On the third day of the 2014 Atlanta Film Festival, a selection of dynamic films by six charismatic, female directors was presented to an audience of excited movie fans. The New Mavericks: Female Directors short film showcase, held at the 7 Stages Theatre in Little Five Points, was preceded by a WIFTA sponsored reception that gave festival goers the opportunity to enjoy a glass of wine and mingle with both filmmakers and film enthusiasts alike before welcoming the talents of some of the indie scenes up and coming stars.
The featured directors hailed from all over the globe and represented films from Greece, Denmark, Canada and the United States. The subject matter of their shorts ranged from adolescent angst and imaginary friends, to aspiring pop stars and harsh living on the Navajo plains. A brief Q&A followed the screening and gave the public the chance to hear insightful feedback from the directors and to also give much deserved praise for a job well done.
Many congratulations go out to all of the evening’s directors for bringing such diverse and beautiful female-centered films to the screen!
Each year Women In Film & Television Atlanta (WIFTA), often in conjunction with Women In Film & Television International (WIFTI), hosts a shortfilmshowcase that highlights the work of talented filmmakers throughout the Southeast and beyond. There is a focus, of course, on uplifting the works of strong women filmmakers, crews, and leads. We accept entries from independent filmmakers from all genres – drama, comedy, action, sci-fi animation, spiritual/gospel, documentary and experimental.
This year the Showcase will take place in late July at a venue to be announced. In an effort to merge the art and film communities in Atlanta, WIFTA is connecting with local artists to to include a local performance art piece in the Showcase.
Like most in Hollywood, Tangi Miller is hard at work carving out a very successful career for herself. This multi-faceted businesswoman is a business triple hyphenate with her hand in the acting, directing, and producing pools.
Reel Focus recently got a chance to speak with Tangi about her entertainment pursuits and her thoughts on Atlanta’s booming film and television scene.
Tangi’s fascinating story began with her love for the arts in high school. She dabbled in acting a little but switched gears in college to pursue a communications and marketing degree at the University of Alabama. The acting bug bit her again when she pursued a Master of Fine Arts degree at the University of California, Irvine. This renewed interest in her first love -acting – landed Tangi her big break on Felicity as Elena, WB’s Emmy-Winning popular hit show that aired on television in the late 1990s.
Other film and television projects that Tangi has worked on include Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Family Reunion, Half and Half, Cold Case, The District, Leprechaun: Back 2 The Hood, Love & Other 4 Letter Words, and The MC Hammer Story – a track record which spans over twenty years. Tangi also appeared in the video “Yesterday” with gospel duo Mary Mary.
Tangi’s most recent directorial project, Diva Diaries – a film in which she produces and co-stars as Sophia – is about five women who are taking charge in the business world, balancing it all with relationships and fighting wars whether it be in the bedroom or the boardroom.
When asked about the inclusivity in film trending now, Tangi responded with a positive outlook. She is especially excited with all the diversity in film and television right now and hopes that the mediums continue to reflect this. Tangi stated that “Film and TV should reflect who we are, it seems we are getting closer. I believe things are getting better, which means we are going in the right direction.”
Not only is film and TV becoming diverse but film production locations are also expanding outside of Hollywood. Atlanta, where Tangi has recently been involved in some film projects, is becoming an international interchange for entertainment. Tangi says, “The beautiful thing about working in Atlanta is that I can work every day and then have Sunday dinner with my family, which helps me stay true to my southern upbringing.”
Tangi is a busy, hardworking business woman, so it is hard to take a break and enjoy the fruits of her labor. However, when she has downtime, she likes to binge watch The Escape Channel because she is into murder mystery real life stories. She claims that she is not normally into that sort of thing, but it has been addictive as of late.
Regarding potential future film projects, Tangi mentioned that she would love to adapt The 5 Love Languages by Dr. Gary Chapman for the screen. She says the reason this book is a favorite is “because I like to work on relationships and I would take the books insightful analogy and actionable wisdom and wrap it around three or four couples in a movie.”
One insider tip that Tangi shared with Reel Focus is how she chooses gigs. She states, “That in order for her to feel passionate about a project, she has to fall in love with the story first. If that foundation isn’t there, it does not fuel my energy or desire to tell it.” Her advice for those looking to get in the industry is to study the craft and take it seriously, especially if they want to be taken seriously in return.
Finally, when asked what she would be doing if she hadn’t pursued acting, Tangi eagerly said that she would have pursued teaching at the college level. She loves to share her experiences as an artist, filmmaker, and businesswoman and plans to do the lecture circuit in the future. She is also an advocate for supporting women and families as well as building educational programs targeting young women from low-income backgrounds. Tangi lives by the words of Maya Angelou in that “My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and style,” and from the look of things she is doing just that.