in Collaborations | 12 MAR 21

Announcing the Fellows and Jury for the Deutsche Bank Frieze Los Angeles Film Award 2021

After a four-month program at GFS, a winner will be selected by a jury composed of leading art and film industry figures

in Collaborations | 12 MAR 21

Now in its second year, the prize presented in collaboration with Endeavor Content and the acclaimed non-profit academy Ghetto Film School (GFS) provides a platform and development program for emerging Los Angeles-based filmmakers aged 18 - 34. The initiative offers ten aspiring filmmakers the opportunity to embark on a rigorous four-month program at GFS. Tasked with responding to a brief to explore the ocean as a framework for thinking about the complex environment of Los Angeles, the fellows produced individual short films. The project will culminate at Frieze Los Angeles 2021 with the award of a $10,000 prize to the best entry.

In addition to the main prize, 2021 sees the introduction of the Audience Award, enabling the public to vote for their favourite film. The winners of both the main prize and the Audience Award will be announced during a special ceremony in July 2021.

The 2021 fellows are: Tayo Amos, Alyse Arteaga, Giselle Bonilla, Jeremy Burkett, Jane Chow, Ashley Chrisman, David Liu, John Rizkallah, Andrés Vázquez and Ciara Zoe. Tasked with responding to a brief to explore the ocean as a framework for thinking about the complex environment of Los Angeles, the fellows produced individual short films that will be screened on the occasion of Frieze Los Angeles 2021.

2021 Jury

The winner of the main prize will be selected by a jury composed of leading art and film industry figures including Stephanie Allain (award-winning Producer), Thelma Golden (Director and Chief Curator of The Studio Museum in Harlem), Alana Mayo (President of Orion Pictures) and Naomi Scott (Actor, Musician and Producer).

The following individuals have made this Award possible and will also serve on the jury: Claudio de Sanctis (Head of International Private Bank, CEO EMEA, Deutsche Bank), Amanda Sharp (Co-Founder of Frieze), Dan Guando (SVP Film Development & Production, Endeavor Content) and Sharese Bullock-Bailey (Chief Strategy & Partnership Office, Ghetto Film School).

Stills from the Fellows’ films will feature on Frieze Viewing Room, alongside an introductory video detailing the second iteration of the prize.

Shortlisted Fellows

Tayo Amos was selected as a 2019 Blackhouse Sundance Fellow, a 2014 Team Oscar member, and guest speaker at AMPAS in 2015. Her USC MFA thesis film ON THE CLOCK, now available on Amazon Prime, played at festivals all over the world including 2019 Diversity in Cannes Showcase (where the film won Best Actor). She is currently represented at the Creative Artists Agency.

Alyse Arteaga is a writer and director born and raised in Los Angeles, California. She began her film journey as a Ghetto Film School Fellow where she has written, directed, and produced a variety of short films for the past four years. Working alongside talented innovators, Alyse has showcased her projects at FX Networks, as well as her Sundance Ignite selection, Mary Jane Girls. She is committed to providing a platform for diversity as well as furthering her education. Moving forward, Alyse intends on continuing her career as a filmmaker who strives to create a story with reflection, fantasy, and truth.

Giselle Bonilla graduated with Honors from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts with a BFA in Film and Television Production. Her thesis film, Virgencita, won the Horizon Award at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, received the Adrienne Shelly Grant, and has competed in festivals across the country. She is currently a 2020 Sundance Ignite Fellow.

Jeremy Burkett is a writer-director from St. Louis, MO. and currently based in LA. He has supported the writing on shows including Hulu’s Shut Eye, BET’s In Contempt, and was also selected as a finalist in the WAN Writer’s Fellowship. Currently, he is a staff writer on an upcoming BET+ show, Birth of Cool.

Jane Chow is a writer-director from Hong Kong. Her films and web series have been recognized at numerous film festivals including the Academy Award-qualifying Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival and Geena Davis’ Bentonville Film Festival. She has directed music videos and branded content for major clients including TikTok, Tinder, Biden-Harris, mxmtoon, and Tiffany Day. Jane is currently an editor at Viacom CBS’ AwesomenessTV.

Ashley Chrisman is a filmmaker from the south side of Chicago living in Los Angeles. Chrisman was a Film Independent, Project Involve Fellow, and an Industry Academy Fellow with the Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Locarno Film Festival. She is currently a fellow in the Blackhouse Multicultural Producer’s Lab and she is developing one feature length project, along with three TV pilots, and two digital series.

David Liu is a writer and director from the San Gabriel Valley of Los Angeles. His work is supported by the Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment (CAPE New Writers Fellowship) and Visual Communications (Armed with a Camera Fellowship), and has been recognized at festivals around the world, including Palm Springs, Cinequest, Heartland, LA Shorts, and LAAPFF. He is a graduate of UC Berkeley and the USC School of Cinematic Arts.

John Rizkallah is a first generation Palestinian-American writer and director from Southern California.

His film Mallory, Los Angeles won the Grand Jury Prize at the Riverside International Film Festival and won him Best Director at the Biola Film Festival. His films have been selected at the Newport Beach Film Festival, Arab Film Festival, LA Shorts Festival and more. John has also been doing stand up comedy for over 7 years.

Andrés Vázquez (Andrew Vasquez) is a Latinx writer-director from Los Angeles. His work has premiered on Remezcla and NPR Music ALT LATINO. His recent film, Wilderness, which addresses the crisis of homelessness in the United States, was an official selection of the Los Angeles Latino International Film Festival (2020), The Social Justice Film Festival (2020), and HOLA Mexico Film Festival, presented by HBO and The Hollywood Foreign Press Association. His recent script, Despierta, won the Sundance Co//ab Sound as Storytelling Challenge (2020) presented by the Dolby Institute. Andres is currently a 2020 Film Independent Project Involve Directing Fellow.

Ciara Zoe is a multidisciplinary artist with a focus in directing and creating empowering visuals based in Los Angeles, CA. Their work often explores Identity, Liberation, and Blackness through an experimental lens. Alongside Ghetto Film School and shadowing working professionals, Zoe has directed, lensed, and written multiple projects over the past 5 years. Their most recent adventure was directing video work for a leading Global Tech Company.

Main image: Fellows at the Deutsche Bank Frieze Los Angeles Film Award ceremony in 2020. Photo: Da Ping Luo