Frameline Sets New Colin Higgins Youth Foundation Grant & 2023 Recipients

Frameline, the arts nonprofit that hosts San Francisco’s International LGBTQ+ Film Festival, announced a new partnership with the Colin Higgins Foundation entitled the Colin Higgins Youth Filmmaker Grant, a new initiative centered on providing young LGBTQ+ filmmakers with financial support to continue their work.

Eligible applicants must identify as LGBTQ+ filmmakers, be under the age of 25 and currently reside in the U.S. The recipients for this year have been chosen and are being announced today.

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Three young American filmmakers, Daisy Friedman, Karina Dandashi and Emilio Subia, have been selected as the recipients of the Colin Higgins Youth Filmmaker Grant, and will each receive $15,000 to support their future film projects, for a total of $45,000 awarded to these filmmakers. In addition, the winners’ short films will be showcased at the Frameline: San Francisco International LGBTQ+ Film Festival, taking place June 14-24, 2023. Each filmmaker will be in attendance for their screening.

The Colin Higgins Youth Filmmaker Grant is named after the late Colin Higgins, an acclaimed screenwriter and director responsible for such classic films as Harold and Maude, 9 To 5, and The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas, amongst others. After being diagnosed with HIV in 1985, he founded the Colin Higgins Foundation as a means of supporting LGBTQ+ youth in underserved communities by helping to fund programs and organizations that foster and build their leadership skills and empowerment. Since 1988, the Foundation has awarded over 660 grants totaling over $5.8 million to further the humanitarian vision of its founder.

“We are thrilled to engage and empower the incoming generation of LGBTQ+ young filmmakers,“ said James Woolley, Executive Director of Frameline. “Colin Higgins is an icon, and it is a dream for our organization to provide life-changing financial support to filmmakers in Colin’s name. These young artists are telling the deeply authentic stories of the LGBTQ+ community, and we couldn’t be more excited.”

“We are deeply honored and could not be more proud to partner with Frameline in handing out these youth filmmaker grants to honor Colin’s legacy,” said James Cass Rogers, president of the Colin Higgins Foundation. “Colin was a consummate filmmaker who wanted to help gay youth succeed. These grants are a perfect fit for his foundation. His memory will live on through these extraordinary young filmmakers.”

Frameline is also co-presenting “A Genuine Tribute to Colin Higgins, Dolly Parton & Jane Fonda” double-feature screening of 9 To 5, and The Best Little Whorehouse In Texas at The Castro Theatre on May 27 at 6:00pm, presented by Movies for Maniacs & Another Planet Entertainment, hosted by Jesse Hawthorne Ficks. Tickets can be purchased here.

The 2023 Colin Higgins Youth Filmmaker Grantees are as follows:

Director: Daisy Friedman (Age 19)
Film: As You Are 
Daisy Friedman is a chronically ill, queer writer and director based out of New York City. Outside of filmmaking, Daisy has interned for companies such as FilmNation, It Doesn’t Suck Productions, and the Representation Project working in both management and creative development. She is also a 2020 National Scholastic Writing Award Recipient. Originally from Omaha, Nebraska, Daisy currently attends Barnard College of Columbia University as a Film Studies major. As Your Are is her directorial debut. Daisy is interested in exploring the complex relationship between embodiment, disfigurement, and desirability of underrepresented communities through film.

Director: Karina Dandashi (age 24)
Film: Cousins
Karina Dandashi is a queer Arab-American filmmaker born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA. Her films explore nuances in identity through the intersection of family, religion, and culture in Southwest Asian and North African (SWANA) and Muslim communities in America. Her work has been featured in numerous Oscar-Qualifying festivals around the U.S. and her latest short Cousins was recently acquired by The New Yorker. Her feature debut Out of Water was accepted into the Film Independent Producers Lab in 2022. Karina was a 2020 Creative Culture Fellow at The Jacob Burns Film Center and a 2021 Sundance Ignite Fellow. She was featured in Marie Claire’s inaugural Creators Issue as one of the “Top 21 Creators to Watch” in 2022.

Director: Emilio Subía (age 24)
Emilio Subía is an Ecuadorian filmmaker based in Brooklyn. His work offers challenging and disruptive perspectives about family, identity, immigration and class, focusing on the Latin American experience. His short film debut, ÑAÑOS (2022), premiered at Tribeca Festival and has screened at various prestigious national and international film festivals. It took home the “Best Film Award” at TIDE, the “International Short Film Award” at Miami Film Festival, and a Jury’s Special Mention at FICQuito. His work in advertising has also received accolades that include the Webby and Telly awards.

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