Nicole Brending is a writer, director, performer and producer of motion picture. An internationally award-winning filmmaker based in Saint Paul, MN, her work incorporates narrative and experimental components with strong visual features. As director, writer, producer and star, she recently won the coveted Silver Saint George for Best Film in the Short Film Competition at the 38th Moscow International Film Festival for Selfied, with screenings in France, Italy, Cyprus, New York, and Australia.
As a screenwriter, her feature spec Lifer was optioned by BSpoke Entertainment and developed with Nicole Kidman's company Blossom Films. She wrote an adaptation of the memoir Whip Smart for legendary producer Robert Evans (The Godfather, Chinatown) and co-wrote The Artist's Wife with director Tom Dolby (Last Weekend), now in post-production and starring Lena Olin, Bruce Dern, Avan Jogia, and Juliet Rylance. She is currently collaborating with acclaimed editor/producer Lee Percy on an adaptation of the memoir Harley Loco by Rayya Elias.
She is an alumna of the Berlinale Talent Campus and Co-Production Market as well as the Nantucket Screenwriters Colony. Her work has been supported by the Jerome Foundation (2007, 2008, 2013), the McKnight Foundation (2009, 2016), and has won awards all over the world including a Student Emmy, the Prix de Varti at Ann Arbor, Best of the Fest at Palm Springs Shortfest, the Ursula Award for Best Lesbian Short at the Hamburg International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, and Best Short at Q Cinema: Dallas/Fort Worth International LGBT Film Festival. Premiers have included IFC New York, NPR: First Watch, BBC 6, and the Bluegrass Situation. Broadcast and distribution has included Netflix, Frameline Distribution, Strand Releasing, BT Music Playlist, PBS, and America’s Best Student Shorts.
She received her MFA in Film from Columbia University where she won the Ezra Litwak Award for Distinction in Screenwriting and her short film Duluth received Faculty Honors and Best Short Under 12 Minutes at the 2010 Columbia University Film Festival. During her most recent McKnight Fellowship year, she produced, directed, shot, production designed, and edited her first feature-length film, Dollhouse: The Eradication of Female Subjectivity from American Popular Culture, a non-traditional animation currently in submission to festivals.