Passionista Shaz Bennett — Queen Sugar Director

How does one go from ticket-taker at the Sundance film festival to a person on the list of all female directors of the critically acclaimed drama series Queen Sugar on OWN? Well, it's certainly not a straight, or short, path. In the case of Shaz Bennett it involves canning fish in Alaska, being involved in the drag community in New York City, working as a staff member of several film festivals, diving into independent filmmaking, being selected as one of eight women for the AFI Directing Workshop for Women and winning the New York Women in Film & Television's Nancy Malone Award. Once you accomplish all that, you put your feelers out. And then you finally get it — a call from Ava DuVernay (Se

Passionista DeMane Davis — Producing Director of Queen Sugar

Imagine you have a successful career as a copywriter and commercial director. You've made your own films and been in competition at the Sundance Film Festival — twice. And to top it all off, you're a voiceover artist. Still, you’d love to dedicate your time to being a film and television director. Now imagine you finally get called up to the major leagues for your big shot but you just happen to have a broken ankle. Would you have the guts to downplay your injury, show up for the gig and take charge of the situation even though you’re not in tip top shape? Well our most recent interviewee for The Passionistas Project, DeMane Davis did. When someone from Ava DuVernay’s team asked her to come

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