Brooklyn College’s Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema is proud to announce that a student thesis film short, More Happiness, was selected for the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) and Film at Lincoln Center’s (FLC) prestigious “The New Directors/New Films” annual festival.

More Happiness is the work of recent Feirstein graduates writer/director Livia Huang and producer Elise Shin, members of Feirstein’s class of 2020. Feirstein cinematographer Jack Davis, editor Andrew Aaronson, composer Yuying Fu, and sound mixer Noah Chevan also worked on the project. The film joins 27 other features and 11 shorts selected for presentation in the 2021 festival.

Huang, a Chinese-American filmmaker whose debut short, Who Can Predict What Will Move You, competed for a Teddy Award in 2020, describes More Happiness “as a conversation between a young woman and her mother that explores relationships and the questions that surround them.” Shot over a full one-year period from 2019 to 2020, the filmmakers said that while it is a bit unusual for a short to be filmed over such a long period of time, the change of seasons played an important role in the film. Watch the trailer here for More Happiness.

Shin also produced the film, Cousins—one of the winners of the IFP Student Showcase Awards at the 2021 Gotham Awards.

“My time at Feirstein was intense and transformative,” Shin said. “The making of More Happiness was not typical. To the Feirstein School’s credit, the faculty understands not all films are made in the same way; they were flexible in accommodating our shooting schedule, and we were grateful for their support.”

Feirstein School Executive Director Richard Gladstein— a two-time Academy Award nominated film producer said this selection further validates the distinct work of filmmakers learning and making films at our school.

“I could not be prouder of our school and these students and their wonderful work. Our diverse artists represent the next great generation of storytellers, and we are all excited for them to share their work in this wonderful venue,” Gladstein said.

The 50th anniversary edition of New Directors/New Films (ND/NF), available April 28 – May 8 via virtual cinema, with in-person screenings extending through May 13 at FLC. The event introduces audiences to the work of emerging filmmakers from around the world who represent the present and anticipate the future of cinema. Throughout its rich half-century history, “New Directors” has brought previously little-known talents like Pedro Almodóvar, Chantal Akerman, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Christopher Nolan, Laura Poitras, Spike Lee, and Kelly Reichardt to wider audiences.

More about Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema

Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema educates a diverse student body in the art and craft of filmmaking, music making, and storytelling in a hands-on, collaborative environment that mirrors the professional world. The extraordinary faculty and staff, made up largely of working members of the film, media and music industries, encourage students to discover their authentic voices and facilitates their access to a wide variety of careers.

The only film school located on a working film lot (within Steiner Studios), Feirstein School opened in 2015, the result of a $30 million public-private partnership. With tuition costing one-third of other major film schools, we offer M.F.A. degrees in Cinema Arts – with specializations in Cinematography, Digital Animation & Visual Effects (DAVE), Directing, Post-production, Producing, and Screenwriting – as well as in Sonic Arts, Media Scoring, and an M.A. in Screen Studies. Feirstein School is based in the heart of Downtown Brooklyn at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. It is part of Brooklyn College and The City University of New York (CUNY).

More about New Directors/New Films Festival

Throughout its rich, half-century history, the festival has celebrated filmmakers who represent the present and anticipate the future of cinema, and whose daring work pushes the envelope in unexpected ways. This year’s festival will introduce 27 features and 11 shorts to audiences nationwide in the MoMA and FLC virtual cinemas, and to New Yorkers at Film at Lincoln Center.

“From intimate, personal tales to political, metaphysical, and spiritual inquiries, the films in the 50th edition of New Directors/New Films embody an inexhaustible curiosity and a fearless desire for adventure,” said La Frances Hui, Curator of Film at The Museum of Modern Art and 2021 New Directors/New Films Co-Chair. “They prove that cinema will continue to illuminate and inspire the way we live, and make art.”