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Rolla Selbak
Rolla Selbak is an award-winning filmmaker whose credits include the internationally acclaimed feature film Three Veils, a first of its kind to confront the delicate subject matters of arranged marriage, homosexuality, and love within the Muslim-American subculture. She is also creator of the virally popular Web series Kiss Her I’m Famous, which satirizes our culture’s relationship with fame. Through the San Francisco Women’s Film Institute Leadership team, she’s involved in initiatives specifically geared toward nurturing a generation of young female filmmakers. She’s also creator and host of Grrl’s Guide to Filmmaking, a monthly Spreecast event where she interviews influential women in the film industry. You can visit her website at

Entries by Rolla Selbak

Scriptys: The Truth Behind Binge Watching

(1) Comments | Posted October 20, 2014 | 1:33 AM

Scriptys are a new form of comic strips without the comics, in the form of a movie scene.


JULIE and BART are snuggling up on the couch. Wine, fancy cheese spread and grapes paint the table.

JULIE Honey, we deserve this, right? You...
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Grrl's Guide to Filmmaking: Faith Soloway (Transparent)

(0) Comments | Posted September 10, 2014 | 3:40 PM

In the premiere episode of a fresh new docuseries featuring women filmmakers, Faith Soloway invites me onto the Paramount lot to talk about what it's like writing on the breakthrough Amazon series, Transparent, coming to a pixel near you on September 26!

Faith sneaks us into the infamous writers' room, let's us interrupt a writers' meeting, and also, she breaks out into song. Yup! And it's fantastic, seeing as she was the musical director at Second City, working with the likes of Steve Carrel, Jane Lynch, and many more.


Even her sister Faith Soloway, creator of Transparent, stops by and makes us squeal with the announcement that her show will be binge-watchable (is that a word?) at the end of September.


Here is my personal vlog leading up to the interview, I spill about how I met Faith, how I prepared for the interview, and my thoughts on Transparent's pilot episode, which you can watch right here, while you're waiting for the whole series to debut.

Grrl's Guide To Filmmaking, showing you the magic, behind the magic. New episodes posted every month.

Follow Rolla on Twitter:...

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L.A Parties, Paparazzi and Poop.

(0) Comments | Posted June 23, 2014 | 5:08 PM

It's been about a month since I moved to L.A. As a filmmaker, I finally caved and weathered the migration, leaving behind my family, friends, and everything that's remotely familiar, for a chance at fully realizing a dream.

The abundance of talent in this town is both humbling and infectious....

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8 TV-Show Creators Killing it Right Now

(4) Comments | Posted March 31, 2014 | 5:18 PM

The golden age of TV is upon us, but do you know who are the ones actually spinning the gold? I share my list of the top TV show creators bringing raw, new, original ideas to the thirsty masses.

Some come from a long history in TV, others have been...

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SF Tech Worker and an Activist Walk Into a Bar

(1) Comments | Posted March 3, 2014 | 8:58 AM

Sounds like the beginning of a joke, or a riot, or a UFC bout, right? Well... it wasn't. Surprised? Read on.

Last week, over 100-plus San Francisco tech workers and housing activists came together at Virgil's bar in the heart of the Mission district, to talk about what's currently at...

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Jill Soloway's Transparent, the Blue Meth of Amazon's Pilot Season

(5) Comments | Posted February 21, 2014 | 5:09 PM

Jeffrey Tambor in a scene from Transparent (Amazon Studios).

This is how I usually wake up in the morning: half-squinting at my phone and scrolling through my messages to make sure I haven't missed anything crucial during my scarce hours of...

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Why Are Web Series so Darn Short?

(3) Comments | Posted October 28, 2013 | 3:41 PM

Web series are pure pixel-drenched awesomeness. Who can argue with that?

All you need to do is press play, whether you're relaxing on your couch, under the desk at a boring meeting, on the treadmill, or sneaking an episode in bed without your partner knowing. A lot of times the...

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Coming Out in a Muslim Family

(35) Comments | Posted October 14, 2013 | 10:54 AM

In commemoration of National Coming Out Day, I'm doing something I've never done before. I'm publicly telling the story of how I came out as a lesbian to my Muslim family.

There's this misconception that just because I seem to have it together, or have enjoyed a certain amount of...

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How I Hacked Angelina Jolie's Premiere Party

(6) Comments | Posted October 7, 2013 | 4:10 PM

Now for something a little different. This is the very true story of how I made one of my biggest dreams come the most convoluted way possible.

You see, I used to have a bit of a young-girl crush on Angelina Jolie. I also used to play Tomb Raider...

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The Glamorous Myth of the Filmmaker

(4) Comments | Posted August 29, 2013 | 12:31 PM

If you are reading this, you either know a filmmaker and can't wait for the juicy details on what really goes on behind their glamorous veneer, or you are a filmmaker yourself, and you're waiting for someone to finally write an article that empathizes with what you're going through.


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Brown Girl Passing for a White Guy

(15) Comments | Posted August 8, 2013 | 7:42 PM

Before your imagination runs wild with the title, this isn't about creating a fake profile on Grindr to partake in a voyeuristic experiment (although now that I mention it, that would make a good blog post for next time!)

This is about making the case for why I, in fact,...

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