Mike Rollo is a Montreal-based experimental documentary filmmaker who specializes in making films that deal with issues of geography and identity. For example, his award-winning Ghosts and Gravel Roads features photographs placed in and around abandoned homes out in the middle of nowhere. Viewers are left trying to determine what relation, if any, there is between the people in the photos and the locations.
James Fotopoulos is an incredibly prolific filmmaker who has been turning out dozens — actually probably hundreds — of experimental and avant-garde feature films and shorts since the early ’90s. He made a huge splash in the underground film world in the late ’90s and early ’00s with a trio of acclaimed feature-length movies — Zero, Migrating Forms and Back Against the Wall — shot on 16mm film and which took semi-familiar concepts, such as the romantic drama and the gangster thriller, and twisted them through an unconventional prism of storytelling, disturbing visuals and unflattering characters.
Many of his short films and his more recent work are highly experimental in nature, shot on video and have been collaborations with other filmmakers and artists such as Raymond Pettibon, Ben Coonley and Cory Arcangel.
Todd Verow is a prolific filmmaker working out of Maine through Bangor Films, the production company he runs with James Derek Dwyer. Verow has been directing digital video dramas, mysteries and comedies since the late 1990s. His films are typically intense character studies about people living in extreme situations, from an aging female punk rock almost-star in The Once & Future Queen to a gay man, devastated by the death of his lover, who goes on a chaotic tour of Europe with an Italian scream queen in The Boy With the Sun in His Eyes.
Most of his films are available on DVD, while A Sudden Loss of Gravity and The Once & Future Queen can be streamed on Netflix.
Martha Colburn is an experimental animator who has been making wildly creative short films since 1994. Her favorite technique is to manipulate found images cut out of magazines, newspapers and other printed sources by moving them around frame by frame and painting directly on them. Her films are colorful, chaotic and manic, but all usually grounded in complex historical, political and social themes.
Her films, including Triumph of the Wild, Myth Labs and Don’t Kill the Weatherman!, have screened at underground film festivals all over the world, as well as mainstream indie fests like Sundance and at numerous museums and art galleries.
In addition, she also collaborates on live expanded cinema performances with noise rock bands, such as Deerhoof, for whom she’s also made a music video.
Some of her films include: Shrimp Chicken Fish (2010) O’er the Land (2009) Kings of the Sky (2004) Energy Country (2003) From Hetty to Nancy (1997) Palimpsest (1993) Possibilities, Dilemmas (1992) My Alchemy (1990)