Cinema Visionaries

Cinema Visionaries is a unique lecture series designed to bring film industry luminaries to CCA for public lectures and exclusive Film Program master classes.

The series launched in 2010 with a grant from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and is now made possible thanks to the generous support of Carla Emil and Rich Silverstein.

See upcoming Film Program events »

Luminary Filmmakers at CCA

Lisa Cholodenko (spring 2014)
Lisa Cholodenko is the writer and director of High Art (1998) and  The Kids Are All Right (2010) starring Annette Bening, Julianne Moore, and Mark Ruffalo, which was nominated for four Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay, and won two Golden Globes including Best Picture (comedy) and Best Actress (comedy) for Bening.

Other honors include an Independent Spirit Award for Best Original Screenplay, The New York Film Critics Circle Award for Best Screenplay, The Berlin Film Festival’s Teddy Award for Best Feature, a BAFTA nomination for Best Original Screenplay, and inclusion in The American Film Institute’s list of best films of 2010.

Michael Moore (fall 2013)
Michael Moore is an Academy Award-winning American filmmaker, author, social critic, and political activist. His written and cinematic works criticize globalization, large corporations, assault-weapon ownership, US Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, the Iraq War, the American health care system, and capitalism.

Moore directed and produced of Fahrenheit 9/11, which is the highest-grossing documentary of all time and winner of the Palme d'Or. His films Bowling for Columbine (2002) and Sicko (2007) also placed in the top-ten highest-grossing documentaries, and the former won the Academy Award for Documentary Feature.

Lucy Walker (spring 2013)
Lucy Walker's documentaries have won over 50 film awards, and she has twice been nominated for an Academy Award: Waste Land (2010), a documentary feature that also won over 30 other awards including Audience Awards at both Sundance and Berlin; and The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom (2011), about survivors of Japan’s 2011 tsunami, which also won the nonfiction jury prize at Sundance.

Sam Green (spring 2013)
CCA welcomes Oscar-nominated documentarian, experimental filmmaker, and performance cinema pioneer Sam Green, whose latest, The Love Song of R. Buckminster Fuller, features Green and seminal indie-rockers Yo La Tengo performing live with the film.

See images »

Werner Herzog (fall 2012)
German film director, producer, screenwriter, actor, and opera director Werner Herzog is often considered one of the greatest figures of the New German Cinema. French filmmaker François Truffaut once called Herzog "the most important film director alive" and American film critic Roger Ebert stated that Herzog "has never created a single film that is compromised, shameful, made for pragmatic reasons, or uninteresting. Even his failures are spectacular."

See images »

Barbara Hammer (fall 2012)
Legendary filmmaker Barbara Hammer, known for such experimental films as Nitrate Kisses (1992); its sequel, Tender Fictions (1996); Dyketactics (1974), and many other first-of-their-kind lesbian-themed films in history, is a pioneer of LGBT cinema and one of contemporary cinema's most important and fearless chroniclers of hidden histories of marginalized peoples.

CCA welcomed the iconic filmmaker November 14, 2012, for a performance lecture, titled "Incorporating The Lesbian Museum and The Hidden Hammer."

See images »

John Waters (spring 2012)
Legendary film director John Waters (Pink Flamingos, 1972; Female Trouble, 1974; Polyester, 1981; Hairspray, 1988; Cry Baby, 1990; Serial Mom, 1994; A Dirty Shame, 2004) made a special guest appearance at CCA for “John Waters in Conversation," copresented by the Design and Craft Lecture Series.

See images »

Gus Van Sant (spring 2011)
In 2011, Cinema Visionaries featured maverick film director Gus Van Sant in a standing-room-only appearance.

"Gus Van Sant is not only a remarkable filmmaker but also a generous one," praised Film Program chair Rob Epstein. "As an artist, Gus Van Sant's films run the gamut from experimental to mainstream hits so, with that, he brought a very special wealth of experience and knowledge to our campus."

Lourdes Portillo (spring 2011)
Acclaimed filmmaker and Oscar nominee Lourdes Portillo's films, which focus on the search for Latino identity, cover a varied range of forms, from television documentary to satirical video-film collage: Las madres de la Plaza de Mayo (1985); Señorita Extraviada, Missing Young Woman, (2001); My McQueen (2004); Al Más Allá (2008); Night Passages (2013)

Barry Jenkins (fall 2011)
CCA visiting faculty member and award-winning filmmaker Barry Jenkins was featured in the second Cinema Visionaries lecture in November 2011. His feature film debut, Medicine for Melancholy, was released in theaters by IFC Films and hailed as one of the best films of 2009 by A. O. Scott of the New York Times.

Other projects include the shorts Tall Enough, A Young Couple, Remigration, and Chlorophyl, all of which were highlighted at the event, followed by a Q&A.

See images »

Young Cinema Visionaries Lecture Series

Similarly, the new Young Cinema Visionaries also brings to CCA film industry professionals -- those whose careers have only recently taken off. Rachel Grady, codirector of Jesus Camp, The Boys of Baraka, 12th & Delaware, and Detropia, launched this exciting new series in fall 2012.

The Young Cinema Visionaries series is made possible by a grant from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

See images »