Spotlight Events feature conversations with high-profile film and television industry professionals who share helpful advice and insights on their career experiences and creative process.

Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck are a wildly successful multi-hyphenate filmmaking team. Together they have directed short and feature fiction films, documentaries, and television. Their proof of concept short film, Gowanus Brooklyn, premiered at Sundance in 2004, winning a jury prize for best short film, and paved the way for them to make their feature, Half Nelson, which was supported by the Sundance Labs and premiered at the Festival in 2006.

Boden and Fleck’s other films include Sugar (SFF 2008), It’s Kind of a Funny Story, Mississippi Grind (SFF 2015) and Captain Marvel, which grossed over a billion dollars at the box office. They executive produced and directed several episodes of the Emmy nominated series Mrs. America and have directed episodes of The Big C, The Affair, Billions, and Room 104.

Boden and Fleck’s new film, Freaky Tales, stars Pedro Pascal and was inspired by Fleck’s childhood growing up in the bay. In 1987 Oakland, a mysterious force guides The Town’s underdogs in four interconnected tales: Teen punks defend their turf against Nazi skinheads, a rap duo battles for hip-hop immortality, a weary henchman gets a shot at redemption, and an NBA All-Star settles the score. It will have its World Premiere at the 2024 Sundance Film Festival.

In this Spotlight Event, Fleck and Boden discuss their journey from making a short to their first feature, the art of collaboration, and the differences between directing film and television.

Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck broke out with the Sundance premiere of HALF NELSON, starring Ryan Gosling, who received an Academy Award nomination for his performance in the film. They are also known for co-writing and directing the billion-dollar box office–grossing film Captain Marvel, as well as independent films SUGAR, IT'S KIND OF A FUNNY STORY, and MISSISSIPPI GRIND In television, they directed and executive produced the Emmy Award-winning limited series MRS. AMERICA, starring Cate Blanchett and recently finished work on MASTERS OF THE AIR, which will be released this January by Apple TV+. more...
Moderator | Digital Course & Event Producer
Erica Elson is a Producer, Writer and Educator based in the mountains outside Los Angeles. Her short film, WING NIGHT, premiered at Method Fest in Los Angeles. She is the co-author of the book THE AWKWARD HUMAN SURVIVAL GUIDE and co-hosted a podcast by the same name on the 5by5 network for five years. Elson's articles have been published by HuffPost, Lifehacker, and Reader's Digest. Prior to working in education, she worked in television development and writers’ rooms such as VH1’s HINDSIGHT, where she had the chance to write for the spinoff web series PLANET SEBASTIAN. more...

Join the Discussion