Austin Film Festival: Ky speaks about directing Sole Survivor (Acquired by CNN FILMS)

Austin Film Festival: Ky speaks about directing Sole Survivor (Acquired by CNN FILMS)



Award winning filmmaker Ky Dickens is best known for her highly acclaimed documentary work and her endless lists of questions. Did the Archaeopteryx sound like a bird, a chicken or a crocodile? 

Ky splashed into the film world with her breakout documentary Fish out of Water, winning four juror prizes and securing international distribution by Netflix and First Run Features. Her second feature film, Sole Survivor, was acquired by CNN Films for broadcast and theatrical release. It premiered on the network in January 2014 and became the second highest grossing CNN Film. Sole Survivor was named the "Best Feature Film" at the 2013 BMA Awards. 

Ky received a Focus Award for “Achievement in Directing” from Women in Film. Ky has been a documentary juror and panelist for film festivals around the country. She is also member of the Gene Siskel Film Center Community Council. 

Ky is currently in post-production on her much-anticipated film, Zero Weeks (2017), about America’s paid leave crisis. For two years, Ky has been documenting families and parents across the country as they juggle the work/life balance, often returning to work within days of having a baby, or tending to breast cancer on their lunch break.  Ky premiered the Zero Weeks trailer at the White House Summit on the United State of Women, hosted by Oprah and Michelle Obama.  

Ky’s other film in post production, The City That Sold America (2017), is about Chicago’s crucial, yet often-overlooked place in american consumer culture. The film is a sequel to Emmy-award winning Art & Copy.

Ky also directs commercials and web content for a long list of clients including:  Tylenol, Sears, Huggies, Sargento, Kohler, Wrangler, Perkins, Long John Silvers and many others. 

Ky graduated with Magna Cum Laude honors from Vanderbilt University. She lives in Chicago's North Park neighborhood with her spouse, daughter, two cats, dog and three chickens. She thinks everyone should know that the chicken is the closest living relative to the T-Rex and that Viktor Frankl's "Man's Search for Meaning" contains the meaning of life.  

If she won the lottery, she’d still want to be directing and editing. Storytelling, like clean water and Sriracha sauce are everyday necessities.