By Peter Knegt | Indiewire January 25, 2012 at 1:00PM
Film Independent has announced that Stephanie Allain will succeed Rebecca Yeldham as the Festival Director of the Los Angeles Film Festival.
She will start immediately, and join a team that includes Festival Managing Director Gloria Campbell and Festival Artistic Director David Ansen, as well as Associate Director of Programming Doug Jones, Senior Programmer Maggie Mackay and
Programming Coordinator Jenn Wilson.
Full press release below.
LOS ANGELES (January 25, 2012) — Film Independent, the non-profit arts organization
that produces the Los Angeles Film Festival and the Spirit Awards, announced the
selection of accomplished film producer Stephanie Allain as its new Los Angeles Film
Festival Director, starting immediately. She succeeds Rebecca Yeldham, who recently
elected to step down for personal reasons. Stephanie will be working closely with Festival
Managing Director Gloria Campbell and Festival Artistic Director David Ansen, as well as
Associate Director of Programming Doug Jones, Senior Programmer Maggie Mackay and
Programming Coordinator Jenn Wilson.
“Stephanie has served on the Film Independent Board of Directors since 2007 and been
involved in many aspects of the organization. She's chaired the Spirit Awards Nominating
Committee and been a huge supporter of Project Involve, as well as our year-round
educational programs,” said Co-President Sean Mc Manus. “Stephanie has a clear vision
for the Festival, a stellar track record as a producer and a deep commitment to the
Festivalʼs filmmaker-centric focus.”
“We so appreciate all that Rebecca has done to grow the Los Angeles Film Festival into
what it is today, and usher it into its new, vibrant home downtown. Rebeccaʼs creativity,
taste, and warmth attracted top-notch filmmakers to the Festival, and she departs with a
world-class curatorial team in place,” said Co-President Josh Welsh. “To have Stephanie
carry on Rebeccaʼs great work and build upon it is a dream come true.”
“My passion for Film Independent has only grown over the years, and I couldnʼt be
happier to become even more involved in an organization that puts filmmakers first and
supports them in specific and tangible ways,” said Stephanie. “The Los Angeles Film
Festival is a unique celebration of cinema and a hub for filmmakers and film lovers,
especially for those of us who live and work in the film industry. I canʼt wait to dive in and
develop creative ways in which we can expand the Festival and its programs.”
Stephanie Allain is a film producer and former studio executive who has been an advocate
for visionary filmmakers for more than two decades. As a Columbia Pictures executive,
she was instrumental in the making of John Singletonʼs Boyz n The Hood, which garnered
him two Academy Award® nominations and set the bar for contemporary urban
dramas. She spent a decade at the studio launching the careers of first-time filmmakers
including Singleton, Robert Rodriguez and Darnell Martin. Several of the films she
supervised, including El Mariachi and I Like It Like That, garnered awards at the Cannes,
Telluride and Sundance film festivals. During her tenure at Columbia Pictures, she rose
through the ranks to become Senior Vice President of Production–the highest creative
production position for an African-American for over a decade.
From 1996-2000, Allain served as President of Jim Henson Pictures, where she produced
Muppets From Space, Elmo In Grouchland and Caroline Thompsonʼs Buddy. In 2000, she
headed production at 3 Arts Entertainment, producing Biker Boyz and Good Boy! In 2004,
she formed her own production company, Homegrown Pictures, and produced Craig
Brewerʼs Hustle & Flow, which won the Audience Award at the 2005 Sundance Film
Festival, an Academy Award® for Best Original Song and earned a Film Independent
Spirit Award and Academy Award® Best Actor nomination for Terrence Howard.
In 2005, she produced Sanaa Hamriʼs directorial debut, Something New, for Focus
Features, with the film earning two nominations for the NAACP Awards. She also
produced Brewerʼs Black Snake Moan, starring Samuel L. Jackson and Christina Ricci. In
2008, Allain traveled to her native New Orleans to produce Hurricane Season, starring
Forest Whitaker and Taraji P. Henson, for The Weinstein Company. Most recently, she
produced Tina Gordon Chismʼs directorial debut, We The Peeples, starring Craig
Robinson and Kerry Washington, which will be released by Lionsgate in 2013.
Allain is a member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences and the
Producers Guild of America. She recently sat on the Board of Film Independent and
currently serves on the Board of Women In Film. She has chaired the Spirit Awards
Nominating Committee, juried numerous festivals and has taught at USCʼs Peter Stark
Program and the Entertainment Studies Division of UCLA. She lives in Los Angeles with
her composer husband, Stephen Bray, and their fast emptying nest.