Tinisha Brugnone, founder of the Cinematic Griot Collective and the Idlewild International Film Festival, is an award-winning Director/Producer/Screenwriter from Detroit, Michigan. She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in "Media Arts and Studies" from Wayne State University with a concentration in Film Production.
While a student at Wayne State University, she joined The Michigan Creative Film Alliance (the MiCFA), a collaborative effort between students and alumni of Wayne State University, the University of Michigan and, Michigan State University.
During her first production with the MiCFA, she served as Co-Producer and Unit Production Manager on the short film "Beauty Queen". Later that year "Beauty Queen" went on to win a Bronze Award at The Blue Water Film Festival (2012) and a Bronze Plaque Award at the Columbia International Film Festival (2012).
Her second production with the MiCFA, the short film “Downriver”, won a total of six awards including the Silver Award at the Blue Water Film Festival (2013) and Best Cinematography at the prestigious Uptown Film Festival (2013).
Upon graduation from Wayne State University, Ms. Brugnone began focusing on writing and storytelling. In late 2015 her screenplay “Top Shelf” was chosen out of 150 applicants, to be one of 12 screenplays included in the Inaugural "Detroit Sundance Writing Intensive Workshop” under the instruction of filmmaker Joan Tewkesbury.
In 2018 she launched The Cinematic Griot Collective a collective of filmmakers, artists, and other creatives. Through her collective, she formed relationships with like-minded individuals who are dedicated to giving a voice to underrepresented groups.
in 2019, Ms. Brugnone then launched her first project and pilot event the “Idlewild International Film Festival". The event attracted diverse film enthusiasts with people traveling from as far as Washington, DC to Michigan, and received rave reviews.
In 2020, Ms. Brugnone opted to cancel the Idlewild International Film Festival due to the current pandemic and to concentrate on writing and freelance production work.
Tinisha is currently an active member of "Final Girls Detroit a collective of women filmmakers working and living in Metro Detroit and Brown Girls Doc Mafia (BGDM)a collective of women and non-binary filmmakers and industry representatives of color.
Final Girls Detroit
Photo by Josh Scott
Hour Detroit Magazine
FROM LEFT: TONYA CORE, EDEN VILLARBA-SABOLBORO, OKSANA MIRZOYAN, ANDREA CLAIRE MORNINGSTAR, NELLIE SMYDRA, JASMINE RIVERA, TINISHA BRUGNONE, AND LARA SFIRE. PHOTOGRAPHED AT THE GHOSTBAR IN DETROIT