22 Rising Female Filmmakers to Watch in 2022

From Sundance breakout star Nikyatu Jusu to "Obi-Wan Kenobi" director Deborah Chow, get to know this year's top female filmmakers.
Female Filmmakers, Deborah Chow, Nikyatu Jusu, Mimi Cave, Aitch Alberto, Adamma Ebo
Deborah Chow, Nikyatu Jusu, Mimi Cave, Aitch Alberto, and Adamma Ebo
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Every year, IndieWire compiles a list of top female filmmakers to watch over the next 12 months.

While the 2022 Oscars has already broken barriers with two history-making nominations for women — Jane Campion is the first woman nominated twice for Best Director, and “The Power of the Dog” cinematographer Ari Wegner is only the second female director of photography to be recognized at the Academy Awards — it’s clear that 2022 is another banner year for women filmmakers.

Nikyatu Jusu‘s first feature, “Nanny,won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival, making her the second Black woman director to win the top prize and the first horror filmmaker to do so. The festival also recognized Mariama Diallo’s “Master,” Adamma Ebo’s “Honk for Jesus, Save Your Soul,” and documentarian Tonya Lee Lewis’ “Aftershock,” as each filmmaker exclusively discussed representation onscreen and behind the scenes during IndieWire’s Sundance Studio presented by Adobe. This year’s Sundance also marked another milestone for the festival: 55 percent of all feature films were directed by one or more women.

Outside of the festival circuit, Disney+ has tapped Deborah Chow to helm the latest “Star Wars” series installment, “Obi-Wan Kenobi,” following Chow’s direction on “The Mandalorian.” Additionally, indie talent Olivia Newman helms the adaptation of “Where the Crawdads Sing” for Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine production shingle.

These female filmmakers are certainly in good company with one another. Whether debut directors or international stars earning Hollywood’s attention, actresses-turned-filmmakers or shorts directors stepping into features, these women are making pivots this year — and we are taking notice.

In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, discover IndieWire’s list of 22 rising female directors to know in 2022 below.

Presenting sponsor Adobe — with a mission to enable creativity for all — is committed to supporting, elevating and amplifying underrepresented creators, so the world can see, learn and benefit from diverse perspectives. Learn more at Adobe.com Diverse Voices.

Filmmakers are listed in alphabetical order.

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