Meet Your New Filmmakers-in-Residence!

Before the 40th Atlanta Film Festival's Opening Night screened Rob Burnett's "The Fundamentals of Caring" to a sold out crowd, it unveiled the four local filmmakers selected to begin three-year residencies with the Atlanta Film Society. The Filmmaker-in-Residence program began in 2014 with intent to support local, accomplished filmmakers and make their lives as career filmmakers more viable.

Filmmakers-in-Residence are selected from Atlanta Film Festival alumni who live in the metro-Atlanta area. The three-year residency gives access to resources, support and attention to the filmmaker. In exchange, Residents are required to make public presentation of their core work, perform educational service to the community and serve as ambassadors of the Atlanta Film Society to the public.

Congratulations again to Jared Callahan, Molly Coffee, Babacar Ndiaye and Marcus Rosentrater—our first chapter selected from a competitive application process. Read on to learn more about their future projects, Netflix queues, and what Atlanta means to them.


 JARED CALLAHAN

JARED CALLAHAN

What's the last movie you watched on Netflix? What's next up in your queue?
Amelie. Finish House of Cards Season 4 (I know I'm behind, but I've been working and there is so much great content being made right now, I am trying to get used to the feeling of constantly not having watched everything I want to have seen). 

What about the FIR program most excites you?
Having people with different perspectives and areas of expertise to bounce ideas around with; we are better in community. 

What are the highlights of your 2016 project roster?
I am currently editing a short about a 19 year old whose family is voting for Trump but she doesn't feel like that might be the right thing to do. We are moving into production on a feature documentary following men in drug recovery as they try to get sober and make a short film that tells their story of recovery. We also just wrapped principal photography on an experimental feature doc, which I'll be excited to talk about as soon as we are allowed to go public with it. And the feature documentary that I premiered at the ATLFF in 2015 comes out in select theaters and online in June 2016. 

What communities/audiences/networks do you venture to affect primarily?
Each project is different. I pick projects and subjects that push me to grow and expand what I think about the world, then I hope they cause more people to do the same. I want to make work that challenges people to see themselves and others as more diverse and valuable than we thought it was previous to the screening. Hearing, watching, and truly absorbing the story of another human is a transformational experience. If we can understand the plight of the "other" than they cease to be "other." 

Are you what you want to be when you grow up?
My 94 year old grandmother said she still feels about 18 but trapped in an old persons body. I can acknowledge that I am growing in maturity and wisdom, and that my body is starting to break down (sigh) I guess that's the literal definition of growing up, huh? Well, in that case, I just want to do more of the same (laugh). 


 MOLLY COFFEE

MOLLY COFFEE

Who are your three most significant creative influences?
Undoubtedly my first influence is Wayne White.  Beginning with the work he did designing Pee Wee's Playhouse to everything since.  His puppets and art and aesthetic design are such an obvious part of my world that I create in.

Second I would say is Edgar Wright. His films aesthetically, tonally and more specifically in spirit are something to aspire to.  He also is pretty forthcoming with his processes and I constantly try to figure out how to manipulate them to make me a better filmmaker.  

Third I would say Yann Tiersen.  He is a music composer most well known for the soundtrack of the film Amelie. I started playing the accordion because of his music and you can hear influences from it in all of the films I make. 

What's the last movie you watched on Netflix? What's next up in your queue?
Most recently I watched Dope!  So great. I am working on the tv series "Atlanta" and one of our actors Keith Stanfield really does steal every scene that he is in.  I had to watch Dope as soon as it was available to see him in it.  Next up in my queue is Harmontown, the documentary about creator Dan Harmon.  He really gets this bad rap for being difficult but I think some of it is that he is just so painfully candid that it makes everyone around him uncomfortable.  And you can't deny he is a great and weird writer.

What sets Atlanta or Georgia apart for you?
I love this community.  I had a few opportunities many years ago when I was just getting started offered to me to go work in tv in LA or Albuquerque and I turned them both down. It wasn't the promise of the tax incentive at that time bc that was still a baby but how up until that point every experience had told me that here in Atlanta, you get from this industry EXACTLY what you put into it.  And all of these years later, I stand by it.

What are the highlights of your 2016 project roster?
Obviously my feature.  Our Podcast has had some really cool things happening recently as our guests get bigger and better. We've been getting invitations to attend events along with legitimate press figures.  And in particular, there are some ladies in my Film Fatales group that also are putting together projects that they hope to shoot by the end of this year and it makes me almost as excited to help them with resources and art dept services as it does to make my own things.  We really have some brilliant and strong lady filmmakers in this town.  

What about the FIR program most excites you?
I plan to make my feature soon, hopefully at the end of this year.  I can't wait for the ways that this program are going to be a part of that process.  Every time I get to talk about my film, I am that much closer to getting to make it.  The Atlanta Film Society are some of the most genuinely nurturing people who really are fans of people that make films.  I am always excited to be around what they are doing.


 BABACAR NDIAYE

BABACAR NDIAYE

 

 

 

What sets Atlanta or Georgia apart for you?
Atlanta is a city that is unlike anywhere else in the world. The rapidly progressing infrastructure along with its diverse population and southern hospitality allow for it to be the perfect melting pot of art and culture . I'm honored to live in and grow with the city and I'm excited to see what the future holds for Atlanta.

What communities/audiences/networks do you venture to affect primarily?
I want my work to affect all audiences and communities but I often choose to tell the stories of communities that are under-represented in the media. I feel like these communities hold many important and inspirational stories and I hope to help shine a light on them.

What are your three most significant influences?
My 3 most significant creative influences are writer/artist Frank Miller, director Abel Ferrara, and the Wu-Tang Clan.        
         
What's the last movie you watched on Netflix? What's next up in your queue?
The last movie I watched on Netflix was "Love", directed by Gaspar Noe. Next in my queue you'll find "Look Who's Back" directed by David Wnendt.       

What excites you most about the FIR program?
I'm most excited to collaborate with the talented and diverse staff of the Atlanta Film Festival, and with my fellow filmmakers and residents. Showcasing the resulting works to the Atlanta Film Community will be the icing on the cake!           


 MARCUS ROSENTRATER

MARCUS ROSENTRATER

What's the last movie you watched on Netflix? What's next up in your queue?
White God. Galaxy Quest. I watched Galaxy Quest a while ago. Why is it still in “My List” Why do I have to scroll through all these movies before I get to "my list"? Can someone help me do Netflix? I hated White God, BTW.

What sets Atlanta or Georgia apart for you?
It’s my Adult Life city. Whoa. I mean, the city where I started my life as an adult, away from my home in Denver. I don’t really have anything else to compare it too. I chased a girl here when I was 21, over a decade later I’m married, have a kid, have made a number of short films and one feature. The people I’ve met here are the primary ingredients to who I’ve become and what I’ve been allowed to accomplish. 

One thing I’ve noticed since I’ve gotten here, and maybe I just arrived at the right time, but it seems like if you want something to exist, you just do it. No one waits at the gate to stop you. There are no gates. There isn’t a lot of competition. People are hungry for cool stuff. As long as you set your expectations at a reasonable level, you can make things happen here. It’s a fertile city to blossom. I guess that’s why everyone has allergies.

What are the highlights of your 2016 project roster?
Lots of difficult to comprehend youtube vids! I’ve already made $40 there. For me that’s like a million dollars since I didn’t do anything to really earn them except have fun. Visit my channel now! However, IRL, this year will finally see the release of LIMO RIDE, a feature film made by Gideon Kennedy and myself. We also want to start a new project, and we have 3 in development to chose from. I want to figure out how to bring back my film series, Contraband Cinema, which has taken a lower priority due to occupational changes and a growing family. And also continue to work with the great team at Floyd County productions on Archer season 8.

What are your three most significant influences?
currently: Brahms, Star Wars, Beyonce

What communities/audiences/networks do you venture to affect primarily?
I’m not great at targeting. One time I had a script writing teacher. He said "aim for the target, don’t be like those people that just write whatever then walk up to their arrow and paint a target around it.” That gave me a great idea, and I’ve been doing that ever since. I like the stuff I like. It changes rapidly. I want to share my interests, publicly, and hopefully that attracts the right people.