Mustafa Davis – Speaker
He was born and raised in the Bay Area in Northern California. After attending college where he studied English and Photojournalism, he traversed overseas in search of ecstatic truth in art and independent stories to tell. Armed with his camera and a notepad he set out to find those obscure stories that he felt needed a voice. After nearly seven years of travel through Europe, Africa, and the Middle East, he ended up in Yemen where he met acclaimed German documentary filmmaker Stefan Tolz who was shooting his film Adobe Towns Shibam, Manhattan of the Desert. Stefan took a liking to him and trained him in the art of documentary filmmaking.
There, he studied with renowned German cinematographer Sorin Dragoi (Winner of 2004 German Cinematography Award) and further developed his deep love for the camera. In 2003, he returned to the USA and continued his studies in the art of filmmaking at the New York Film Academy (Universal Studios Hollywood, CA) and graduated at the top of his class with his thesis film The Champ.
He co-founded the media production company Guidance Media and also created his own production company Grazroots Films. He relocated to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates and established the Media Division of the Tabah Foundation. He also established the production company Tabah Films (which focuses on feature films and documentaries) as well as Tabah TV (a television production company). There he held the executive positions of Media Division Director, Film Producer/Director and Media Advisor at the Tabah Foundation.
He left the Tabah Foundation in 2008 and relocated to Hollywood, California and founded the award winning production company (Cinemotion Media). Cinemotion Media produces feature documentary films (including the award winning films Common Ground, Deen Tight and The Warm Heart of Africa) as well as music videos, commercials, educational films, corporate videos, and short films. Cinemotion Media provides film and photography services as well as official media consulting to several companies and non-profit organizations globally.
His work has been showcased internationally on MTV, PBS, iTV, Rotana, Al Risala, Abu Dhabi TV, Dubai TV, Channel 1Yemen TV, IQRA, TV Sudan, MBC, Al Aqariyya, KBC, Dream, and at international film festivals, screenings and exhibitions. Cinemotion Media incorporates the expertise and consultation of acclaimed award winning and four time Oscar nominated producer Robert Richter (Woman Rebel, The Last Atomic Bomb, In Our Hands), award winning editor Ruth Schell (A Life Apart, A Letter Without Words, The Last Ghost of War) and many other professional filmmakers and photographers worldwide. He also founded Mustafa Davis Inc which is the production company that produces the majority of his fine art photography. Cinemotion Media and Mustafa Davis Inc, have offices in the San Francisco Bay Area, California and Santa Monica, CA.
Gabrielle Kelly – Speaker
Gabrielle Kelly is a screenwriter, producer of diverse content for the global marketplace and Associate Professor of Film at Tisch Asia, Singapore.
She is the recipient of two Fulbright Awards: one in screenwriting at Tapei National University of the Arts, Taiwan and the second as writer/mentor in the screenwriting /producing Lab for the ASEAN Independent Cinema Project in the Philippines.
Following a career in book publishing, she worked with New York based director Sidney Lumet and screenwriter/producer Jay Presson Allen on films such as Daniel, Prince of the City, Deathtrap, The Verdict and others.
Additional projects she developed include work with Andy Warhol’s Factory on an audio-animatronic show From A to Z and Back Again, musical La Cages aux Folles with Mike Nichols and scripts for music maven Malcolm McClaren and CBS Theatrical Films.
In Hollywood she ran producer Robert Evansʼ company (Godfather, Rosemary’s Baby, Love Story, Chinatown) at Paramount Studios working in development and production on a slate of diverse projects and has worked as executive and producer with such companies as HBO, Fields Hellman, CBS Films, Eddie Murphy Productions and Warner Bros.
She is the writer/producer of the 2009 music driven indie film All Ages Night and has consulted on many studio and indie co productions as writer and producer, most recently China’s Empire of Silver, starring Jennifer Tilly.
She has taught screenwriting at USC, Chapman, London’s PAL LABS and for the Middle East Sundance Lab held in Jordan, as well as leading global storytelling seminars in Russia, India, China and all over the world.