Jed Riffe is an award-winning independent filmmaker and new media producer. Riffe is best known for being the director and producer of the milestone documentary film Ishi, the Last Yahi, the true story of the man known as the Last Wild Indian in North America. Narrated by Academy Award winner Linda Hunt, the national Emmy nominated, award-winning film was released theatrically in 35mm on 1992, won Best Documentary awards at eight major national and international film festivals, and was acquired for broadcast on PBS’ The American Experience.
In 2006, Riffe and his colleagues Lyn Goldfarb and Paul Espinosa produced California and the American Dream, a highly acclaimed, four-part nationally broadcast PBS Series. Riffe produced, directed and co-wrote the Series’ opening episode California’s “Lost” Tribes, and produced the fourth episode, Ripe for Change with Emiko Omori, who also directed the latter.
In the same year, Riffe released the acclaimed feature length Waiting to Inhale: Marijuana, Medicine and the Law, a dramatic documentary that explores the controversial battle to legalize marijuana for medicinal use. Waiting to Inhale has won three Best Documentary awards and a CINE Golden Eagle. The film was screened in festivals across the US, Canada and Australia, pioneering the cannabis legalization debate. (read more)
Among his most recent works as a producer, special mention goes to To Chris Marker, an Unsent Letter (2013), by director Emiko Omori, Smokin’ Fish (2011) by director Luke Griswold-Tergis and the current The Gene Myth (2015), in post-production phase, directed by Stephanie Welch.
Other documentary films produced and directed by Jed Riffe include Who Owns the Past? (2000), an award-winning documentary on the American Indian struggle for control of their ancestral remains (Independent Lens-PBS); Roots of Beauty (2000), for the National Museum of the American Indian, and his first two television programs for PBS: Rosebud to Dallas (1977), an hour-long documentary on the relocation of American Indians, and Promise and Practice (1975), an hour-long documentary on redlining of inner city neighborhoods.
As a transmedia storyteller, he most recently served as the interactive producer and video director of the Africana Studies Center at Merritt College, the first interactive ethnic learning center in the U.S.. Previously, Riffe served as interactive producer/writer for four interactive exhibits for the Autry National Center of the American West. He conceived of the award-winning Public Broadcasting In Public Places where he was the interactive producer. In 2000, Riffe wrote, produced and directed “TV of Tomorrow,” an interactive prototype demonstrating the possible ways interactive content might appear on television in the future for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. In 1990, Riffe produced 86 minutes of edited video modules for three interactive History Information Stations at the Oakland Museum of California.
Riffe’s films and interactive media productions have won over 35 awards at national and international festivals and competitions. He is honored to be both a 2009 Sundance Documentary Film Program Fellow/Alumni, and a 2001 Gerbode Fellow for Excellence in Non-Profit Management.
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Maureen Gosling has been an award-winning documentary filmmaker and editor for more than thirty years. She is best known for her twenty-year collaboration with acclaimed independent film director, Les Blank (Burden of Dreams, Always for Pleasure). Since 2000 Gosling has edited three films for Jed Riffe Films including Waiting to Inhale, California’s “Lost” Tribes and Smokin’ Fish. She just completed A New Color with Riffe serving as consulting producer and Mo Morris directing. Maureen is currently serving as an editor on The Gene Myth, a film being produced by Jed Riffe and directed by Stephanie Welch.