For almost two decades, Ellen Spiro has pushed the boundaries of the documentary form by creating award-winning and imaginative films, including DIANA’S HAIR EGO, GREETINGS FROM OUT HERE, ROAM SWEET HOME, ATOMIC ED AND THE BLACK HOLE, ARE THE KIDS ALRIGHT? (with Karen Bernstein) and TROOP 1500.
In 2007 she released BODY OF WAR (co-directed and co-produced with Phil Donahue), which was short-listed for an Academy Award in the Best Feature Documentary category and won Best Documentary of 2007 by the National Board of Review. It was also was nominated for a Producer's Guild Award and was broadcast nationally on the Sundance Channel.
Spiro has been awarded The Foundation of American Women in Radio and Television's Gracie Award for Outstanding Director and Outstanding Documentary, an Emmy Award for Outstanding Documentary. She is a two-time recipient of the Rockefeller fellowship, a Guggenheim fellowship, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a Jerome Foundation Fellowship, and a commendation from the Texas State Legislature.
Spiro's films have been shown in film festivals internationally, broadcast on television worldwide on PBS, HBO, BBC, CBC and NHK and are housed in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Peabody Collection of the Museum of Television and Radio and the New York Public Library.
She is currently a visiting professor at UC Berkeley.
PJ Raval is an award‐winning filmmaker whose work explores the overlooked subcultures and identities within the already marginalized LGBTQ+ community. Named one of Out Magazine’s “Out 100”, PJ’s credits include TRINIDAD: TRANSGENDER FRONTIER (Showtime) and BEFORE YOU KNOW IT, which follows the lives of three gay senior men, described by indieWIRE as “a crucial new addition to the LGBT doc canon.” BEFORE YOU KNOW IT screened theatrically and broadcast premiered as the season finale of AMERICA REFRAMED on PBS World Channel, and was awarded the National Gay and Lesbian Journalist Association Excellence in Documentary Award 2016.
PJ recently completed CALL HER GANDA which follows the events surrounding Jennifer Laude, a trans woman who was discovered dead in a motel room in Olongapo City, Philippines with the prime suspect being a US Marine. CALL HER GANDA released theatrically Fall 2018, winning over a dozen Best Documentary and Audience Awards and recently broadcast premiered on POV on PBS to millions of viewers.
Also an accomplished cinematographer, PJ shot the Academy Award‐nominated Best Documentary TROUBLE THE WATER and is a 2015 Guggenheim Fellow, 2016 Firelight Media Fellow, 2017 Robert Giard Fellow, and a member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences.