Filmmakers

Check out the faces Behind the Camera

Joanna Rudnick - Director and Producer
Gordon Quinn - Executive Producer
Leslie Simmer - Editor
Beth Iams - Co-Producer
Jenny Wells - Outreach Coordinator

JOANNA RUDNICK - Director and Producer

Joanna brings a personal connection to In the Family as a BRCA-positive young woman. Professionally, she has a background in science journalism and film production. Joanna is also producing Prisoner of Her Past - a film that traces the journey of Chicago Tribune journalist Howard Reich's attempt to uncover his mother's tragic Holocaust childhood in order to understand why she is reliving it 60 years later.

Before returning to Chicago, Joanna co-produced a film on war photographer Robert Capa for the American Masters series. Robert Capa in Love and War was broadcast on PBS and the BBC, premiered at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival, was the presenting film for the 2003 Emmy award for Outstanding Nonfiction Series, and received the Voice of Humanity award at the Mountainfilm Festival.

Prior to her role on the Capa project, Joanna worked for American Masters for three years contributing to numerous films including Juilliard, Ella Fitzgerald: Something to Live For and Joe Papp: In Six Acts.

Watch an Interview with Joanna.


GORDON QUINN - Executive Producer

President and founding member of Kartemquin Films, Gordon Quinn has been making documentaries for over 38 years. At Kartemquin, Gordon created a legacy that is an inspiration for young filmmakers and a home where they can make films that investigate and critique society. Kartemquin's best-known film, Hoop Dreams (1994) was executive produced by Gordon. Recent films include Stevie (2002), for which Gordon, who was the film's executive producer, producer and cinematographer, won the Cinematography Award at the Sundance Film Festival, 5 Girls (2001), Refrigerator Mothers (2002), and Vietnam Long Time Coming (1999).


LESLIE SIMMER - Editor

Leslie has been Director of Post Production and an Editor at Kartemquin Films for over seven engaging years. Most recently, she was co-editor with Steve James on the feature documentary The War Tapes, which won Best International Documentary at both the 2006 Tribeca and BritDoc Film Festivals. Just prior to that she wore dual hats on the seven-part PBS series The New Americans as both Series Story Editor and Post Production Supervisor. Leslie received her BA in Communication/Theater Arts (Phi Beta Kappa) from Kalamazoo College in Michigan, and completed graduate work in film at Columbia College, Chicago.


BETH IAMS - Co-Producer

In addition to her role as co-producer of In the Family Beth was the Director of Project Research at Kartemquin and worked with the company from 2005 through 2008. Previously, Beth worked as the Senior Researcher and Associate Producer for Peabody Award-winning York Zimmerman Inc. on international political documentaries. Orange Revolution, called "the most convincing film to date" about the 2004 civic uprising in Ukraine, has appeared in numerous film festivals. Confronting the Truth, a film exploring truth commissions and the challenges of transitional justice in Peru, East Timor, South Africa, and Morocco, recently screened at the United Nations and has been translated into Arabic, Bosnian, and Kurdish.

Beth graduated with honors from Duke University with degrees in Public Policy and Psychology, and lived in South Africa, Thailand, Barbados and DC before returning to her beloved hometown of Chicago.


JENNY WELLS - Outreach Coodinator

Jenny directs the outreach and education campaign for In the Family. As the main contact for the film, she coordinates screenings that bring In the Family to professional and community audiences across the world. She began working with Kartemquin as an intern in 2008 after having worked in development and communications for nonprofits on issues including the environment, health, and public media. Jenny graduated with honors from American University in Washington, DC with a degree in Literature and a minor in International Peace and Conflict Resolution.

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