Nadia Shihab, Director & Cinematographer
Nadia Shihab is an artist and filmmaker who works across film, collage and sound. She was a Fulbright Scholar to Turkey and worked as a community practitioner for over a decade before directing her feature-length debut, JADDOLAND, which was awarded five festival jury awards, including the IFP Independent Spirit "Truer than Fiction" Award in 2020. She is the recipient of fellowships and awards from the Sundance Documentary Fund, Center for Asian American Media, Firelight Media, Tribeca Film Institute, and Center for Cultural Innovation, and was an artist in residency at the MacDowell Colony and the Djerassi Residency. Recent screenings and exhibitions include the Centre Pompidou, Walker Art Center, Kassel DokFest, DOXA, CAAMFest, Ashland Independent film festival, Dallas International Film Festival, LA Asian Pacific Film Festival and New Orleans Film Festival. She was raised in the Texas panhandle by immigrant parents from Iraq & Yemen, and currently lives and works in Oakland, California.
Talal Al-Muhanna, Producer
Talal Al-Muhanna produces documentaries and features with emerging filmmakers of Arab descent. His films have screened at numerous festivals internationally, won awards, and have aired in the U.S. and Europe on World Channel, ARTE, ZDF, NRK, NTR, YLE, SVT, and DRK, amongst others. Talal produced WHOSE COUNTRY? with ITVS (World Premiere at Hot Docs) and co-executive produced “Emirs” for ARTE France. His Grand Prix award-winning arts documentary DISPORTRAIT was co-produced with ZDF and nominated by the Danish Film Academy for Best Short Documentary in 2015. His projects have been supported by Sundance, Tribeca Film Institute, Doha Film Institute, Enjaaz (Dubai), Visions Sud Est (Switzerland), CNC & Rhone-Alpes Cinema (France), MDM (Germany), MEDIA/Creative Europe and Eurimages. Talal holds an M.A. in Film Production from Leeds Metropolitan University in the U.K. and a Certificate in Fundraising from New York University. He has also served on film juries for Beirut Film Station, La Femis and Talents Beirut, and, in 2015, was selected as a Producing Fellow at the Center for Asian-American Media (CAAM). Talal produced Karim Goury’s critically acclaimed autobiographic film THE MAN INSIDE – which was programmed alongside Nadia Shihab’s documentary AMAL’S GARDEN at the Dubai International Film Festival in 2012.
Avrïl Jacobson, Editor
Avrïl Jacobson is an award-winning editor specializing in cinematic documentary and art films. Her films have been selected for Sundance, IDFA, TIFF, True/False, and Hot Docs and she works closely with directors to craft a strong narrative while leaving space for moments of reflection and stillness. In 2015, Avrïl edited the feature documentaries THE PRISON IN TWELVE LANDSCAPES and MICHAEL SHANNON MICHAEL SHANNON JOHN, both of which were selected for True/False and Hot Docs. The Prison in Twelve Landscapes won Hot Docs' Special Jury Prize for Canadian Feature Documentary, was nominated for a Canadian Screen Award for Best Feature Length Documentary and featured as a New York Times Critics' Pick upon its American theatrical release. Avril’s experience also extends to editing films for public television. In 2016, Avrïl edited the one-hour film The Skin We're In for Canadian public television, which follows journalist Desmond Cole as he illustrates the connection between the history of anti-black racism in Canada and present-day power structures. In 2011, she received a Gemini Award for Best Picture Editing in a Documentary Program or Series for Peep Culture, a one-hour documentary about our changing relationship to privacy and new media. Other editing credits include My Prairie Home (Sundance ’14), Jennifer Baichwal’s Payback (Sundance ’12), Ghost Noise (IDFA ’10), Deadman (TIFF ’09), Four Walls (TIFF ’07), and Spring Hurlbut’s Airborne ('08), which was acquired by the National Gallery of Canada.
Sara Dosa, Associate Producer
SARA DOSA is an award-winning documentary director and producer based in San Francisco, California. Dosa’s feature directorial debut, THE LAST SEASON made its World Premiere in Competition at the 2014 San Francisco International Film Festival where it took home a Golden Gate Award, and went on to tour the national and international festival circuit. THE LAST SEASON was nominated for an Indie Spirit Award, was acquired by PBS for national broadcast and by First Run Features for its 2015 theatrical release. Most recently, she co-produced AN INCONVENIENT SEQUEL: TRUTH TO POWER, the follow-up documentary to Al Gore’s seminal AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH, and produced the award-winning AUDRIE & DAISY about teenage sexual assault and bullying. In addition to THE SEER, Dosa is currently directing an episode of a forthcoming music docuseries for Netflix; is producing Banker White and Anna Fitch's SURVIVORS about Ebola in Sierra Leone as well as their HEAVEN THROUGH THE BACKDOOR; and, co-producing Petra Costa’s IMPEACHMENT. Other credits include the 2013 Sundance award-winning INEQUALITY FOR ALL and, the acclaimed Brazilian documentary, ELENA. Dosa graduated from Wesleyan University holds a joint Masters in Anthropology and International Development Economics from the London School of Economics.
Lara Sarkissian, Associate Producer
Lara Sarkissian is a sound artist, composer, and filmmaker born and based in San Francisco, CA. She is co-founder of CLUB CHAI; a music label, radio show and curatorial project that focuses on the artistic hybridization of non western sounds and visuals with contemporary western culture. Sarkissian’s films explore familial narratives, diasporic intimacy, and social issues. In 2016, she produced a story for Emmy award winning filmmaker Bared Maronian’s documentary WOMEN OF 1915. Research for this film began from her work in 2013, with the Embassy of the Republic of Armenia to the Kingdom of Denmark in digital archiving never-before-seen artifacts, film and collodion processed photos of the 20th century Armenian Genocide documented by Danish missionaries. Sarkissian produces scores for films and installations. In March & April 2018, she joined ZKM Center for Art and Media in Karlsruhe, Germany as an artist in residence in producing a 360 degree immersive sound and visual installation piece for ISM Hexadome with Jemma Woolmore, alongside residents Brian Eno, Holly Herndon, Thom Yorke, Tarik Barri, and more. In 2017, Sarkissian performed a live score to a screening of her film IR HOKIN HANGEEST at Moscow Museum of Modern Art’s 'Hosting the Inhuman' exhibition.
Nels Bangerter, Consulting Editor
Mark Ashworth & Nadia Shihab, Music Composers
Martin Crane, Music Composer
Robert Arnold, Online & Color
Dan Olmstead, Sound Design
Angad Singh Bhalla, Additional Editing (TV Cutdown)