Writer | Director | Producer
Filmmaker Pratibha Parmar has an exemplary track record for her passionate commitment to making films with integrity and illuminating untold stories with visual flair and imagination. Her award-winning work has been widely exhibited at international film festivals and broadcast globally. Pratibha’s dedication in bringing complex subjects into mainstream media has helped change the contours of popular discourse on race, feminism, sexuality and creativity.
Pratibha’s most recent award winning feature documentary film, Alice Walker: Beauty In Truth tells the compelling story of an extraordinary woman’s journey from her birth in a paper-thin shack in cotton fields of Georgia to her recognition as a key writer of the 20th Century making history as the first African- American woman to win the Pulitzer Prize. Alice Walker: Beauty In Truthtoured film festivals around the world to sell out audiences and positive reviews in 2013. The film was broadcast nationwide in the U.S on the Emmy Award winning series American Masters on PBS in February 2014, kicking off Black History month. The film was also broadcast on BBC Television (UK) and several European cities. A limited theatrical release by D Street Media is scheduled for Fall 2014 in select cities in the U.S.
Pratibha’s credits include A Place of Rage, a documentary film on African-American women and the civil rights movement featuring Angela Davis and June Jordan. The film received international critical acclaim and was named Best Historical Documentary at the National Black Programming Consortium. In 1993 Pratibha released her most challenging film Warrior Marks, which documented female genital mutilation at a time when the subject was taboo globally. This award-winning documentary was made in collaboration with the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Alice Walker. Parmar and Walker collaborated on the book Warrior Marks – Female Genital Mutilation and the Sexual Blinding of Women, which documented the making of the film (Jonathan Cape UK, Harcourt Brace US 1993).
Nina’s Heavenly Delights, Pratibha’s multi-award winning narrative feature film, a lesbian curry romance was released theatrically in the UK and US in 2006|7 and nominated for a GLAAD Award.
In 2006, Pratibha was selected as one of 14 out of 500 candidates for INSIDE PICTURES, a highly competitive industry training programme fast tracking the careers of British filmmakers in the international film business. Organised by Qwerty Films led by Michael Kuhn, funded by the UK Film Council.
Pratibha is the recipient of several Awards, which include:
* One In Ten Visionary Award, Presented by Reel Affirmations – One in Ten Film Festival, Washington DC
* The Pink Peacock Award Presented by Trikone in Recognition of Exemplary Service to the South Asian Queer Community
* Frameline Film Festival Life Time Achievement Award
* In 2012 & 2013 included in the list of Top 100 LGBT people making a difference by U.K’s Independent On Sunday.
* In 2014 nominated for a GLAAD Award in the Global Voices category in Los Angeles.
Pratibha is in development with several films including:
Fury & Tenderness: Andrea Dworkin. An innovative feature documentary drama on controversial writer and feminist campaigner Andrea Dworkin. Co-Producers Salon Pictures (Developed with the support of the BFI (British Film Institute).
BAFTA – British Academy of Film, Television and Arts (Voting Member)
ACADEMY of MOTION PICTURES (Voting Member)
WFTV – Women In Film And Television – Board Member from 2003-2005
THE ACTORS’ CENTRE – Board Member to 2010
Recent Teaching Positions
Associate Professor at California College of the Arts, San Francisco – Film Department.
Visiting Professor at Stanford University – Theatre and Performance Studies Department
Workshops for actors on “Acting for the Screen”
– London Centre for Theatre Studies
– The Actors’ Centre (London)
Born in Kenya, and of Indian decent, Pratibha and her family moved to England when she was 11 years old. Pratibha studied at Bradford University where she was awarded a BA Honours Degree and went on to do a postgraduate degree at the Contemporary Cultural Studies Centre At Birmingham University. Pratibha spent her undergraduate gap year in India working as a volunteer in rural development projects in addition to dedicating 3 months to working with Mother Teresa in Calcutta.
On her return to the UK, Pratibha became a youth and community worker working with young women in the South Asian community, pioneering educational strategies at the national level for approaches to working with young South Asian women.
Pratibha left youth work to become an active working member of the pioneering publishing collective, Sheba Feminist Presswhere shewas responsible for editing and publishing writings by women of color, including the publication of The Cancer Journals by Audre Lorde (British edition). Pratibha was also responsible for enabling the UK publication of numerous books by U.S poet and essayist June Jordan.
Pratibha is author and editor of several books, including The Empire Strikes Back (1982) Queer Looks (1993) and Warrior Marks (1997) (with Alice Walker). Her academic and journalistic writings have appeared in multiple anthologies and collections.
Pratibha spends her time between Berkeley, California and London.