Tribe Filmmakers

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Emmy-nominated filmmaker and Webby Awards Founder Tiffany Shlain has received over 65 awards and distinctions for her films and work, including being named by NPR as having delivered one of the Best Commencement Speeches, Ever, and by Newsweek as “one of the women shaping the 21st Century.” 

She has premiered four films at Sundance, including her acclaimed feature documentary Connected: An Autoblogography about Love, Death & Technology, which The New York Times hailed as “high-tech Terry Gilliam,” and “Examining Everything From the Big Bang to Twitter.”  The US State Department has also selected three of Shlain’s films including Connectedto represent the U.S. at embassies around the world for their American Film Showcase. Her AOL Original series, The Future Starts Here was nominated for an Emmy in New Approaches: Arts, Lifestyle, Culture and has over 40 million views to date. Shlain’s films employ her signature style of fast-paced images, colorful animations, and daring and funny insights to encourage us all to think about where we’re headed in our increasingly connected world.

Tiffany is a world-renowned speaker and has been featured at institutions including Google, Harvard, NASA, and Fortune 500 companies.  Tiffany was the on-air Internet expert on ABC’s Good Morning America with Diane Sawyer, is a Henry Crown Fellow of The Aspen Institute, is an advisor to The Institute for the Future, and was invited to advise then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton about the Internet and technology. She has contributed articles for Harvard Business ReviewDocumentary Magazine and was listed by Indiewire & FastCompany for her writing on twitter. TED Conferences published her first book, Brain Power: From Neurons to Networkswhich premiered simultaneously with the accompanying 10 min film and has been writing a quarterly newsletter called Breakfast @ Tiffany's since 1998. She runs an independent film studio + lab in San Francisco called The Moxie Institute.

Tiffany lives in Northern California with her husband and collaborator Ken Goldberg (an artist & professor of robotics at UC Berkeley) and their two children. Her films and work often wrestle with the good, the bad and the potential of technology. She and her family are on their 5th year unplugging each week for 24 hours as part of their “technology shabbats,” which she has written about, given talks about and explores in many of her films.


Ken Goldberg is an inventor working at the intersection of art, robotics, and social media. At UC Berkeley, Ken teaches and supervises research in Robotics, Automation, and New Media. Ken was awarded dual degrees in Electrical Engineering and Economics from the University of Pennsylvania (1984) and MS and PhD degrees from Carnegie Mellon University (1990). He joined the UC Berkeley faculty in 1995 where he is craigslist Distinguished Professor of New Media. He is a Professor of Industrial Engineering and Operations Research, with secondary appointments in Electrical Engineering/Computer Science and the School of Information. Ken also has an appointment in the UC San Francisco Medical School’s Department of Radiation Oncology. Ken has published over 150 peer-reviewed technical papers on algorithms for robotics, automation, and social information filtering; his inventions have been awarded eight US Patents. He is Editor-in-Chief of the IEEE Transactions on Automation Science and Engineering (T-ASE), Co-Founder of the Berkeley Center for New Media, Co-Founder and CTO of Hybrid Wisdom Labs, Co-Founder of the Moxie Institute, and Founding Director of UC Berkeley’s Art, Technology, and Culture Lecture Series. Ken was awarded the Presidential Faculty Fellowship in 1995 by President Clinton, the National Science Foundation Faculty Fellowship in 1994, the Joseph Engelberger Robotics Award in 2000, and elected IEEE Fellow in 2005. 

Gil-Gershoni-300x300.jpegGIL GERSHONI, ART DIRECTOR

Gil Gershoni is the Founder and Creative Director of Gershoni, an award-winning communication design agency based in San Francisco. For over 15 years, Gershoni has led integrated branding and interactive projects for clients like Nike, The BBC, The Patrón Spirits Company, Clif Bar and many more. Gershoni’s work has appeared in a wide range of venues from Communication Arts, Print and How magazines to the Whitney Biennial and Sundance. A noted lecturer, Gil Gershoni is a member of International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences and is an advisor to national design schools.

Peter Coyote has performed for some of the world’s most distinguished filmmakers, including Barry Levinson, Roman Polanski, Pedro Almodovar, Steven Spielberg, Walter Hill, Martin Ritt, Steven Soderberg, Diane Kurys, and Sidney Pollack .  Coyote became a professional theater-actor during his early twenties, first as an actor at San Francisco ‘s Actor’s Workshop, and then as an actor -writer-director at the San Francisco Mime Troupe.  Coyote has also starred in a number of television movies and mini-series, among them “A Seduction in Travis County,” “Living a Lie,” “Privileged Information,” “The People vs. Jean Harris,” “Echoes in the Darkness,” and “Buffalo Girls.”  Recently he played Harvey Milk in Showtime’s Execution of Justice.  Coyote is well-known for his voice-over work, and in 1992 won an EMMY as the host for the nine-hour series, “The Pacific Century.”  Coyote currently plays Warren Keaton in ABC’s “Commander-in-Chief.”

Actress/Poet/Playwright/Native New Yorker Vanessa Hidary grew up on Manhattan’s culturally diverse Upper West Side.  Her experiences as a Sephardic Jew with close friends from different ethnic and religious backgrounds inspired her to write “Culture Bandit,” a solo show that chronicles Vanessa’s coming of age during the golden age of Hip-Hop and her dedication to fostering understanding and friendship between all people.  Her performances have been aired on HBO’s “Russell Simmon’s Presents Def Poetry.”  She has been featured in The New York Post, Time Out New York, The Jewish Week,, The Forward, URB magazine, BUST Magazine, The Los Angeles Times, The Albuquerque Journal, and Lilith Magazine.  Vanessa is also a member of the burlesque troupe “Nice Jewish Girls Gone Bad.”

Paul Godwin has worked for 20 years as a professional composer in NYC and San Francisco.  His recent credits include the West Coast Premiere of Tony Kushner’s “Homebody/Kabul” at Berkeley Repertory Theatre for which he was awarded the Bay Area Critics Circle Award for Best Composer.   Other film credits include “Road Scholar” with Andre Codrescu and other documentaries. Paul has created original music for games by Purple Moon, Gravity/Grolier and IBM/Crayola.   He is a graduate of Berklee College of Music and has done additional musical studies at Mills College.  His work with Jewish music includes studies in Hebrew chanting with Zen Tziona Cohen and as producer of her album, “The Hebrew Book of Ascending.”  Paul is the creator and lead singer of The Sippy Cups, a pop-rock band for preschoolers, currently creating mosh pits throughout northern California.

Son of a wedding videographer and photographer, Stefan received a bachelor’s degree in fine arts from Iowa State University in 1994 and began working in New York City as a print graphic designer. He then transitioned to web design and then web animation not only for interactive design but for film.  In 2000, Stefan’s first film, “Latin Alive” was included on the Best of Resfest DVD volume 1.  By 2003, Stefan left the world of web-based animation for that of film and television. Shortly after, “Terminal Bar” won the Jury Prize for short film at the Sundance Film Festival.  Stefan continues to work on motion graphics for food, film, and fun.


Carlton was the associate producer and director of outreach for The Tribe, an award-winning short about the history of the Jewish people and the Barbie doll, and an official selection at over 100 festivals including Sundance and Tribeca. He is also the co-founder and director of the Disposable Film Festival, which celebrates achievements in new media filmmaking. Carlton has taught film theory, art history, and architecture at Stanford, San Francisco State University, and SF Art Institute, and lectures worldwide about film and new media. Carlton holds a PhD in Art History and Film Theory from Stanford University.


Romy Itzigsohn was born in Los Angeles with lots of Barbies and has always wanted to work in the production of her own films.  After neither applying nor graduating from USC’s film school, she traveled through much of Europe and Asia, living and working in New Zealand and Australia only to find a home in San Francisco.  Here she was inspired to meet a group of talented and intelligent personalities in the making of The Tribe, who subsequently bribed into her employment.  Luckily, Romy’s interests have been limited to issues of assimilation, Judaism, and Barbie, making this process like a dream come true.  She is currently working in pre-production on the evolution of her latest script.


Dave Nelson’s career spans over twenty years in the film/sound and recording industry. His work involves an interesting mixture of documentaries, feature, and short films, and albums some that have been nominated for Academy, Emmy and Grammy Awards. It is his intuitive and improvisational style constantly keeps him in demand as one of the most sought after sound designer/engineers in the industry. He is currently heading Outpost Studios in the SOMA neighborhood of San Francisco. With the largest 5.1 mix room in San Francisco, a live room, and a large Foley pit he has made Outpost Studios the independent audio post-production facility in the Bay Area to come to. Being a part of the film and music community has always been a focus of Outpost Studios and Dave is happy to be a part of San Francisco’s and the world’s cinema.

Contrary to popular belief Thomas Eugene is not Jewish. He does however love working on movies, especially if he gets to animate Barbie dolls.  Thomas started his artistic career as a classical ballet dancer under Larry Long at the Ruth Page Foundation in Chicago. He has danced with Louisville Ballet, Boston Ballet, and Gus Giordano‚s Jazz Dance Chicago. After discovering the wonderful combinations of pizza, beer, and terrible movies from the 80‚s, Thomas decided to hang up his dancing shoes and moved into the world of graphic design.  He currently works in SF as a freelance designer at Odopod, Carat, and 8speed Multimedia.

A native of New Orleans, LA, Matt Ganucheau has been creating and performing electronic music for over 8 years. In 2004, Matt graduated from The Berklee College of Music with degrees in Film Scoring and Music Synthesis. Shortly after, he moved to the Bay Area to pursue a career in sound design and composition. Since his arrival he has completed three short film scores, a full featured game score, and has had several compositions appear on international compilations. He currently keeps his daytimes occupied by working for electronic music giants such as Native Instruments, BEAM, and Robotspeak.

Dalan McNabola has been a musician since 1993 and has been editing since 1999. His films have been shown all over Northern California, including the Pacific Film Archive, and in Canada.

Sophia’s work has earned international acclaim for tackling difficult topics with artistry and sensitivity. She has produced, directed and photographed several award-winning documentaries, including “Divided Loyalties ” an intensely personal, feature-length exploration of the conflict in Cyprus (Golden Gate Award, 1999); “Between the Lines” about women and self-injury (Golden Gate Award, 1998); and “Impact Zone” (Best Experimental Film, NY Underground Film Festival, 1997.)  Specializing in alluring, formally dramatic lighting design as well as improvised observational camerawork, Sophia has been shooting high-profile documentary films for over a decade. Her cinematography credits include HBO’s “Unchained Memories, PBS’ Presumed Guilty, and KQED’S Emmy Award winning “Home Front.”

Full List of Credits

Produced, Directed and Edited by
Tiffany Shlain

Written by
Tiffany Shlain & Ken Goldberg

Art Director
Gil Gershoni

Peter Coyote

“Hebrew Mamita” Written and Performed by
Vanessa Hidary

Music Composed by
Paul Godwin

Special Animations by
Stefan Nadelman

Sophie Constantinou

Associate Producer
Carlton Evans

Sound Design & Rerecording Mixer
Dave Nelson

Additional Music Composed by
Matt Ganucheau

Production Management
Citizen Film

Assistant Director
Romy Itzigsohn

Associate Editor
Dalan “The Magician” McNabola

Thomas Eugene Green

Music Supervisor
Paul Godwin

“Yismekhu Khosid’l” (trad., arr. Amy Zakar/TKD)
& “New Jersey Freylekhs” (Ben Holmes)
Performed by
The Klez Dispensers

“Who Knows One?”
From the So Called Seder
Performed by
So Called, featuring David Krakauer

Beatbox “Hava Negila” (trad., arr. Yuri Lane)
Performed by
Yuri Lane

Dina Amsterdam, Bill Barnes, Marina Berlin,
Stellah DeVille, Carlton Evans, Amy Gershoni,
Ken Goldberg, Romy Itzigsohn, Misha Leybovich
Emily Morse, Jen Naylor, Ian Schneider,
Jordan Shlain, BJ Wasserman, Adam Werbach

Make-up by Marina Berlin

Archival Images and Footage Provided by
Getty Images
Oddball Film & Video San Francisco
Prelinger Archives
Craig Baldwin Archive
Diaspora’ photographs copyright Frédéric Brenner

Barbie Collection Provided by
Sandi Holder’s Doll Attic

Fiscal Sponsor
Film Arts Foundation

Script Contributors
Carlton Evans, Susan Stern, Romy Itzigsohn

Script Advisors
Maya Draisin, Leonard Shlain, Ari Kelman,
Kimberly Brooks, Colin Weil, Ari Wallach,
Ann Goldberg, Elena Mann, Aldele Goldberg,
Cathy Brooks, Adam Werbach, Amichai Lau-Levi,
Dan Geller, Michael Kaminer, Yogi Graham,
Amy Gershoni, Rebecca Eisenberg, Curtis Smoler,
Sandi Dubowski, Rabbi Andy Bachman

Resident Barbieologist
Susan Stern

Audio Post Production Facilities, Outpost Studios
Online Services, Elastic Creative
Dialogue & SFX Editor, Miik Dinko
Scheduling Goddess, Deldelp Medina
Prop Master, Molli Amara Simon

For Citizen Film:
Coordination, Katrina Drabkin
Kohn Intern, Ben Friend
Praxis Intern, Jordan Clement

*If the world were a tribe of 100 people” inspired by an anonymous email that began circulating sometime around 2000

In Memory of
Ella King Torrey

It takes a shtetl …special thanks to:
Carole Jaffe, Leonard Shlain, Odessa Simone, Kimberly Brooks, Jordan Shlain, Maya Draisin, Ann Goldberg, Ina Gyemant, Herb Jaffe, Lillian Rosenthal,
Elena Mann, Adele Goldberg, Amy Gershoni, Rachel Levin, Roger Bennet,
Marla Steuer, Douglas Rushkoff, Amy Critchett, Meg Wagner, Felicia Herman, Joyce Linker, Betty Schafer, Dr. Debbie Findling, Mark Reisbaum, Susan Mall,
Roseann Levitt, Anita Wornick, Sue & Dick Wollack, Connie Shapiro, Dr. Judith Ginsberg, Sharna Goldseker, Lisa Goldberg, Barbara & Richard Rosenberg, Mirelle Silkoff, Jules Shell, Jon Kessleman, Mitchell Frank, Julie Hermelin, Lynn Newhouse Segal, Hiedi Zukerman-Jacobson, Dan Bern, David Henkin, Jennifer Elias, Beth Kelley, Bess Bendet, Suzanne Baird, Sandi Holder, Ron Alterovitz, Laura Lauder, Mark Itzigsohn, Rick Prelinger, Aaron Bisken, Marilyn Fabe, Arnie Baskin, Roberta Munroe, Sam Ball, Kate Stilley Steiner, Tamara Smart, Jerry Giaquinta, Davida Finger, Jon Rodrigues, Beth Kelley, Robert Chehoski, Craig Baldwin, Danielle Leeper, Ruben, Jessica Robins, Josh Crandall, Gilad Gershoni, Mickey Heimlich, Lisa Lepson, Simon Frankel, MJ Bogatin

*No Barbies were harmed in the making of this film

Barbie is a registered trademark of Mattel, Inc.  This film is not in
any way sponsored by or affiliated with Mattel.  The film contains
factual references to the creation and history of the Barbie doll.

The Tribe is a non-profit pursuit. 


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