Independent Women for Independent Film

Celebrating and Supporting the Brave
and Inspiring Work of Women Filmmakers

BendFilm’s IndieWomen mission is to support all women filmmakers at the Bend Film Festival and beyond. Female identifying, non-binary and trans individuals are welcome to join. Your funding supports increased filmmaker representation at the Festival in order to help build filmmaking careers.

Why Join Independent Women for Independent Film

All filmmakers represent a range of experiences and backgrounds, and it is through artful and innovative storytelling that we are transported to another place and time or moved to take social action.

However, according to San Diego State University’s Center for the Study of Women in Television and Film, women held just 18% of behind-the-scenes film jobs. As awareness of dismal statistics like this one grows so does the commitment to change them.

In our digital age, society is continuously exposed and shaped by visual stories so it’s more important than ever for women to write, direct, and produce films. Become an IndieWomen today—your contribution will allow us to continue to recognize the artistry and vision of women filmmakers through our IndieWomen of the Year Award.

“If you want to have a sustainable career in filmmaking, the trick is to be as entrepreneurial as possible. What that means is being open to as many different kinds of storytelling and platforms for storytelling as you possibly can be. There is no crystal ball and the industry has changed in a million different ways, and what matters is the ability to adapt.”

– Christine Vachon, Producer, 2019 Indie Woman of the Year Recipient


In early 2018, we lost a legend, Pamela Hulse Andrews, founder of Cascades Publications who touched so many lives and made an incredible impact on the Bend Community—especially at BendFilm.

Pamela founded Independent Women for Independent Film as a way to strengthen the bonds of leading women in the arts and business and to support filmmakers at the Bend Film Festival. Since 1929, only one woman has ever won the Academy Award for Best Director. In 2010 nearly 35 years after the first woman was ever nominated, Kathryn Bigelow won an Academy Award for Best Director for Hurt Locker.

In 2019, Oscar nominations shut out female directors again. These realities bring us back to the late Pamela Hulse Anderson, a trailblazer in her own right who founded Cascade Publications in 1993. She was a community leader and advocate for the arts who supported BendFilm.

Each year Pamela enlisted the support of 100 women to donate $100 to support women filmmakers at the Bend Film Festival. These funds help Indie filmmakers with travel and room and board so they can participate in a full-festival experience giving them access to colleagues, mentors, actors, and more.



Indie Filmmaker of the Year Award

Nicole Holofcener

BendFilm announced writer and director, Nicole Holofcener as the 2023 Indie Filmmaker of the Year. When it comes to indie filmmaking you don’t get much better than Nicole Holofcener. With films like Please Give, Friends With Money, and Enough Said, she illuminates her characters’ everyday lives and seemingly ordinary, almost petty problems with grace, ease, and compassion. Her indie filmmaking sensibilities aren’t only apparent in the size of her budget and production: her stories are subtle, and lacking in blockbuster action and sweeping change, but that’s where her strength lies. Her films speak the truth of what it feels like to live in the real world with our spouses, children, parents, and friends.

Nicole Holofcener has written and directed seven films including Friends With Money and Enough Said, starring Julia Louis Dreyfus and James Gandolfini. She co-wrote the Oscar-nominated screenplay for Can You Ever Forgive Me and has directed numerous television shows including Mrs. Fletcher, Enlightened, and most recently Lucky Hank and Extrapolations. Nicole co-wrote the screenplay for The Last Duel directed by Ridley Scott, and has just completed her latest movie, You Hurt My Feelings.


(Indie) Woman of the Year Award

Tamara Jenkins

BendFilm announced writer and director, Tamara Jenkins as the 2022 IndieWoman of the Year and First Features Honoree. BendFilm hosted a screening of two of her films, Slums of Beverly Hills and Private Life, along with a guided Q&A session moderated by former Director of Sundance Film Festival John Cooper. Jenkins shared insights from her 20-year career and reflected on gender inequities in the industry.

Oscar-nominated writer and director Tamara Jenkins was described by actor Philip Seymour Hoffman as “not a compromiser.” Rolling Stone said this of Jenkins’ work: “… her microscopic looks at human beings in all their complexities and vanities are vital to the cinematic landscape. Her stories are not didactic. They are observational and communal — a hug, not a finger-point. She is scrupulous not just with the female character closest in age to her; Jenkins takes years to write a script because she wants to walk in the shoes of every character until she gets them right.”


(Indie) Woman of the Year Award

Anna Boden

The (indie) Women of the Year award in honor of Pamela Hulse Andrews was presented virtually to director Anna Boden. (Half Nelson, Captain Marvel, Mrs. America). BendFilm celebrated her illustrious career with deep indie film roots, her episodic work in television and her diverse experience in the Marvel franchise. Anna Boden, Ryan Fleck and Andrew Bujalski were celebrated as First Features Honorees during the Festival for their authentic filmmaking styles and impact on the independent film world.


(Indie) Woman of the Year Award

Christine Vachon

BendFilm formally recognized Christine Vachon as Indie Woman of the Year in 2019 for her tireless work to foster diverse voices in independent film and her bold vision to champion stories that steer outside the mainstream.

Celebrations included a screening series of four films produced by Vachon including Carol, First Reformed, and Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Each screening was followed by a guided Q&A session where Vachon will share insights from her 30-year producing career and ground-breaking experience in the industry. Film critics have long praised Vachon for her fearlessness in “telling the stories Hollywood won’t” and for having the grit to champion up-and-coming directors that turn into mainstays like Todd Haynes (Carol), Todd Solondz (Happiness), Mary Harron (I Shot Andy Warhol), Kimberly Pierce (Boys Don’t Cry), and John Cameron Mitchell (Hedwig and the Angry Inch).


(Indie) Woman of the Year Award

Debra Granik and Anne Rosellini

In Memoriam of Pamela Hulse Andrews, the inaugural IndieWomen of the Year Award was presented to Oscar-nominated independent filmmakers, Debra Granik and Anne Rosellini at the 2018 BendFilm Festival. Debra and Anne have won more than 43 awards over their careers and have been nominated for more than 53 awards including Oscar consideration for Best Writing for an Adapted Screenplay for Winter’s Bone in 2011.

Anne and Debra are lauded for discovering mainstay actors like Jennifer Lawrence, exhibiting extreme sincerity in their stories, fearlessly depicting the lives of everyday Americans and a “willingness to follow inspiration anywhere.”

Thanks to all of the IndieWomen who have contributed!

Help us continue Pamela Hulse-Andrews’ incredible legacy of growing arts and culture in Bend. Join today!