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Biography of an American Hostess 




As an Indian American woman, the Hostess finds herself the target of expectations and misconceptions from both family and the customers she serves, Indians and Americans alike. Only when she finally tries to get away from everyone does she encounter someone who understands her, though barely speaking to her at all.


Hostess is a story about the feelings of alienation of the second-generation Indian American woman contrasted with the rare, golden event of simply connecting with someone.


Production Details


Writer/ Producer/ Director: Shilpa Sunthankar

Film Description: Narrative Short

Shooting Format: Digital Video, 24 fps

Camera: Panasonic DVX 100

Running Time: 18 min. 13 sec

Location: Portland and Garibaldi, Oregon, USA

Completion Date: October 2003



Director of Photography:  Randall Timmerman

Casting Director: Lana Veenker

Assistant Director:  Kari Coleman

Production Coordinator:  Michaela Cotter

Script Supervisor:  Sandy Parker

Sound Recordist:  Jesse "Nordy" Nordhausen

Gaffer:  John Nichols

Key Grip:  Tom Stark

Grip:  Joe Vitellaro

Motorcycle “Speedcam:”  Jerry L. Buxbaum

Editor:  Jennifer Zea

Sound Design:  Jesse Nordhausen

Post Supervisor:  Trevor Cable

Props/ Set Dressing:  Steve Waters, Simon Hill

Still Photographer:  Sandy Parker, Jim Willmarth

Caterer:  Tonya Miller

Production Assistants:  Lisa Cicala, Daren Claymon, Jacquline Yerly


The Hostess:  Shilpa Sunthankar

Woman Diner:  Judith M. Ford

Sally:  Trish Egan

Sally's Husband:  Jim Becker

Honey:  Kristin Coleman

Drunk Husband:  Garland Lyons

Other Couple:  Ritah Parrish, David Burnett

Young Man:  Matt Morris

Raju:  Siddhartha Chakravarti

Businessman Diner: Alan H. King

Waitress:  Jeanette Burkhardt

Balloon Vendor: Shantu Shah

Featuring Music by:


Crystin Byrd

And The Crystin Byrd Band


Sreevidhya Chandramouli

10th Generation Descendent of the Karaikudi Veena Tradition


And the award-winning Indian restaurant:


Plainfield's Mayur

Cuisine of India





Festival Tour:


2004 FILMI Toronto South Asian Film Festival

Toronto, ON


2004 L.A. Asian Pacific Film & Video Festival

Los Angeles, CA

*Recommended a MUST SEE by programmers!


2004 IAAC: Indian Diaspora Film Festival

New York, NY

* Award Finalist


2004 Northwest Film & Video Festival

Portland, OR

*Opening Night


2004 Seattle South Asian Film Festival

Seattle, WA

*Closing Night


2004 Dallas South Asian Film Festival

Dallas, TX


2005 Portland International Film Festival

Portland, OR

 2004 Kelso Film Festival

Kelso, WA

*3rd Place Audience Award

2004 Hot Curry Film Festival

New York, NY


2004 Asian Film Festival of Dallas

Dallas, TX


2004 Longbaugh Film Festival

Portland, OR



For more information on Biography of an American Hostess, or to order a copy, contact PushStart