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LA Film Festival Promotes Jennifer Cochis to Director

She replaces Stephanie Allain, who leaves to focus on producing

Film Independent has named Jennifer Cochis director of the Los Angeles Film Festival, the non-profit organization announced in a statement on Friday.

Cochis has served as the festival’s creative director and senior programmer, working with outgoing director Stephanie Allain the last two years. Allain is stepping down to focus on producing. She is currently in production on the Netflix series “Dear White People,” in post-production on “Burning Sands” and preparing “Juanita,” which will star Alfre Woodard.

“Jennifer Cochis is a brilliant new force on the festival scene and I am extremely happy to have her step into this new role,” Film Independent President Josh Welsh said in the statement. “She brings so much experience, intelligence and passion to everything she does.”

“Jennifer is a secret weapon,” said Film Independent Board Chair Mary Sweeney, “and I expect exciting things for the LA Film Festival from her.”

“It has been such an honor to shine a spotlight on women and directors of color, and leaving is bittersweet,” Allain said. “But I know that the festival is in extremely capable hands with Jennifer Cochis at the helm because she helped me build it.”

 “It’s an incredibly exciting challenge to build upon the great work that Stephanie has done at the LA Film Festival these past five years,” said Cochis. “I am passionate about continuing to grow this festival, bringing together audacious and brave visual storytellers with the audiences of Los Angeles.”