BraveMaker Film Festival

Making Your First Feature Film PANEL DISCUSSION

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Making Your First Feature panel discussion with:

Josh Ruben is an award-winning actor, writer, & director whose debut feature film SCARE ME which he wrote, produced, directed & starred alongside Aya Cash and Chris Redd premiered at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. As one of the founding members of CollegeHumor's "Originals" team, Ruben directed and/or starred in thousands of shorts, amassing views well into the billions. Josh directed (and cameoed) in all 10 episodes of Funny or Die & Spotify's narrative podcast series, Josh's second feature film WEREWOLVES WITHIN, a horror/comedy from Ubisoft starring Sam Richardson, is an official selection of the 2021 Tribeca Film Festival and premieres in theatres June 25th, 2021 and on-demand July 2nd. Werewolves will be distributed by IFC Films. You can watch SCARE ME now on SHUDDER or VOD!


Carlyn Hudson is a director and writer from a little bitty town in south central Texas, disappointing her family by calling Los Angeles home.

Her first feature, the micro-budget relationship comedy THE BIG SPOON, starring Zach Knighton (Happy Endings, Magnum PI), and Isabelle McNally (Bates Motel), premiered at Austin Film Festival in 2016 and was distributed by Gravitas Ventures. Her next feature as writer/director, a biting social commentary about sex ed, is being packaged at a fancy agency with some fancy actors/producers and she hopes to be able to talk more about this one very soon. She's also adapting a book for Netflix that she's not really supposed to talk about either.

Carlyn has directed dozens of sketches for College Humor as well as multiple projects for Funny or Die's branded division. As a commercial director, she specializes in stylish dialogue comedy and most recently directed a campaign starring Whitney Cummings encouraging women to have an orgasm and use birth control while they're at it (not kidding.)


Roxy Shih is an internationally acclaimed, Emmy-nominated writer and director. Born in Europe, Roxy’s third culture background has given her a distinct perspective. As a filmmaker, she is known for her versatility and has worked with many independent companies both overseas and domestically, making her one of the most in demand cinema artists today. She has had her work shown at an array of festivals such as The LA Film Festival, LA Asian Pacific Film Festival, Cannes, SXSW, Toronto Independent, and Dances with Films. She has won numerous awards including Best Debut Feature at Female Eye Film Festival and Best Feature Director at Other Worlds Austin for her first feature film, THE TRIBE (Jessica Rothe, Anne Winters). In the drama and comedy space, Roxy directed the movie POOLING TO PARADISE (Lynn Chen, Dreama Walker, Jonathan Lipnicki, Jordan Carlos and Taryn Manning), and her most recent film BREAST CANCER BUCKET LIST with Kelly Hu and Patricia Velasquez.


Qasim Basir is the director and co-writer of the Sundance film, A Boy. A Girl. A Dream., a feature starring Omari Hardwick and Meagan Good, which received critical praise for its style, beauty, and depth of performance.

Qasim's is a unique voice, constantly finding ways to tell compelling, exceptional stories. Since his three independent features, he's been developing projects with HBO, Endeavor Content, and many others coming soon.


Tony Gapastione is weird. He is an ordained pastor turned filmmaker. As a writer/director, he has made several scripted shorts films, one of which starred Emmy winner Loretta Devine. He’s screened at NYC’s Urbanworld Film Festival, Pasadena Film Festival, San Jose Short Film Festival and Chicago’s Blue Whiskey Film Festival. When Tony is not making films, he consults with communities of faith, shares his stories via podcast, and invests in makers of all kinds. He’s passionate about films that incite awareness about rarely discussed theological issues like suicide, gender, and human trafficking, Tony founded a media nonprofit called BraveMaker based in the SF Bay Area focused on social justice, diversity and inclusion. Through film screenings, community dialogues and an annual film festival, BraveMaker affects cultural change through art and conversation. Tony is directing, Last Chance Charlene, his first feature film in June 2021. Last Chance Charlene is about a struggling actress trying to make a break in her filmmaking career while mourning the loss of her brother to suicide. It's loosely based on his weird, personal life. It's how he likes to tell stories.