Senior Film Program Director, Austin Film Festival
Born and raised in the small island of Dominica located in the West Indies, Casey Baron moved to Austin after graduating from Florida State University with a degree in English – Editing, Writing, and Media. While attending FSU, Casey worked for The Torchlight Program. During his time there, he was the Team Leader and Personal Assistant to film industry veteran Paul Cohen, the program’s Executive Director. Beyond that creative venture, Casey has also been an editor on a handful of literary magazines, including FSU’s The Kudzu Review and Miami Dade College’s AXIS Creative Arts Magazine.
Casey has been a part of the Austin Film Festival family for five years running; starting off as an intern before climbing the ladder to become the festival’s Shorts Programmer for its 25th anniversary. He’s excited to jump into his new role as the Senior Film Program Director, and continuing the organizational and personal mission of championing storytellers. When he’s not racing to find interesting stories, Casey spends his spare time watching basketball and soccer, listening to music, and playing with his dog Niobe.
Director of Programs – Filmmaker & Community Media Resources, Austin Film Society
Erica Deiparine-Sugars works with independent media makers and media arts communities expressly to support diverse voices and stories. She has held senior roles in national media arts organizations including ITVS, an award-winning funder and co-producer of independent documentaries based in San Francisco. She is currently the Director of Programs for the Austin Film Society where she oversees filmmaker grants and artist development programs as well as Austin Public, the city’s community media center.
Erica has served on grant panels and film juries for organizations such as the NEA, IDA, SXSW, and the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM).
Actor, Writer, & Producer
Minji Chang is a Korean American actor, producer, podcast host, and entrepreneur. Her past work includes presiding as Kollaboration Global Executive Director, acting in award-winning short films & viral comedy sketches, & producing events for the Asian American community with grassroots organizations, major network studios & film festivals. She is the host of First Of All podcast, a real & unfiltered conversation on career, family, relationships & pop culture. She continues to create content, share stories, empower the community, & champion diversity & inclusion everywhere she goes. She will be launching her new tech enterprise in July 2020.
Colorist, Former AAAFF Director of Programming
Anand Modi is a New York-based colorist with a variety of credits in feature, television, commercial, music video, and installation projects.
Deputy Entertainment Editor, Mashable
Angie Han is the deputy entertainment editor at Mashable, and was previously the managing editor of Slashfilm. She’s a former New Yorker who now resides in Los Angeles with her husband and their cat.
Tanuj Chopra is writer/director/producer and showrunner from Northern California with 5 feature films to his name. His first feature film PUNCHING AT THE SUN about South Asian teenagers coming of age in post 9/11 Queens premiered at the 2006 Sundance and Tribeca film festivals + won the grand jury prize at the San Francisco International Asian American Film festival. Variety called the fiery debut “a display of talent that’s distinctive, original and iconoclastic.” PUNCHING AT THE SUN was the first South Asian American feature to ever be selected to Sundance.
Tanuj’s most recent award winning feature STAYCATION won the grand jury prize at the 2018 LA film festival in the Muse section. His other award winning titles GRASS and CHEE AND T were both acquired in 2017 by genre leader Comedy Dynamics and available to watch on Netflix. CHEE AND T premiered at 2016 Los Angeles Film Festival where it won a jury prize for comedy.
Chopra holds a BA in Art Semiotics from Brown University and an MFA in film direction from Columbia University where he was awarded the Dean’s Fellowship. He was recently selected to the 2018 Sundance Episodic Lab, the Fox Global Filmmaker Initiative and the Sony TV directors lab. He’s a member of Temple University’s faculty and teaches ‘Directing the Actor’ in the university’s Los Angeles Film program. He’s currently the showrunner of DELHI CRIME season 2 on Netflix.