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Girls Impact the World Film Festival comes to Austin

posted March 28, 2019 | in Entertainment by Christine Bolaños

Women and girls are breaking barriers in all sectors of society and in a variety of professional industries. Among these is documentary filmmaking, where women are sharing global stories of importance with the nuance and compelling angles that make their films stand out and encourages viewers to take action toward a better world.

Fresh off the heels of South by Southwest, the Austin community is preparing for the Girls Impact the World Film Festival from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at St. Andrew’s Dell Fine Arts Center in Austin, on Sunday, April 14.

The festival showcases short films created by young filmmakers from around the world that touch on a variety of global issues. Topics include education for girls, immigrants and refugees, poverty alleviation, violence against women, sex trafficking, redefining beauty and more. The event is open to the public and ticket sales benefit Austin nonprofit Connecther, which provides a platform to invest in projects that better the lives of women and girls across the globe.

Each year, a panel of prestigious industry judges reviews and selects 30 finalists to be considered for awards on the day of the event. This year’s lineup includes longtime festival supporters Elizabeth
Avellán, an Austin-based film producer, philanthropist Eloise DeJoria, philanthropist and award-winning Twilight actress Nikki Reed and The Vampire Diaries star and festival sponsor Ian Somerhalder. Joining them are Candice Wilson of Code Black Films and Socie Bacon.


Elizabeth Avellán speaks at the 2018 Girls Impact The World Film Festival. Courtesy photo.

“As always, we were so impressed by the passion and range of the film submissions from across the U.S. and the world,” said Lila Igram, founder of Connecther in a press release. “More than 200 girls – and 39 young men who entered – are using their creativity and activism to bring attention to issues that impact women – and communities – worldwide.”

Films entered for this year’s competition represent a record-breaking 42 countries. The finalists’ films will be screened during the Red Carpet Awards Ceremony and during the April 14 daytime program.

Judges’ Grand Prize winners at the 2018 Girls Impact The World Film Festival.
Courtesy photo.

Finalists are as follow:

JUDGES’ CHOICE TOP 5

A Film for Gugu
by Aida Namukose
African Leadership Academy, South Africa 

Dignity
by Rachel Deva Rani Dharmapalan
Oakland School for the Arts, USA 

Lucía
by Gerardo Torres Hernández
Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Mexico 

We Could Be Champions Too
by Novera Hasan Nikkon
Jagannath University Dhaka, Bangladesh 

What I Love Most
by Nguyen Thi Kieu Oanh
Academy of Journalism and Communication, Vietnam

GLOBAL IMPACT

Dilemma
by Diana Senator Lyoto
Catholic university of health and allied sciences (CUHAS), Tanzania

In Search of Rekha Hasda
by Hasanul Hoq and Abu Owazed Sah Showmik
Jagannath University, Dhaka, Bangladesh

Surviving Burns
by Mallika Sehgal
FLAME University, India

 


GREEN IS (ENVIRONMENT)

Ecovillage Brachoua
by Fatima Mouhammou
Abdelmalek Essady University, Morocco

Introduction to Reusable Menstrual Cups
by Taryn Everdeen
Paston College, United Kingdom

What I Love Most
by Nguyen Thi Kieu Oanh
Academy of Journalism and Communication, Vietnam

 


HONEST BEAUTY

Girls and Dolls
by Megan K Palmer
SUNY Geneseo, USA

Make Me Divine
by Bobbi Broome
Kent State University, USA

Pitt Soley
by Rigodon Soeurette
Faculte d’Ethnologie, Haiti

The Skin Tone Rule
by Amanda Gordon
New York University, USA

#BuyOurProduct
by Sharlene Richards and Cailyn Hoertz
Savannah College of Art and Design, USA

 


ENDING VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN

GONE
by Haythem Makhlouf
ISIMA, Tunisia

She Matters
by Suhayl Omar
Riara University, Kenya

Surviving Burns
by Mallika Sehgal
FLAME University, India

 


STAND UP MEN

Stand Up Men 
by Emily Seshadri
University of London, United Kingdom

Tumaini
by Ishara Musimwa Gentil & Nadege Cibogo Felista
Université Catholique de Bukavu and Université Officielle de Bukavu, Democratic Republic of Congo

We Could Be Champions Too
by Novera Hasan Nikkon
Jagannath University Dhak, Bangladesh

 


LET GIRLS LEARN

A Film for Gugu
by Aida Namukose
African Leadership Academy, South Africa

Aya’s Home
by Inaya Ahmed
St. Stephen’s Episcopal School, USA

Bangladesh’s Girls
by Mallika Sehgal
The Lawrenceville School, USA

Dilemma
by Diana Senator Lyoto
Catholic university of health and allied sciences (CUHAS), Tanzania

In Search of Rekha Hasda
by Hasanul Hoq and Abu Owazed Sah Showmik
Jagannath University, Dhaka, Bangladesh

 


BEST FILM PRODUCTION

A Heist of One’s Own
by Pubali (Priya) Ghosh
Savannah College of Art and Design, USA

Roles Reversed
by Olivia Lovito
Savannah College of Art and Design, USA

Ruza
by Raashi Metkari
FAMU International, Czech Republic

 


WOMEN IN TECH

Change the World by Promoting Girls in STEM
by Lilia Becker
Shipley School, USA

GEMS: Girls Empowered by Math & Science
by Sadie Price-Elliott
Sussex County Technical School, USA

The Science Behind the STEM Gender Gap
by Tiffany Fang
High Technology High School, USA

 


GEMs CHOICE

Child Marriage Robbed Me of My Childhood
by Suzete Da Graça André
Eduardo Mondlane University, Mozambique

Lucía
by Gerardo Torres Hernández
Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Mexico

She Matters
by Suhayl Omar
Riara University, Kenya

 


MOST INNOVATIVE SOLUTION

As Girls / As Women 
by Gillian Ryan Dittmer
Rider University, USA

Aya’s Home
by Aidan Ellis
St. Stephen’s Episcopal School, USA

Ecovillage Brachoua
by Fatima Mouhammou
Abdelmalek Essady University, Morocco

One Letter or Other
by Natalia Stefanni and Aguilar Fernandes
PUC-Campinas, Brazil

 


PEOPLE’S CHOICE

GONE
by Haythem Makhlouf
ISIMA, Tunisia

Lucía
by Gerardo Torres Hernández
Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Mexico

Silently Sorry
by Meghan Montminy
Pelham High School, USA

Tumaini
by Ishara Musimwa Gentil & Nadege Cibogo Felista
Université Catholique de Bukavu and Université Officielle de Bukavu, Democratic Republic of Congo

Tickets are $25 for the day program, $35 for the evening awards program, $10 for students and $100 for VIP all-access tickets. The day program features panels and film screenings from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. $25,000 in awards will be presented for this year’s winning submissions at the evening Red Carpet Awards program.

Attendees of the 2018 Girls Impact The World Film Festival. Courtesy photo.

Female filmmakers, business leaders, activists, and philanthropists will share inspiring words throughout the day. For tickets, visit Eventbrite.  For more information on the Girls Impact the World Film Festival, including full list of festival panels to be announced, visit www.connecther.org/gitw/.