Film Independent’s Global Media Makers Program Unveils L.A. Residency Shorts

Spirit Award organizer Film Independent has released three short films directed by South Asian filmmakers that took part in its Global Media Makers Los Angeles Residency.

The three shorts include Anup Poudel’s Birds in LA, where the filmmaker from Nepal portrays a paper swan meeting others of different colors and sizes and embracing friendship and freedom while on a tour of Los Angeles.

The second short is Indian director Archana Borhade’s Inner Camera, where the filmmaker, a cinematographer, reflects on visiting a global beauty capital and finding self-acceptance when turning the camera on herself.

The third short film is also from India, Sriram Raja’s To LA with Love, where the director travels to locations where La La Land was filmed and reflects on how nostalgic Los Angeles feels in his still 35mm photographs, yet modern when captured on his iPhone.

The Global Media Makers program in recent years has moved from mentoring talent from countries in the MENA region (Middle East and North Africa) to including creatives from South Asia. The program launched in 2016 is a partnership between Film Independent and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and connects film talent such as writers, directors and producers with leading U.S. entertainment professionals through workshops and master classes.

The participants receive a yearlong fellowship starting with a six-week residency in L.A. The three shorts unveiled on Tuesday had Spring LA Residency participants paired with local Film Independent fellows to create a short impressionistic film that showcases personal views of Los Angeles and uses an iPhone.

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“Providing our GMM fellows a space and time to explore our city of Los Angeles, guided by a local Film Independent fellow, is central to the mission of the program: building bridges and fostering a dialogue amongst creative minds around the world,” María Raquel Bozzi, senior director of education & international initiatives, explained in a statement.