THE FILMMAKERS

Jason DaSilva, Director/Producer

Jason DaSilva

Director/Producer

Jason DaSilva has been a prolific filmmaker for the past 15 years. He has directed four short films (Olivia’s Puzzle, A Song For Daniel, Twins of Mankala, First Steps) and two feature length-documentary films (Lest We Forget and When I Walk). Olivia’s Puzzle premiered at the 2003 Sundance Festival. Three of his films have had national broadcasts on PBS, HBO, and CBC. DaSilva’s latest film, When I Walk, won a 2015 Emmy Award for Outstanding Informational Programming, was an Official Selection of the 2013 Sundance Film Festival and won Best Canadian Feature at Hot Docs 2013. In 2014, Jason also won three awards: AAPD Mobility Magazine’s Person of the Year, the Paul E. Hearn Leadership Award, and the Christopher Award for Excellence in Film. Currently he is working on a new feature film When They Walk and on AXS Map, a website and accessibility database to find disability friendly places around the world.

Richard O’Connell, Producer

Richard O’Connell

Executive Producer

Richard O’Connell is an Emmy Award winning filmmaker, producer and educator living in San Francisco. Richard worked for 15 years at the Independent Television Service serving as Head of Production and later a Senior Producer of National Productions. During his time at ITVS, Richard oversaw the production, delivery and broadcast of over 500 films to PBS and all the national series including Frontline, American Masters, POV and Independent Lens. Richard is also a filmmaker working in both documentary and narrative producing and directing short form and feature. His current film, The Corridor looks at the first high school to be built inside an adult jail. Richard’s work has appeared on national television in the U.S, been released theatrically and exhibited at major film festivals. Additionally Richard has worked as a journalist, freelance editor, cinematographer, and lectures at Berkeley City College. He has participated in selection committees for the San Francisco Film Festival, Mill Valley, INPUT and is a Director of Programming at the San Francisco Irish Film Festival, and won a National Emmy Award as a Producer of the film The Homestretch.

Leigh DaSilva Producer

Leigh DaSilva

Producer

Leigh DaSilva began his independent filmmaking career producing alongside award-winning filmmaker Jason DaSilva on First Steps, which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival (2009) and also screened at the Vancouver Film Festival (2009). He then went on to produce the feature-length documentary When I Walk, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival (2013), broadcast on PBS/POV (2014), won Best Canadian Feature Documentary award at Hot Docs (2013), Grand Jury Award for Best Film at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (2013), and Most Popular Canadian Documentary at the Vancouver International Film Festival (2013). It won a News & Documentary Emmy in 2015. Leigh also produced the mobile application AXS Map, which is a crowd-sourced platform for mapping wheelchair accessible locations. It has received funding from numerous donors, including Google through the Tides Foundation, The Nathan Cummings Foundation, and the Canada Media Fund. He is the President of the award-winning production company In Face Films. As a PMP certified producer/project manager that also specializes in transmedia storytelling and digital media, he currently sits on the Moving Images Distribution Board of Directors as Vice-Chair. He is pursuing a Master's Degree in Business Administration from the University of South Dakota.

Photo of Simeon Hunter • Producer/Editor

Simeon Hutner

Editor/Executive Producer

Simeon Hutner has over twenty-five years of film and television credits, including award-winning works shown at Sundance and many other film festivals, as well as on HBO, BBC, Bravo, A&E and PBS. He is currently editing the documentary feature My Ascension, directed by Greg Dicharry, about teen suicide. He just finished editing When We Walk, directed by Jason DaSilva, and also recently edited Cooked, directed by Judith Helfand, about the 1995 heat wave disaster in Chicago. He edited Vessel, directed by Diana Whitten, about the Dutch abortion activist Rebecca Gomperts and her organization Women on Waves. Simeon also edited and co-directed Harlem Street Singer, about the influential blues and gospel musician the Reverend Gary Davis. Additional selected editing credits include: When I Walk, Everything’s Cool and Blue Vinyl, which premiered at Sundance in 2013, 2007 and 2002, respectively. He was editor on Chicks in White Satin, which premiered at Sundance and was nominated for an Academy Award in 1994. He has an MFA in Film Production from USC, an MBA in Finance from New York University and a BA in English Literature from Middlebury College.