Colombian-American director Ilse Fernández was one of the three emerging filmmakers announced as recipients of the 2019 SFFILM Catapult Documentary Fellowship for her project Exodus Stories: Voices from the Caravan. The fellowships comprised of cash grants and mentorship are awarded to filmmakers working in the early stages of developing compelling, story-driven documentary features, and run August through December of this year.
Exodus Stories is a feature-length documentary that intimately weaves together the harrowing experiences of three Central American immigrants who flee violence to join the migrant caravan, only to face their last but most decisive battle: making their case for asylum in the United States.
Fernández has produced and directed over 200 hours of documentary programming and unscripted series for networks including ABC, NBC, VICE, MTV, Netflix, Univision, Discovery Channel, A&E, National Geographic, History Channel, and TLC. She worked as a director and field producer on five seasons of the A&E series Intervention, including the 2009 Outstanding Reality Program Emmy Award winning season; and was the showrunner on Viceland’s cutting-edge eight-part documentary series Cyberwar. Recently, she both directed and executive produced Spotify’s first documentary series about locations pivotal in music history called Music Happens Here, which won three Clio awards.