BIPOC students to becoming film fest administrators and curators.
Tracie Timmer is a freelance illustrator and museum professional from the Bay Area who specializes in children’s book illustration. She holds a Master’s Degree in Illustration from Academy of Art, San Francisco, and currently serves as the Public Programs Manager of The Walt Disney Family Museum, where she curates unique talks and events about Walt Disney’s life and legacy. In the past, she has worked as a painting instructor for both children and adults. Look for her children’s books, The Mermaid and the Moon, written by Susan Pace-Koch and Maggie Discovers the Rainbow written by Kara Navolio at a bookstore near you, as well as her freelance illustration work at www.ttillustrations.com, or on her Instagram @tracietillustrations.
Alonso Bernal is a Mexican American Cinematographer raised in Oakland and born in Berkeley. He studied film at Youth Beat, a non-profit film and animation program. He has an independent film company named ‘Waterson Studios’ and created in partnership with Lindsey Hoang, they currently have a film in production and a web series also in production with 4 episodes. He spoke at the NBC Bay Area/Telemundo48 ‘Dear Oakland’ event talking about his journey into film and his film company which they screened 4 of ‘Waterson Studios’ films.
Davia Ferree is a Sophomore at Galileo Academy of Science and Technology. They are an animation nerd on the tech side of film (lights, mics and cameras etc.) Davia was introduced to filmmaking through the Digital Communications program at their school. They fell into it by chance and are glad that they made the decision to stick with it!
Kaiya Jordan is an aspiring filmmaker based in Berkeley, CA. She attends Berkeley High School and is a member of SFFILM’s Youth FilmHouse Residency program. Holding a deep passion for film’s endless possibilities for creative and emotional expression, her films have showcased her perspective of humanity, relationships, and emotions in everyday life. She hopes to continue to pursue filmmaking and develop her creative voice and vision.
Steven Raven Liang is a writer-director from the San Gabriel Valley based in Berkeley, CA. Their current work explores the ripple effects of mass incarceration on Asian Americans and their families. Currently, they are developing the feature film, Godfrey’s Time, Out, which is supported by SFFILM, the California Arts Council, API RISE, and executive produced by Pulitzer Prize finalist, Kristina Wong. Previously, they were writer-producer at Warner Bros. Television.
Center for Asian American Media (CAAM)
CrequeVision Entertainment, LLC
Programmers + Screeners
SFFILM is grateful to all of the individuals who helped the Festival Programming team sift through thousands of submissions to this year’s edition.
Director of Programming
Associate Director of Programming
Print Traffic Manager
Guest Office Manager
Guest Office Coordinator
Festival Programmer — Features
Festival Programmer — Features & Shorts
Festival Programmer — Shorts
Festival Programmer — Features
Director of Education
2023 Festival Screeners
Oscar Arce Naranjo
Miguel Angel Cedeno Navarro
Machu LatorreEmily Li
Sarah NashDavid Ortiz
Diana Sánchez Maciel
Lee Ivy Voisin