About the team

Aaron Schimberg (Director) is a filmmaker living in New York. His debut feature Go Down Death was part of the IFP Narrative Lab, premiered as the closing night film of the Fantasia Film Festival’s Camera Lucida section and is distributed by Factory 25. His screenplay for Chained For Life was selected for inclusion in the FrontieÃÄres International Co-Production Market in 2016. He is a programmer at Brooklyn’s Spectacle Theater and a co-founder of Grand Motel Films, which recently rediscovered and restored the lost 1966 film Who’s Crazy?, featuring an original soundtrack by Ornette Coleman.

Vanessa McDonnell (Producer) is a producer and co-founder of The Eyeslicer and Grand Motel Films. She produced the feature films collective:unconscious, John’s of 12th Street and Go Down Death, and made the archival discovery and oversaw the restoration of the lost 1966 film Who’s Crazy?, which features an original soundtrack by Ornette Coleman. Vanessa sits on the Board of Directors for experimental theater group Object Collection and Spectacle, a Brooklyn microcinema, where she is also a programmer. As a Contributing Editor at Screen Slate, a daily resource for film commentary in New York City, she’s written about dozens of films and interviewed AgneÃÄs Varda, Kathryn Reed Altman and Dave Kehr.

Dan Schoenbrun (Producer) is the co-founder and co-creator of The Eyeslicer. He recently produced and curated collective:unconscious, a collaborative feature film in which five of NYC’s most acclaimed filmmakers adapted each other’s dreams for the screen. In 2016, collective:unconscious became the first ever omnibus film to premiere in Competition at SXSW, and was praised by Rolling Stone as, “unlike anything you’ve ever seen with your eyes open.” Previously, Dan has worked in the independent film industry for nearly a decade, serving as the Senior Film Outreach Lead at Kickstarter, the Associate Director of Programming at IFP, and the Associate Editor of Filmmaker Magazine.

Daniel Patrick Carbone (Producer) graduated from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2007. In 2012, he was selected for the IFP Narrative Labs, Emerging Visions program, and the New York Film Festival’s Artists Academy for his debut feature film Hide Your Smiling Faces. The film had its world and North American premieres at the Berlin International Film Festival and the Tribeca Film Festival in 2013 and was named the Best Film Still Awaiting Distribution by the National Society of Film Critics. In 2014 the film was released via Tribeca Film, and was named a Critic’s Pick¬Æ by the New York Times. In 2016, collective:unconscious – an experimental omnibus feature he co-directed – had its world premiere at SXSW in the narrative competition. His feature-length documentary Phantom Cowboys, a Cinereach grant-supported film, premiered at Tribeca 2018.

Matthew Petock (Producer) made his feature film debut in 2011 with A Little Closer, which premiered internationally at the 40th International Film Festival Rotterdam, and domestically at the 47th Chicago International Film Festival as a part of the New Directors Competition. Petock is a fellow of IFP’s Emerging Storytellers program, the New York Film Festival’s Artist Academy, and the recipient of Panavision’s New Filmmaker Grant. He also served as a producer on Hide Your Smiling Faces (dir: Daniel Patrick Carbone) and Americana (dir: Zachary Shedd), both written and directed by his Flies Collective collaborators.

Zachary Shedd (Producer) grew up in San Francisco and graduated from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2007. After producing four independent features, he made his feature directorial debut in the fall of 2014 with Americana, which he wrote and set in his home town. The film stars David Call (Two Gates of Sleep, Tiny Furniture), Jack Davenport (Pirates of the Caribbean, The Talented Mr. Ripley), Kelli Garner (Lars and the Real Girl, The Aviator), Frank Mosley (Upstream Color, Ain’t Them Bodies Saints) and Peter Coyote (E.T., Erin Brockovich). Americana premiered at the 2016 Seattle International Film Festival and internationally at the Fantasia Film Festival.

Chained for Life is a Cinereach grantee.

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