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Meet the Filmmakers

Rukiya Bernard is an award winning actress and bourgeoning writer/director/producer. Originally from Toronto, she garnered much attention as a writer through her viral opinion piece “Dear Becky”. It was the impetus to her debut short film “The Blactor” (2022 Leo Award – Best Short/Screenplay/Director), her award winning play “Yoga For Black Women,” (Theatre BC National Playwriting Competition), the short “El Color Negro” ( 2021 Leo Nomination for best documentary screenplay) and other projects. She is currently adapting “Yoga for Black Women” for Crazy8s and is also writing two feature films. Her years of experience on set has revealed the lack representation in front and behind the camera and has influenced her decision to embrace a writer/producer/director career.

Andy Hodgson – Born in Ecuador and raised in the Middle East, Andy graduated from Capilano University’s Cinematography program in 2004. He began his career in film, working on several big-budget movies as a member of IATSE Local 891. He quickly realized his passion for filmmaking and began producing and shooting short films. In 2017, Andy was the Producer and Director of Photography for the feature film, “Woodland,” which is now on Amazon Prime and across all major video on demand platforms. He was the Producer of “Brother, I Cry,” a Telefilm Talent to Watch funded feature set to be released in 2023. Alongside producing, Andy works as a Director of Photography, shooting movies for networks like Oprah Winfrey, Netflix, Hallmark and Lifetime.

Mariam Barry is a biracial filmmaker of Norwegian and African descent. Her creative work as an actor, writer, director and producer is grounded in her experience as a Third Culture Kid. Mariam grew up internationally between the United States, Germany, Norway, Switzerland, and The Netherlands, before moving to Canada as a young adult. This multi-lens ignites Mariam’s work as her voice explores what it means to be Black and biracial around the world. Mariam was a recipient of the Netflix-BANFF Diversity of Voices Initiative in 2021 and is a BFA in Acting graduate from the University of British Columbia. Her filmmaking credits include: “Cypher” (Short doc, Telus Storyhive), “RISE” (Short film, Bakau Consulting Inc), “Legacy” (Short film, ETC & Iris Studios), “Yaye” (Short film, Studio 104 Entertainment, Harold Greenberg: BC Shorts Program & Creative BC), and a mini-series currently in development.