Bleedfest Film Festival - Honoring One Woman At A Time

“Women are not given enough credit for the incredible types of writing and directing that they can do. That’s why we started Bleedfest.  We honor women in all the genres – more than just comedy and romantic comedy,” said Elizabeth and Brenda Fies, the sisters who started the Bleedfest Festival and award.  “Chick flick now seems to be applied to any film written or about women. That term needs to be retired.  Female filmmakers are not hobbyists. They are just as serious about their craft as the men are.”

Bleedfest: The Fies Sisters, Elisabeth and Brenda and Dave Lipin

In the first of their monthly festivals, the January Bleedfest honored those women who write and direct Westerns.  Assisted by Christina Wickers and Dave Lipin, the Fies sisters, both graduates of USC Film School, are determined to make a difference in the way the world sees women in the entertainment industry.  

Bleedfest: The Fies Sisters and Christina Wickers

Their feature of this month was the curious Sci Fi Western, The Foundling.  It tells the tale of two Asian women, traveling through the desert, who discover an alien child.  Written and directed  by Carly Lynn and staring Shelby Bond, Cindy Chiu, Nora Jesse and Peter David Parasiliti, the film won it’s first Inanna Award. Shot in the Mohave Desert, the crew described the difficulty of working two weeks in the heat and the cold and the difference in having a female director at the helm. “The emotional arc of the story and the reactions of the characters are as important as the story.” David Smith was DP.    The movie will be available in Blu Ray and DVD on line next month and can be purchased through Amazon or on

Bleedfest: the crew of The Foundling - Cindy Chiu, Carly Lynn, Shelby Bond, Nora Jesse, Peter David Parasiliti

The Inanna is their logo and award.  This unusual statue aka “The Bleedy” is the head of the Sumerian Goddess is made in England and sent here especially for the presentation.  

Bleedfest: Carly Lynn, writer - director of the Foundling

Besides the feature, a category of trailers were presented next.  The winner – Stop I’m Not Dead Yet, by Anne Norda – is a funky horror story of a couple looking to become vampires and ending up as zombies.  Of the trailers, it was the only one not yet completed as a film.  Others included Fugue by Barbara Stepansky, In Memoriam from Amanda Gusack, Golden Earrings by Marion Kerr, American Mary from the Soska Sisters, and Legend of the Red Reaper produced by Tara Cardinal.  

The partnership award was presented to Armano Franco and will be given to men who have movies where women are more than just comical or sex pieces and show women in an intellectual positive light.  

After the open bar, the short films were up for viewing.  Drug(ged) by Brenda Fies, and Consumed by Elisabeth Fies were two of the entertaining showings.  Others included The Boarder by Susan Bell, Super Morning by Julia Camara, and Ugly On the Inside by Whitney Boe.

Bleedfest: Lauren Mora of Golden Earrings.

The films, shorts and trailers are all winners from among the many many submissions the sisters receive each month.  

Sponsors of the events include Film Radar,, Rubber Gorilla, CAP – the Complete Actor’s Place, and Monster Island.  

Bleedfest: Actress Vida Ghaffari

The festivals are held at the CAP theatre (13752 Ventura, Sherman Oaks) on the first Sunday of every month from 11:30 am  to 3:30 pm.  Each time a new genre will be highlighted.  All day tickets are only ten dollars.  Since horror is the topic of February, a blood drive will also be held outside the theatre.   For more information or to submit a film go to  

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