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The International Documentary Association (IDA) seeks to deepen the discourse at Getting Real through our Getting Real Fellowship program, which spotlights emerging and mid-career documentary professionals who have inspired visions that will benefit their communities and the field at large.

The purpose of IDA’s Getting Real Fellowship is to create community amongst nonfiction writers, makers, and workers who would not normally have connected in such an intimate way. The second cohort of the fellowship comprises 16 fellows—eight filmmakers and eight industry professionals from the U.S. and around the world—who are burgeoning creative leaders in documentary film. From April 15–18, 2024, we will welcome them to Getting Real ’24 as one of the conference’s official Delegations. After the conclusion of the conference, fellows will co-program a yearlong series of public and private panels and workshops, building a robust, global, and peer-to-peer network.

If you’d like to read more about the Getting Real fellowship, you can read about our 2022 cohort, and what they did, here.

The biographies of the Getting Real ’24 Fellows are below. This program is supported by the Golden Globe Foundation. 

Getting Real ’24 Fellows

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Arno Mokros, Co-Director (Untitled Filmmaker Org), USA 

Arno Mokros is a queer/trans film producer and co-director of UFO (Untitled Filmmaker Org), a nonprofit that makes space for the next generation of truly independent filmmakers to work, connect, and thrive. Based in New York state, UFO's programs include an 18-month Short Film Lab for early-career directors hosted at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) and other partnership-driven initiatives to cultivate a more robust filmmaker support ecosystem. He also coordinates NewFest's grant for emerging LGBTQ+ filmmakers, and recently produced the independent feature film, Summer Solstice, directed by Noah Schamus.

Headshot of a middle-aged female of Asian descent in a brown coat, in front of a river.


Atiqa Kawakami, Filmmaker, Japan

Atiqa was born in Yokohama and awarded second prize in the Kirin Art Award 2001 for her first short documentary Pilgrimage, about the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. In 2004, she embarked on a project documenting the final years of legendary butō dancer Ōno Kazuo. Her first feature-length film, called With Each Passing Breath, about the relationship of the master and the disciple of Japanese traditional performing art rōkyoku, had a world premiere at Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival 2023.

Headshot of a young smiling Caucasian female of African descent with shoulder-length curly hair wearing a houndstooth jacket.


Berry Hahn, Sales Agent, South Africa

Berry Hahn represents author-driven fiction and documentary features at Square Eyes, a sales company that helps outstanding non-mainstream films find the audience and recognition they deserve. She has been actively involved in supporting emerging storytellers shaping a strong film ecosystem between the Global South and North. In 2021, she was a film programmer on feature documentaries for the Durban International Film Festival. Berry is a Documentary Association of Europe, International Documentary Association, and Collectif 50/50 member.

Picture of a light skin afro latin american woman with curly, shoulder-lenght brown hair, wearing a white blouse with crossed arms.


Bethania Maia, Executive Producer (Vaporosa Cultural) / Director (Rastro - Documentary Film Festival), Brazil

Bethania Maia has been producing and programming exhibitions and festivals since 2011 and curating since 2014. She's worked as executive producer on independent audiovisual projects since 2018, having produced music videos, short and feature films, seminars and publications. She is the co-creator of Rastro – Documentary Film Festival and founder of Vaporosa Cultural, a production company based in Brasilia, capital of Brazil, with a focus on Latin American Afro-diasporic narratives.

headshot of a smiling light skinned Indigenous female with shoulder length brown hair and brown eyes, wearing a black and white jumpsuit and beaded colorful earrings in front of green pattered wallpaper.


Colleen Thurston, Director / Producer / Film Programmer, USA

Colleen Thurston is a documentary storyteller and film curator from Tulsa, Oklahoma.  Her films explore the relationships between humans and the natural world and focus on Indigenous perspectives. Colleen has produced for the Smithsonian Channel, Vox, PBS, and federal, tribal, and nonprofit organizations. Colleen is an Assistant Professor at the University of Oklahoma, the project coordinator for the Indigenous video series, Native Lens, and a programmer for Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival and Make Believe Seattle. Colleen is a citizen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.

Black and white headshot of a white woman in her thirties with dark short hair, dressed in black T-shirt.


Iryna Tantsiura, Programmer (Filma Feminist Film Festival), Ukraine

Iryna Tantsiura is a programmer at Filma Feminist Film Festival, focusing on intersectional feminist values, anti-racism, anti-colonialism, inclusion, and a culture of consent. She has a queer feminist activist background and a decade of experience in human rights-related projects. She is an independent researcher based in Ukraine.

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J. Faye Yuan, Filmmaker, USA

Born in Shanghai and raised in Indiana, J. Faye Yuan is a New York-based bilingual curator, producer, and documentary editor. With support from Tribeca Creators Market, Doha Film Institute, and Women Make Movies, Faye produced and edited her first feature about a maverick Chinese animal activist. She is a 2023 PBS Diverse Voices Fellow, where she will direct and produce a digital series episode about natural disasters and extreme weather. She is the host of the third season of the Queens Memory Podcast about the diverse Asian immigrant experience in Queens, NY.


Jameisha Prescod, Artist / Filmmaker, United Kingdom

Jameisha Prescod is an artist-filmmaker and writer from South London. Their work uses storytelling, moving image and digital technology to seek connections between medicine, disability and Black history. Jameisha is also the founder and creative director of You Look Okay To Me, the online space for chronic illness. They explore the social and cultural aspects of living with a chronic condition through visual mediums. Jameisha is currently an associate artist at Forma Arts & Media in London and a trustee for London Arts & Health Forum.


Juan Pedro Agurcia, Artistic Director (Tercer Cine) / Producer and Programs Manager (The Flaherty), Honduras

Juan Pedro Agurcia works in cinema production, programming, promotion and distribution. His efforts center around access and experimentation with forms of gathering and creating community through film. He’s co-founder of Tercer Cine, the only independent exhibition project in Honduras, where he serves as Artistic Director and Programmer. He is the Producer and Programs Manager at the Flaherty. He is the co-founder and editor of Corrientes, a trilingual digital platform dedicated to expanding access and opening conversation with and through experimental Latin American cinema.

Headshot of a Black woman with round glasses, burnt orange box braids, wearing a floral jumpsuit and surrounded by green Christmas trees.Headshot of an adult with medium-dark skin tone, short-length hair, wearing green shirt.wearing a purple t shirt, green wall on the background.


Kayla Myers, Programmer and Black Creators Forum Manager (Indie Memphis), USA

Kayla Myers is a film programmer, writer, and filmmaker. Currently, she works as a programmer and Black Creators Forum Manager at Indie Memphis. She’s previously held roles as the Series Producer for the DocYard in Cambridge, MA, and as a Features Programmer for the 2021 and 2022 San Francisco Documentary Festivals. She is passionate about intersectional feminist practices within film, making films more accessible to those not living in large filmmaking centers, and developing audiences with a thoughtful, community-centered approach.


Marouan Omara, Filmmaker / Lecturer / Programmer, Egypt

Marouan Omara is a filmmaker, educator, programmer, and arts administrator. He passionately supports Arab and African cinema, offering expertise and mentorship to organizations as Rough Cut Lab Africa, Hot Docs-Blue Ice Film Fund, and Doha Film Institute. Marouan's films blur the lines between fiction and documentary, utilizing cinema as a genuine tool of research. His last feature-length film Dreamaway (2018) was shortlisted for an Egyptian Oscar nomination. Since 2012, Marouan has been an Associate Lecturer of Film Production at the German University of Cairo - GUC.


Natali Chkhartishvili, Project Manager / Audience Designer, Georgia

Natalie Chkhartishvili, a project manager and audience designer from Georgia, has a keen interest in the creative documentary genre. Currently, she contributes to Chai Khana, a regional media platform in the South Caucasus, where she is involved in strategic fundraising and the distribution of short documentaries. Additionally, Natalie oversees KineDok, an alternative distribution platform for documentaries across Central and Eastern European countries, operated by Chai Khana in Georgia. Natalie is also an alumna of Berlinale Talents 2024 market studio, with a focus on audience design and distribution.

Headshot of a woman with black and brown hair, a little below the shoulders, wearing a blue denim shirt.Headshot of an adult with medium skin tone, short hair, Asian descent.Headshot of an adult woman of East Asian descent wearing gold hooped earrings and a black sweater, sitting on a couch.


Shilpi Gulati, Filmmaker / Academic, India

Shilpi is a filmmaker and academic based in Mumbai, working at the intersections of documentary history, theory, and practice for over fifteen years. Her films explore feminist and queer narratives, visual and performing arts, and issues of identity, home, and nationhood in the South Asian context. A Fulbright scholar, Shilpi recently completed her Ph.D. at Jawaharlal Nehru University. She is currently teaching at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences and has been actively engaged in campaigns against censorship, protecting national film archives, and developing support networks for independent filmmakers in South Asia.


Soe Arkar Htun, Producer, Myanmar

Soe Arkar Htun is a Deputy Director of Yangon Film School and one of the co-founders of Kefka Film Production. In 2018, he received a scholarship to study international film production at the Busan Asian Film School in South Korea. Soe Arkar Htun is also an alumnus of the Locarno Open Door Lab, Asiadoc Producer’s Workshop in Cambodia, the Hanoi International Film Festival Talent Campus, and Fajr International Film Festival Talent Campus. He recently released his latest feature-length documentary project, Song of Souls, directed by Sai Naw Kham, in Sheffield Doc Fest 2023.


Sophia Rhee, Writer / Producer, USA

Sophia Rhee is a writer and producer based in Chicago. Trained as a visual artist and ethnographer, Sophia has worked on non-fiction films and contemporary moving image artworks that have been presented at the Berlin International Film Festival, Metro Pictures Gallery, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. She is committed to building a career in Chicago and developing resources and equitable pathways for documentary professionals in the Midwest. 

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Tony Nguyen, Cultural Worker, USA 

Tony Nguyen is a Des Moines-born, Dallas-based cultural worker who recruits talent for movement organizations, distributes for Sentient.Art.Film., co-founded the Latin American Film Festival of Dallas, programs for the Austin Asian American Film Festival, operates the digital infrastructure at Viet Film Fest, and founded Spacy, the first ever microcinema in Dallas, TX.