Laurels

The Filmmakers




Gini Reticker Gini Reticker (Director) is an Academy Award nominated documentary filmmaker. Much of her work has focused on women engaged in struggles for social justice and human rights. Her directorial debut was The Heart of the Matter, a groundbreaking film about women and HIV that received the Sundance Freedom of Expression Award. In 2004, Reticker was nominated for an Academy Award for the documentary short Asylum, which portrayed the story of a Ghanaian woman who came to the US seeking political asylum. In 2005, Reticker took home an Emmy for Ladies First, which highlighted the crucial role women played in rebuilding post-genocide Rwanda; and received a second Emmy nomination for producing A Decade Under the Influence, which celebrates the 1970s as a turning point in American cinema.

In 2006, she joined forces with producer Abigail Disney to direct the renowned Pray the Devil Back to Hell, which tells the inspirational story of the women of Liberia and their efforts to bring peace to their broken nation after decades of destructive civil war. After winning best documentary at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2008, Pray the Devil Back to Hell went on to wide acclaim. Viewed across the US at community screenings, in theaters and on public television, it went on to screen in over 60 countries around the world, and is broadly credited with helping its lead figure, Leymah Gbowee, to be named a Nobel Peace Prize winner in 2011.

Since then, Reticker was an executive producer of a five part series, "Women, War & Peace", 2011 winner of the Overseas Press Club’s Edward R. Murrow Award and The 2011 Television Academy Honors Award. This series was a first-of-its-kind look at the role of women in war in the modern age, not just at victims of conflict but as active agents for peace in their communities.

Other films to Reticker’s credit are: Director, In the Company of Women (IFC); Producer/Director, New School Order (PBS); Co-producer on The Betrayal (Nerakhoon), a nominee for both an Academy Award and an Independent Spirit Award; and Executive Producer on Fork Films’ 1971, Alias Ruby Blade, Citizen Koch, Hot Girls Wanted, and She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry.

Reticker is currently producing and directing The Trials of Spring, a multi-media project about the role of Arab women before during and after the revolutions in Libya, Tunisia and Egypt.



Abigail E. Disney Abigail E. Disney (Producer) is an award-winning filmmaker, philanthropist and the CEO and president of Fork Films. An active supporter of peacebuilding, she is passionate about advancing women’s roles in the public sphere. Disney’s 20+ films and series focus on social issues, sharing a quality of spotlighting extraordinary people who speak truth to power.


Disney’s directorial debut, The Armor of Light, has been selected for the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival. The Armor of Light follows an Evangelical minister trying to find the courage to preach about the growing toll of gun violence in America. Reverend Rob Schenck, anti-abortion activist and fixture on the political far right, breaks with orthodoxy by questioning whether being pro-gun is consistent with being pro-life.


Having grown up in a family of filmmakers, Disney turned to documentaries in 2008, inspired to tell the story of a brave group of women who used nonviolent protests and sex strikes to bring an end to Liberia’s long civil war. That film, Pray the Devil Back to Hell, won best documentary at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2008, and screened in 60 countries around the world on all seven continents. Pray the Devil Back to Hell is broadly credited with highlighting the bravery and sacrifice of its lead figure, Leymah Gbowee, who received a Nobel Peace Prize in 2011.


The extraordinary response to Pray the Devil Back to Hell led Disney to work on the five-part special series for PBS, “Women, War & Peace,” which aired in 2011 and was the winner of the Overseas Press Club’s Edward R. Murrow Award, a Gracie Award, and a Television Academy Honor. This first-of-its-kind series created and executive produced by Abigail Disney, Pamela Hogan and Gini Reticker looked at the role of women in war in the modern age, not just as victims of conflict, but as active agents for peace in their communities.


Pray the Devil Back to Hell also led to Disney founding Peace is Loud, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting and spotlighting women who are stepping up for peace and resisting violence in their communities. Together, Fork Films and Peace is Loud produced “Women, War & Peace” screening kits, dubbed into four languages, for use by international grassroots organizations in an ambitious global outreach campaign. To date, over 1,500 screening kits have been shared with 250 partner organizations at 575 screening events reaching 35,000 viewers. Events featuring the films have taken place in 82 countries—reaching all continents, including Antarctica.


Disney has also executive produced films on a wide array of social issues, including 1971, Family Affair, Citizen Koch, Hot Girls Wanted, The Invisible War (Academy Award® Nominee, Best Documentary Feature), Return, and Sun Come Up (Academy Award® Nominee, Best Documentary Short).


Disney’s other producing credits include: The Mask You Live In; She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry; The Iran Job; Sexy Baby; Mothers of Bedford; This Is How I Roll; Alias Ruby Blade; and Playground.



Kirsten Johnson Kirsten Johnson's (Director of Photography) who works both as a cinematographer and director, recently shot the Sundance 2012 Audience Award winner, The Invisible War. In 2011, she was the supervising DP on Abby Disney and Gini Reticker's series, Women, War and Peace, traveling to Colombia, Bosnia, and Afghanistan. She shared the 2010 Sundance Documentary Competition Cinematography Award with Laura Poitras for The Oath. Her cinematography is featured in Farenheit 9/11, Academy Award-nominated Aslyum, Emmy-winning Ladies First, and Sundance premiere documentaries, Finding North (now titled "A Place at the Table"), This Film is Not Yet Rated, American Standoff, and Derrida. A chapter on her work as a cinematographer is featured in the book, "The Art of the Documentary”. She is currently editing a documentary on sight that she shot and directed in Afghanistan. Her previous documentary as a director, Deadline, (co-directed with Katy Chevigny), premiered at Sundance in 2004, was broadcast on primetime NBC, and won the Thurgood Marshall Award.