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The Gotham Announces Public Programming for 2021 Gotham Week Virtual Conference

by Gotham on August 17, 2021

Conversations on Creativity Series, in Partnership with Filmmaker Magazine, to feature:

Janicza Bravo (Zola) in conversation with Joi McMillon (Zola)

Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson (Summer of Soul) in conversation with Jamila Wignot (Ailey) 

A conversation with the team behind The Starling including director Theodore Melfi

Additional conversations with Nanfu Wang, Lance Oppenheim, Kitty Green, Sharon Mashihi, Chris Giliberti, Lang Fisher, Robia Rashad, Michael Mohan, Leslie Shatz, Wendy Zukerman, Sarah Adina Smith, Julia Solomonoff and Jake Brennan

Gotham Week to take place virtually September 19th – September 24th

Purchase tickets here and check out the Gotham Week schedule here.


NEW YORK (August 17, 2021) – The Gotham Film and Media Institute (formerly IFP), announced today the public programming for the 2021 Gotham Week Conference, taking place virtually Sunday, September 19th – Friday, September 24th. This year’s program includes topical conversations centered around different mediums including audio, documentary feature films, fiction feature films, and TV series and emphasizes the collaborative nature of how they overlap. The Conference will take a deep look at how the media and entertainment industry is reinventing itself in the wake of the pandemic as well as the increased attention on diversity, equity and inclusion.

The Conference will unveil a new series, Conversations on Creativity, in partnership with Filmmaker Magazine, and will feature Zola director Janicza Bravo in conversation with Zola editor Joi McMillion; and Summer of Soul director Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson in conversation with Ailey director Jamila Wignot, and and a conversation with the team behind The Starling including director Theodore Melfi.

“As the landscape evolves for independent storytellers to get their stories made and shared with audiences, it’s important that the Gotham Week Conference provide solutions to the very challenges they face around navigating the industry and specifically around financing, production, and distribution,” said Kia Brooks, The Gotham’s Deputy Director and producer of Gotham Week. “Whether you’re an audio or TV creator, fiction or nonfiction filmmaker, we hope this year’s Gotham Week will continue to encourage those in our community to move forward with their projects and careers.”

Opening day of the Conference, September 19th, will look at the current state of the industry in terms of talent pipelines, the landscape of documentary artist support programs, the emergence of episodic content across mediums and more. Each subsequent day of the conference will cover a vital aspect of the media & entertainment industry, such as “People,” “Story,” and “Business.” The full list of these panels can be found here.

There will also be a day of case studies focusing on works by director Nanfu Wang (In the Same Breath); Originals Series Hit Job; director Michael Mohan (Voyeurs); Sarah Adina Smith (Birds of Paradise); and podcaster Jake Brennan (Badlands).

In addition, Gotham Week will host their signature Direct Access program, which features intimate workshop-style sessions that explore specific topics lead by industry decision makers and insiders. This year’s session will include a workshop lead by the Documentary Accountability Working Group around accountability in nonfiction filmmaking; a workshop on pitching investors and collaborators in partnership with Seed&Spark; a workshop for creators interested in making the leap to audio storytelling in partnership with Audible; as well as an “Insiders Tips” session with independent producers discussing their film financing journey in partnership with Film Independent.

After the success of last year’s free programming offerings, Gotham Week will continue to offer free conversations through IGTV with partners such as Undocumented Filmmakers Collective, Virginia Film Office, Missouri Film Office, Produce Iowa – State Office of Media Production, and Mississippi Film Office. These conversations will cover topics such as equity for undocumented filmmakers in the media ecosystem, opportunities for filmmakers outside of tax incentives, writing personal stories as TV pilots, and more. Additionally the event will host virtual networking events highlighting Gotham programs such as Gotham EDU, Gotham Z and Owning It. Owning It specifically will host a networking event in partnership with organizations such as New York Women in Film, Women in Film, and European Film Market’s EFM Startups.

The Gotham and Gotham Week are generously supported by a group of loyal corporate, foundation and government benefactors. The 2021 Sponsors include Premier Sponsors Amazon Studios and Netflix; Platinum Sponsors Audible, Wondery and Amazon Music; and Gold Sponsors Decentralized Pictures, Penguin Random House Audio, SAGindie, Soundcloud and WarnerMedia. Gotham Week is also supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and the New York State Council on the Arts.

For additional detailed information on Gotham Week and programming, as well as to purchase tickets please visit here.


About The Gotham Film & Media Institute
The Gotham champions the future of storytelling by connecting artists with essential resources at all stages of development and distribution. The organization, under the leadership of Executive Director and award-winning producer Jeffrey Sharp, fosters a vibrant and sustainable independent storytelling community through its year-round programs, which include Gotham Week, Gotham Labs, Filmmaker Magazine, the Gotham Awards, and Gotham EDU.

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