The Test Podcast

The Test Podcast

The Test is derived from The Bechdel Test and is essentially what The Bechdel Test is all about: 2+ women sitting in a room together, NOT talking about a man within the context of the movies. Inspired by The Bechdel Test and Mark Maron's WTF long form interviews, The Test is intimate, personal and will explore one female in entertainment for each episode (producers, casting directors, show runners, actresses, editors, directors, etc), from their upbringing to early inspirations to what they're up to right now to where they're headed next, with a focus on their career in film & tv. It's a digging in that's equally light, funny, and feminist. 

Episodes

Play » Elissa Down

Elissa Down

Aussie Writer / Director Elissa Down won the Crystal Bear Award at The Berlin Film Festival for her autobiographically inspired feature film debut "The Black Balloon" with Toni Collette. Growing up the daughter of a nurse and a soldier and the oldest sister to three brothers, two of which are autistic, she quickly learned the art of a good & amusing story. Ever charming, her projects tend to explore embarrassment in all of its messiness & humor. Join us for a winding chat on the fascinating life of this absolute delight.

Play » Tema Staig

Tema Staig

Art Director and Executive Director of Women In Media, Tema Staig is a powerhouse do-er creative on a mission. Tema's company, Women In Media, is a growing contact list of women in all areas of film production. Bechdel approved, her organization provides thousands of options for creating greater gender parity on any film set. From DJing in New York City when virtually no women were spinning in clubs, to set designing in LORT theaters across the country to Art Directing and running product placement for indie hit 'Kissing Jessica Stein,' Tema has lived and worked in so many creative worlds. Tune in for this exciting and open chat that delves into everything from how Tema's grandparents escaped the Holocaust via Cuba to her assistant production designing on 'American Splendor' to how she retired from chemical laden set painting when she became pregnant with her daughter.

Play » Kristen Murtha

Kristen Murtha

Producer Kristen Murtha is who you get when you want it done and with excellence. Raised outside Boston in a pragmatic, Irish American family, Kristen's producer star was born while watching a behind the scenes special on Finding Nemo while still in elementary school. Post college, she landed in sunny LA and soon started working for DreamWorks on giant studio animation projects like Rise of the Guardians and How to Train Your Dragon II. A consummate go-getter, she continuously took on smaller indie projects in her limited off hours from Studio Production Coordinating, steadily building up an impressive body of work that includes Associate Producing on The LEGO Ninjago Movie & Co-Producing Sundance indie favorite Band Aid, recently released through IFP & Sony Worldwide. Michal recently brought her on as Producer on her narrative feature, Born That Way. Join us for this must-listen talk that covers everything from all female crews to strolling the streets of Sydney with Jackie Chan.

Play » Grace Nkenge Edwards

Grace Nkenge Edwards

TV Writer & Actress Grace Nkenge Edwards knows funny. Born in Guyana, South America to a linguistics professor & an accountant that immigrated to Michigan when she was a toddler, she started acting & creating stories from a young age. After pursuing an acting career in NYC post college, she found her way into writing, eventually becoming a writer assistant on INSIDE AMY SCHUMER (as well as being a contributing writer and actress in some sketches), a writer assistant for BROAD CITY, a writer for NICOLE BUYER's show and a writer for the newest season of UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT. Join us for this wonderful chat with this fierce and funny force & learn all the inside secrets to finding your own way into the Writer's Room.

Play » Gina Atwater

Gina Atwater

Gina Atwater is a wonder. As an over-achieving independent spirit raised in the suburbs of Atlanta, her desire to tell character driven period piece stories led her to Columbia University where she created an award winning short that later caught the attention of her boss at CAA. Soon recommended for a job with JJ Abrams, she eventually found her way to Bad Robot & then The Writer's Room of HBO's Westworld. Join us for this insider look at how hard work, good character, whip smarts, & moxie pays off in droves.

Play » Bette Gordon

Bette Gordon

Bette Gordon is a legend. A critically acclaimed Director & a contemporary of Jim Jarmusch, she's been making films in NYC since the late 70's. Join us for this musically inspired talk about art house cinema in New York & Germany, French New Wave inspirations, how she got her complex & nuanced indie films Variety & Handsome Harry with Steve Buscemi made, & the haunting inspiration behind her glorious new feature, The Drowning.

Play » Hilary Bolger

Hilary Bolger

TV & Film Editor Hilary Bolger's candid openness & refreshing sense of humor about her life & work is a big bold breath of clean air. Born in La Canada, in the suburbs of Pasadena, just shy of the biz, her wild ride of a childhood may have had some influence in her decision to pursue a career where she gets to cut out the messy parts of the story. Join us for this intimate discussion as we wax poetic on everything from mental illness to ghost editing to how Spielberg takes his tea.

Play » Tamara Federici

Tamara Federici

Writer / Producer / Director Tamara Federici is one funny lady. Join us for a delightful conversation that weaves us through her North Carolina performance based childhood, her Chicago training with improv gurus Del Close at iO & Mick Napier at the Annoyance, how she infiltrated the comedy boys clubs of Comedy Central, writing and / or producing on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Chappelle's Show, & Demetri Martin in New York City, and how all that work for others has expanded into directing & writing her own screenplays & films, most recently her short film Layla featuring Dan Mintz (Tina from Bob’s Burgers on FOX).

Play » Lagueria Davis

Lagueria Davis

Director & Line Producer Lagueria Davis discusses carving out a creative life in Texas while being raised by strict religious working class parents, being a person of color in a very white Oklahoma, how volunteering in a domestic abuse shelter led her back to filmmaking, & where she's now headed as a Line Producer & Narrative Director. Join us for this intimate discussion that explores activism, working class expectations, religion, race, and gender in America.

Play » Grainne Godfree

Grainne Godfree

All around nice gal & TV writer Grainne Godfree who's currently a writer for DC's LEGENDS OF TOMORROW and THE FLASH shares her thoughts on breaking into TV writing and being a working female writer. Learn about how a dreamy California childhood of books, athletics, & Westerns with her father led to a DC Comics dream job. Tune in for this informative chat & learn how YOU can land in the Writer's Room too.

Play » Sarah E. Mason

Sarah E. Mason

Producer Sarah E. Mason is a woman of the world. Born in South Africa, raised in Northern Ireland, educated in Canada and England, and with stints in Colombia & Russia before living in Abu Dhabi and now Los Angeles, she is committed to bringing strong & truthful stories about the Middle East to Hollywood. Join us for this valuable & insightful discussion on her experience of being a non-Muslim white woman working in the Middle East, her desire for a more truthful portrayal of the Muslim community on film, & how a life reared amidst an Apartheid transitioning South Africa & a tumultuous Northern Ireland shaped her advocacy for the underdog in marketing, television, film.

Play » Jazz Smollett

Jazz Smollett

Jazz Smollett started acting & modeling in NYC alongside her 5 other siblings as a child. By the time she was a teenager, her entire family had its own sitcom that ran on the TGIF Block of ABC. Listen in as we discuss feminism, intersectionality, & what it was like for her growing up bi-racial in both NYC & Los Angeles in the 80's & 90's, as well as her current life as a Producer, Mother, Film Fest Curator & Life Style Host.

Play » Michelle Kantor

Michelle Kantor

In our inaugural episode, Michelle Kantor, founder of Cinefemme, discusses her storied upbringing in Colorado raised by Communist defector parents from Czechoslovakia, motherhood, epilepsy, what it takes to run a successful non-profit, and filmmaking with an activist heart.