The 38th Annual Big Muddy Film Festival is proud to announce the official jury for the 2015 festival. Prizes will be awarded in each of the festival’s categories including Animation, Documentary, Experimental and Narrative. The winning films will be announced at the Big Muddy Film Festival Awards Ceremony at the end of the festival.
Rosalind Sibielski, PhD is an Assistant Professor of Film Studies at Rhode Island College. Her research interests include media representations of gender and sexuality, girl culture, monsters in popular culture, media adaptations, and media convergence. She has published essays on film, television, and visual culture in Literature and Psychology, Rhizomes, and Feminist Media Studies, and has contributed chapters to the essay collections Cyberfeminism 2.0 and Monster Culture in the 21st Century: A Reader. She is currently working on a book on revisionist fairytales in contemporary popular culture. She is also the Associate Editor of the online journal The Projector: A Journal on Film, Media, and Culture.
Kris Swanberg began her film career at Southern Illinois University where she studied documentary film production. Using naturalistic techniques and often working with non-actors, Swanberg went on to focus her career in narrative film. Her first feature, It was great, but I was ready to come home played in competition at the SXSW Film Festival in 2009, followed by her next feature, Empire Builder (2012) and short film Baby Mary (2014). Unexpected, starring Cobie Smulders and Anders Holm, premiered in competition at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival and is Swanberg’s third feature.
Heather Elliott-Famularo is an award winning filmmaker and artist who is committed to researching and exploring important cultural issues. Although primarily focused on video and film production, Ms. Elliott-Famularo also creates artworks that use performance, photography, and digital media. She is currently Associate Professor and Chair of Digital Arts at Bowling Green State University and holds an MFA in Art and Technology from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a BFA in Art Media Studies from Syracuse University.
Her most recent, ongoing research includes Bearing Witness: The Voices of Our Survivors, a documentary film that shares the testimonies of six Holocaust survivors of Toledo, Ohio. Her training in documentary archival research, interview strategies, and digital media production established the framework for an inquiry-based collaborative project, Bearing Witness: Social Responsibility in the Shadow of the Holocaust, that is developing 21st-century interactive, digital curricular materials based on the histories of the six local Holocaust survivors. The Bearing Witness Holocaust project has already received several grants from the local to federal level, including an Ohio Humanities Council grant and a Fulbright-Hays GPA grant, which brought eleven educators to East Central Europe in 2014 to further research and document the survivors’ histories.