Go backBack to selection

The American Pavilion Announces Its Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the 2022 Cannes Film Festival

in Festivals & Events
on May 10, 2022

The American Pavilion announced today the 2022 program of its Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the upcoming 2022 Cannes Film Festival. 33 films comprise this 25th anniversary edition, with the program screening at the American Pavilion along with finalist films from the 2020 and 2021 editions. All screenings with filmmakers in attendance with be accompanied by live Q&As.

From the press release:

The films in the Emerging Filmmaker Showcase focus on themes as diverse as the meaning of community, gender identity, the COVID-19 epidemic, self-perceptions and representation, the holocaust, the development and evolution cultural identity, family dynamics, the quest for love, and more. Beloved screen icons featured in the 2022 showcase series films include: Guillermo del Toro (Pan’s Labyrinth, The Shape of Water); Phil Lord (The Lego Movie, 21 Jump Street); Lee Unkrich, (Coco, Toy Story 3); Ian Buchanan (The Bold and the Beautiful); Lauren Ridloff (The Eternals, Sound of Metal); Danielle Savre (Station 19, Heroes); Vico Ortiz (Our Flag is Death); Melanie Nicholls-King (Billions, Little Fires Everywhere); Greer Grammar (Awkward); Jeremy Sisto (Wrong Turn); Billy Wirth (Shutter the Doors); Kausar Mohammed (4400), Victoria Atkin (Assassin’s Creed); with many more appearing in the 2020 and 2021 finalist projects.

“The 2022 cohort of student filmmakers and young talents brings us a richly diverse program including 24 female-identifying directors presenting 17 films, and 10 films focused on LGBTQ+ topics as well as many projects exploring the meaning of cultural identity,” said Julie Sisk, Founder and Director of The American Pavilion. “We are also thrilled to back in-person this year bringing the 2022 finalist filmmakers together with the talents from 2020 and 2021 to provide them the opportunity to screen during the 75th landmark edition of the Cannes Film Festival.”


The Show Must Go On
2021, 17:39 min., USA, Documentary
Producer/Writer/Director: Paul Grant, Nathan Crane Cohen
Cast: Jeff Whiting, Robin McGee, Sarah Timberlake, Bruce Barish
At the height of the Covid-19 Pandemic and in the midst of a PPE crisis, Broadway’s resilient community comes together to create the infrastructure to supply frontline medical workers with desperately needed hospital gowns.

Stoneheart: An Undying Gift
2021, 6:20 min., USA, Documentary
Director: Nicholas Markart
Producer: Stephen Hilfiker, Nicholas Markart
Cast: Stephen Hilfiker
Steve Hilfiker, a heart transplant survivor and father of four, describes his experience facing death, and how his perspective on life has forever changed following the fateful operation.


7 Lbs 8 Oz
2021, 7:08 min., USA, Animation/Comedy/Drama
Writer/Director: Yoo Lee
Producer: Xin Li, Evelyn Angelica Martinez
Cast: Frank Thon, Michelle Sohn, Robin Daniels
When a young mother moves into 8th street, Jersey City, NJ, she learns about the value of community and how her own perception determines her own experiences.

Charlie and the Hunt
2022, 14:31 min., USA, Family/Drama/Coming-of-Age
Writer/Director: Jenn Shaw
Producer: Dannielle Dormer, Anita M Cal, YJ Meira, Tema L Staig, Allison Vanore
Cast: Lauren Ridloff, Nifeoluwa Ramroop, Robert Artz
A young girl goes on a whimsical adventure and faces her fears while setting out to recover a sentimental family treasure.

The Errand
2022, 11:23 min., USA, Drama
Director: Amanda Renee Knox
Writer: Mira Olsson
Producer: Lara Aslanian, Amanda Renee Knox
Cast: Naya Johnson, Ezekiel Bridges, Toni Robison-May, Sean Gallagher
When a young girl hitchhiking is picked up by a stranger, who ends up taking whom for a ride?

My Gift
2021, 13:25 min., Australia, Drama
Writer/Director: Michael Raso
Producer: Michael Raso, JD Cohen
Cast: Luke Hoogendyk, Ridhi Prasad, Joshua Fisk, Catherine Ross, Jyotsna Sharma, Susan Ling Young
A young boy is admitted to a hospital for lifesaving treatment. He befriends a young Indian girl who hopes a cure is found to save him before it’s too late.

If My Voice Rang Louder than My Skin
2021, 4:46 min., USA, Animation
Writer/Director: Kyra Peters
In If My Voice Rang Louder Than My Skin a teenage boy craves a life where his skin no longer affects his daily experiences or how others perceive him. Using 2D animation, the film follows him through the streets of the Bronx, trying to unite his community’s voice through music to rally against the divisive hate against color.

2020, 10:04 min., USA, Drama
Writer/Director: Cedric Hill
Producer: Cedric Hill, Pandora Scooter, Daniel Philips
Executive Producer: Dany Bouchedid
DP: Valentina Caniglia
Cast: Max Lamadrid, Gabi Faye
Sam gets on the subway to get home. He catches the eye of April. The two of them discover they have way more in common than where they’re heading. Sometimes you need a noisy place to have a quiet conversation.

Shutter the Doors
2021, 13:23 min., USA, Drama
Writer/Director: Sheri Sussman
Producer: Antonio Cortese, Adam Rex
Cast: Ian Buchanan, Billy Wirth
Shutter the Doors, starring Ian Buchanan and Billy Wirth, is a short film that captures a moment in time of a man struggling to deal with an unexpected loss in his life.


Cans Can’t Stand
2022, 18:42 min., USA, Documentary/Social Justice/LGBTQ+, Yale University
Director: Matt Nadel, Megan Plotka
Producer: Matt Nadel, Wendi Cooper
Cast: Wendi Cooper, Milan Nicole Sherry, CANScan’tSTAND Activists
Since 1982, police have weaponized Louisiana’s Crime Against Nature by Solicitation (CANS) law to terrorize queer/trans Louisianians. CANS Can’t Stand follows a group of Black trans women in New Orleans who are fighting to repeal that law—and advance trans liberation statewide.

All the Young Dudes
2020, 8:39 min., USA, Drama/Historical/Music/LGBTQ+, Florida State University
Writer/Director: William Stead
Producer: Cameron Greco
Cast: Blake Lafita, Richie Gambardella
Georgia, USA, 1973. Glam rocker Billy rebels against his conservative high school, inspiring admiration from an unlikely ally with a desire to walk on the wild side…

2021, 3:46 min., USA, Animation/LGBTQ+, School of Visual Arts
Writer/Director: Carlos Taborda, Roshel Amuruz, Ashley Williams
In the streets of Cartagena, a young boy embarks on an adventure to find a flower for his crush and win his affection.

2021, 10 min., USA, Comedy/LGBTQ+
Director: Zoey Martinson
Writer: Zoey Martinson, Julie Sharbutt
Producer: Korey Jackson and Devin E. Haqq
Cast: Melanie Nicholls-King, Toryn Isabella Coote, Julius Sampson, Scarlett London Diviney
In this playful comedy, three kids worry that their beloved school bus driver will be lonely this summer without them. They set out to find her a partner and imagine the perfect matches.

Don’t Let Go
2021, 9:33 min., USA, Drama/LGBTQ+, University of Southern California
Writer/Director: Mel Orpen
Producer: Mehmet Gungoren
Cast: Tessa Hope Slovis, Joyce Lee, Lauren Lynn King, Susan Harmon
When Sam and Reggie get engaged, their future seems bright—until a terrible car accident leaves Reggie in a coma. Sam must confront Reggie’s homophobic mother to fight for a place at her hospital bedside before it’s too late.

Dotting the “I”
2022, 11:14 min., USA, Romance/Drama/Comedy/LGBTQ+
Writer/Director: Doug Tompos
Producer: Doug Tompos, Risa Bramon Garcia, Steve Braun Cast: Jeff Lorch, Miguel Perez
In the shadows of an empty office, the poetry of an unlikely kiss helps two men discover a love lost and a love never found.

Imperfectly Complete
2021, 14:46 min., USA (Subtitles), Drama/Romance/LGBTQ+, University of Southern California
Writer/Director: Bruce Chiu
Producer: Victor Tsao, Chrissy Aung
Cast: Chrissy Aung, Zaw Myo Htet
Lucy has been taking care of Owen, a blind guitarist she has admired for years. When Owen is about to get his vision back, Lucy faces the struggle of whether to reveal her true identity to Owen.

Noah’s Song
2021, 2:57 min., USA, Animation/Romance/LGBTQ+, Vassar College
Producer/Writer/Director: Damián Bonito Zapien
Noah’s Song is an animation film about a transgender man coming out to his partner.

Second Team
2020, 10:27 min., USA, Comedy/LGBTQ+
Director: Ria Pavia
Writer: Anni Weisband
Producer: Mayon Denton, Julia Armine, Robert E. Arnold, Anni Weisband
Cast: Francia Raisa, Danielle Savre, Gigi Zumbado, Greer Grammar, Phill Lewis, Chester Lockhart, Sally Brooks, Akil Jackson, Alexander True Snyder, Catfish Jean, Melissa Greenspan
A scorned stand-in actor for a hit TV show distorts the script to publicly undress her costar.

The Syed Family Xmas Eve Game Night
2021, 11 min., USA, Comedy/LGBTQ+
Director: Fawzia Mirza
Writer: Kausar Mohammed
Producer: Amalia Mesa-Gustin, Kausar Mohamed
Cast: Kausar Mohammed, Vico Ortiz, Meera Rohit Kumbhani, Pia Shah, D’Lo Srijaerajah
All cards are on the table when a queer Pakistani Muslim woman brings her Puerto Rican partner home for the first time on the family’s annual game night.


Bad Hombrewood
2021, 23:45 min., USA, Documentary, University of Southern California
Director: Guillermo Casarin
Producer: Marian Cook, Santos Herrera
Cast: Phil Lord, Lee Unkrich, Guillermo del Toro, Melissa Fumero, Ben Lopez, Dr. Laura Isabel Serna, Leslie Arcos, Osiris Pichardo, Jenniffer González Martinez, Anabel Iñigo, Santos Herrera, Guillermo Casarín
For decades, the film industry has confined minorities to stereotypical characters. Now, filmmakers fight to change the Latinx role in Hollywood.

2020, 23:30 min., USA, Documentary, University of Southern California
Director: Ryan Mekenian
Producer: Daniel Sheahan, Stephen Tonti
Cast: Jeremy Sisto (Narration)
For Los Angeles natives living in the early 1900’s, bicycles and streetcars shared the road as our primary modes of transportation. But the arrival of the freeway effectively wiped them out. Today, a collective of cycling communities fight for protected bike lanes and road safety; determined to bring a new era of mobility justice to the city.


Message Sent
2021, 4:13 min., USA, Animation/Comedy, Cal State University Northridge
Producer/Writer/Director: Ryan C. Lopez
Cast: Ryan C. Lopez, Danielle Della Porta
When Steven struggles to make his feelings for Liza clear, his cell phone comes to life and encourages him to make the most important decision of his young adult life, to trust himself, and take a leap of faith.

Mother in the Mist
2021, 20:51 min., China, Drama, University of Southern California
Writer/Director: Kay Niuyue Zhang
Producer: Robin Zhongyu Wang, Kay Niuyue Zhang Co-Producer: Eris Zhao, Jiayun Li
Cinematographer: Jiang Du
Cast: Shen Shiyu, Wang Xiwen
Following Wuhan’s Coronavirus lockdown, a rural single mother embarks on a dangerous journey in search of her preemie newborn baby stranded in Wuhan City Hospital. Against a harsh, grim winter night, she trudges through trials and tribulations, fighting a way around checkpoints. Joining her path is a mysterious eight-year-old girl, who shares the same determination to reunite with her mother in the city. When She finally almost gets to Wuhan, we realize things are not as it seems…

Over My Dead Body
2020, 25 min., USA (subtitles), Drama/Comedy/Family, New York Film Academy
Producer/Writer/Director: Meital Cohen Navarro
Cast: Mary Apick, Nakta Pahlevan, Bahram Vatanparast, Afshin Katanchi, Mahsa Shamsa
When a young Jewish Persian-American woman tells her parents that her fiancé is Muslim, they make her choose between him and them.

The War Within
2021, 25 min., USA (subtitles), Drama, Santa Monica College
Writer/Director: Marta D’Ocon
Producer: Marina Coutinho, Catharine Dada,
Cast: Sabrina Hartmann, Alan Corvaia, Laura Urgelles, Damián Delgado
Somewhere in Latin America, a young woman joins a guerrilla army when her entire family is massacred by government troops. She initially thrives, finding strength and independence as a deadly sniper. But her newfound sense of purpose and self-respect come with a high price.

Wuhan Driver
2021, 14:14 min., USA, Drama, New York University
Writer/Director: Tiger Ji
Producer: Alena Svyatova, Jonathan Sanger
Cast: Wayne Chang
At the beginning of the pandemic, a Chinese driver in New York struggles to make ends meet as he picks up passengers on a long and dreary night.


A Prayer for My Mother: The Eva Brettler Story
2022, 9:58 min., USA, Animation/Documentary, The Righteous Conversations Project
Director: Ruben Barrett, Raisa Effress, Sophia Evans, Lauren Fuchs, Katie Hadsock-Longarzo, Ian Kim, Eve Levy, Timothy Lim, Asher Meron, Marlon Ochoa, Bella Rahi, Hank Schoen, Olivia Uzielli
Producer: C. Lily Ericsson, Carter Beardmore, Sophie Kim
Exec Producer: Cheri Gaulke, Samara Hutman
Cast: Eva Brettler
The extraordinary saga of Holocaust survivor Eva Brettler told through personal testimony and animation. Young Eva survives two concentration camps and the destruction of her family to emerge, with a tender heart and faith intact, crediting the goodness of caretakers she encountered along the way.

Devil Bean
2021, 10:36 min., Australia, Comedy, St. Matthews Catholic School
Director: Jessica Nipperess
Writer: Sam Paine
Cast: Sam Paine, Stella Morgan, Reneé French, Charlie French
After gifting a coffee machine to their father on Christmas, this picture-perfect family is thrown into the jaws of a horror-come-anti-drug flick as their dad’s addiction tears the family apart.

2021, 7:49 min., USA, Drama/Coming of Age, Glendale High School
Writer/Director: Sofie Verweyen
Cast: Lilah Hayes, Erinn Hayes, Victoria Atkin, Jack Hayes, Maggie Hayes, Eva Langsdorff
A personal, subjective journey into the mind of Greta Thunberg, before realizing her calling as a climate activist. While struggling with mental health issues and bullying because of Asperger’s Syndrome, she also grapples with a sense of impending doom due to the climate crisis. These same struggles and fears drive her to push for change and become the person she is today.

2021, 11:51 min., USA, Drama, Orange County School of the Arts
Writer/Director: Ethan Chu
Producer: Ava Encinas
Cast: Khoi Le, Julie Tong, Antone Axten
After building a seemingly successful life, a man must come to terms with the melancholic truth that he has detached from his Vietnamese culture and subsequently his grandmother, both of which he once held a close relationship with. His grief pushes him through a journey of reflection which reveals to him the perfect recipe to restore the once lost connection.

2021, 13:21 min., USA, Drama, Pacifica Christian High School
Writer/Director: Andreas Mickelopoulos, Garrett Seabold
Cast: Isai Palomares, Charlotte Shays, Robert Pitts, Nicolas Kolesnikow
Three high school boys’ night of prank calls quickly develops into a matter of life and death when an unsuspecting classmate answers the phone.

Sydney 2078
2021, 9:36 min., Australia, Sci-Fi/Drama, Balgowlah Boys Campus
Producer/Writer/Director: Brady O’Sullivan
Cast: Gordon Carroll
A teenage boy from Sydney’s Northern Beaches, with a fascination for science fiction movies and novels has a vision during the night, leading him on an inter-dimensional endeavour into the future.

Think Like a Filmmaker
2021, 6:20 min, USA, Documentary, Saint Ann’s School
Producer/Director: Eli Berliner
Cast: Alan Berliner
Eli Berliner turns the camera on his father, Alan, a personal documentary filmmaker, whose new body of work approaches sculpture through the eyes of a filmmaker.

© 2024 Filmmaker Magazine. All Rights Reserved. A Publication of The Gotham