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UPDATE: SJ Chiro’s feature directorial debut Lane 1974 met with lovely Variety reviews while premiering at SXSW. Plot: A teenager has to grow up fast to save her family from its self-centered single mother in SJ Chiro's atmospheric '70s drama. Read the review here » It's 1974. 13-year-old Lane lives on a beautiful Northern California commune, wild and free, until her mother, a rebel and iconoclast, alienates their small group from the security and safety of the community land. They begin moving from one unlikely situation to another, leaving normal life far behind. Scrounging for food and hitchhiking, while her mother cadges cash and begs favors, Lane and her siblings rely on one another in an increasingly desolate and isolated emotional landscape. After a series of dangerous events, Lane must decide how to survive. SJ Chiro is executive producer and wrote the screenplay. See all credits here:

Lacey Leavitt, Mischa Jakupcak, Mel Eslyn produced the SXSW Grand Jury Prize documentary short Little Potato by directors Wes Hurley and Nathan M. Miller. Little Potato is an autobiographical doc about Seattle Capitol Hill artist Wes Hurley that tells the story of Little Potato's journey growing up gay in the Soviet Union before and after the fall of Communism, his mother's struggles to create a better life for them both, and their eventual escape to America via her becoming a mail-order bride.

Screenwriter: Wes Hurley
Cinematographer: Nathan M. Miller
Editor: Parsnip Millhouse
Production Designer: Christopher Balder
Sound Designer: Kristen Quebe
Music: Robyn Miller
Principal Cast: Wes Hurley, Elena Bridges, Benjamin Jakupcak, Matthew Cotner, Darlene Sellers
Additional Credits: Sound Mixer: Tara Neuman, PA: Keisuke Kobayashi, Gaffer: Mike Astle, Stills Photographer: Bronwen Houck, Wardrobe Designer: Harmony Arnold
plus an exclusive clip.

SJ Chiro's directorial debut feature Lane 1974 will premiere at SXSW. Her film is a coming of age story, an adaptation of Clane Hayward's memoir The Hypocrisy of Disco, the story of a mother and daughter (Katherine Moennig and Sophia Mitri Schloss) who leave their Northern California commune and find themselves involved in American countercultural life. Jennessa West produced and Mel Eslyn is Executive Producer. and

Lynn Shelton directed Netflix's Santa Clarita Diet, Strange or Just Inconsiderate. The series stars Drew Barrymore who also produces, and Timothy Olyphant Logline: Sheila and Joel, a married couple are real estate agents in Santa Clarita, California. When Sheila dies their lives take a dark turn. It's a zombie romp and buffet. Local Seattle actor Katie Hemming also makes an appearance in this episode.

Kay D. Ray is creating a new documentary: In Her Hands: Women in Jazz Today following her award-winning Lady be Good: Instrumental Women in Jazz. In Her Hands… celebrates and elevates women musicians. Kay Ray and Monika Herzig's team filmed The Whole World in Her Hands band at Birdland in NYC in December and will film interviews and a panel discussion on Women in Jazz in New Orleans in January at the Jazz Educators Conference. The In Her Hands…production is raising funds via and NWFF and needs help to make this story, that has the power to entertain and awaken awareness of the dynamic roles of women throughout the world come to the screen. Money raised will pay for the video concert, interviews, mentoring of students and a video trailer for grants and fundraising. Donations are tax deductible through fiscal sponsor Northwest Film Forum. Christopher Day

Laura Jean Cronin president of WIF Seattle, is Line Producer of the award-winning PBS program Biz Kid$, a ground-breaking educational TV show. BizKid$ teaches financial education and entrepreneurship to a preteen audience with kid hosts, sketch comedy and profiles of young business kids who've launched their own companies.

Megan Griffiths director, Lacey Leavitt and Jennessa West, producers have completed principle photography of the feature Sadie in January 2017. The story of Sadie, a young girl whose violent tendencies are stoked by the world she lives in and the media she consumes has historically featured a male protagonist at its center. The choice to focus this film on a young girl highlights the fact that choices we make as a society and as individuals have a profound impact on all children, boys and girls alike. Contributions to Sadie are 100% tax deductible and can be made via Northwest Film Forum. A portion of all donations benefit this fiscal sponsor. Megan Griffiths features include The Off Hours, Eden, Lucky Them and The Night Stalker.

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