Featured Guests

Greg Aidala


10:30 – 11:30 p.m., Lecture Center 21

Greg Aidala, an award-winning comedian and actor based in New York, has shared the stage with such comedians as Jerry Seinfeld, Colin Quinn and Kathleen Madigan to name a few, and has appeared on the Lifetime Movie Network, NBC, Amazon Prime, PBS and numerous TV commercials. In 2005, he formed Radial Gage Entertainment and since 2006, Aidala has produced and hosted his award-winning touring production, The Brew Ha-Ha Comedy Showcase.

Norman C. Berns


12:00 – 12:45 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium

A PLACE TO DANCE is a documentary on the extraordinary life of Lewis A. Swyer — arts patron, visionary, a founding member of the New York State Council of the Arts, and a driving force behind both the Saratoga Performing Arts Center and National Museum of Dance.

Norman C. Berns, director, served as an assistant director for Martin Scorsese’s KUNDUN (1997), Louis Malle’s MY DINNER WITH ANDRE (1981), and (uncredited) FORT APACHE THE BRONX (1981), starring Paul Newman.

Jake Bernstein


1:15 – 2:15 p.m., Campus Center West Multi-Purpose Room

Jake Bernstein, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist, is the author of Secrecy World: Inside the Panama Papers Investigation of Illicit Money Networks and the Global Elite (2017). The book was the basis for Steven Soderbergh’s 2019 film, THE LAUNDROMAT, starring Meryl Streep, Gary Oldman, Antonio Banderas and Sharon Stone. Bernstein’s earlier bestseller was VICE: Dick Cheney and the Hijacking of the American Presidency (2006).

Amy Biancolli


2:45 – 4 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall

New York's capital city and surrounding region have a rich history as a location for scads of films over the decades, from a series of 1918 silent melodramas shot in Lake George to scenes from “Motherless Brooklyn” shot in Troy a century later. In between: “A Star is Born,” “Scent of a Woman,” “Age of Innocence” and “Salt,” plus dozens more.

Amy Biancolli, a Times Union arts writer and former film critic for the TU and the Houston Chronicle, will survey of some of the films and filmmakers that trained their lenses on the beauties and quirks of area. 

Douglas A. Blackmon

DougLAS A. blackmon in conversation with DIRECTOR Samuel Pollard 

5:45 – 6:45 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium

Douglas A. Blackmon is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Slavery by Another Name: The Re-Enslavement of Black Americans from the Civil War to World War II (2008), the story of prison labor that enriched American corporations long after abolition. Adapted as a 2012 film by UAlbany professor Sheila Curran Bernard, and directed by Samuel Pollard, Slavery by Another Name was a finalist for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance.

Theodore Bouloukos


10:30 - 11:30 a.m., Lecture Center Room 6

Theodore Bouloukos is a New York-based actor whose international performance work inhabits cinema, stage and the art world, and extends to commercial and voice-over projects as well. Educated at The Albany Academy and Columbia University, he is a member of AEA and SAG-AFTRA; and a member of the New Stage Theatre Company.

Also on the panel discussion and ROMANCE ANALYST screening 4:30 - 6:30 p.m. with Rachel Wortell and Lily Meyer.

Jeanne Veillette Bowerman

Jeanne Veillette Bowerman, The Evolution of Screenwriting Panel 

1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall
Jeanne Veillette Bowerman is the editor-in-chief of Script magazine, senior editor at Writer's Digest, and founder of Writers Strong and Twitter's screenwriters’ chat, #Scriptchat. She's recognized as one of the "Top 10 Most Influential Screenwriting Bloggers" and co-wrote the narrative adaptation of the Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Slavery by Another Name, with author Douglas A. Blackmon.
Also participating in the Morning Workshop: A Writer’s Guide to Screenwriting for Hollywood, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., in the Campus Center West Auditorium


Jacob R. Brackman

jacob R. brackmAn in conversation with William Kennedy

3:30 – 4:30 p.m., Campus Center West Multi-Purpose Room

Jacob R. Brackman served as executive producer of DAYS OF HEAVEN (1978), one of the best films ever made according to many critics. He wrote screenplays for THE KING OF MARVIN GARDENS (1972), starring Jack Nicholson, and the punk rock film, TIMES SQUARE (1980). As a lyricist, Brackman co-wrote dozens of Carly Simon’s songs including the top 10 hits, "That's the Way I've Always Heard It Should Be" and "Haven't Got Time for the Pain.”

Lyric Cabral

Lyric cabral, film screening AND Discussion of "(t)error"

2:15 – 3:15 p.m., Performing Arts Center Recital Hall

Lyric Cabral, co-director of (T)ERROR, was the upstairs neighbor of Saeed Torres in Harlem at the time of the events depicted in the 2015 documentary. A fellow of the Sundance and Tribeca institutes, she is currently at work on THE RASHOMON EFFECT, a film that examines multiple contradictory accounts of why an unarmed black teenager was shot by a white police officer. Feature Films page > Watch the (T)ERROR trailer

Mike Camoin


3:45 - 4:45 p.m., Lecture Center Room 5, with Tom Mercer

Mike Camoin served as the unit production manager for the 2016 Sundance Special Jury Prize winning AS YOU ARE, location manager on WE THE ANIMALS (Sundance 2018), James Franco’s PRETENDERS and location scout on director Alice Wu’s Netflix feature THE HALF OF IT. As a filmmaker in his own works, Camoin is best known for his short RELAX and documentary series on Adirondack culture INSIDE THE BLUE and THE BATTLES OF SARATOGA.

Also moderating the 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. Morning Workshop Why Invest in the Arts, Performing Arts Center Recital Hall with Valerie Landsburg, Chet Opalka, and Joe Ventura


Jonathan Champagne, Discussion of "THE PIGEON"

12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m., Lecture Center 5
Jonathan Champagne is a New York City writer and producer. A graduate of Cornell University, his focus on music and Italian cinema play a central role in his approach to filmmaking and character creation. His first film THREAD received honors at Hoboken's International Film Festival in 2016, with THE PIGEON being his second as a writer/producer and first as a music composer.


Victoria Diana

Victoria Diana, Presentation: How to make no-budget films, with Micah Khan 

2:30 – 3:30 p.m., Lecture Center 5
Victoria Diana is a stand-up comedian and filmmaker who recently directed a short horror film, THE CABINET. She is currently preparing to director DEVOUR, written by Kristin Noriega and Mark Sinclair, and also a short proof of concept horror film, A MOTHER'S LOVE, , which was a quarter-finalist at Killer Shorts Horror Competition. 


Devika Girish

Devika Girish, Critics Panel

4:15 p.m. – 5:30 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall
Devika Girish is assistant editor at Film Comment. Her work has been published in The New York Times, BFI, Film Comment, Village Voice, Reverse Shot, MUBI’s Notebook, Kinoscope, Vague Visages, Fandor, Film Companion, SVLLY(wood), and The Ground Truth Project, among other publications and websites.


Debby Goedeke WORKSHOP: The “Reel” Film Albany

10:30 - 11:30 a.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall

Albany County Film Commissioner Debby Goedeke is an advisory board member to the Upstate Women in Film and Television Association, Capital Cinema Cultural Exchange and a member of Upstate Independents Film Network. She is also an education committee member of the Professional Convention Management Association and past president of the Northeast Chapter of Meeting Professionals International.

Lizzie Gottlieb

lizzie gottlieb, Film screening AND Discussion of "romeo, Romeo"

4:30 – 6:30 p.m., Performing Arts Center Recital Hall

In ROMEO, ROMEO, documentary filmmaker Lizzie Gottlieb followed her friends Lexy and Jessica on their quest to conceive. In her previous film, TODAY’S MAN (2006), she documented the quirky life of her autistic brother, Nicky Gottlieb, featuring interviews with other family members, including their father, legendary book editor Robert Gottlieb. Feature Films page > Watch the ROMEO, ROMEO trailer

Eric Haze

Eric Haze in conversation with Rosie Perez

3:45 – 4:45 p.m., Campus Center Ballroom

Eric Haze first achieved acclaim as a major graffiti artist in the 1970s and 80s. A graphic designer, he went on to create some of the best-known logos and album covers of the Hip Hop era for a variety of artists and companies including The Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Tommy Boy Records and EPMD. At its height, his pioneering “streetwear” company, HAZE, boasted three flagship stores in Tokyo. His fine art studio is located in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, where he lives with his wife, Rosie Perez.

Christopher Hibma

Christopher Hibma, Disruptive Innovation in the Arts and Humanities Panel

12:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall
Christopher Hibma is director of the Sundance Institute Theatre Program, which provides a catalytic process of artistic development for independent theatre-makers in the United States and globally. The Theatre Program’s international activity supports mentorship and cross-cultural exchange, focusing now on artists from Arabic-speaking countries based in the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe.  It also supports the Theater Lab at Mass MOCA.

James Ivory

James Ivory in conversation with Stephen Soucy

4:30 – 5:30 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium

Co-founder of Merchant Ivory Productions, James Ivory is one of the most influential filmmakers of the last 50 years. Together with his partner, producer Ismail Merchant,and screenwriter Ruth Prawer Jhabvala, he received worldwide acclaim for nuanced adaptations of literary classics, including A ROOM WITH A VIEW (1986), HOWARD’S END (1992), and THE REMAINS OF THE DAY (1993). At age 89, he became the oldest-ever Oscar winner for his screenplay adaptation of CALL ME BY YOUR NAME (2017).

Willliam Kennedy

William Kennedy in conversation with Jacob R. BrackmAn

3:30 – 4:30 p.m., Campus Center West Multi-Purpose Room

William Kennedy wrote the screenplay for Francis Ford Coppola’s THE COTTON CLUB (1984), starring Richard Gere and Gregory Hines, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel that served as the basis of the 1988 film IRONWEED, starring Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep. Kennedy founded the NYS Writers Institute in 1983, the same year he was named a MacArthur “Genius” Fellow.

Micah Khan

Micah Khan, Presentation: How to make no-budget films, with Victoria Diana

2:30 – 3:30 p.m., Lecture Center 5
Micah Khan is a filmmaker who was featured on Robert Rodriguez's (Director of SIN CITY and SPY KIDS) El Rey Network. Most recently, he's directed MEETCUTE ON DANCEWORLD, co-written with Victoria Diana and is currently adapting a two-time World Fantasy Award-winning author's short story for the screen. 

Valerie Landsburg


1:15 – 2:15 p.m., Lecture Center Room 5

Although Valerie Landsburg has a very large body of work, with 42 years in production as a an actor, writer and director and producer, most of the world knows her as Doris Schwartz -- beating out Madonna for the role -- from the television series "Fame,"her most treasured artistic achievement.  She recently directed LOVE & DEBT starred Tom Cavanagh, Bellamy Young, and Bailee Madison. 

Also participating in the Morning Workshop: "Why Invest in the Arts" 10:30 - 11:30 a.m., Performing Arts Center Recital Hall, with Mike Camoin, Chet Opalka and Joe Ventura

Kasi Lemmons


3:15 – 4:15 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium
Kasi Lemmons is the director and screenwriter of HARRIET, the 2020 Oscar-nominated biography of Underground Railroad hero Harriet Tubman. Her previous credits as director include EVE’S BAYOU (1997), THE CAVEMAN’S VALENTINE (2001); TALK TO ME (2007); and BLACK NATIVITY (2013).

Lemmons began her career as an actress, with roles in SILENCE OF THE LAMBS (1991), CANDYMAN (1992) and FEAR OF A BLACK HAT (1993). She also designed and hosted the tribute to actor Sidney Poitier at the 2002 Academy Awards. As an educator, she mentors the next generation of filmmakers at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.

Jonathan Lethem

yaddo presents a conversation WITH JONATHAM LETHEM

1:15 – 2:15 p.m., Campus Center Ballroom

Major American novelist Jonathan Lethem is the author of MOTHERLESS BROOKLYN (1999), the basis of the 2019 film adapted and directed by Edward Norton. The film stars Norton along with Bruce Willis, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and Alec Baldwin. Both book and film feature a detective with Tourette’s Syndrome, and pay homage to the film noir genre. For his novel, Lethem received the National Book Critics Circle Award. He was named a MacArthur “Genius” Fellow in 2005.

Justin Maine

Justin Maine, Magic Wig Productions Workshop

10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., Lecture Center 5
As the president and co-founder of MagicWig Productions, Inc., Justin Maine has produced and directed hundreds of productions that have aired around the globe, including the Emmy Award-winning television series "Brewed in New York" and the documentary film SO RIGHT SO SMART.

Samuel Margolius

Samuel Margolius, PANEL: for Disruptive Innovation in the Arts and Humanities 

12 – 1:15 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall
Samuel Margolius is the executive producer of Branch VFX, which is a STARTUP NY designated company focused on high-level TV and film projects for Netflix, Paramount, Disney/Marvel, Nickelodeon, etc. and is a sister company to Emmy-Award winning Shade VFX.

Darnell Martin

A Conversation WITH DIRECTOR darnell martin

5:00 – 6:00 p.m., Campus Center Ballroom

A landmark figure of U.S. cinema history, Darnell Martin was the first African American woman to direct a film for a major Hollywood Studio—I LIKE IT LIKE THAT (1994), about a Puerto Rican couple facing the challenges of life in the South Bronx. The film was nominated for the Palme d’Or at Cannes. She went on to direct Oprah Winfrey’s production of Zora Neale Hurston’s THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD (2005), and wrote and directed PRISON SONG (2001),and CADILLAC RECORDS (2008), starring Beyoncé.

Michael Mayer

Michael mayer, A conversation

Noon - 1 p.m., Campus Center Ballroom

One of Broadway’s leading directors, Michael Mayer's 2018 film adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s classic play, THE SEAGULL, features an all-star cast, including Annette Bening, Saoirse Ronan, Elizabeth Moss, Brian Dennehy and Corey Stoll. In 2007, Mayer received the “Best Director” Tony Award for his 2007 Broadway hit, the rock musical "Spring Awakening," which also won “Best Musical.” His many Broadway directing credits include the first Broadway production of "Hedwig and the Angry Inch" in 2014.

Tom Mercer


3:45 - 4:45 p.m., Lecture Center Room 5, with Mike Camoin

Producer Tom Mercer grew up steeped in Revolutionary War history. As a youth, he enjoyed riding his bicycle around the Saratoga Battlefield. He studied film at Ithaca College where he graduated with a dual major in History and Politics. A 20-year career in government gave way to a second career as an independent filmmaker. He wrote and directed the feature film UNCIVIL LIBERTIES, a highly acclaimed political thriller, and several short films shown at festivals in the US and Europe. More recently, Mercer wrote and directed BENEDICT ARNOLD, HERO BETRAYED.

Lily Meyer


4:30 - 6:30 p.m., Lecture Center Room 21, with Rachel Wortell and Theodore Bouloukos

Lily Meyer is an actress and producer, known for A SIBLING MYSTERY (2017), TREASURE TROUBLE (2019) and ROMANCE ANALYST (2019).

Chet Opalka


10:30 - 11:30 a.m., Performing Arts Center Recital Hall, with Mike Camoin, Valerie Landsburg, and Joe Ventura

Chet Opalka is a co-founder of Albany Molecular Research, Inc. (AMRI), a full service chemistry services provider focused on applications for the pharmaceutical, biotechnology and life sciences industries. Opalka and his wife Karen established the Opalka Gallery, co-founded The Global Child in Siem Reap, Cambodia and locally, are longtime supporters of Capital Repertory Theatre, The Arts Center of the Capital Region, Proctors Theater, Albany Pro Musica, the Albany Symphony Orchestra, and the NYS Writers Institute.  An active member of the Eastern New York Angels, Mr. Opalks provided support in director Mike Camoin’s short film RELAX.  

Owen Pataki

owen pataki, A short film presentation

12:00 – 1:00 p.m., Lecture Center 5

Filmmaker Owen Pataki is an Army veteran who served in Afghanistan with the 10th Mountain Division. The son of former NYS Governor George Pataki, he is coauthor (with his sister, bestselling novelist Allison Pataki) of the historical novel of the French Revolution, Where The Light Falls (2017).

Pataki is the director of THE PIGEON (2020), a tale of a homeless mute who gets a second chance to sing when his love and compassion repair the lives of an affluent couple.

Rosie Perez

rosie perez in conversation with Eric Haze

3:45 – 4:45 p.m., Campus Center Ballroom

Rosie Perez received her first major role in Spike Lee’s DO THE RIGHT THING (1989). She went on to perform in NIGHT ON EARTH (1991), WHITE MEN CAN’T JUMP (1992), and FEARLESS (1993), for which she received an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress. She also received three Primetime Emmy Awards for her work as a choreographer on the hit show, "In Living Color," and co-hosted the ABC talk show, "The View," during its 18th season.

Most recently, Perez portrayed the character of Renee Montoya in the DC Comics movie, BIRDS OF PREY (2020).

Samuel Pollard

Samuel pollard in conversation with DougLAS A. Blackmon

5:45 - 6:45 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium

Samuel Pollard, director of THE HARVEST, is one of America’s greatest living film editors, and a key figure in the recent history of African American filmmaking. His credits include the landmark PBS series, EYES ON THE PRIZE (1987), and several of Spike Lee’s films— MO’ BETTER BLUES (1990), JUNGLE FEVER (1991), CLOCKERS (1995), 4 LITTLE GIRLS (1997), BAMBOOZLED (2000)— as well as countless award-winning documentaries.

Deepak Rauniyar

deepak rauniyar, film clip screening AND Discussion

12:00 – 1:00 p.m., Campus Center West Boardroom

Deepak Rauniyar, Nepal’s leading filmmaker, was named one of “9 New Directors You Need to Watch” by the New York Times in 2017. His films, HIGHWAY (2012) and WHITE SUN (2016), have received top awards and nominations at international festivals in Berlin, Venice, Singapore, Palm Springs and Toronto. Hollywood Reporter called WHITE SUN, “a breath of fresh air from the top of the world.”

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don rittner, Film Screening & Discussion of "karen or bust"

12:00 – 2:15 p.m., Lecture Center 21

Don Rittner is the writer, producer and director of the autobiographical feature film KAREN OR BUST, which will be screened at the Albany Film Festival. He also has been producer of THE NEIGHBORHOOD THAT DISAPPEARED, ECHOES FROM THE NEIGHBORHOOD THAT DISAPPEARED, and HISTORY OF THE DEWITT CLINTON HOTEL. Rittner has published more than 45 books on history, natural history, computers, and other subjects.

Feature Films page > Watch the KAREN OR BUST trailer

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susan robbins, film screeninG AND discussion of "lee's 88 keys"

5:00 – 6:30 p.m., Lecture Center 5

Actor, mural artist, textile designer and first-time filmmaker, Susan Robbins met Lee Shaw at an Albany arts and education program in 1998. She became a friend and a loyal fan, and began filming this documentary 15 years later in 2013.

Feature Films page > Watch the LEE'S 88 KEYS trailer

Julie Casper Roth

JULIE CASPER ROTH, Rooted Out: Behind the Scenes of a Documentary in Progress

4:45 - 5:45 p.m., Campus Center West Multi-Purpose Room 

Julie Casper Roth is an award-winning filmmaker, artist, and writer interested in hidden histories, the unseen, and the ignored. She's presently working on a documentary about how discrimination extends to the grave (UNEVEN GROUND) and is in post-production on a documentary (ROOTED OUT) about two men who were denied a marriage license in rural New York.  She currently teaches production in the documentary studies programs at Skidmore College and the University at Albany.

Julie Casper Roth will also hold a morning workshop, Better Than Fiction: How to Make a Compelling Documentary, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m., Campus Center West Boardroom

Christopher Schiller

Christopher Schiller, The Evolution of Screenwriting Panel 

1:30 – 2:30 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall
Producer, writer, director, entertainment attorney and longtime columnist for Script magazine, Christopher Schiller is well versed in the ins and outs of the entertainment world. He happily shares his extensive knowledge and experience towards assisting those who are pursuing their own forays into the industry so that they can have the best chance of success.
Also participating in the Morning Workshop: A Writer’s Guide to Screenwriting for Hollywood, 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., in the Campus Center West Auditorium

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Vaishali Sinha, Film Screening & Discussion of "ask the sexpert"

4:15 – 6:15 p.m., Campus Center Boardroom

Director of ASK THE SEXPERT, Vaishali Sinha is also co-director of MADE IN INDIA (2012), about the phenomenon of outsourcing surrogate motherhood to India. The award-winning film is currently a case study at Harvard Business School for their class on ethics.

Feature Films page > Watch the ASK THE SEXPERT trailer

Stephen Soucy

Stephen Soucy, In conversation with James Ivory

4:30 – 5:30 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium
Stephen Soucy is a producer and film director. Current theatrical projects include the off-Broadway-bound (Fall 2020) "Romy and Michele The Musical"; MERCHANT IVORY, a documentary feature film in collaboration with Oscar-winning director James Ivory; and THE DRESS, a short film adapted from a story by David Ebershoff.
Soucy’s short film RICH ATMOSPHERE: THE MUSIC OF MERCHANT-IVORY FILM will also be screened during the Documentary Short Film Screening at 12 - 1:15 p.m. in Lecture Center 20. 

Bhawin Suchak


1:15 – 2:15 p.m., Campus Center West Boardroom

Bhawin Suchak is an educator and filmmaker born in Tanzania and now based in Albany. In 2008 he co-founded Youth FX focused on empowering young people of color in Albany and around the world by teaching them creative and technical skills in film and digital media. Suchak is the co-founder and co-director of NeXt Doc, a year-round fellowship program that exists to amplify the voices of young doc filmmakers of color. 

Suchak will also moderate the Youth FX "Keeping It Reel" morning workshop at 10:30 a.m. in the Campus Center West Multi-Purpose Room.

Daniel Swinton

Daniel Swinton: FILM Screening & Discussion OF "THE HARD PLACES"

2:30 – 4:15 p.m., Lecture Center Room 21

Daniel Swinton is a multiple Emmy Award-winning filmmaker who has produced numerous documentaries, television series and multi-platform productions, most notably on PBS. He combines his passions for filmmaking, travel, history and storytelling to create engaging experiences for viewers from all walks of life.

Feature Films page > Watch THE HARD PLACES trailer

Also participating in the Magic Wig Productions Workshop, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m., Lecture Center 5

Carol Swyer


12:00 – 12:45 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium

A PLACE TO DANCE is a documentary on the extraordinary life of Lewis A. Swyer — arts patron, visionary, a founding member of the New York State Council of the Arts, and a driving force behind both the Saratoga Performing Arts Center and National Museum of Dance.

Carol Swyer was associate producer for the film GRAZING MISS ALBANY and is executive producer of the A PLACE TO DANCE documentary about her father. She earned a BFA in Visual Art from Syracuse University and served on the board of directors of The Albany Academies and the National Museum of Dance.

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Stephan Talty, a conversation

12:00 – 1:00 p.m., Campus Center West Multi-Purpose Room

Stephan Talty co-authored A Captain’s Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALs, and Dangerous Days at Sea (2010), which provided the basis of the hit movie, CAPTAIN PHILLIPS, starring Tom Hanks and Barkhad Abdi. The film received six Oscar nominations including “Best Picture.” Talty is also the author of The Black Hand (2017), the basis of a forthcoming motion picture starring Leonardo DiCaprio. His newest book is The Good Assassin: How a Mossad Agent and a Band of Survivors Hunted Down the Butcher of Latvia (April 2020).

Anastasia Traina

Anastasia Traina, The Evolution of Screenwriting Panel 

1:30 – 2:30 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall
Screenwriter and playwright Anastasia Traina wrote the original screenplay HORTON BLISS, AWAY for Open City Films, SPARTICLES AND STRING. She also wrote for the SHO original series "Street Time." Her newest play, "Seagulls on Sullivan Street" is being developed by The Director’s Company NYC for a 2020 production, and is currently finishing her newest screenplay, THE EXTRAORDINARY LOVE LIFE OF TOM BOTTOMS, along with a children’s book, The Curious Tales of Thymble Tarn. She sits on the advisory boards of FCFF and the New York International Children’s Film Festival. 

Glen Trotiner


2:30 - 3:15 p.m., Campus Center West Multi-Purpose Room

Glen Trotiner, film producer, writer, and director, holds bachelor's and master's degrees from UAlbany.

His film career began as a Directors Guild of America trainee on Sidney Lumet’s POWER and shortly thereafter as second assistant director on Brian De Palma’s THE UNTOUCHABLES. Trotiner serves on the board of trustees of the Directors Guild of America Training Program, the very apprenticeship program which launched his career in the motion picture industry. He has helped produce dozens of movies, including THE GIANT MECHANICAL MAN, BELLA, BERNARD AND DORIS,  FAM-I-LY (which premiered at South by Southwest); and BIG TIME ADOLESENCE (which premiered in competition at this year’s Sundance Film Festival).

Trotiner will also hold a morning workshop at 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. in Lecture Center 20 and be a featured panelist on the Disruptive Innovation in the Arts and Humanities Panel from 12:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m. in the Campus Center Assembly Hall.

Rudy Valdez

rudy valdez - Film screening & discussion of "the sentence"

1 – 3 p.m., Campus Center West Auditorium

Director and first-time filmmaker, Rudy Valdez is the younger brother of Cindy Shank of THE SENTENCE.

Feature Films page > Watch the THE SENTENCE trailer

Joe Ventura


10:30 - 11:30 a.m., Performing Arts Center Recital Hall, with Mike Camoin, Valerie Landsburg, and Chet Opalka

Joe Ventura, owner of Eden Advisory Services and Cafe in Loudonville, Ventura holds a bachelor's degree in theater, serves on the board of the Capital Cinema Cultural Exchange, Inc,  and is active in the film, theater, and live entertainment industries. 

Alissa Wilkinson

Alissa Wilkinson, Critics Panel

4:15 – 5:30 p.m., Campus Center Assembly Hall
Alissa Wilkinson is a staff writer and critic for Vox.com where she covers film and culture. Her work has appeared at Rolling Stone, The Washington Post, Vulture, RogerEbert.com, The Atlantic, Books & Culture, The Los Angeles Review of Books, and Paste, among others. She is also an associate professor of English and humanities at King's College in New York City, teaching courses on criticism and cultural theory.

Rachel Wortell


4:30 - 6:30 p.m., Lecture Center Room 21, with Thedore Bouloukos and Lily Meyer

Rachel Wortell is a filmmaker based in New York. She is a member of Film Fatales, Alliance of Women Directors, New York Women in Film & Television, Women in Media, and Film Powered. Her films include A SIBLING MYSTERY, TREASURE TROUBLE, and her latest production ROMANCE ANALYST.