Newport Beach Film Festival presents World Premiere of SEEING IS BELIEVING: WOMEN DIRECT 4/25

Emmy winning actress-turned-director Cady McClain's Seeing is Believing: Women Direct will make its World Premiere and is an Official Selection of the 2017 Newport Beach Film Festival. The first episode in the series will screen as part of the program 'Short Femme Factor' on April 25 at 1:30 p.m. at Island Cinema 6 in Newport Beach. Seeing is Believing: Women Direct is a documentary series, directed, executive produced, written and edited by Cady McClain, about women directors who are on the front lines of the field: from major award winners and those in the vanguard of television and feature films, to graduated students and frustrated auteurs.

McClain has spent the past year traveling the globe, speaking to female directors of film and television and documenting their stories. The outcome is a serialized documentary, providing insider access to the skills and tools needed to succeed as a woman in the directing field. When only 1.9% of the top 100 films are directed by women, it is a symptom of a larger problem: an ingrained cultural bias against women's ability to lead. McClain believes the best way to create change is to show proof that the bias is based on outdated and false ideas. Considering all aspects of the directing experience, the series will show how these women drive through obstacles creative, cultural and professional. The series is also intended to serve as peer-to-peer mentorship for anyone of any gender looking for guidance and real world experience as they pursue their dreams of becoming a visual storyteller.

Last fall, McClain started an IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign for the project's post-production, which successfully met and then surpassed its $50,000 goal by 16%. Donations were fully tax-deductible due to not-for-profit sponsorship from The Film Collaborative. The series also received a micro-grant and social media support from the Awesome Without Borders via the Harnisch Foundation (announced today!)

"We are so thrilled to receive our premiere at the Newport Beach Film Festival!" said McClain. "As an alum of several Newport schools, it is my hope that Seeing is Believing: Women Direct will bring inspiration and encouragement to the young women of Orange County and the ever-expanding community of the festival. It's so wonderful to share the news of our premiere on the same day as our Awesome Without Borders grant! It's been a lot of work to get here so this feels especially good!"

The 50 interviewees include: Sarah Gavron (Suffragette, Brick Lane), Meera Menon (Equity), Oscar winner Lee Grant (Down and out in America), LesLi Linka Glatter (EP/Director, Homeland), Betty Thomas (highest grossing female director: The Brady Bunch Movie, Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeekquel) Bethany Rooney (200+ hours primetime TV & co-author of Directors Tell the Story), Lizzie Borden (Born In Flames, Working Girls (Sundance Jury Prize), two-time Oscar-winner Sarah Kernochan (documentaries: Marjoe, Thoth), Emmy-winner Anne Makepeace (I. M. Pei: Building China Modern, Robert Capa in Love and War), Rusudan Glurdijdze (Karlovy Vary winner: House of Others), Marianna Palka (Sundance: Good Dick, Bitch), Nicole Conn (lesbian genre films: A Perfect Ending, Elena Undone), producer Deborah Del Prete (Ender's Game, The Spirit), plus John Wells (ER, West Wing), Mike Robin (Major Crimes), Deborah Riley Draper (Olympic Pride, American Prejudice, Versailles '73: American Runway Revolution) and many more.

The producing team: Executive Producers: Cady McClain and Leah Meyerhoff (Founder, Film Fatales, director: I Believe in Unicorns). Lead Producer: Kate Super (Director/Producer: Women on the Edge), Additional Producers: Amanda Quinn Olivar (Board member, The Chimaera Project), Kimberly McCullough (Director: Pretty Little Liars), Jon Lindstrom (Director: How We Got Away With It) and Li Lu (Director: There Is a New World Somewhere).

ABOUT Cady McClain:

Cady McClain is a two-time Emmy winning actress, writer, director, and producer. She studied directing with legendary artistic director of The Ensemble Studio Theatre, Curt Dempster. Her short film, The World of Albert Fuh, premiered at the SOHO International Film Fest. It then won Best Comedy/Drama Short at the Ohio Indie Gathering, was awarded an Honorable Mention for "Best Director" by the Los Angeles Film Review, an "Honorable Mention" by the SaMoIndie FF, and received an Award of Merit by the Best Shorts Film Festival. It was also an official selection of the LA Indie Film Fest. Her short film, Flip Fantasia, enjoyed acceptance into the Macon Film Festival and gained a remarkable FB cult following of over 80K. Seeing is Believing: Women Direct, a serialized doc on women and leadership, explores the journey of women artists working in the field of directing. She is thrilled to be directing and producing Butterflies, a short film by Carlotta Summers, in May of 2017. To learn more about Cady McClain, visit:

ABOUT KATE SUPER: A graduate of Johns Hopkins University, Kate began her career in the world of documentaries. She has served in leadership roles for original programming produced for networks such as Fuse, TruTV, Discovery and the DIY Network. Her short and feature-length documentaries are international in scope and include Homeless Not Hopeless, Soledad, Women on the Edge, and Misha Versus Moscow: The Battle for Georgia's Future.

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