Celebrate the 2021 Class of AFI Directing Workshop for Women

An independent fundraiser for their upcoming projects
February 19 - 21st, 2021

DWW is the longest-running program dedicated to supporting women and nonbinary narrative directors. Committed to providing opportunities for marginalized voices, DWW annually mentors up to eight filmmakers through the production cycle of a short film. Participants are responsible for raising the funds for their projects.
Learn more about the class of 2021, view their past films and donate to their upcoming projects. The celebration will be available from February 19- 21st with a live Q&A with the filmmakers on Saturday, February 20th at 3pm PST.
If you missed the Live Q&A with the filmmakers on
Saturday, February 20th you can view it here. Enjoy!

Click on the title to be directed to the film

* This independent event is not officially affiliated with AFI or the Directing Workshop for Women.

After You Left

The memories come flooding back when Andrea's ex-girlfriend returns the last few items from their prior life together.

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Director: April Maxey

April is a queer Chicana filmmaker originally from San Antonio, Texas. Her narrative writing & directing credits include short films Polaroid Girl, Same Same, This Is You And Me, & After You Left. She holds a BFA from Pratt Institute in Film/Video. Her short work has collectively screened at over 60 festivals across 14 countries and won 8 awards internationally. She is an alumna of the Berlinale Talents Short Film Station. Her pilot screenplay Work was a top 5 finalist in the 2019 New Orleans Film Festival Screenplay Competition. Her last short film, After You Left won the Shorts Jury Prize at the Milwaukee Film Festival and has screened at Academy and BAFTA-Qualifying festivals such as Palm Springs Int’l Shortfest, Flickerfest, HollyShorts, as well as Outfest Fusion, Newfest, and Wicked Queer Film Festival.


Upcoming 2021 DWW Project


Film Title: WORK

Work is a narrative short film that follows Gabriela, a queer Chicana, who decides to go back to an old job as an underground lap dancer, after a recent breakup. There, she unexpectedly reconnects with an old friend, and begins a journey of finding her way back to herself.



The day before Charlie leaves for college, her relationship with her best friend Nina explodes as they figure out how to say goodbye. CANDACE explores questions of race, queerness, and identity through the messy intimacy of young female friendship. 


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Director: Em Weinstein

Em is a writer and director for film, theater, and television. Em has made two award winning short films that have played at festivals worldwide. CANDACE (2018) won the Best Film at the American Pavilion at the Cannes Film Festival and IN FRANCE MICHELLE IS A MAN’S NAME (2020) won the Grand Jury Award at Outfest, an Academy Award qualifying prize. Em is developing an hour long pilot for Imagine Entertainment and is a Staff Writer for Amazon TV’s A  League of Their Own series. While getting their MFA at Yale School of Drama, Em directed numerous plays such as the first workshop  production of SLAVE PLAY by Jeremy O. Harris. Em has written, directed and developed work with companies  such as Rattlestick Theater, Shakespeare & Company, Two River Theater, New  York Theater Workshop, Working Theater, New Georges and the Museum of Ice Cream. Em is nonbinary and uses they/them pronouns.


Upcoming Project



SOLDIERGIRLS is a musical short film about love, liberation and lesbianism in the US Army during World War Two. Based on Em Weinstein and Emily Johnson-Erday's full length musical which was put on hold due to Covid, we couldn't be more excited to bring this joyful project to the screen. More info at:



After the first week of her arranged marriage in a foreign land, Quyen must decide how the next chapter in her life will be written.


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Director: Lucretia Stinnette

Lucretia Stinnette is a Los Angeles based filmmaker and producer, whose work takes a nuanced look at the ways that class, economics and racial identity shape the interior lives and lived experiences of women of color. She is currently a fellow in the 2021 class of the AFI Directing Workshop for Women. Stinnette is the recipient of the Princess Grace Graduate Film Scholarship, the Lynn Weston Fellowship in Film, the Women in Film Foundation/Verna Fields Memorial Fellowship and the Four Sisters Scholarship in Directing. 


Her short film Quyen, about a young Vietnamese woman's first week with her new Korean husband, was informed by her four years living and teaching in South Korea. Quyen awarded the KQED Film School Shorts Best Film, and her work has been screened at the New Orleans Film Festival, L.A. Asian Pacific Film Festival, Munich Festival of Film Schools, among many others. Born and raised in Chicago, Lucretia Stinnette has worked and studied in countries such as Ghana, South Africa and South Korea. She earned her BA in International Relations from the University of Southern California, and MFA in Film from UCLA.


Upcoming 2021 DWW Project


Film Title: REDONDO 

Redondo is a narrative short film that takes place in a Korean owned beauty supply store, where a misunderstanding between Brittany, a Black woman, and Eugene, the store owner, explodes into a violent confrontation that is captured on video by a bystander. This story explores what happened from 3 perspectives.



Hellen’s luck seems to change one day when she is offered housing, but she soon finds herself forced to choose between love and survival.

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Director: Kelly Pike

Kelly Pike is a Writer/Director who arrived in Los Angeles by way of Houston, TX. She is also a  recipient of  the DGA (Directors Guild of America) Award of Outstanding Directorial Achievement. With an established career in the visual arts, she first expanded her practice into filmmaking by working with documentarian Albert Maysles, then went on to earn an M.F.A. in Directing from UCLA. 


Her short films have won awards from the Caucus of Producers Writers & Directors, the National Association of Theater Owners (NATO), VIMEO, Austin Film Festival, and at the Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the Cannes Film Festival. They have screened at festivals around the world and on PBS.


Upcoming 2021 DWW Project


Film Title: PICTURE DAY 

The day before school pictures, a newly transplanted tomboy’s decision to pierce her ears sparks a family crisis. A nuanced portrait of the transition from girlhood to sexual maturity, this film explores what we’ll sacrifice in
order to fit in