Ava DuVernay is a writer, producer, director and distributor of independent film.
Winner of the Best Director Award at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival, DuVernay was honored with the 2013 John Cassavetes Independent Spirit Award and the Tribeca Film Institute 2013 Affinity Award for her second feature film "Middle of Nowhere."
Currently, she is in post production on the upcoming feature film SELMA, which chronicles the historic 1965 voting rights campaign led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. DuVernay is directing the film from her screenplay, with Oprah Winfrey and Brad Pitt's Academy Award winning company Plan B serving as producers.
DuVernay made her directorial debut with the critically-acclaimed 2008 hip hop documentary, "This is The Life." Winner of Audience Awards in Toronto, Los Angeles and Seattle, the film debuted on Showtime in April 2009. LA WEEKLY raved, "This is The Life vaults into the upper echelons of must-see hip-hop documentaries."
In 2010, she wrote, produced and directed her first narrative feature, "I Will Follow", starring Salli Richardson-Whitfield. Released theatrically in 2011, the family drama was hailed by critic Roger Ebert as "... one of the best films I've seen about the loss of a loved one."
DuVernay has directed the network documentaries "Venus Vs" for ESPN and "My Mic Sounds Nice" for BET, along with "John Legend Interludes Live," Essence Music Festival" and "Faith Through The Storm" for TV One.
In 2013, she directed an episode of ABC top-rated drama series, SCANDAL, as well as acclaimed fashion and beauty films for Prada and Fashion Fair with "The Door" and "Say Yes" respectively.
Previously, DuVernay worked as a film marketer and publicist for more than 14 years, forming DVA Media + Marketing in 1999. Her award-winning firm provided strategy and execution for more than 120 film and television campaigns for acclaimed directors such as Steven Spielberg, Clint Eastwood, Michael Mann and Bill Condon.
A graduate of UCLA, DuVernay is the founder of AFFRM, the African-American Film Festival Releasing Movement. She is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, as well as the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. She is also board member for both Film Independent and the Sundance Institute. DuVernay is based in Los Angeles.