Started in 1979, The Big Muddy Film Festival remains a significant cultural event in Carbondale as well as the whole Southern Illinois region. Each year, The Big Muddy Crew, the committee of students who run the festival, selects three film and media enthusiasts from all walks of life with various interests to jury the films selected into The Big Muddy Film Festival. Past Jurors have included Barbara Hammer, Naomi Uman, Kris Swanberg, Akosua Adoma Owusu, Jim Jarmusch, Kerry Laitala, James Benning, Tomonari Nishikawa, and Sasha Waters-Freyer.

The Big Muddy Crew would like to announce jurors of The 41st Annual Big Muddy Film Festival.


Ricardo Miranda Zuniga | Personal Webpage

Ricardo Miranda Zuniga is an American new media artist who approaches art as a social practice that establishes a dialogue in public spaces. Having been born of immigrant parents and grown up between Nicaragua and San Francisco, a strong awareness of inequality and discrimination was established at an early age. Themes such as immigration, discrimination, gentrification and the effects of globalization extend from highly subjective experiences and observations into works that tactically engage others through populist metaphors while maintaining critical perspectives. Ricardo’s work has been exhibited at galleries, festivals, and museums internationally, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, the New Museum of Contemporary Art, the New York Hall of Science,  and the Museum of the Moving Image.


Cathy Lee Crane | Personal Website

Cathy Lee Crane has been making innovative narrative and documentary films on 16mm since 1994. She has also directed music videos, created installations, and photographed numerous films for other directors. Crane is the recipient of several fellowships, including the prestigious Guggenheim Fellowship in 2013 and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Film. Her work has been showcased at the National Gallery of Art in D.C. in 2015, the Montreal Festival du Nouveau Cinema, and it has even broadcast on European television. Currently, Crane is an Associate Professor in the Department of Cinema, Photography, and Media arts at Ithica College.


Kamau Bilal | Personal Webpage

Kamau Bilal is an African American filmmaker based in Central Missouri. He was named one of 25 New Faces of Independent Film in 2018 by Filmmaker Magazine. His short film Baby Brother held it’s World Premiere at Sundance in 2018, it’s International Premiere at Sheffield Doc/Fest and was supported by the Points North Institute. The film was selected as one of seven shorts to participate in the Sundance Short Film Theatrical Tour, where it was shown in four countries and over seventy cities. His work has been featured in the The NYTimes, Filmmaker Magazine, Hammer To Nail & No Film School, among others. His previous short film, Crown Candy co-directed with David Wilson premiered at DOC NYC and won the grand jury prize at the St. Louis International Film Festival, an Academy Award qualifying event. In 2016, he photographed the HBO commissioned and Emmy nominated documentary Stories Women Tell, directed by Tracy Droz Tragos (Rich Hill), which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and aired on HBO. As an editor, he cut the NYTimes Critics pick A Stray directed by Musa Syeed (Valley of Saints), and premiered at SXSW 2016. He teaches film production classes at the University of Missouri, where he is infusing a new generation of filmmakers with a desire to reject the expensive industrial process, currently known in our industry. With the hope that average people alike will be given the time and space to speak in the language of cinema. He is based in the Midwest.


Festival Jury Archive

Jurors for The 40th Annual Big Muddy Film Festival

Jurors for The 39th Annual Big Muddy Film Festival

Jurors for The 38th Annual Big Muddy Film Festival

Jurors for The 37th Annual Big Muddy Film Festival

Jurors for The 36th Annual Big Muddy Film Festival