Directed Action Live Film Series

Tuesday May 2nd at Capital Fringe, 730pm, Giovanna will talk about the new film Java, recent work on Spirits of Rebellion, and look at a work made 10 years ago at the start of youtube / interactive storytelling.

Our latest short film, Java, premiered in competition at Richmond International Film Festival on March 4th, 2017. Actors Drae Campbell (Jet) and Rebecca Wahls (Diana) joined Giovanna and Producer Lisa Thrasher at the Q&A. The next screening will be on March 30th, Opening Night of the Boston Wicked Queer Film Festival in front of the feature Signature Move. Read about Java in this Fairfax Times article that covers our film as a Mason Film Lab co-production.

World Premiere of JAVA!

Giovanna interviewed by Voice of America on this year's Oscar race

"Oscars Reflect Talent, but Also Money and Politics" February 13, 2017
by Penelope Poulou

Giovanna Chesler, director of the Film and Video Studies program at George Mason University in Virginia, says that as in any other campaign, robust advertising and a large amount of money can have as much influence as artistic merit in securing a film’s road to the Oscars.

As a documentary producer herself, she says when she worked on a film she and her team were considering promoting for Oscar consideration, she knew that it would cost about $50,000 just to secure the screening of the film in core markets during the Oscar season. This money does not cover additional expenses for advertising and promotion.

Chesler says she has renewed faith in the Oscars because, as she puts it, “in this year’s nominees you see more talent reflected, not just the marketing ability of the industry.”

Video interview with VOA News

Spirits of Rebellion Screenings



After winning Best African Diaspora Documentary at the African Academy Awards (in Port Harcourt, Nigeria), and Best Documentary Feature (Jury) and shared Audience Award for Best Documentary at Blackstar Film Festival in Philadelphia PA, SPIRITS continues to enjoy festival and curated screenings.
National Museum of African American History and Culture March 25
African Diaspora Int'l Film Festival, New York (Closing Night) Dec 11
Foto DC, November 19
New Orleans Film Festival, October 12-20

Spirit Magazine

As Director and Associate Professor of Film and Video Studies, Giovanna was featured in a cover story on the program, its students, and the FAVS focus on crafting a film program around gender, equity and inclusion in Spirit Magazine.

2016 Events

October 26 9am - 10am Baltimore, MD presentation "Finding Sweet Spot in Film Pricing and Purchasing at National Media Market and Conference

September 28, 730pm - GMU Visiting Filmmakers Series with Christine Vachon, conversation with Giovanna Chesler, Johnson Center Cinema, Fairfax, VA. Tickets here through Women in Film and Video - DC.

August 1- 5: University Film and Video Association Conference, presentation of JAVA - feature screenplay, Membership workshop on Diversity and Inclusion, formal responses to UFVA member screenplays, Gender Caucus Workshop

The New York Times propels Period

In April 2007, Period: The End of Menstruation was featured on the front page of the New York Times. Above the fold! This launched international coverage and turned Period into a Cinema Guild top-seller that year.

Out in the Night Reviews and interviews

As a documentary on PBS's nationally televised independent documentary series POV and the Logo network, Out in the Night enjoyed international coverage and acclaim. Here is a selection of interviews and reviews. More can be found at

Reviews for BeauteouS: The Trilogy

BeauteouS, BeauteouS: Stephanie and BeauteouS: Giovanna were created as three separate but connected pieces - the BeauteouS: Trilogy, between 2000 and 2002. Three portraits of three sisters and their relations to beauty in three distinct genres: fiction comedy, a documentary portrait and experimental film. As a trilogy, they garnered reviews and screenings.

A Mentour Worth Watching, Alisia Chase in Afterimage

Gay and Lesbian Times, Sept 04
KPBS review of the trilogy Sept 04
Video Librarian Review, April 2004
City Beat, San Diego, review, February 2004