Award-winning filmmaker Jen McGowan has quickly become one of the most on-the-rise directors in the entertainment industry, after several years of hitting the festival circuit with her critically acclaimed projects. Her unique storytelling, creativity, and boldness have allowed her to continuously develop films that will change the landscape of movie making in the years to come.
McGowan’s first feature, KELLY & CAL, starring Juliette Lewis, Cybill Shepherd, Jonny Weston & Josh Hopkins premiered at SXSW where she won the Gamechanger Director Award.
The film was released theatrically by IFC Films to rave reviews such as comparing McGowan to the likes of Alexander Payne and Nicole Holofcener.
McGowan’s previous short films, CONFESSIONS OF A LATE BLOOMER and TOUCH, played at over one hundred film festivals worldwide, winning a majority, and have been distributed by PBS, NBC Universal, Shorts International and Canal Plus. TOUCH became eligible for the short film Oscar when it won the qualifying Florida Film Festival.
Early in her career, McGowan worked her way up the commercial production ladder at many notable production companies including RSA, Radical and Propaganda and was fortunate to work on many features including the Oscar-winning BOY’S DON’T CRY.
McGowan studied directing in the MFA program at USC where she was honored with a scholarship from Women in Film and a grant from The Caucus Foundation. She received her BFA in Acting at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, studying under David Mamet, Bill Macy & Sam Shepard at the Atlantic Theatre.
She is an active member of The Alliance of Women Directors and Film Fatales. McGowan created Film Powered, the online skill-sharing site for women in film & tv. The site was featured in Indiewire, included in the Sundance Women’s Initiative Resource List and supported by the PGA, WGA, ICG and others.
She is a Film Independent Fellow, was a finalist for the Clint Eastwood Filmmakers Award, recipient of the Alliance of Women Directors Breakout Award for Excellence in Directing and was included on Vulture’s list of Women Directors Hollywood Should Be Hiring.