World Premiere Films Highlight ‘OTVTonight: A Return to Fellowship’ at MCA

For the first time since 2019, #OTVTonight from Emmy and Webby-nominated non-profit streaming platform OTV – Open Television returns in-person with Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago on Tuesday, May 16th at 6pm CST

#OTVTonight: A Return to Fellowship will serve as the world premiere of hand-picked short films created by 2021-2022 #OTVFellows. Past #OTVFellow members include Filmmaker Adhana Reid, Journalist Lena Elmeligy, and Multidisciplinary artist Maya Lori

This year’s featured #OTVFellows include Shann Sasani (he/they), Vee Hua (they/them), Maya Lori (she/her), LaTasha Mercer (she/her), and Marlo A. Viriña (he/they). These dynamic storytellers are recipients of OTV’s annual fellowship program, now in its fifth year, providing support, mentorship, and education to intersectional filmmakers from Chicago and beyond.

“Now more than ever, media and storytelling is needed to help cultivate a world that celebrates empathy and champions belonging” says Elijah McKinnon, Co-Founder + Executive Director, OTV. “Storytelling creates a portal for fellowship — a space for shared ideas, values and cultures to be exchanged and examined. I’m so excited to bring our Chicago community together while celebrating the next generation of storytellers that are dreaming, creating and thriving on their own terms.”

OTVTonight: A Return to Fellowship will world premiere films created by 2021-2022 OTVFellows Vee Hua, Marlo Abril- Viriña, LaTasha Mercer, Shaan Dasani, and M. Lorin

Shaan Dasani | he/they

Title | Format: AGENTS OF CHANGE: Project Polymer | Short film

Log Line: AGENTS OF CHANGE: Project Polymer is a spy-genre short film featuring transgender actors of color in one of the most popular cinema genres in the world. 

Vee Hua  華婷婷 | they/them

Title | Format: Reckless Spirits | Short film

Log Line: Reckless Spirits is a hyperreal buddy comedy featuring two best friends—Yvette, a neurotic Korean-American therapist, and Syd, a gender-fluid Puerto Rican performance artist—who are led by a series of supernatural events into an uncanny new world of psychics, spirits, and a cult leader that’s threatening to tear their friendship apart.

M. Lorin | she/her

Title | Format:  Chickweed Magik | Series  

Log Line: An anthology triptych of urban fantasy tales centering Black teen girls in Chicago, whose encounters with temptation and danger challenge their beliefs – and existence, altogether.

LaTasha Mercer | she/her

Title | Format: JustLaTasha’s Inner Actions | Series

Log Line: LaTasha applies a Black cultural observation through a Bi Black woman’s lens to explore dating, sexuality, queerness and pop culture in this short form, witty sketch series.

Marlo Abril- Viriña | he/they

Title | Format: ManicMan! | Short 

Log Line: In coping with bipolar disorder, Malcolm crafts the newest comic book superhero “ManicMan!”  with the help of his small-town friends.

#OTVTonight: A Return to Fellowship will feature exciting creator interviews, tunes from DJ Shaun J. Wright, a return of fellowship and much more — all hosted by OTVs co-founder  Elijah McKinnon and will feature a mix of surprises.  

Tickets are available by visiting https://bit.ly/areturntofellowship

This year the show will not stream but key interview segments will be  available on-demand via the OTV App for audience viewers after the initial premiere. Some OTV Tonight past guests include Ahya Simone (Femme Queen Chronicles, Adult Swim’s OPUS), Ricardo Gamboa (Brujos, Showtime’s The Chi), Sam Bailey (Brown Girls, Netflix’s Dear White People), and Zachary Drucker (Southern for Pussy, HBO’s The Lady and the Dale) with over 25,000 unique views of the live show. Viewers can watch previous #OTVTonights for free at https://watch.weareo.tv/otvtonight or via the OTV app available on iOS, Apple TV, Roku, FireTV or Android devices.

Check back here at SCREEN for updates as this film forges ahead, plus the latest in independent film news in Chicago and the Midwest. And you can also click right here to subscribe to our weekly email newsletter.

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