Cheryl Dunye

Cheryl Dunye
Cheryl Dunye
Born May 13, 1966 (1966-05-13) (age 45)
Education BA at Temple University. MA at Rutgers University
Occupation film director, producer, screenwriter, editor, actress

Cheryl Dunye (born May 13, 1966) is a film director, producer, screenwriter, editor and actress. Dunye is a lesbian[1] and her work often concerns themes of race, sexuality and gender, particularly issues relating to black lesbians.

Dunye was born in Liberia. She has taught at UC Riverside, Temple University, and Pitzer College.[2]

She is currently a associate professor at the California College of the Arts, and a mother of two children.[3]


Film career

Dunye started her career with six short films which have been collected on DVD as The Early Works of Cheryl Dunye.[4][5] Dunye's feature debut was The Watermelon Woman (1996), a film which explored the history of black women and lesbians in film.[6]

She directed the 2001 television movie Stranger Inside based on the experiences of African-American lesbians in prison.[7]

Taking a turn from self-written lesbian-focused films, she directed My Baby's Daddy starring Eddie Griffin, Michael Imperioli, and Anthony Anderson in 2004, although a character in the film turns out to be lesbian.[8]

She directed The Owls, co-written with novelist Sarah Schulman, which made its debut at the Berlin International Film Festival. The film is about a group of "Older, Wiser Lesbians" (an acronym of which provides the title) who accidentally kill a younger woman and try to cover it up.[9] The cast includes Guinevere Turner and V.S. Brodie, who had appeared together in the 1994 lesbian-themed film Go Fish and The Watermelon Woman, as well as Dunye, Lisa Gornick, Skyler Cooper, and Deak Evgenikos.[9]

As of 2010, Dunye is working on a film called Adventures in the 419, also co-written with Schulman, which was selected as one of the works-in-progress films in the Tribeca All Access program during the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival.[10][11] The film is set in Amsterdam and is about 419 scams among the immigrant community.[11]





  1. ^ "Cheryl Dunye — Director, Screenwriter, Film & Media Maker". Cheryl Retrieved 2007-06-30. 
  2. ^ "Faculty: Cheryl Dunye". Temple University. Retrieved 2010-01-14. 
  3. ^ "Faculty - Cheryl Dunye". California College of the Arts. Retrieved 2010-01-14. 
  4. ^ Hardy, Ernest (2009-05-07), "Cheryl Dunye: Return of the Watermelon Woman", LA Weekly,, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  5. ^ Dunye, Cheryl (1992), "Janine, (1990) & She Don't Fade (1991)", FELIX: A Journal of Media Arts and Communication (2),, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  6. ^ Keough, Peter (1997-05-08), "Slice of life — The Watermelon Woman refreshes", The Phoenix,, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  7. ^ Marcus, Lydia (2001-07-03), "Cell Out", The Advocate: 54,, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  8. ^ Harvey, Dennis (2004-01-11), "My Baby's Daddy", Variety,, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  9. ^ a b Felperin, Leslie (2010-02-21), "The Owls", Variety,, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  10. ^ Williams, Janette (2010-04-03), "Local filmmaker heading to Tribeca film fest", Pasadena Star-News,, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  11. ^ a b Knegt, Peter (2010-03-22), "Tribeca All Access Sets 24 Projects For Seventh Edition", indieWire,, retrieved 2010-04-27 
  • Juhasz, Alexandra. Women of Vision: Histories in Feminist Film and Video. 

External links