Co-hosted by GLAAD, this conversation features a roundtable of amazing producers who will unpack not only the work of the producer but also explore ways to improve the space as we look towards the future. Moderated by Alex Schmider (GLAAD, Chasing Chasing Amy) with guests Joel Michaely (Downtown Owl, Mutt), Chester Algernal Gordon (The Inspection) and Simone Ling (They, Mosquita y Mari).
Chester Algernal Gordon is a producer, costume designer and stylist with a passion for making powerful stories that capture the imagination and inspire. They began working in film production in 2016, and since then Gordon has costumed three Lionsgate feature films, 17 short films, and has produced award-winning films that have played in festivals worldwide including the New York Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival, BFI, Outfest, Reykjavik International Film Festival and New Orleans Film Festival. Gordon’s latest film, Elegance Bratton’s critically-acclaimed The Inspection, starring Jeremy Pope and Gabrielle Union, released in theaters on November 18. The A24 film centers around a young homeless gay man who joins the Marine Corps to win back his mother’s love, but learns how to respect himself at bootcamp. The film won the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Independent Motion Picture and has garnered numerous award nominations including from the Golden Globes, Gothams, and Film Independent Spirit Awards. Gordon co-runs the production company, Freedom Principle, alongside Bratton.
Simone Ling has a particular interest in supporting diverse voices behind and in front of the camera. Producing credits include Spirit Award nominated Mosquita y Mari, and They, an Official Selection of the Cannes Film Festival nominated for a Queer Palm and Camera d’Or. She is a member of the Producers Guild of America, MPEG/IATSE, BAFTA and Deputy Chair for BAFTA/LA’s Learning, Inclusion and Talent Committee. Simone spearheads Asian, Asian American and BIPOC outreach for the Sundance Institute Feature Film Program, is an Advisor for Sundance Co//ab Producing and Screenwriting courses, and mentors for Outfest’s Screenwriting Lab and Mexico’s Cine Qua Non Script Revision Lab. A Fulbright Scholar, she holds Masters degrees from the University of Oxford and Stanford University and is a professor in story and development at AFI, the American Film Institute Conservatory.
Joel Michaely is an actor and producer that has done over a hundred films. As an actor, he is best known for the teen comedy Can't Hardly Wait with Jennifer Love Hewitt, the LGBTQ Classic But I'm a Cheerleader opposite Natasha Lyonne and RuPaul, and the dark comedy The Rules of Attraction opposite James Van Der Beek and Jessica Biel. As a producer, he produced The Quiet for Sony Pictures Classics starring Elisha Cuthbert and Edie Falco, the James Franco/Zachary Quinto queer film I Am Michael, and Space Station 76 for Sony starring Patrick Wilson, Liv Tyler, and Matt Bomer.
Recently Joel Executive Produced and had a role on Paul Schrader's The Card Counter starring Oscar Isaac and Tiffany Haddish. As well as the upcoming Robert De Niro/Tommy Lee Jones comedy The Comeback Trail. The last 3 Sundance's Joel had in Dramatic Competition the Angolan Immigrant drama Farewell Amor, the Native American film Wild Indian starring Michael Greyeyes and Jesse Eisenberg, as well as this year's Latino Transgender drama Mutt that won Best Performance from the Grand Jury.
Upcoming, Joel will next be seen recurring on the new Netflix series Obliterated from the Cobra Kai creators, as well as Saint Clare opposite Bella Thorne (which he also produced) and opposite Britt Robertson in Lionsgate's comedy The Re-Education of Molly Singer. Currently, at Tribeca, Joel Executive Produced Downtown Owl with Ed Harris, Henry Golding, and Vanessa Hudgens. Joel also EP’d the Tribeca comedies Adult World with John Cusack and Emma Roberts and Asking For It starring Alexandra Shipp and Ezra Miller. Joel joined the producing team of Mutt because of the pitch session that occurred at last year's Tribeca Festival.