A native of Tupelo, Mississippi, Tina Mabry graduated from the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts with an MFA in Film Production in 2005. While participating in Film Independent’s (FIND) Project: Involve, Tina finished developing and writing her short film, Brooklyn’s Bridge to Jordan, which she went on to direct. The film screened at more than fifty film festivals worldwide and won multiple Jury and Audience Awards as well as an award for Best Director. Brooklyn’s Bridge to Jordan aired on Showtime Networks, BET J (now Centric), and was voted the #1 film on the season finale of LOGO’s The Click List 2: Best in Short Film. Shortly after graduating from USC, Tina co-wrote the feature screenplay Itty Bitty Titty Committee, which was directed by Jamie Babbit (But I’m a Cheerleader). The film premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival (2007) and won Best Feature Narrative at the South by Southwest Film & Music Festival (2007). In 2008, Tina participated in the FIND’s Directors Lab with her feature film, Mississippi Damned; the film was later awarded the Kodak Film Grant. While playing on the festival circuit, Mississippi Damned garnered an impressive thirteen awards from participation in fifteen film festivals including awards for Best Feature Film and Best Screenplay at the Chicago International Film Festival (2009). The film premiered on Showtime Networks in February 2011. Tina was named among the “25 New Faces of Independent Film” in Filmmaker Magazine in July of 2009 and was recognized by Out Magazine as one of the most inspirational and outstanding people of 2009. She was featured in the Advocate magazine as part of their “Top Forty Under 40” issue, which features the top 40 individuals who are raising the bar in their respective fields. With over 300 nominated artists and only 50 selected artists, Tina was named the James Baldwin Fellow in Media by United States Artists, a national grant-making and artist advocacy organization, in December of 2010. Tina’s latest feature, County Line, was accepted into FIND’s 2010 Screenwriters Lab. In April 2011, the script participated in Tribeca All Access where it won the Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award. County Line also took part in FIND’s Fast Track, a film financing market, which was held during the Los Angeles Film Festival 2011. Concluding in June 2012, Tina participated in the Fox Writers Intensive, which is a highly selective writer’s initiative designed to introduce experienced writers with unique voices, backgrounds, life and professional experiences that reflect the diverse perspectives of FOX’s television and feature film audiences. Independent Television Service produced Tina’s latest short film, Crossover, as part of their FUTURESTATES program; a series of independent mini-features showing visions of what life in America will be like in decades to come. The film premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival (2012) and screened at the Urbanworld Film Festival (2013) and the Pan African Film Festival (2013). In February 2013, Tina was a fellow in the Sundance Institute’s Screenwriters Intensive. Tina is currently developing another film for the FUTURESTATES program, which is set to premiere Summer 2014.
Morgan R. Stiff
Producer / Editor
Morgan R. Stiff, a North Carolina native, graduated from the University of Southern California, School of Cinema-Television, with an MFA in Film Production in 2005 after receiving her BFA from New York University in Dramatic Writing in 2002. As a producer, Morgan has produced fiction and documentary films, as well as promotional videos. Producing projects include Porcelain (2004), which is currently being distributed by Iron Rod Motion Pictures, Inc.; Hip Hop Homos (LOGO Networks, 2004); the award-winning Brooklyn’s Bridge to Jordan (Showtime, LOGO, BET J, 2005); the award-winning feature documentary One Bad Cat: The Reverend Albert Wagner Story (Ovation TV, 2009), which she also edited; and the critically acclaimed and award-winning Mississippi Damned (Showtime 2011). In 2007, Morgan participated in the FIND Producer’s Lab with Mississippi Damned, which she also edited. As an editor, Morgan has worked on tributes, music videos, fiction films, and documentaries. Additional editing projects include Hope’s Choice (Showtime 2004) and Burn: One Year on the Front Lines of the Battle to Save Detroit, executive produced by Denis Leary and winner of the Audience Award at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival. Morgan is the Chief Production Officer of Morgan’s Mark, a production company dedicated to bringing marginalized stories to the mainstream. Her new feature, County Line, was accepted into FIND’s 2010 Screenwriters Lab as well as their 2011 Fast Track program. In April 2011, the script participated in Tribeca All Access where it won the Tribeca All Access Creative Promise Award.
Lee V. Stiff
Lee V. Stiff is the executive producer of Brooklyn’s Bridge to Jordan (2005). He is a university professor; co-author of elementary, middle grades, and high school mathematics textbooks; and a popular speaker about issues affecting the mathematics education of all children. He was also the executive producer of the second album of hip-hop artist, J.Bully and is owner of Sengar Properties, Inc., a real estate concern.
Meg Morman & Sunday Boling
They met in the Feature Casting office of 20th Century Fox, working on such films as Ice Age, Dude, Where’s My Car?, From Hell, One Hour Photo, Unfaithful, Behind Enemy Lines, and Big Momma’s House. They then entered the independent casting world, working with such casting directors as Sheila Jaffe, Debi Manwiller, Eyde Belasco and Francine Maisler. In late 2004, Meg and Sunny reunited and opened the door to Morman Boling Casting. To date, they have cast many films, including Waitress (starring Keri Russell, Nathan Fillion, Jeremy Sisto, Cheryl Hines and Andy Griffith), which premiered at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival and was subsequently picked up by Fox Searchlight, as well as Dr. Dolittle 3 and Like Mike 2 for 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment and Another Cinderella Story for Warner PremiereIn addition, Steal Me and Me & You & Everyone We Know, were both official selections of the 2005 Sundance Film Festival; Me & You & Everyone We Know also went on to win the Special Jury Prize for Originality of Vision as well as the Golden Camera Award at Cannes. Other credits include Serious Moonlight (starring Meg Ryan, Timothy Hutton, Justin Long and Kristen Bell), Ball Don’t Lie (starring Mykelti Williamson, Nick Cannon, Ludacris, Harold Perrineau, Rosanna Arquette, Emilie de Ravin, Cress Williams, Mathew St. Patrick), Small Town Saturday Night (starring Chris Pine, John Hawkes, Lin Shaye and Robert Pine), Oranges (starring Heather Locklear, Tom Arnold, Jill Hennessy, Tom Sizemore and Richard T. Jones), Loveless in Los Angeles (starring Dash Mihok, Brittany Daniels and Stephen Tobolowsky), and GI Jesus, winner of the Grand Jury Prize at Cinevegas, to name just a few.
Director of Photography
A native of Louisville, Kentucky, Bradford Young has lensed an impressive amount of independent shorts, features, documentaries, commercials and music videos. Bradford received his Bachelors of Arts and MFA from Howard University where he was the four-time winner of the prestigious Paul Robeson award for best cinematography. In 2002 Bradford was invited by IFP (Independent Feature Project) to participate in Project: Involve for his achievements in cinematography. Recently, Bradford wrapped on Black Sheep, White Lies (directed by James Spooner), which is his third feature as Director of Photography. Bradford has shot multiple music videos for several artists including the Foo Fighters and a documentary with Alicia Keys in South Africa. Young’s feature films as director of photography include Mississippi Damned (2010), Pariah (2011), Restless City (2011), Middle of Nowhere (2012), Ain’t Them Bodies Saints (2013), and Mother of George (2013). Bradford has won Cinematography Awards at the Sundance Film Festival twice. In 2011, he won for his work on Pariah. Two years later, he won for his work on both Mother of George and Ain’t Them Bodies Saints.
Aiyana Trotter has spent the last decade designing and working in film, television and theatre. She designed and painted for musicals, dramas, dance performance and puppetry shows in the San Francisco Bay Area until she became production designer for the award-winning independent film Half Life. Since then she has worked in the art department of several television hits such as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (ABC), It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (FX Network), and Ugly Betty (ABC). She has also worked on several independent films across the country. To learn more visit: www.aiyanatrotter.com
Ryan Adison Amen
Growing up either running through the Colorado mountains or with a trumpet practically glued to his lips, the young Ryan Adison Amen found he had an inextinguishable passion to play and create music. Coupled with his delight in movies and games, he was compelled to meld the two mediums. A graduate of the University Of Southern California’s Scoring for Motion Pictures and Television, Ryan now spends nearly all his time involved in creating music for the screen. As a team producer/composer at Glue Audio and as a freelance composer, Ryan has had the opportunity to score several feature films, numerous commercials, dozens of student films, and short subjects. For Ryan, the fun lies in collaborating with great people to create something unique. And then watching it and saying, is it me, or did you just get chills from that?