ReFraming Gender-Inclusive Hiring: How Producers are Shifting the Narrative
Join ReFrame, the screen industry’s gender equity coalition led by Sundance Institute and WIF, in a conversation with leading independent producers about what it takes to really move the needle towards gender parity and inclusion in production. While some progress has been made in the last 5 years to increase the numbers of women and historically underrepresented talent in key roles, the (slight) increase in greenlit projects led by women and filmmakers of color remains the primary driver of that change. Until the majority of films make a push for inclusive and gender-balanced hiring, especially those led by male creative teams, the game just won’t change. ReFrame’s director, Andria Wilson Mirza will lead a discussion with acclaimed male and female producers that are challenging the historical approaches to building their teams, and working towards a more representative industry on all levels.
Andria Wilson Mirza, Director, ReFrame
Alexander Stegmaier, Producer/Manager, previously at Walt Disney Animation Studios
Andrew Hevia, Head of TV & Film in North America, Fabula
April Shih, Writer/producer, Diversity Hire Ltd.
Ebony Elaine Hardin, Producer, Pretty Little Liars (ABC), Sense8 (Netflix)
presented in partnership with Reframe
Andria Wilson MirzaDirector of Reframe
Andria Wilson Mirza is the Director of ReFrame, the screen industry’s gender equity coalition founded and led by Sundance Institute and Women In Film. Previously, Andria was Executive Director of Inside Out, Canada’s largest LGBTQ film festival. There, she established the world’s only LGBTQ Feature Film Financing Forum, launched two development funds, co-founded the North American Queer Festival Alliance (NAQFA), and spearheaded a multi-year partnership between Inside Out and Netflix. Named ‘one of 15 Canadian women to watch’ by the CBC, Andria has been a featured speaker at festivals including TIFF, Sundance, SXSW, Berlin’s European Film Market, San Diego Comic Con, Oslo Fusion, and the Iris Prize Producer’s Forum. Under her Baby Daal Productions banner, co-founded with her wife Fawzia Mirza, Andria produced their award winning film NOOR & LAYLA for CBC Gem and is in pre-production on Fawzia’s directorial debut feature ME, MY MOM AND SHARMILA. Andria and Fawzia served as advisors on the Sundance documentary SIRENS from Emmy-winning director Rita Baghdadi, and are Executive Producers of Sandra Itäinen’s upcoming queer Muslim documentary COMING AROUND.
Alexander StegmaierProducer/Manager, previously at Walt Disney Animation Studios
Alexander Stegmaier is a producer and manager working in film and television with a focus on underrepresented voices. He previously worked in development at Walt Disney Animation Studios where he helped build unique worlds and characters, expanding some of the company’s biggest franchises including FROZEN, MOANA, and ZOOTOPIA.
Most recently, Alexander produced the feature film MUTT by Vuk Lungulov-Klotz, which world premiered at Sundance 2023, was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize and won a Special Jury Award. He also executive produced Fawzia Mirza’s Bollywood-inspired epic, THE QUEEN OF MY DREAMS (Toronto 2023), and Jamie Sisley’s STAY AWAKE (Berlinale 2022, Special Jury Mention Award). Prior to Disney, Alexander was an award-winning art producer at National Geographic magazine where he covered a range of human-interest stories that reached millions of viewers a month.
April ShihWriter/producer, Diversity Hire Ltd.
April Shih is a WGA Award-winning television writer/producer and filmmaker with several series in development at FX, WBTV, and Paramount Television Studios. She has written for FX’s critically acclaimed comedy YOU’RE THE WORST, MRS. AMERICA (starring Cate Blanchett), and Amazon’s UNDONE, and served as Supervising Producer for Season 2 of DAVE. April was recently a showrunner for Alex Garland’s THE BEACH for FX and is currently a co-executive producer on Season 5 of FARGO. April has been a fellow of the Sundance Episodic Story Lab, CAPE New Writers Fellowship, CBS Writers Mentoring Program, and the inaugural Film Independent Episodic Lab. April is currently under an overall deal at FX where she is creating, developing, and producing meaningful, soul-oriented content under her production banner DIVERSITY HIRE LTD.
Andrew HeviaHead of TV & Film in North America, Fabula
Andrew Hevia is the Head of TV & Film in the North American office of Fabula, the international production company founded by Academy Award winning filmmakers Juan de Dios and Pablo Larraín. His producing credits include MOONLIGHT, CENIZAS and SPENCER. A Cuban American filmmaker from Miami, Andrew is a graduate of the Florida State University Film School and Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business. He was a Fulbright Fellow in Hong Kong, a Gotham Labs Fellow and a Producing Fellow at Berlinale Talents. Andrew currently lives in Los Angeles.
Ebony Elaine HardinProducer
Ebony Elaine Hardin is a LA-based Producer with roots in casting for TV, Film, and Broadway. She has worked on various TV series and films, including Pretty Little Liars (ABC), Sense8 (Netflix), Dimension 20 (CH Media), and Baby Driver (TriStar).With a passion for developing and producing projects with visionary creatives, Ebony is currently producing Trashy People, a coming-of-age environmental dramady written and directed by Marissa High. In the short film space, Ebony produced Mr. Talented (dir. Rochée Jeffrey), which screened at the 2018 Austin Film Festival and was a finalist in the HBO Short Film Competition at MVAAFF. More recently, she produced The Bluest Hour (dir. Logan Jackson), Dinner Party Dictator (dir. Bente Engelstoft) and The Flacalta Effect (dir. Rochée Jeffrey) which will all be on the 2024 festival circuit.Ebony is honored to have been selected as a 2018 NCBW Maya Angelou Phenomenal Woman Award Winner, a 2021 Constellation Incubator Producing Fellow, a 2022 Film Independent Project Involve Producing Fellow and a 2023 WIF Producing Fellow and Film Financing Intensive participant with Trashy People.