2023 SBIFF WOMEN'S PANEL Showcasing Domee Shi, Gwendolyn Yates, Mary Zophres, Ruth E. Carter, and More
SANTA BARBARA, CALIFORNIA - FEBRUARY 11: (L-R) Claudia Puig, Anne Alvergue, Ruth Carter, Hannah Minghella, Domee Shi, Gwendolyn Yates Whittle and Mary Zophres attend the Women's Panel during the 38th Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival at The Arlington Theatre on February 11, 2023 in Santa Barbara, California. (Photo by Tibrina Hobson/Getty Images for SBIFF)

2023 SBIFF WOMEN’S PANEL Showcasing Domee Shi, Gwendolyn Yates, Mary Zophres, Ruth E. Carter, and More

Domee Shi (Turning Red), Anne Alvergue (The Martha Mitchell Effect), Hannah Minghella (The Boy, The Fox, and The Mole), Gwendolyn Yates (Avatar: The Way of Water), Mary Zophres (Babylon), Ruth E. Carter (Black Panther: Wakanda Forever)

The 38th Santa Barbara International Film Festival will take place LIVE February 8 – February 18, 2023. Official events including screenings, filmmaker Q&As, industry panels, and celebrity tributes, will be held throughout the city, including at the historic Arlington Theatre. Passes for the 2023 Festival are on sale now at sbiff.org

Last year, SBIFF had a triumphant return to in-person screenings, panels, and events. The festival had 48 world premiere, 95 U.S. premieres, with honorary awards feted on Javier Bardem, Nicole Kidman, Kristen Stewart, Penélope Cruz, Will Smith and Aunjanue Ellis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Caitriona Balfe, Ariana DeBose, Alana Haim, Ciarán Hinds, Emilia Jones, Troy Kotsur, Simon Rex, Saniyya Sidney, Paul Thomas Anderson, Kenneth Branagh, Jane Campion, Ryusuke Hamaguchi, and Steven Spielberg. Historically, organizers are expecting A-list guests to once again ascend to Santa Barbara, making it a must-stop location on the awards circuit, and delivering an unprecedented number of films with many World and U.S. premieres. The film lineup and schedule will be announced January, 2023.

The panel began as Roger Durling introduced the panelists’ amazing work and invited them on stage. He lastly brought on Moderator Claudia Puig.

Puig began with brief bio’s of the Oscar nominated panelists.

Anne Alvergue spoke on how she felt drawn to make a film on feminine power and found herself making a film on Martha Mitchell. She continues by summarizing how she went from editor to directing her own project.

Ruth E. Carter noted how a variety of her work has been on women directed projects.

As a costume designer, Carter has seen how the influence from producers and editors has evolved throughout the years to become more inclusive.

As a female director, Domee Shi noted how she feels a sense of responsibility to “hold the door open” for more women to get involved in the industry.

The conversation moved back to Carter as she spoke on the challenge of applying traditional African designs into a modern film for “Black Panther”.

Costume Designer Mary Zophres spoke on the research involved in the designs behind “Babylon” and how throughout the year of 2020 she was tasked in going through various images and paintings from the 1920’s.

Zophres was moved by the collaboration between the various craftsmen involved in the creation of the “Babylon”.

Hannah Minghella details the process of turning a beloved book into a short film. Minghella was focused on keeping the art from the book consistent into the film. She also spoke to the importance of keeping the author at the center of it all.

Gwendolyn Yates spoke on her collaborations with James Cameron as she has partnered with him for various projects.

Yates explained how the sound really sets the reality in film. Even in fiction, sound brings all the components to life.

The panel wraps as Puig asks the panelists what is next for them.


About the Santa Barbara International Film Festival

The Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit arts and educational organization dedicated to discovering and showcasing the best in independent and international cinema. Over the past 37 years, SBIFF has become one of the leading film festivals in the United States – attracting 100,000 attendees and offering 11 days of 200+ films, tributes and symposiums, fulfilling their mission to engage, enrich, and inspire the Santa Barbara community through film.

SBIFF continues its commitment to education and the community throughout many free educational programs and events. In 2016, SBIFF entered a new era with the acquisition of the historic and beloved Riviera Theatre. After a capital campaign and renovation, the theatre is now SBIFF’s new state-of-the-art, year-round home, showing new international and independent films every day. In 2019, SBIFF opened its own Education Center in downtown Santa Barbara on State Street to serve as a home for its many educational programs and a place for creativity and learning.

February 11, 2023
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