We are thrilled to announce our incredible panel of judges for our fifth annual Young Filmmakers Contest!

The fifth annual JASNA Southwest Young Filmmakers Contest drew a stellar panel of judges, who will be scoring the 5-minute-and-under entries from amateur filmmakers around the topic of Jane Austen in early October.

They are:

Suzanne Allain is the author of Austen-inspired historical novels set in the Regency period. She adapted one of these novels, Mr. Malcolm’s List, into a feature script that is currently in post-production. Allain also wrote the script for the 2019 short film Mr. Malcolm’s List – Overture, starring Gemma Chan and Freida Pinto.

Film critic for The Boston Globe since 2002, Ty Burr is also the author of the critically acclaimed books Gods Like Us: On Movie Stardom and Modern Fame (2013), The Best Old Movies for Families (2007) and the e-book The 50 Movie Starter Kit: What to Know if You Want to Know What You’re Talking About (2013). He wrote for Entertainment Weekly during the 1990s and programmed movies for HBO/Cinemax in the 1980s. A member of the National Society of Film Critics and the Boston Society of Film Critics, Burr also teaches courses in film and criticism at Boston University and Emerson College.

Film director and producer Gurinder Chadha OBE’s award-winning films include Bend It Like BeckhamBride & Prejudice, Viceroys House, a sumptuous period set during the last days of British rule in India 1947, and the Bruce Springsteen-inspired Blinded by the Light. Chadha recently created Beecham House, an epic, returning drama series set in India in 1795 for ITV and Masterpiece/PBS.

USA Today bestselling author Sonali Dev writes Bollywood-style love stories that explore universal issues. Her novels have been named Best Books of the Year by Library Journal, NPR, the Washington Post and Kirkus. Dev’s acclaimed Rajes series reimagines her four favorite Austen novels under one story universe of a politically ambitious Indian American family in San Francisco.

Amy Heckerling directed Fast Times at Ridgemont High, followed by Johnny Dangerously and European Vacation. Heckerling later wrote and directed Look Who’s Talking, Look Who’s Talking too, Clueless, I Could Never Be Your Woman and Vamps, and produced A Night at the Roxbury, executive produced, wrote and directed episodes of the TV series of Clueless and Fast Times, and directed episodes of The Office, Gossip Girl, The Carrie Diaries, Red Oaks, Weird City and Royalties.

Laura Rister is an award-winning Los Angeles-based film and television producer at Untitled Entertainment. She was recently nominated for Emmy, Critic’s Choice and Independent Spirit awards for the landmark cine-memoir The Tale starring Laura Dern, distributed globally by HBO Films. She is currently in post production on Mr. Malcolm’s List, a Regency-era romantic comedy/drama in the spirit of Jane Austen, in collaboration with Bleecker Street and Universal International. She previously served as VP of production, development and casting at Miramax Films in New York and Los Angeles, working on films and TV series including Chicago, Blue Car, Finding Neverland and Project Greenlight.

Please help us spread word about the contest to any aspiring filmmakers and Austen enthusiasts you know (as well as any teachers or faculty members) who are under the age of 30 in North America. Deadline for 2021 entries: October 1, 2021. Winners will receive cash prizes, one year’s JASNA membership and a special screening at JASNA’s Annual General Meeting in Chicago in October 2021. Learn more on the Young Filmmakers Contest section of our website.