Janicza Bravo has been directing and writing innovative content since her VICE produced short, “Eat!” (2011), starring indie darling Katherine Waterston and comedian Brett Gelman. In 2014, her short film Gregory Go Boom, starring Michael Cera, won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, and Janicza was named as one of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Cinema.”
As a creative who studied theater at New York University before eventually transitioning to filmmaking, Janicza fearlessly embraces new forms, genres, and technologies. Hard World for Small Things was her first turn to virtual reality. The live-action short premiered at Sundance in 2016 and was also the highlight of Tribeca’s Virtual Arcade that same year. The film offers viewers a backseat to what appears to be an average ride among friends to a neighborhood deli but quickly becomes a shocking look at police violence in Los Angeles.
The following year, she directed the first episode of season three for Kate Spade’s hit branded content series #MissAdventure. The video has over seven million views on YouTube and stars the Academy Award-nominated Rosie Perez and comedic actress Anna Faris.
In 2018, Janicza directed Act IX of Gucci’s video series The Performer, featuring playwright Jeremy O. Harris who uses clothes as a point of entry for discussing his thoughts surrounding his identity as being both black and queer.
Janicza has also directed episodes for acclaimed television series, including Atlanta, LOVE, Divorce, and Dear White People. In 2020, her feature film Zola premiered at Sundance and was acquired by A24. Zola has received critical acclaim, earning Janicza multiple awards and accolades, including an Independent Spirit Award nomination for Best Director.