Mar 28, 2022
We are thrilled to to welcome a new group of Bay Area–based storytellers to take up residence at FilmHouse, SFFILM’s dynamic shared workspace for independent filmmakers. FilmHouse residencies, made possible by the Kenneth Rainin Foundation with additional funding from the San Francisco Film Commission and the San Francisco Foundation, supports both narrative and documentary projects (including features, shorts, and series) by providing 12-month residencies to filmmakers actively engaged in various stages of production.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the FilmHouse residency moved to a virtual workspace in 2020. For 2022, we have opened the doors of the FilmHouse once again, following all SF Public Health COVID guidelines, to support the filmmakers throughout their residency period. FilmHouse is the only year-round artist residency program of its kind. FilmHouse residents will be provided special access to established industry professionals offering artistic guidance and support from their various areas of expertise. Other resident benefits will include a robust guest speaker series, featuring lectures and presentations by leading industry professionals; workshops led by prominent filmmakers and other members of the independent film industry; peer-to-peer support; work-in-progress screenings; bi-weekly production meetings; access to meaningful networking opportunities; and numerous other community-building programs.
The selection committee for the 2022 FilmHouse Residents were:
Masashi Niwano, SFFILM Director of Artist Development
Joshua Moore, SFFILM Artist Development Manager of Documentary Projects
Rosa Morales, SFFILM Artist Development Associate Manager of Narrative Projects
Sabrina Sellers, SFFILM Artist Development Coordinator
Manijeh Fata, Acting Executive Director of Film SF
Maria Victoria Ponce, Writer/ Director and Former FilmHouse Resident
Tom E. Brown, writer/ director/ producer Creative Advisor
We are excited by the diversity of identities represented in this group and noted that what these unique filmmakers have in common are their innovative and urgent stories that ponder where we are going and consider where we have been. We are honored to provide support and guidance to these promising local filmmakers as they craft their stories and we look forward to helping share their work with the world.
— 2022 FilmHouse Residents Selection Committee
Now let’s meet the residents that will be taking their projects to the next stage — whether it be screenwriting or post-production — at FilmHouse in 2022!
Hannah’s Family — Narrative Short
Hannah’s Family is a series of vignettes about the plurality of the Asian American experience within the bounds of one family. Although they live under one roof, each family member goes out to experience the world in ways completely unique to themselves.
Jessica Zitter & Cheo Tyehimba Taylor
The Chaplain of Oakland — Documentary Feature
Frustrated by watching Black patients needlessly suffer in hospitals due to end-of-life healthcare inequities, a crusading hospital chaplain works to transform an unfair healthcare system, one patient at a time.
Inês Pedrosa e Melo
The dark knot at the center (working title) — Documentary Short
In this unusual road movie set against American landscapes, an anonymous collective of women narrates their personal experiences with traveling long distances to access abortion care. Their voices reshape the road and the vast scenery around it, shedding light on realities of womanhood, sexuality and health care access in contemporary America.
Curse of the Mutant Heirloom — Documentary Feature
What happens when WWII trauma and a genetic mutation collide in the suburbs of New Jersey? That’s what filmmaker Debra Schaffner is trying to figure out as she attempts to connect with her estranged mother who is battling ovarian cancer.
LaTajh Weaver & Hillary Pierce
Queerling Series — Narrative Episodic
After taking a cushy tech job to make ends meet, 25-year-old, Queer, Oakland native struggles to stay morally grounded while benefitting from the same luxuries that are destroying her community.
Rolling Stone — Narrative Feature
A disaffected music journalist assumes the identity of a rising rap star.
Still Waters — Documentary Short
A daughter asks her mother a question about her mother’s childhood. Her answer begs them to wade through its rippling effects throughout their lives.
John Juan — Narrative Feature
At 15, nerdy bookworm John Lopez is “too Mexican,” for his old private school and “too white” at his new public high school. When John meets Sandra, a militant LatinX activist, he struggles to impress her, and so reinvents himself as “Juan, Super woke Latino.”
Mestizx: Aquí y Allá — Documentary Feature
Searching for ways to protect his daughter from the intergenerational trauma of immigration, a first-generation Latinx father travels along the U.S./Mexico border to record Indigenous and immigrant perspectives and chart a world where borders are inconsequential.
Kevin Wong & KarYin Tham
Home Is A Hotel — Documentary Feature
A composite portrait of housing inequality and community resilience, Home Is A Hotel exposes the human cost of housing insecurity through the eyes of 5 diverse San Francisco residents living in SROs.
Cousins — Narrative Feature
Follow the lives of three kids coming of age in the ghettos of Oakland, CA as they are sent on a wild adventure after one of their cousins escapes house arrest (think “Boyz N Da Hood” mixed with “Stand By Me”).
Joy and Pain — Narrative Feature
An exploration of two families, through a young couple burying a parent and bearing their first child.
Untitled Feature — Narrative Feature
When his estranged father moves back to town with a new family during summer break, a teenage boy is forced to reconcile with his complicated reality.
Untitled Prison Hunger Strike Film — Documentary Feature
A documentary film about the rise and fall of long-term solitary confinement in California prisons.
Doha Girls — Narrative Episodic
Three teen girls navigate the revelations and confusions of high school life amidst the ultra-conservativeness of the oil-rich monarchy of Qatar.
Shao Min Chew Chia
The Plutonians — Narrative Feature
When the official definition of the word “planet” puts Pluto under threat of expulsion, ninth planet expert Alvin Gibbs swoops into a sleepy international astronomy conference to save it. Bullying his peers with increasingly desperate ploys, Alvin fails to win this debate but rediscovers why Pluto matters to him in the first place.
Holder of the Sky — Documentary Feature
Holder of the Sky is a story of colonization’s continuum in modern-day America, documenting one tribe’s pursuit to reclaim historic treaty territory in Wisconsin, in the face of longstanding racism and lingering land lust.
Wei Keong Tan
Skin Coat — Narrative Animated Feature
A son forces his male lover to wear a woman’s skin coat in order to enter his home village to see his aging parents. After the death of his father, the short visit turns painfully unbearable for the trio who have to make sacrifices to protect the ones they love.
For more information about SFFILM’s artist development programs, visit sffilm.org/makers.