About this submission

Binary was created out of fear of graduating from college, but also out of love for my father. It explained my fear of capitalism, and how I didn't just want to work for the rest of my life in a job I hated. Something my dad has done for the last forty years. But also explained my love for gender expression, creativity, and self care. It was my attempt to reach out to my dad, and to other parents of queer-leftist kids, and explain our side of the story.

My name is Riley Thomas Stewart (they/them). Filmmaking, creating and collaborating have always been a part of who I am. I grew up in front of the camera, working in film and television with award winning actors and directors. I was on my first film set at a year old, and joined SAG at six. When I wasn’t on set or driving to LA for auditions, I was playing pretend in my treehouse, building in the garage with my dad, creating with legos and making short films with friends. In high school I found a larger platform for creating and collaborating. I helped found an improv troupe, choreographed fights and designed lights for the theater department, performed, danced on a dance team, and did valuable community service with Leo Club. It was here that I found my passion for creativity through collaboration. That’s why I decided to move behind the camera and go to film school. In college, I discovered my queer identity and my passion for social justice and helping. I took what I learned in the garage with my dad and went to work in the school’s scene shop. There, I developed advanced set construction skills and helped countless productions build their sets and taught a whole lot of people to use a staple gun. I also found a new passion for writing my own stories, creating characters that tell the stories I think need to be heard. Moving forward, as a queer writer and director, I want to use these creative and collaborative skills to help people, and inspire change on an individual level.. I’m committed to giving voice to diverse stories that are a departure from the remakes, reboots and sequels that overwhelm the media landscape. I want to show that these stories can resonate with a variety of people by wrapping a universal kernel of relatable truth in a specific shell, whether that shell is a quirky dark comedy or a surrealist sci-fi world, the goal is to hold a meaningful message for a wide audience and inspire change. That’s my ultimate goal as a filmmaker and as an artist. more...

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