The Investigate Fund, a New York-based award-winning nonprofit journalism organization, has unveiled the winners of its inaugural documentary film contest. Directors Lyric R. Cabral (“(T)ERROR”) and Elizabeth Lo (“Hotel 22”) will each receive $15,000 to create a documentary short that explores social issues. The shorts are scheduled to be released this fall.
The contest was launched with the support of JustFilms at the Ford Foundation.
Cabral co-directed last year’s Sundance winner “(T)ERROR,” and in an interview with Women and Hollywood, the filmmaker offered great advice for other women directors: “I would encourage female directors to actively collaborate with other women in film, at all levels of the industry, so as to create working relationships, partnerships and support systems that can combat the misogyny and dearth of opportunities for women in Hollywood and independent film.” Cabral also emphasized the importance of mentoring: “I would say that female directors need to actively cultivate new women directors — I have several young women filmmakers, in high school and college, whom I mentor in support of developing their personal vision and talent, so that they are prepared to enter the industry as viable, competitive directors.”
Lo was named one of the 25 New Faces of Independent Film by Filmmaker Magazine last year.
Learn more about Cabral and Lo and their planned shorts, which address Michael Brown’s death by police shooting in Ferguson and children with imprisoned parents, respectively:
Cabral is a New York City-based filmmaker, producer, and photojournalist whose work explores the intersections of race and surveillance in post–9/11 America. She is best known for (T)ERROR, a look into a live FBI counterterrorism sting operation that won the 2015 Sundance Film Festival Special Jury Prize for Breakout First Feature and the 2015 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival Grand Jury Prize. She was also named one of six Women at Sundance Fellows for 2016. For her Investigative Fund Fellowship, Cabral will create a short film, in partnership with Kevin Chris Seltzer, that will shed new light on the police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.
Lo is an award-winning Los Angeles-based nonfiction filmmaker whose short films have been broadcast nationally and showcased around the world, including at Sundance, Hot Docs, and on PBS. Her film “Hotel 22,” a look at a public bus route in Silicon Valley that transforms by night into an unofficial homeless shelter, appeared in the New York Times’ Op Doc series and spurred the City of San Jose to provide housing for many of its homeless riders. For her Investigative Fund Fellowship, Lo will create a short film that will address the experiences of children with incarcerated parents.