PRESS RELEASE: American Film Showcase Joins the 9th Annual Ulaanbaatar International Film Festival

U.S. Embassy in Ulaanbaatar
Public Affairs Section
Phone:  7007-6001
For Immediate Release
October 6, 2017

American Film Showcase Joins the 9th Annual Ulaanbaatar International Film Festival

Special Envoys: Stacey Ferreira (Entrepreneur); Tony Gerber (Filmmaker); 

UBIFF: October 10-15, 2017

In celebration of the 9th Annual Ulaanbaatar International Film Festival (UBIFF), and in honor of the 30th anniversary of the establishment of U.S.-Mongolia diplomatic relations, the U.S. Embassy in Ulaanbaatar is proud to present the United States as a Focus Country of this year’s Festival, and bring the best of contemporary American films featuring the American Film Showcase (AFS) for the third consecutive year in Mongolia. 

The UBIFF is organized during the second week of October every year, by the Arts Council of Mongolia (ACM) and the Ulaanbaatar City Mayor’s Office.  During the years, UBIFF presented internationally acclaimed, unique and powerful films awarded at Cannes, Berlin, Toronto, and other world-renowned festivals.  This year, the festival will be comprised of the International Film Forum with 12 international film experts, 20 film screenings, as well as workshops and discussions related to new and innovative films and filmmaking techniques.

The U.S. Embassy has chosen entrepreneurship as the main theme of our involvement in the festival. Jointly with the AFS, the Embassy will present special programming as follows:

  • Filmmaking professional exchange and workshops with special envoy Tony Gerber.

Writer and filmmaker Tony Gerber is a two-time Emmy recipient and has written and directed over a dozen documentaries for National Geographic, shot in some of the most remote and dangerous regions of the world.  He most recently directed (CNN Films’) We Will Rise chronicling former First Lady Michelle Obama’s trip to Africa to raise awareness of the importance of girl’s education, featuring Meryl Streep, Isha Sesay and Freida Pinto.  The film was a 2017 recipient of an American Television Academy honor. Mr. Gerber also wrote The Forbidden Tomb of Genghis Khan in 2011 for the National Geographic. His documentary about the fight to protect mountain gorillas, Explorer: Battle for Virunga (National Geographic Channel) was a 2017 recipient of a Genesis Award, the Humane Society’s top honor for bringing critical animal protection issues to the public. His feature article on Jane Goodall (“Becoming Jane”) will be the October cover story in National Geographic Magazine.  He recently co-conceived and created films for a ground-breaking multimedia installation in Reading, Pennsylvania called THIS IS READING.  In 2005 he founded Market Road Films, a New York-based production company with two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Lynn Nottage. Gerber is a member of the faculty of the Feirstein Graduate School of Cinema at Steiner Studios in New York City.

Mr. Gerber is scheduled to be a panel member at the UBIFF (October 12 at Ancore Event Hall), to give a public talk at the American Corner (October 12, 6 pm), and conduct workshops with local filmmakers on Octover 13 and 14.

For more details about Mr. Gerber’s visit to Mongolia, please contact ACM at 11-319015, or

  • Programming and public engagement activities on Entrepreneurship, and youth & women’s empowerment with Stacey Ferreira.

A native of the state of Arizona, Stacey Ferreira co-founded her first company, an online solution for password storage and management, called MySocialCloud, when she graduated from high school. Through Twitter, she attracted investors like Richard Branson, Jerry Murdock and Alex Welch. She raised $1.2 million for her business when she was just 18 years old.  In 2013, Ms. Ferreira sold MySocialCloud to and went on to publish her first best-selling book, 2 Billion under 20: How Millennials Are Breaking Down Age Barriers & Changing the World.  She is currently the CEO of Forge, an enterprise workforce management application that empowers hourly employees to work on-demand while providing retailers the tools needed to source, hire, manage and retain their workforce. In 2016, Ms. Ferreira was named to Forbes “30 under 30” entrepreneurs. She has also been featured in several other media outlets, including The Huffington Post, Women 2.0, Business Insider, CNBC, TechCrunch, and on the cover of Seventeen Magazine.  She has spoken at popular technology conferences, including TEDxYouthSanDiego, TEDxNYU, and GRAMMY Media Week and has been a guest contributor to Women 2.0 and Forbes.

Ms. Ferreira is one of the five young female entrepreneur characters in the film She Started It, a documentary by filmmakers Nora Poggi and Insiyah Saeed that will open the Showcase during the UBIFF on October 11 at 5pm at Tengis Cinema, and will be presenting the film and answering questions.  The screening of the film is in honor of the UN International Day of the Girl.  Ms. Ferreira will also be screening and meeting with girls of the Girls STEM/Entrepreneurship Camp on October 14.  Ms. Ferreira will join four Mongolian young entrepreneurs who are U.S. alumni (October 13, 5:30pm at Khuvsgul Lake Hotel) to discuss entrepreneurship and innovation with the local community. She’s scheduled to engage with local start-ups at the Start-Up Terminal (October 13), and network with other young entrepreneurs in Start-Up Mongolia and JCI.  Ms. Ferreira’s involvement in the festival highlights the theme of the upcoming Global Entrepreneurship Summit to be hosted by the U.S. Department of State in November – Women in Entrepreneurship.

For more details about Ms. Ferreira’s visit to Mongolia, please contact the U.S. Embassy at 7007-6045, or at

  • Screenings of five award-winning contemporary American films will take place at Tengis Cinema: She Started It by Nora Poggi and Insiyah Saeed; Landfill Harmonic by Brad Allgood and Graham Townsley; Chef by Léa Mysius; Good Time by Safdie Brothers; and Captain Fantastic by Matt Ross.

For the screening schedule, please call 11-313105 (Tengis Cinema); 11-319017 (ACM); or refer to or the UBIFF event pages, available through the ACM and U.S. Embassy social media pages.


The American Film Showcase brings award-winning contemporary American documentary and independent narrative films to audiences around the world, offering a view of American society and culture as seen by independent filmmakers. Funded by a grant from the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) and produced by the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts (SCA), the Showcase highlights the value of film in fostering understanding and cooperation, dialogue and debate. For more information, visit

Focus Country programming is brought to you by the American Film Showcase (AFS), the premier film diplomacy program of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), and produced by the USC School of Cinematic Arts (SCA).


The University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts is one of the leading film schools in the world. Founded in collaboration with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 1929, the USC School of Cinematic Arts has fueled and mirrored the growth of entertainment as an industry and an art form for 85 years. The School offers comprehensive programs in directing, producing, writing, critical studies, animation and digital arts, production, interactive media and games, all backed by a broad liberal arts education and taught by leading practitioners in each field.  Its more than 11,000 alumni are among the world’s most distinguished animators, scholars, teachers, writers, directors, producers, cinematographers, editors, sound experts and industry executives. Since 1973, not a year has passed without an alumnus or alumna being nominated for an Academy Award.


For interview or coverage requests, you are advised to refer to the Media Note available here. All media coverage is required to include the AFS official hashtag: #AFSMongolia, and AFS account handles: @FilmShowcase.