Monthly Film Festival

January 15, 2022 03:00pm PST - 11:00pm PST

Industry Delegates

Liz Spaulding


Jordan Nutson

108 Media

Alex Villalta

TriStar Television

Michael Bitar

Sony Screen Gems

Rebecca Windsor

Warner Bros. TV Workshops

Elly Lachman

Warner Bros. TV Workshops

Jason Kyle

Sony Television

Josh Nadler

Affirm Films

Faisal Kanaan


NewFilmmakers Los Angeles (NFMLA) hosts its January Monthly Film Festival, whose InFocus: Counter-Ageism program spotlights narratives and storytellers battling perceptions around age, followed by the Los Angeles premiere of Matthew Wade’s A Black Rift Begins to Yawn and closing with a selection of Winter Shorts featuring highlights from NFMLA’s ongoing programming. Each screening will take place virtually and will be followed by a live Q&A via Zoom.

The day starts with InFocus: Counter-Ageism Shorts, a collection of films that tell stories of the joys, wisdoms and challenges of aging both in front of and behind the camera, celebrating protagonists and filmmakers alike as they thrive, embrace their truth and defy the societal expectations of age.

The evening continues with the Los Angeles premiere of writer-director Matthew Wade’s second feature film, A Black Rift Begins to Yawn, a surreal reality-blurring story of two scientists investigating their recently-deceased professor’s set of mysterious recordings, which he describes as “an experiment in stream-of-conscious narrative filmmaking,” and which won Honorable Jury Mention for Breakouts Feature at Slamdance Film Festival. It is preceded by Zach Dorn’s short animation, Charlotte, which premiered at Toronto International Film Festival and mediates on the memories of a folk singer’s long ago pop hit.

The night concludes with Winter Shorts, a selection of vibrant narrative films which each explore the complexities, challenges and beauty of connecting with others, be they strangers or family. The frustrations of work, the nuances of love, the pain of loss and the meaningful encounters we chance upon are all represented in this block.

NFMLA showcases films by filmmakers of all backgrounds throughout the year, across both our general and InFocus programming. All filmmakers are welcome and encouraged to submit their projects for consideration for upcoming NFMLA Festivals, regardless of the schedule for InFocus programming, which celebrates diversity, inclusion and region by spotlighting communities of filmmakers within our filmmaking community as part of our monthly program.

Schedule Details

Program #1: InFocus: Counter-Ageism
12:30 PM – 2:00 PM – Suggested Screening Time
2:00 PM – 3:00 PM – Audience Q&A (Live via Zoom)

Program #2: Feature Film: A Black Rift Begins to Yawn (w/Charlotte)
3:15 PM – 5:15 PM – Suggested Screening Time
5:15 PM – 6:15 PM – Audience Q&A (Live via Zoom)

Program #3: Winter Shorts
6:30 PM – 8:00 PM – Suggested Screening Time
8:00 PM – 9:00 PM – Audience Q&A (Live via Zoom)

Buy Tickets
InFocus: Counter-Ageism

The Pratt in the Hat

Dir. Susan Hillary, Writ. Susan Hillary & Prod. Susan Hillary
15 Mins | USA

Sophie in Hollywood (Episodes 1, 2 & 4)

Dir. Marya Mazor, Writ. Noreen Lee, Kazumi Kusano & Prod. Noreen Lee, Kimberli Wong
14 Mins | USA

A Poem by Alba

Dir. Yoo Lee, Writ. Yoo Lee & Prod. Sam Retzer
6 Mins | USA
If You Want Me To Thumbnail

If You Want Me To

Dir. Liquid Girlfriend, Janet Van Ham, Writ. Liquid Girlfriend & Prod.
4 Mins | USA
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Don’t Close Your Eyes

Dir. Janet Van Ham, Writ. Robin J. Hayes, Janet Van Ham & Prod. Janet Van Ham
11 Mins | USA

Lost Time

Director: Jack Chapman & Production: Monty Baxter & 4ReelDocs
12 Mins | UK

Good Men and Unicorns

Dir. Jake Ebright, Writ. Jake Ebright, Capri Ebright & Prod. Jake Ebright
22 Mins | USA
A Black Rift Begins to Yawn (w/ Charlotte)
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Dir. Zach Dorn, Writ. Zach Dorn & Prod. Zach Dorn
12 Mins | USA
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A Black Rift Begins to Yawn

Dir. Matthew Wade, Writ. Matthew Wade & Prod. Sara Lynch, Matthew Wade
102 Mins | USA
Winter Shorts

The Cocktail Party

Dir. Jessica Sanders, Writ. Jessica Sanders, Charlotte Taschen & Prod. Patricia Seely
5 Mins | USA
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Dir. Maya Zydman, Writ. Maya Zaydman & Prod. Roni Huberman
19 Mins | Israel
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Last Weekend

Dir. Mandy Fabian, Writ. Mandy Fabian & Prod. Mandy June Turpin
17 Mins | USA

Of Hearts and Castles

Dir. Ruben Navarro, Writ. Ruben Navarro & Prod. Sheri D. Bradford, Ruben Navarro
15 Mins | USA, Spain
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A Bitter Fruit

Dir. Ryan Weatrowski, Writ. Ryan Weatrowski & Prod. Taylor Greenthal
15 Mins | USA

Serious Matters in the Middle of the Night

Dir. Josh Copeland, Writ. Josh Copeland & Prod. Josh Copeland, Brittany Carlton, Taylor Napier
16 Mins | USA
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Dir. Chun Chun Chang, Writ. & Prod.
5 Mins | USA