EMILY ABT – WRITER/DIRECTOR/PRODUCER/CINEMATOGRAPHER
Selected as one of Variety Magazine's 'Top 10 Directors to Watch', Emily Abt is an ambidextrous filmmaker who has directed five features (four documentaries, one narrative). Abt's narrative feature “Toe to Toe” was nominated for the Grand Jury Award at the Sundance Film Festival and theatrically released nationwide by Strand. The film featured a critically acclaimed break-out performances by Sonequa Martin-Green (star of "Star Trek:Discovery") and Louisa Krause (star of “The Girlfriend Experience”). Abt's current fiction feature project is "Thirsty" which won the Athena Award for scripts featuring outstanding female protagonists. Jurnee Smollett, Pablo Shreiber and Lili Taylor are attached to star; Jonathan Duffy ("Sorry to Bother You", "The Long Dumb Road", "Hellion”, etc) is producing and Rachel Morrison ("Black Panther", "Mudbound", "Fruitvale", etc) is attached as Cinematographer. Abt is also developing an Oakland based episodic series entitled "Pureland".
Abt's first feature documentary “Take It From Me” (PBS’s POV series) was created when she was a 23 year-old caseworker in New York City. She then went on to receive her MFA in film directing from Columbia University and was awarded a Fulbright fellowship to make her thesis film. Abt's other feature documentaries include “All Of Us” (Showtime's 2008 World AIDs Day film) and “Daddy Don’t Go” which was executive produced by the actors/activists Omar Epps and Malik Yoba. The film screened at 35 festivals, won eight “Best Documentary” awards and premiered on the Starz network in 2017. Abt recently directed and operated 2nd Camera on a new documentary feature for the Showtime Network entitled "Beyond the Opposite Sex” about two transgender people living in rural America. It premiered on the network in March 2018.
Abt is also a seasoned documentary cinematographer and branded content director who has created films for clients such as Microsoft, Johnson & Johnson and Oracle. She is currently directing/DPing the short film "Born A Fighter" which is being commissioned by Tribeca Enterprises and the genetics testing company 23andMe.
Abt was a Brooklyn based filmmaker for 20 years who moved to the Bay area in 2016 with her husband (UC Berkeley Professor Shamik Dasgupta) and their two daughters. She is represented by Ava Greenfield at ICM.