Interview with Filmmaker Jodi Gwen Garber-Simon (SHATTERED: How Women Broke the Glass Ceiling In Oregon Politics)

SHATTERED: How Women Broke the Glass Ceiling In Oregon Politics, 38min., USA, Documentary
Directed by Jodi Gwen Garber-Simon
Oregon is filled with female firsts, from the nation’s first openly lesbian speaker of any state house in 2013 to the country’s only female-majority state house in 2021. For more than four years, Oregon’s major metro county has been led by an all-female county commission.

Get to know the filmmaker:

1. What motivated you to make this film?
I realized that Oregon is outstanding in terms of having many women in elected office including an all-female Multnomah County Commissioner’s court, but no one had told the story about how and why.
It seemed like the kind of success that should be replicated and I wanted to look into just how exceptional Oregon is and who these elected women are.

2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
We began part way through the pandemic in 2020 and finished in Spring 2022.

3. How would you describe your film in two words!?
Hopeful and Inspirational

4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
Most of the film is self-financed. Cost is definitely always an obstacle.

5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
It was so nice to see people reacting to the movie. I felt relieved that the messages I meant to convey were getting through to the audience. And I was moved that people outside my local community were able to experience the film.

6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
I still haven’t realized this! I studied journalism in college and worked as a newspaper reporter for a time. My husband was a broadcast journalist. We have come together to tell important stories a few times. But this is a side project for sure.

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
When Harry Met Sally? I’m blushing.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
Fantastic and easy.

9. What is your favorite meal?
New Mexico green chile bean burrito or sushi.

10. What is next for you? A new film?
I am raising my three kids, two girls and a boy, working my full time job and looking to make a positive impact on the world. It’s possible that that means another film. Or maybe I’ll write a book? I can’t wait to find out.


By matthewtoffolo

Filmmaker and sports fan. CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival

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