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Category: Art and Entertainment, Girls

Entirely Connected to Tiffany Shlain

January 21, 2011


The WMC blog is featuring Progressive Girls’ Voices in dispatches from the Sundance Film Festival, as our girl journalists attend feminist film screenings and interview notable leaders and directors. In this installment, Charis Benjamin reflects on director Tiffany Shlain's thoughts on women in film — watch this space for more.

By Charis Benjamin

Charis Benjamin was born in Dallas, Texas, but currently lives in Salt Lake City. She is a Junior at Rowland Hall. She is an advocate for discussing diversity issues, and as a young African-American woman in a state with a 1.3% Black demographic, she has a unique perspective.

The 11 degree Park City weather did not deter the excitement of meeting Tiffany Shlain for an interview about her film Connected. Us four young female bloggers' thrill defrosted our fingers and toes as we prepared for our first interview. Tiffany Shlain's poise and joy made this experience that much more rewarding.

We were able to not only discuss her film, but also her views on women in film-making and her personal experience as a female in fast-paced modern society. Shlain credits her inclusive and supportive upbringing with her success not only as a female film maker, but also as a full time mother. She has not felt pressured to change herself or felt that she is any less appreciated in her field. She also credits the amazing women she has met in the industry and their abilities to inspire her to do her best work with utmost integrity.

In her eyes, mentoring between the experienced and the new is the best way to encourage young women to join in her footsteps. After viewing Connected, I was impressed by the film's ability to capture my attention. The scenes they show are real, the examples they give are real, and the reality of the power humans have is extremely real. A smart film is one that is easy to relate to, and this is true for Connected. For those who enjoy great visual effects, the animations of this film are exceptional. The visual effects artists were able to play with artifacts from the past and make them come to life.

Though at times comical, these animations never detracted from the message of change for the better that Tiffany Shlain has at the root of her purpose. I wish the best of luck for Tiffany Shlain and her fabulous crew as she goes forward in this 2011 Sundance Film Festival! I also want to thank her for the great interview!