David Riker

David Riker


Screening – The Girl

Synopsis: Struggling with the loss of her child to Social Services, a single mother is trapped in the quicksand of her south Texas life, unwilling to accept the consequences of her actions. When her path collides with a young child from Mexico, she begins a journey that will change her life — teaching her that she is the architect of her own fate and learning what it is that truly defines home.

About the filmmaker

David Riker is an award-winning director, screenwriter, and editor, working in both fiction and documentary forms. His debut feature, La Ciudad (The City), premiered at Toronto to critical acclaim, and won awards at South by Southwest, San Sebastian, Havana, and the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival, among others. His second feature, The Girl, starring Abbie Cornish and Will Patton, won the NHK Award for Best American Screenplay at Sundance in 2009.

As a screenwriter, Riker has received a number of prestigious awards including the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at Sundance in 2008 for his work with Alex Rivera on Sleep Dealer. Most recently, he co-wrote with Jeremy Scahill the documentary Dirty Wars about the global war on terror. The film was nominated in 2014 for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, as well as the Writers Guild of America award for Best Documentary Screenplay.

The recipient of Guggenheim, Rockefeller, and Annenberg Fellowships for his work as both writer and director, Riker also teaches screenwriting and directing, most recently at Columbia University’s Graduate Film Program. He has also taught directing and writing workshops at universities across the country as well as in Mexico, Cuba, and at FiSahara, the only film and film education festival that takes place in a refugee camp. He earned an MFA in Film from New York University in 1996.

Sponsored by: IMA Program