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Jurors Dianna Agron, Effie T. Brown, Cara Delevingne, Mary Harron, Rachel Morrison, and Paula Weinstein Award ROSA Full Production Funds Along with Support From Tribeca Studios

NEW YORK, NY– October 18, 2018– Tribeca Enterprises and CHANEL concluded the fourth annual THROUGH HER LENS: The Tribeca Chanel Women's Filmmaker Program, announcing the recipient who will receive full production funding for her original short film at a cocktail reception this evening in New York City.

Writer/director Suha Araj and producer Maryam Keshavarz were selected by the jury to receive the production grant, along with production support from Tribeca Studios. In addition, the other four writer/directors in the program each received a development grant to support continued work on their respective films to bring them closer to production. A total of $100,000 in filmmaker grants was awarded amongst the five projects.

Following an intensive, three-day workshop, the filmmakers from the five projects selected pitched their projects to a jury comprised of: actor/director Dianna Agron (“Glee,” Berlin, I Love You), producer Effie T. Brown (FOX’s “Star,” Dear White People,“Project Greenlight”), actor Cara Delevingne (Suicide Squad, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets), writer/director Mary Harron (Charlie Says, American Psycho, “Alias Grace”), cinematographer Rachel Morrison (Black Panther, Mudbound), and producer Paula Weinstein (“Grace and Frankie,” The Perfect Storm, Recount).

“THROUGH HER LENS: The Tribeca Chanel Women’s Filmmaker Program is where women help women. Through mentorship, through encouragement, through creating a space for women’s voices to be heard,” said Paula Weinstein, EVP of Tribeca Enterprises. “The past three days have been rewarding for all the participants and mentors involved. We congratulate writer and director Suha Araj and producer Maryam Keshavarz, and thank all of the women in the industry who generously came together for this program.”

“This was a very difficult decision. Each of the projects brought us into new worlds and all of them have subject matters that deserve to be seen,” said the jury. “We selected a project that for us was the most unexpected, that offered a unique vision and cultural perspective. In this climate when the view of the immigrant experience can be so polarizing, this is a story that hit a universal chord. It gives fresh insight into our cultural landscape in a way you haven’t seen before.”

The winning project, ROSA, is centered on Rosa who, while working at her aunt's flower shop, takes her job underground when she begins a side business of shipping undocumented bodies to their home countries for burial.

“I’m thrilled and touched. This story comes from a very personal place and I hope to connect with a lot of different communities with this project,” said ROSA writer/director Suha Arajwere. These three days with the THROUGH HER LENS program have been so supportive and have helped me sharpen this story and has created an amazing network of women who I hope grow with. I’m so grateful to Tribeca and CHANEL for putting a genuine effort behind new voices.”

The announcement wraps up a powerful program, presented by Tribeca and CHANEL, in collaboration with Pulse Films, and facilitated by Tribeca Film Institute® (TFI), which offered the participants project support, one-on-one mentorship, peer-to-peer sessions, and master classes on directing, costume design, composing, producing, and the actor/director relationship. The women filmmakers selected for the program were:

The leadership committee for the program, in addition to the jury, included the following:

MASTER CLASS ADVISORS: Costume designer Stacey Battat (The Beguiled, Still Alice), casting director Ellen Chenoweth (The Goldfinch, No Country For Old Men), writer/director Debra Granik (Leave No Trace, Winter’s Bone), composer Laura Karpman (Paris Can Wait, Underground), and cinematographer Rachel Morrison (Black Panther, Mudbound).

MENTORS: Director/producer Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty), actor/director/producer Courteney Cox (“Cougar Town,” “Friends”), producer and TFI Executive Director Amy Hobby (What Happened, Miss Simone?, Secretary), writer/director Stella Meghie (Everything, Everything, The Weekend), writer/director/executive producer Veena Sud (“The Killing,” “Seven Seconds”), and producer Christine Vachon (Carol, Far from Heaven).

WRITING MENTORS: Producer Stephanie Allain (Beyond the Lights, Dear White People),writer/executive producer Janine Sherman Barrois (“Claws,” “Criminal Minds”), writer/director Susanna Fogel (The Spy Who Dumped Me, Life Partners), writer Jenny Lumet (Rachel Getting Married, Untitled Monsters Franchise for Universal Studios), and writer/executive producer Marti Noxon (“Sharp Objects,” “UnREAL”).

About the recipients:
Suha Araj creates films that explore the displacement of immigrant communities. The Cup Reader, shot in Palestine, screened at the Tribeca Film Festival and was awarded The Next Great Filmmaker Award at the Berkshire International Film Festival and Baghdad International Film Festival. Araj followed with Pioneer High in 2015. She has received support for her work from the Sundance Film Festival, TorinoFilmLab, Independent Filmmaker Project, Berlinale Talent Project Market, Center for Asian American Media and Cine Qua Non Lab.

Maryam Keshavarz is a writer, director and producer whose short The Day I Died won the Gold Teddy and Jury Prize at the Berlin International Film Festival. Keshavarz’s first feature, Circumstance, won the Sundance Film Festival’s Audience Award and was distributed theatrically by Participant Media and Roadside Attractions. Her sophomore feature — Viper Club, starring Susan Sarandon — world premiered at Toronto International Film Festival and hits theaters this month.


Tammie Rosen – Tribeca Enterprises – 212.941.2003,
Annie Buck – CHANEL – 404.771.8501

Tribeca Enterprises is a multi-platform storytelling company based in New York City. Established in 2003 by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff, Tribeca provides artists with unique platforms to expand the audience for their work and broadens consumer access to experience storytelling, independent film and media. The company operates a network of branded entertainment businesses including the Tribeca Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival International, and Tribeca Studios. In 2014, The Madison Square Garden Company acquired a 50% stake in Tribeca Enterprises, bringing together two of New York's most important cultural and entertainment icons to enhance the reach and impact of both brands.

CHANEL, the international luxury goods company, was founded in France by Gabrielle Chanel at the beginning of the last century. The company, which is privately held, offers a broad range of luxury products, including Ready-to-Wear, fragrance, cosmetics, leathergoods, accessories, fine jewelry and watches, through a U.S. network of 24 boutiques and approximately 91 locations at select retailers. CHANEL is also renowned for its Haute Couture collections presented in Paris. CHANEL maintains 190 fashion boutiques worldwide, including the legendary House of CHANEL on rue Cambon in Paris. Under the creative guidance of designer Karl Lagerfeld, the House of CHANEL remains dedicated to luxury, fashion, style and image.

CHANEL opened its very first watch boutique avenue Montaigne in 1987 for the launch of the Première watch. The boutique was then transferred to place Vendôme in 1990, displaying also from 1993 the new CHANEL Fine Jewelry creations. Since 1997, the flagship Watch and Fine Jewelry boutique sits at 18, place Vendôme. There are 12 boutiques featuring fine jewelry collections in the U.S. and 52 Watch and Fine Jewelry boutiques worldwide.


TFI partners with storytellers and joins them in breaking barriers of access, exposure, and sustainability in the media landscape. The Institute prioritizes creators whose points of view have been marginalized due to race, gender, sexuality, class, and/or politics. Through grants, mentorship, industry connections, and professional development, TFI helps to ensure that storytellers from a multitude of backgrounds have access to the resources and tools they need to tell their stories, connect with audiences, and thrive in their careers. The Institute's educational programming leverages an extensive film community network to cultivate the next generation of storytellers. Through customized mentorships and curriculum-aligned film screening workshops, TFI provides New York City public school students with media literacy skills necessary to be creative and thoughtful global citizens. TFI was founded by Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, and Craig Hatkoff in the wake of September 11, 2001 and is a 501(c)(3) year-round nonprofit arts organization.


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