Black Women+ Behind the Camera | a Smalls study guide

by kamooremitch | created - 01 Oct 2018 | updated - 05 Oct 2018 | Public

a list of Black women, femmes, + non-binary creators who work behind the camera in film + television.

1. Debbie Allen

Producer | Fame

Deborah Kaye Allen was born in Houston, Texas, to African-American parents, Vivian Elizabeth (Ayers), a poet and art director, and Andrew Arthur Allen, an orthodontist. As a child, Debbie, her older brother, Andrew (called Tex), and her older sister, actress Phylicia Rashad, lived in Mexico to ...

2. Millicent Shelton

Director | 30 Rock

Millicent Shelton is a director and writer, known for 30 Rock (2006), Run the World (2021) and Titans (2018). She has been married to Donald Samuel since June 10, 1995. They have two children.

3. Gina Prince-Bythewood

Writer | The Secret Life of Bees

Gina Prince-Bythewood wrote and directed the widely acclaimed feature film Love & Basketball (2000) which premiered at the 2000 Sundance Film Festival. She won an Independent Spirit Award for Best First Feature and a Humanitas Prize for her work on the film. Her other directing credits include ...

4. Linda Mendoza

Director | Ugly Betty

Linda Mendoza is a director and producer, known for Ugly Betty (2006), Scrubs (2001) and Tiffany Haddish Presents: They Ready (2019). She is married to Tim Kahle. They have one child.

5. Erma Elzy

Director | Redeemer

Erma Elzy is a multi-talented television, short feature and theater director. As a member of the Directors Guild of America, her credits include numerous multi-camera television shows including the Disney Channels 'That's So Raven', the CW's (formerly UPN) 'Girlfriends', 'The Parkers' and 'Moesha'....

6. Chip Fields

Actress | The Amazing Spider-Man

Chip Fields was born on August 5, 1951 in the USA. She is known for her work on The Amazing Spider-Man (1977), Menace II Society (1993) and Blue Collar (1978). She has been married to Erv Hurd since August 20, 1994. She was previously married to John Randolph.

7. Mara Brock Akil

Producer | The Game

Akil is a native of Los Angeles, but was raised primarily in Kansas City. She is a graduate of Northwestern University, where she earned a bachelor's degree in journalism.

Akil began her writing career on Fox's critically acclaimed "South Central." She later moved on to writing for the UPN series "...

8. Anike Tourse

Writer | America; I Too

Anike Tourse is the writer and director of award winning short film short film "America;I Too," has written for daytime serial "One Life to Live" and for sitcom series "Girlfriends". Anike's projects include feature film "America's Family;" the five stories of one family separated by one border and...

9. Neema Barnette

Director | Harlem

Director and producer Neema Barnette has engaged audiences with a body of socially compelling and politically charged work that defies the narrow stereotypes of African-Americans usually depicted in entertainment. Working in both television and film, Barnette has earned the respect of peers and ...

10. Tina Mabry

Director | Mississippi Damned

A native of Tupelo, Mississippi, Tina Mabry graduated from the University of Southern California's School of Cinematic Arts with an MFA in Film Production in 2005. A true hyphenate, Tina is a writer, director, and producer for television and film. She is a writer and producer for Fox's upcoming ...

11. Salli Richardson-Whitfield

Actress | Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid

Salli Richardson-Whitfield is a 30 year industry veteran. She has been featured in over 20 major motion pictures and has starred opposite a number of Hollywood's top actors, including Samuel L. Jackson in THE GREAT WHITE HYPE, Denzel Washington in ANTWONE FISHER, and Will Smith in I AM LEGEND. On ...

12. Julie Dash

Director | Daughters of the Dust

Julie Dash was born on October 22, 1952 in Queens, New York, USA. She is a director and writer, known for Daughters of the Dust (1991), The Rosa Parks Story (2002) and Funny Valentines (1999).

13. Cheryl Dunye

Director | The Watermelon Woman

Cheryl Dunye was born on May 13, 1966 in Liberia. She is a director and producer, known for The Watermelon Woman (1996), The Owls (2010) and Mommy Is Coming (2012).

14. Tanya Hamilton

Director | Night Catches Us

Tanya Hamilton is a director and producer, known for Night Catches Us (2010), The Chi (2018) and Queen Sugar (2016).

15. So Yong Kim

Director | Na-moo-eobs-neun san

She originally comes from Korea but also grew up in Los Angeles, USA.

16. Victoria Mahoney

Director | Yelling to the Sky

Born and raised in New York, Mahoney developed her debut feature film "Yelling to the Sky" through the Directors and Screenwriters Sundance Institute Labs and was named an Auerbach Fellow, Annenberg Fellow, Cinereach Fellow, Maryland Fellow, Tribeca Fellow and IFP Narrative Lab fellow. She was ...

17. Garrett Bradley

Director | Time

Garrett Bradley is a director and producer, known for Time (2020), Below Dreams (2014) and America (2019).

18. Aurora Guerrero

Director | Mosquita y Mari

Aurora was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area and is a queer, Indigenous-identified Chicana. Guerrero wrote and directed "Mosquita Y Mari"; her debut narrative feature film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. In 2017, Guerrero directed her first episode of television on Ava ...

19. Patricia Cardoso

Director | Real Women Have Curves

Patricia Cardoso is an award-winning director, writer, and producer. She was the first Latinx woman to receive a Sundance Audience Award and a Student Academy Award®. Cardoso's feature film, "Real Women Have Curves," was a box office and critical success and has become a landmark of Latinx cinema. ...

20. Ayoka Chenzira

Director | Alma's Rainbow

Ayoka Chenzira is an award-winning filmmaker and a recognized pioneer in Black independent cinema. She is part of a generation of African American filmmakers who helped create a genre of filmmaking now identified as Black independent cinema. Her distinctive body of work spans fiction, documentary, ...

21. Christina Choe

Director | Nancy

Christina Choe is an American filmmaker whose 2011 short film, I am John Wayne, won the Grand Jury Prize at the Slamdance Film Festival and screened at dozens of festivals around the world. Choe's documentary series Welcome to the DPRK, a personal portrait of North Korea, was recently acquired and ...

22. Chloé Hung

Writer | Queen Sugar

Chloé Hung is a writer and director, known for Queen Sugar (2016), Signal (2019) and Drawing Duncan Palmer (2016).

23. Christiana Hooks

Production_manager | 13th

Christiana Hooks is a producer and production manager, known for 13th (2016), This Is Us (2016) and When They See Us (2019).

24. Kira Kelly

Camera_department | Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Kira Kelly is known for her work on Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021), Insecure (2016) and 13th (2016).

25. Rhonda Marie Alston

Actress | Shake, Rattle and Roll: An American Love Story

Rhonda Marie Alston was born and raised in Raleigh, North Carolina. She started taking ballet and tap classes at The Raleigh School of Dance Arts at the age of 3. At 14 she became a student at The North Carolina School of the Arts majoring in modern dance and theater. While working as a flight ...

26. Jessica Johnson

Actress | Queen Sugar

A native of New Orleans, Jessica is an actor, writer and filmmaker who studied television and film production at Xavier University of Louisiana before transitioning into commercial and theatrical acting in 2015. Her recent credits include the award winning hit series Queen Sugar, AMC's Preacher, ...

27. Chasidy Morris

Queen Sugar

Chasidy Morris is known for her work on Queen Sugar (2016), Blackstock Boneyard (2021) and Underground (2016).

28. Cynyon Dawn Rodriguez

Girls Trip

Cynyon Dawn Rodriguez, native of Dallas, TX, has had a passion for the big lights and cameras for as long as she can remember. This love may have stemmed from the first time she hit the stage in a third grade reenactment of the children's classic "Cinderella". From that point on acting remained at ...

29. Davida Chanel Smith

Queen Sugar

Davida Chanel Smith is a manager and producer, known for Queen Sugar (2016), Hope 4 Dating in LA (2016) and Lee Daniels' The Butler (2013).

30. Michelle Green

Costume_department | Valor

31. Anne Marie Fox

Camera_department | Frankenstein

Anne Marie Fox is a native of southern California, educated at private Catholic schools with the exception of the three years spent attending Helmholtz Gymnasium in Heidelberg, West Germany from ages 10 through 13. During this time abroad she began her fascination with photography, cinema and ...

32. Michelle Mitchenor

Actress | First Wives Club

Michelle Mitchenor, a New Jersey native started in the industry as a professional dancer working with top recording artists such as Rihanna, Beyoncé, Pharrell, Cee-lo Green, and several more. In 2015 she completely transitioned into the acting world and starred in her first feature "Chi-Raq" ...

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