Posted by

Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival to Host Google Seminar Series on Gender & Racial Gaps in Film & Tech March 4-5, 2017


Miami, FL. Dec. 12, 2016 – Miami Dade College’s (MDC) Miami Film Festival announced today that it will continue its special partnership with Google and the seminar series during its program on March 4-5, 2017.  The Google Seminar Series will consist of discussions with women filmmakers and producers about solutions for gender and racial bias in the film and technology world. Miami Film Festival, being the only major film festival produced and presented worldwide by a college or university, hopes the series will pave the way for women that aspire to be in an industry normally dominated by men.

“Now, more than ever, we need a plurality of stories onscreen. The Google Seminar Series will feature informative talks from invigorating voices working behind and in-front of the camera. Each speaker will address issues and tactics for change in their respective fields, with the aim of preparing those in attendance to make their own moves to become the future decision makers of the film industry,” said Festival programmer Kiva Reardon.

“We’re ecstatic to return to the Miami Film Festival and have the opportunity to collaborate for a second year on the Google Seminar Series on Gender and Racial Gaps in Film and Tech,” added Daraiha Greene, Google Diversity in Entertainment Ambassador. “It’s critical that we harness the power of the media and film industry to showcase positive role models and encourage women and underserved groups to pursue careers in computer science.”


The Google Seminar Series on Gender & Racial Gaps In Film & Tech will take place in the MDC Live Arts Lab (formerly the Prometeo Theater), located in MDC’s Wolfson Campus, 300 N.E, Second Ave. Building 1, in Downtown Miami over 2 days, March 4 – 5, 2017.


The highlights of the series include the following:


  • Sarah Gadon, (Actress/Director), rising star known for her eclectic roles in films such as Indignation (Based on Philip Roth’s novel), A Royal Night Out, Maps to the Stars, Belle, and Netflix’s forthcoming mini-series Alias Grace (based on the book by Margaret Atwood, directed by Mary Harron) to name a few. Gadon will draw on her experience in front of the camera with female-helmed sets, her directorial debut with TV documentary Reelside, and how she’s asserted professionally herself to build a successful career.


  • Tilane Jones (Selma) the executive director of ARRAY, an independent film distribution collaborative, that aims at disrupting the current model to change the ecosystem of the film industry and dedicated to amplifying the voices of women filmmakers and filmmakers of color around the globe. Jones will discuss how ARRAY is creating avenues for the distribution of films and what wider distribution of their stories means for reshaping societal narratives of race and gender.
  •  Rebecca Theodore-Vachon – (Writer/Editor/Podcaster) – Rebecca Theodore-Vachon film/tv editor at com, founder of the blog Film Fatale NYC, and co-host of the “Cinema in Noir” podcast, (which discusses “all things cinema-from a black female perspective.”), will be speaking about how the debacle on Twitter of #CoatSwitching showed (once again) how vital it is to have a multitude of voices and perspectives talking about film-and yet bylines are still largely dominated by men and lack racial representation. Rebecca will also speak to why criticism matters, how it can champion-and challenge-a wider range of stories, and shed light on how she’s carved such a large platform for herself in the field.
  • Radhika Vaz – (Author/Writer/Comedian) and Nadia P. Manzoor (Actor, Writer, Producer) – both creators of ‘Shugs and Fats’ – a Gotham award winning comedy web series; team up to talk about using comedy to spark difficult dialogue and overturn stereotypes. They will walk you through their creative journey from developing two unlikely comedic characters to pitching a long form TV show on the mean streets of Hollywood. They will talk about their evolution as creators, writers, and eventually as producers, and how despite living in different continents they were able to make it work. Finally, they will discuss how their desire to spread the word of feminism was ultimately the driving force behind their comedy.  Below you will find a description of their work:
    • Radhika Vaz (Author/Writer/Comedian) – Considered one of India’s most well recognized stand-up comedians whose comedy specials ‘Unladylike’ and ‘Older. Angrier. Hairier.’ have sold-out in New York, Los Angeles, Dubai and all major Indian cities; Radhika also has a bi-weekly column in Times of India, she’s a regular contributor to GQ, Vogue Architectural Digest amongst other publications, and has a book called Unladylike, A Memoir that is now available in stores and online.
    • Nadia P. Manzoor (Actor, Writer, Producer) – This filmmaker whose autobiographical one-woman show Burq Off! has sold-out in New York, LA, San Francisco, London, Toronto, and Seoul, has delivered her Tedx Talks in Brooklyn about The Story of Identity and is a frequent guest speaker at colleges and panels that focus on comedy, feminism and women in Islam. Nadia has also appeared on major networks and publications such as CNN, NPR, Al Jazeera, The Guardian, Elle, Vogue, and more. To infuse her commitment for social activism and storytelling she founded Paprika Productions, an all-female production company that produces content to challenge the status quo and to deconstruct the male gaze.


The 34th annual Miami Film Festival will take place March 3-12, 2017.  Advance ticket vouchers for Google program on sale now for $9 each or $30 for all at or by calling 1-844-565-6433 (MIFF). Regular ticket will go on sale February 10.  For membership opportunities or more information, please email or call 305-237-FILM (3456).

# # #



About Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival

Celebrating its 34th anniversary March 3 – 12, 2017, Miami Dade College’s Miami Film Festival is considered the preeminent film festival for showcasing Ibero-American cinema in the U.S., and a major launch pad for all international and documentary cinema. The annual Festival, produced and presented by Miami Dade College, attracts more than 60,000 audience members and more than 400 filmmakers, producers, talent and industry professionals. It is the only major festival housed within a college or university. In the last five years, the Festival has screened films from more than 60 countries, including 300 World, International, North American, U.S. and East Coast Premieres. The Festival’s special focus on Ibero-American cinema has made the Festival a natural gateway for the discovery of new talent from this diverse territory. The Festival also offers unparalleled educational opportunities to film students and the community at large. Additionally, every October, the Festival hosts a mid-season festival titled GEMS, showcasing the season’s finest new cinematic works. Major sponsors of the 2017 Festival include Knight Foundation, Lexus and Miami-Dade County. For more information, visit or call 305-237-FILM (3456).


About Culture at Miami Dade College
The Cultural Affairs Department of Miami Dade College (MDC) is composed of the Miami Book Fair, Miami Film Festival, Tower Theater Miami, Koubek Center, Freedom Tower, MDC Live Arts and MDC Galleries and Museum of Art + Design. MDC is committed to providing its community with the opportunity to come in contact with innovative thinkers, creators and tradition bearers from around the world. With each presentation, MDC offers a bridge between cultures and ideas, creating new opportunities for the increasingly diverse population of Miami to come together through shared live arts experiences. For more information, visit

About Google

Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful, and our approach to computer science in media is an extension of that mission. We are committed to increasing CS opportunities for all — regardless of gender, ethnicity, geography, or socio-economic level — and aim to inspire young people everywhere not just to use technology, but to create it. For more information, visit


About John S. & James L. Knight Foundation

The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. The foundation believes that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit



Miami Film Festival Contacts:

Salazar PR, Andrea Salazar | Tel: +1 954-756-0652 |

Clique PR, Dina Allende | Tel: +1 305-205-1058 |


MDC Contacts:

Juan Mendieta | +1 305-237-761 |

Hessy Fernandez | Director, Media Relations | +1 305-237-3949 |

Sue Arrowsmith | +1 305-237-3710 |

Allison Horton | 1+ 305-237-3359 |