Joan Bressler joined the Film Office staff in 1992. Over the years, her responsibilities have included tracking economic impact, organizing & executing the very successful job hotline, managing the Fiscal Sponsorship program, working in tandem with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, World Meeting of Families, the DNC & other large entities to create film programming within their events, partnering with the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts to curate Film @ the Kimmel, developing & facilitating events and programs sponsored by the Film Office & representing the GPFO on career panels & other public venues.
When the Greater Philadelphia Filmmakers was officially launched in 2001, Joan was a natural choice to helm this program. Under her direction, Filmmakers has pursued innovative partnerships with various companies/individuals in the region and implemented programs such as The Tripod Initiative, where student filmmakers are paired with professionals to produce videos for the community; Presentation of the “SIP” (Set in Philadelphia) Screenwriting Competition; Managing the Derek Freese Documentary Fund; Partnering with the Kimmel Center of the Performing Arts to manage Film @ The Kimmel and Greater Philadelphia Filmmakers Presents….which includes on-going workshops and seminars in Business Training, Legal Perspectives, Script to Screen, Packaging and Financing, Grant information and more. She also serves as a Film Office liaison, visiting schools and community groups, helping students navigate the Greater Philadelphia film industry and talking with the public about the process of making movies.
Joan’s objective in this role is to find out what regional filmmakers need and work to provide it. She has served on the Advisory Committee for Entertainment & Arts Management (EAM) at the Westphal College of Media Arts & Design at Drexel University, the Advisory Committee for the Arts & Business Council of Greater Philadelphia, and the Film/TV Production Occupational Advisory Committee for the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts (CAPA). She has also served as an advisor for Philadelphia Women in Film and Television (PWIFT), the Philadelphia American Asian Film Festival and the Philadelphia Free Library’s ‘One Film, One Philadelphia.’
Prior to working at the Film Office, as a free-lancer, she worked with various companies, shooting stills, scouting locations, coordinating events and editing. Joan won a Cine Golden Eagle as the editor on The Art of Learning, She also worked on the Web-Marc Pictures feature film, I Don’t Buy Kisses Anymore, where she first became acquainted with the Greater Philadelphia Film Office. She began her film career at Lopatin Productions, where she met and married the boss’s son. Joan is married to film producer Michael Lopatin and has three children and a grandchild.