Josephine Decker

Josephine Decker Profile

Recently named one of Filmmaker Magazine's 25 New Faces of Independent Film, Josephine Decker premiered her first two narrative features at the Berlinale Forum 2014 and theatrically in NYC. Her film “Thou Wast Mild and Lovely,” starring Joe Swanberg, Robert Longstreet, Sophie Traub and Kristin Slaysman and inspired by a character from John Steinbeck’s East of Eden, balances horror, beauty, and intimacy as an erotic thriller set in the wilds of Kentucky and was said by The New Yorker to be ushering in a "new grammar" of narrative. The film won the Independent Visions Award at Sarasota Film Fest, Emerging Filmmaker Award at IndieMemphis and Best Narrative Feature Award at Dallas VideoFest among many others.

Her first feature "Butter on the Latch" -- called “a sexy, wild romp you have to see to believe” by Indiewire and "an utter exhilaration of cinematic imagination" by The New Yorker -- is set at a real-life Balkan folk song and dance camp.  The film, based on a Balkan folk song, explores the dark intimacy and neuroses of a female friendship.

In 2008, Josephine directed the documentary feature "Bi The Way,”exploring the rise of bisexuality in America and available on Logo and Netflix.  The film screened at SXSW, Silverdocs, and about 100 festivals worldwide and received rave reviews in The Austin Chronicle, Curve Magazine, The New York Times, New York Magazine, and The Dallas Morning News, among others. Josephine’s short films and music videos have played at MoMA, SXSW, Cucalorus, Maryland, and Austin Film Festival, have won children's programming awards, and can be seen on PBS and Kidzbop. Her short "Me The Terrible," about a child pirate who tries to conquer New York City, received a glowing review in The New Yorker.   

Fortunate to be collaborating with artists she admires, Josephine Decker spent the past two years producing short videos for United Way, creative producing a doc for performance artist Sarah Small and acting.  She starred in Brigitta Wagner’s Rosehill, Stephen Cone’s Black Box, Joe Swanberg’s Uncle Kent (IFC/Sundance) and Art History (Factory 25/Berlinale), Joe Swanberg and Adam Wingard’s Autoerotic (IFC), Spencer Parson’s Saturday Morning Massacre, and Onur Tukel’s Richard’s Wedding. Josephine raises awareness about environmental issues through her performance art. Her pieces, which feature striking visuals of performers walking in slow‐motion, have received press everywhere from The New York Times to WNYC, were featured in The Dumbo Arts Festival and at the UN, and won first place in The Human Impacts Institute’s Climate Challenge. 

Inspired by a recent workshop with Pig Iron Theatre Company and by some grotesquely beautiful pig masks by Isolde Chae-Lawrence, Josephine plans to direct a film exploring clown, country and the three little pigs this winter.  She is collaborating with producers Mel Eslyn, Lacey Leavitt and Katrina Lencek-Inagaki to direct a feature film about the all-female Main Squeeze  Accordion Orchestra, of which she is a member. Josephine is always looking for enthusiastic collaborators.  Feel free to get in touch with her at j at josephinedecker dot com.

A dream film - collective : unconscious: Dan Schoenbrun has recently cast Josephine and four other filmmakers in a project to explore each other’s dreams.  Josephine will trade dream notes with filmmaker/choreographer Lily Baldwin, filmmakers Frances Bodomo (Afronauts), Dan Carbone (Hide Your Smiling Faces) and Lauren Wolkstein (Social Butterfly), and they will each make one super magical, strange-as-your-face short film.  'Twill be a series direct from the subconscious. In a world of film increasingly marked by plot and high-level casting, this project is a unique opportunity to pursue a pure wilderness of vision. Please take a look here.

Mike Ambs

I love to film things, tell stories, and read on the subway. I'm pretty sure blue whales are my power animal.