Marie Jamora is a trailblazing Filipino writer-director named as one of the "Five Visionary Asian-American Female Filmmakers." As a woman of color making a name in the film industry, Jamora faced a lot of adversity because of her nationality. She began her career in the Philippines by directing music videos and TV commercials, and many years later started her platform called "Cinema Sala." Through this, she aimed to bring to light Filipino stories and gather Filipino artists in the performing arts and film industries.

It wasn't until she met the American filmmaker Ava DuVernay that her career flowered into the success that it is today. Jamora made her television debut with DuVernay's award-winning drama series, Queen Sugar. This opportunity opened many doors and helped her gain a respected position in the industry. Jamora has also directed short films and shows such as Family Style and Harana, which earned her the Grand Jury Award for Best Narrative Short presented by the Sarasota Film Festival. From struggling to gaining recognition to finding success in such a competitive field, Marie Jamora believes in the power of saying "yes" to opportunities that come your way.

LASM: You went from music videos to short films and now on TV. What's that been like for you?

Marie Jamora: I was born and raised in Manila, Philippines. I started off my career with music videos, which led me to do commercials, TV and then my first feature film. After I graduated from Columbia University with an MFA in Film, I went home and taught directing for eight years. But when I made my feature film, I got into the Slamdance Film Festival, which brought me to the United States again. I met my husband at the film festival, and so I ended up in L.A. because he was working there as a filmmaker. I came here just out of pure faith, motivating myself to make it all work.

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