Mari Walker

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Mari Walker
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CitizenshipUnited States of America
EducationBA in film
Alma materEmerson College
  • Film director
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
  • Editor

Mari Walker is an American film director, screenwriter, producer, and editor.[1] Much of her work focuses on lived experiences of LGBTQIA, and explores themes of gender and race identity.[2][3][4]

Walker is a frequent collaborator with the Los Angeles-based production company, Vanishing Angle,[5][6] where she wrote, directed, and edited her first narrative feature, See You Then.[2]

She is a transgender woman[7][8] of Japanese-American descent[1] from Vancouver, Washington.[9] She currently resides in Los Angeles, CA.[9]

Early Life

When Walker was 14 years old, she was in a surfing accident. During her recovery, her parents gave her a camcorder. Walker says the gift gave her life direction.[10] Throughout the course of her high school career, she created over 60 short films, PSA's, commercials, and promotional videos.[10]

Walker graduated from Emerson College in 2008 with a BA in film.[11][12]


Immediately following college graduation, Walker began working on a documentary film about the experiences of her family members in Japanese-American in internment camps.[13]

Her short documentary, The Soul of a Tree, won Best Short Documentary at the Kerry Film Festival in 2016.[14] Her semi-autobiographical[4] narrative short, Swim, played at over 30 film festivals[15], including the LA Film Festival, where it was awarded the Audience Award in 2017.[16]

Following the success of Swim, Walker co-wrote, and co-directed her first feature film, See You Then. The LGBTQIA+ and Asian-American narrative centers on Kris, a transgender Iranian woman and Naomi, a cisgendered Asian-American woman over the course of one evening. A decade after abruptly breaking up with Naomi, Kris invites her to a dinner to catch-up on their complicated lives, relationships, and Kris' transition. See You Then was selected as part of the Atlanta Film Festival 2021[17], and South by Southwest Film Festival 2021[18].

Select Filmography

Year Film Director Writer Producer Editor Notes
TBD Nekropolis Co-director Co-writer Yes
2021 See You Then Yes Co-writer Yes Yes
2020 Beast Beast Additional
2019 Greener Grass Additional
2018 Alone in the Game Yes Yes
2017 Swim Yes Yes Executive Yes
2016 The Soul of a Tree Yes Yes Yes Yes Animator, Digital Effects
2016 Her Story Assistant Visual Effects, Joanna (Ep 1.1 and 1.6)

Awards & Nominations

Year Festival Film Award Result Notes
2018 Idyllwild International Festival of Cinema Swim IIFC Award - Best Short Film Nominated
The Mary Austin Award - Excellence in Producing- Short Film Nominated
The Mary Austin Award - Excellence in Directing- Short Film Nominated
2017 Columbia Gorge International Film Festival Jury Award - LGBT Advocacy Award Won
Long Beach QFilm Festival Jury Award - Best Director Won
LA Film Festival Audience Award - Best Narrative Short Won
2016 ReelHeART International Film Festival Soul of a Tree Festival Prize - Short Documentary Won
2016 Kerry Film Festival Soul of a Tree Best Short Documentary Won


  1. 1.0 1.1 "The Soul Of A Tree". We are moving stories. Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Rubin, Rebecca; Rubin, Rebecca (2020-06-24). "Vanishing Angle Sets Jim Cummings Thriller 'The Beta Test' as Next Film (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  3. Contributor, Russ Pirozek, Fanbase Press. "Fanbase Press - HollyShorts 2016: Documentary II Block - Film Reviews". Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Queer-Themed Films Win Big at the L.A. Film Festival". 2017-06-22. Retrieved 2021-01-14.
  5. "Vanishing Angle - Client & Contact Info | IMDbPro". Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  6. Stories, Local. "Meet Mari Walker of Vanishing Angle in Atwater Village - Voyage LA Magazine | LA City Guide". Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  7. "Transgender People Talk About Coming Out #TransStories - YouTube". Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  8. "Diversity Speaks at the 2017 LA Film Festival: Underrepresented Voices Push for Greater Visibility". Film Independent. 2017-06-20. Retrieved 2021-01-27.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Stories, Local. "Meet Mari Walker of Vanishing Angle in Atwater Village - Voyage LA Magazine | LA City Guide". Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  10. 10.0 10.1 "Bits 'n' Pieces: Filmmaker toasts transition on return to festival". The Columbian. Retrieved 2021-01-14.
  11. "Cast and Crew | Her Story". Retrieved 2021-01-14.
  12. "Sundance Spectacular: Plethora of Emersonians Involved in Festival Films". Emerson College Today. 2020-01-28. Retrieved 2021-01-27.
  13. Staff, The Wenatchee World. "Filmmaker hopes to document Idaho internment camp". The Wenatchee World. Retrieved 2021-01-14.
  14. "Winners of the 17th Kerry Film Festival | The Irish Film & Television Network". Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  15. "SWIM". Mari Walker. Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  16. "Los Angeles Film Festival 2017 Winners List". The Hollywood Reporter. 2017-06-22. Retrieved 2021-01-19.
  18. Erbland, Eric Kohn,Kate; Kohn, Eric; Erbland, Kate (2021-02-10). "SXSW 2021 Announces Full Feature Film Lineup, All Available for Online Viewing". IndieWire. Retrieved 2021-02-11.

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