Charles Burnett

Charles Burnett is an American film director, film producer, writer, editor, actor, photographer, and cinematographer. His most popular films include Killer of Sheep (1978), My Brother's Wedding (1983), To Sleep with Anger (1990), The Glass Shield (1994), and Namibia: The Struggle for Liberation (2007). He has been involved in other types of motion pictures including shorts, documentaries, and a TV series.

Called "one of America's very best filmmakers" by the Chicago Tribune and "the nation's least-known great filmmaker and most gifted black director" by The New York Times, Burnett has had a long, diverse career.

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Jonathan Burnett

Independent filmmaker and Visual Media Artist Jonathan Burnett  studied and received his training in film production and visual media, obtaining a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco, CA, and a Master of Fine Arts from Loyola Marymount University. He has written, directed, produced, and filmed several projects during his tenure. Jonathan worked on professional films in France, Algeria, and Atlanta, Georgia. He is also the Creator, Director, and Lead Instructor of the Urban Exposure Independent Film Program, a 10-week intensive program that teaches the basics of filmmaking to youth in the Midwest. Currently, Jonathan’s thesis film “Smoke & Mirrors” is on a festival tour. So far, it has been shown in five different festivals across the United States and has won two awards.


Joy Shannon

Joy Shannon is a producer, writer and director of indie feature films. Years ago, a historian of African American cinema conducted a study and determined that Joy's first 16mm feature film, Rags to Reality , was the first feature film directed by an African American woman to get a home video deal and the first to get released in the then popular Blockbuster Video (under the title of Uptown Angel). Joy has a BFA from Howard University and an MA in film from The American University, both in Washington, DC.  She served as a juror for the Corporation for Public Broadcast (CPB) and was a grant recipient from AFI and WETA.  Joy even taught teens who were former gang members and dyslexic students all about film-making.  She currently resides in Los Angeles. Past films include a feature and short version of 3rd Generation Female Gangsta, a short comedy entitled Sexless After 45, a screw-ball feature comedy entitled Stuck With Jazz (aka All That Jazzin') and My Dead Selfie, a supernatural thriller. Joy's features, 3rd Generation Female Gangsta and My Dead Selfie are award winning films.