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Sundance Institute Sets 2022 Momentum Fellows

Client: Minhal Baig - Director

The Sundance Institute has selected Minhal Baig, Marion Hill, Ciara Lacy, Billy Luther, Chanelle Aponte Pearson, Mariem Pérez Riera, Jamila Wignot and Iman Zawahry for its fourth Momentum Fellowship, supporting professional development for mid-career artists from historically marginalized communities as they explore and develop their creative practice.

The eight fellows selected will participate in a full-year program tailored for each by Sundance Institute staffers, receiving access to unrestricted grant funding, as well as industry mentorship and meetings, a writing intensive, and professional coaching offered by Renee Freedman & Company, with support from The Harnisch Foundation. Additionally, as part of the Sundance Institute’s ongoing partnership with NBCUniversal, the studio will provide an opportunity for select Momentum fellows working on fiction projects to participate in the Universal Directors Initiative. The two-year, at-will initiative, led by Universal’s Global Talent Development & Inclusion team, provides access to NBCUniversal’s creative executives and producers to build career momentum and exposure to potential directing opportunities across the company’s portfolio.

“These fellows’ voices represent a myriad of cultural perspectives and creative styles. Yet for so many proven filmmakers from historically marginalized communities, sustainability and access remain elusive,” said Adella Ladjevardi, who serves as Associate Director of Women at Sundance for the Sundance Institute. “With the comprehensive professional development and creative support the Momentum Fellowship offers, we’re thrilled to provide a space for community-building and personal growth.”

The Momentum Fellowship is a program of Outreach and Inclusion and Women at Sundance. It launched in 2018 as an evolution of the Women at Sundance Fellowship, which was expanded to offer opportunities to a broader range of artists from underrepresented communities. Those eligible for the intersectional program include artists identifying as women, non-binary and/or transgender, Black, Indigenous, and/or people of color, and artists with disabilities. Notable past recipients include Christina Choe, Cristina Costantini, Yance Ford, Natalie Erika James, Ekwa Msangi, Edson Oda, Linda Yvette Chávez, Angel Kristi Williams, Malika Zouhali-Worrall and Eva Vives.

More information on the 2022 Momentum Fellows can be found below.

Minhal Baig: Her feature, Hala, premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival and was released by Apple TV+. She has written for Ramy and BoJack Horseman. In 2021, she signed an overall deal to develop TV exclusively for Amazon. In 2017, she was selected as a directing mentee by Ryan Murphy’s Half Initiative.


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