Afro Punk on 'This Land'
Savanah Leaf’s groundshaking video marries the song with powerful imagery and a narrative about a young boy reclaiming his legacy and future. It’s the rare video that can stare directly at the cancer in America’s soul and come away with what is ultimately a message of hope. And it doesn’t hurt that flowing through the whole thing is some of Gary Clark Jr’s best guitar work to date. When that’s just the icing on a veritable guitar god’s cake though, you know you’re in for something.
Promonews and their writ-up on 'This Land'
A young boy's journey through Deep South country becomes a gripping visual metaphor of African-American suffering in Savanah Leaf's dazzling video for Gary Clark Jr's This Land...This is a hugely ambitious, richly rewarding video for a very powerful song.
Pitchfork on 'This Land'
Huffington Post on 'This Land'
Rolling Stones writes about 'This Land'
The video for “This Land” was directed by award-winning 25-year-old filmmaker Savanah Leaf, and filmed around Clark’s home in rural Texas, capturing a young boy grappling with haunting symbols of American racism such as the Confederate flag. “I basically just told her where I came from and she made a beautiful short film out of it,” Clark says. “Shout out to her, much love. I hope the video and the song together accomplish acceptance and moving forward
Savanah Leaf releases a music video for Gary Clark Jr titled 'This Land'!
Interview with Director's Library!
If there was a common thread in the films I like to watch, I think it would be ‘painfully honest stories’. This sometimes takes form in comedies, and at other times takes form in tragedies. But each time they resonate with me, it's because they speak to human truths that often times in regular life, I try to ignore or hide from. In that way, they also challenge the viewer and make them question what they know and what they believe.
Interview in I-D Magazine !
London-born Savanah Leaf went from volleyball-playing Olympian to celebrated film director and photographer, crafting nuanced mediations that explore race, gender and culture. After achieving her dream of competing in the Olympics in 2012, Savanah realised she wanted to work towards the goal of making a life in art, after many years of exploring it as a hobby.
Savanah releases a new video for Justine Skye, fighting against domestic violence.
Interview with The Reel Woman
What is your biggest concern with the future? That I’ll be expected and funded to only make films about ‘women of colour’ and for ‘women of colour’. When that’s not my intention, nor is it the only type of film I aspire to create. I just want to tell stories.
Savanah gets nominated for Shots Awards - New Director of the Year!
Jazzanova is now on Girls in Film!
It’s a beautiful image to think what happens when you release someone’s ashes: Do they dance upon mountain tops? Do the they run through barren fields? Do they swim with ocean currents? I imagine all of the above. So for ‘Let’s Live Well’ I wanted to depict a poetic interpretation of this idea, revolving around the desperate attraction and liberation that comes with letting go.
Jazzanova is on BOOOOOM TV!
A beautiful video for Jazzanova’s track with Jamie Cullum by director Savanah Leaf (previously featured here). “Let’s Live Well” follows a pair of young lovers guided by raw energy and connection yet simultaneously tied to lyrics spoken from a place of reflection, warning one not to let love dance away.
Interview with Hush Magazine!
Training is about understanding what your body and mind need to grow and develop. This involves a combination of sport practice, tactical theory, muscle development, muscle recovery, mental development, and awareness of your diet.
I think what was the most important for me was my development of my mental state. No matter what you do in life, you’re always faced with doubts: not only from your opponents, teammates and sometimes even your coaches, but also yourself. For me, it was about blocking out the noise and finding a place within myself where I could achieve what I wanted to achieve without any distractions. I’m not necessarily religious, but one prayer really resonated with me throughout life, and especially in sport: “Grant me serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference”. That’s what life’s all about.
Write up in Dazed and Confused about the V&A museum show, featuring The Ayes Have It.
The Ayes Have It is screening at the V&A Museum this weekend in London!
Savanah's new music video for Jazzanova and Jamie Cullum is out now on Apple Music!
Savanah Leaf features on Something Curated's female directors to watch!
Before gravitating towards filmmaking, Savanah Leaf used to compete as a professional volleyball player. But in spite of a successful sporting career (represented team GB at the 2012 Olympics), she decided in 2015 to dedicate her full attention to the arts. Both a filmmaker and a photographer, she carved her own way, and has since a few years directed a mix of shorts films, visual poems and documentary episodes. Credits include ‘Subelo Cuba’, ‘The Ayes have it’ and the ‘F Word’. She has among others collaborated with Stink Films, the Mill, Motionpoems, Gilles Peterson and Havana Club.
Savanah Leaf features on The Reel Women!
Savanah releases her first fanzine with the ¡Subelo Cuba! vinyl!
Open Your Eyes Is out!
Savanah Leaf creates a music video for up-and-coming Roc Nation artist, Victory Boyd.
¡Subelo Cuba! is Out Now!
A series of documentary shorts on up-and-coming muisicians in Cuba, in collaboration with Gilles Peterson.
The Ayes Have It is on Free The Bid!
Director Savanah Leaf, newly added to the Free The Bid database, shared her thoughts on her short film, “The Ayes Have It,” a beautiful and blistering visual interpretation of a poem of the same name by Tiana Clark. Both the poem and film meditate on the connections across time between Trayvon Martin, Emmett Till, and the long legacy of Black Americans denied justice.
The Ayes Have It is now on Girls In Film
It has a unique Free Association pattern, that at times may feel random. But the words of the poem have a unique resonance with me, having lived in London, the Bay Area, and Miami.
Little Black Book does an Interview with Savanah Leaf on The Ayes Have it and the transition to becoming a filmmaker from being an Olympic Athlete. "Given that this is a publication primarily about advertising and creativity, it’s not commonplace that we get to interview Olympians. But Savanah Leaf is exactly that, having competed for Team GB’s volleyball team at the London 2012 Olympics. The real reason we’re picking her brains though is for her filmmaking ability...
The Ayes Have It is now a Vimeo Staff Pick!
Leaf's film The Ayes Have It now on Booooooom TV!
So many gorgeous shots in this poetic meditation by London/Los Angeles-based director and photographer Savanah Leaf. Speaking to two specific cases that changed the culture of the South — the murders of Emmett Till and Trayvon Martin — “The Ayes Have It” offers a mixed-race woman’s perspective on racial discrimination and justice in America.
Leaf's music video for Dayme Arocena is featured on Billboard
Leaf's film The Ayes Have It now on Afro Punk!
“The Ayes Have it” by Savanah Leaf is a raw, spoken word short film that embodies the racist history of interracial relationships in the south and pays tribute to “Emmett Till, Trayvon Martin and every family denied justice.
Leaf's film The Ayes Have It now trending on Vimeo!
Interview on the making of The Ayes Have It on One Point Four
We last spoke with new director Savanah Leaf a good 18 months ago when she’d just completed her first short film, F Word, and now she’s created this beautiful visual eulogy set to Tiana Clark’s poem The Ayes Have It.
Savanah Leaf releases her new short film 'The Ayes Have It' a film for a charity called Motion Poems.
Savanah Leaf's music video for Mabel McVey has over 26 million views on Vevo -- see the link Finders Keepers
Savanah's film Fin showcases on London's Top Safe
Savanah Leaf releases her second short Fin on Girls In Film
Savanah Leaf releases a music video for Mabel McVey's new hit 'Finders Keepers'
Savanah Leaf's second music video for Dayme Arocena is released on Okay Africa!
Over 2 Million Views on Savanah Leaf's music video for Dayme Arocena!
Havana Cultura releases Savanah Leaf's new music video for Dayme Arocena, co-produced by Brownswood Recordings.
In I-D Magazine and speaking at the ICA for the International Women's Day Events Round Up
...Join the BORN n BREAD ladies at the ICA for an important discussion on how we get more POC women working in and around the film industry. With a stellar panel, made up of three experienced directors Savanah Leaf, Jenn Nkiru and Dionne Edwards.
In Dazed & Confused
...The short films inspiring you to rebel and revolt.
Screening at the London Short Film Festival....
...The bold women of these short dramas are definitely on the edge of something, whether it’s perilous or pushing boundaries. These women are murderesses, astronauts, religious healers, fleeing Nazis and neglectful husbands. Watch out for Steve Waddington, Lesley Manville, Alex MacQueen and Karl Johnson.
Screened at Baewatch and Learn...
...Our aim is to focus on work by women because, as we're sure you all know, there is some really fucking great stuff out there in the abyss of internet and unknown places.
Screened at Women in Revolt (Girls on Film X Gurl Talk X Gal-Dem X Shorts on Tap) ...
...the vision for Women In Revolt is a cross-art, all-inclusive space where platforms can be given to forcibly silenced voices, ideas can be shared, and freedom from structural oppression, bit by bit, achieved. Partnering with critically acclaimed Gal-Dem Magazine and Adwoa Aboah's Gurl Talk.
Great talk today with the students of London School of Speech and Drama
Up on A Color Blue today
We hit our goals for our indiegogo campaign for my next short 'Fin'
Screened at Brooks and Groves
...Our first exhibition is titled 'Intimacy' and consists of an ongoing exhibition, a publication event and a screening event on the last day. The exhibition seeks to give an insight into the intimacy between artists and their work and what are the issues and ideas that have influenced and formed the concepts behind a select few artist’s art practices...
F Word is now a Vimeo Staff Pick!
Screening at the ICA
...GIF curate a programme of screenings by female directors showcasing the most exciting young talent in the UK today...
...This new film by London-based filmmaker Savanah Leaf, may be one of the most accurately raw interpretations of life as a single-parented child to take the screen. 'F Word' investigates the reality of a young black woman, Nicole(Savanna Small), and her struggle to address her absent father...
Girls in Film
...Olympic Volleyball player turned filmmaker first foray into filmmaking is a beautiful visual journey of acceptance and forgiveness...
A Cost Magazine
...Alev Lenz's video for "If Love" is a lofty flutter into the beauty and wonder of romance.
...Alev Lenz's story is about love, as shared by Born Music.
Indie Music Dimension
New beautiful video for "If Love" by Alev Lenz.
If Love music video released on Vevo
Find me on the cover of the Evening Standard, modeling for Maria Sole Ferragamo and her recycled leather jewelry
One Point Four
...We don’t have that many Olympic volleyball players turn film makers on 1.4 so it's very exciting to show off new director Savanah Leaf's first short film, F Word. Please tell us the elevator version of your background and how you came to direct your first short film, F Word?...
The Mill Blog
...The Mill worked with Writer & Director Savanah Leaf to grade the beautiful short film 'F Word’...
...Writer & Director Savanah Leaf says; "The idea for the film came from a collection of experiences shared by myself and many of my friends and family. It touches on a genuine feeling of being alone—speaking to those having lost, misplaced, or are missing a person who has been part of their life story and it touches on a unifying theme of self-discovery.
Catch me on the latest Long Tall Sally advert
Cannes Short Corner
...This experimental short film reflects on child abandonment. It takes us on a journey across South London, and shows us the affects of having an absent father. Nicole confronts seemingly inescapable and uncontrollable conflicts with honesty and self-discovery...
San Francisco Black Film Festival
...A self-funded short film, exploring both the internal and external journey of a young woman searching for answers about her absent father…
Private Screening at Pixar Animation Studios!
A few words in Glamour Magazine
...our Sports star of the week