Short Film Produced by Film Student Hongwei Wu is Awarded the Through Her Lens Women's Filmmaker Grant

Aisha Amin
November 29, 2022

Film student Hongwei Wu has been awarded full production funding for her short film, FISHTANK, through the acclaimed Through Her Lens: The Tribeca Chanel Women's Filmmaker Program. Wu is producing the film, which will be directed by NYU Tisch Alumna Wendi Tang. As winners of the award, Wu and her creative partner will receive full financing to produce their short film with support from Tribeca Studios. 

FISHTANK is about a sardonic 28-year-old Jules who has been sober for a year, but she can’t stop vomiting fish. Striving to put her life back on track, she must preserve control when a fish enthusiast unexpectedly enters her life.

The Through Her Lens Program is in its eighth year and ran from September 20-22, 2022, welcoming program finalists and jurors to participate in workshops, classes, and peer-to-peer sessions for the finalists. The mentorship program provides industry support, artistic development, and funding to emerging US-based self-identifying women and non-binary writers and directors

In order to become a finalist, selected filmmakers participated in an intensive three-day workshop after which they pitched their projects to a jury comprised of actor and director Jennifer Morrison (This is Us); actor Alexandra Shipp (tick, tick… BOOM! and Love, Simon); producer Riva Marker (Whiplash and Drive); actor Thuso Mbedu (The Woman King and The Underground Railroad). 

After the pitches, the jury chose FISHTANK as the winner of the award and remarked: “FISHTANK captivated our imaginations with its unique symbolism and universal story.”

Upon winning the award, Wu and Tang said  "Our writing mentors gave thorough notes from the beginning and helped us see the blindspots in our script. We can’t imagine what our script would look like without the last three days of mentorship. It has evolved so much since the pitch process.”

Hongwei Wu is an international producer who was born and raised in Guangzhou, China, and now splits her time between China and New York. Hongwei acquired a bachelor degree in commerce from University of Western Australia with a second major in Communications and Media. She is currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Producing at Columbia University. For Hongwei, creating art is a lifelong exploration and she takes enormous pleasure in the collaborative creative process crucial to international cinema.