2018 Special Guests

Quinn Costello


Quinn Costello is remarkably unequipped to live off the land for having grown up in rural Idaho. After exhibiting no ability to hunt he fled to study film at a hippie college in Olympia, Washington, only to find himself years later making a film about hunters. After relocating to the Bay Area, Quinn began editing documentaries on subjects ranging from environmental justice, sacred islands, and dancing spiders. His portfolio of work has been seen on PBS, The Learning Channel, Sundance Channel, and innumerable film festivals, including Tribeca and Mountainfilm in Telluride. For the past ten years he has been editing the Emmy award winning Public Television series THE NEW ENVIRONMENTALISTS, narrated by Robert Redford. RODENTS OF UNUSUAL SIZE is his feature length directorial debut.

Michael Beran

Wildlife Expert, Key Cast in RODENTS OF UNUSUAL SIZE

Michael Beran heralds from Bossier City, Louisiana, and grew up hunting nutria to help pay the family bills. After a stint in the U.S. Navy stationed aboard a nuclear submarine, his deep entrepreneurial spirit and love of animals led him to start Wildlife Command Center—a nuisance animal control business. Beran has been under contract to remove nutria from the canals that protect New Orleans and is frequently hired to rid nutria from local golf courses. As both a self-proclaimed carnivore and animal lover, Beran frequently uses hawks, dogs, vultures, minks, and other trained animals to help him track down nuisance animals.

Matthieu Jean-Pierre

Lead Actor for NIGHT CALL

Matthieu Jean-Pierre is an actor, singer, and songwriter. He was born in Washington, DC, and raised in Maryland. Matthieu discovered his passion for acting when he was cast as “Mushu” in the 6th grade, in the play “Mulan”. As parents and children lined up for autographs and shared their excitement, at that moment Matthieu knew he wanted to be an entertainer.

This life changing experience sparked an interest in acting and singing and was nurtured through extensive training via summer camps and various acting and musical performance opportunities. Matthieu is described as a people person and one who is dedicated and committed to accomplishing his goals.

Cy Dodson


Cy Dodson has been in the storytelling business for over two decades, and BENEATH THE INK is his third film in five years. He considers this his most compelling and inspiring film to date. His past two efforts with MY LAST BREATH and THE RAGMAN—A HOBO’S STORY UNTOLD garnered a total of seven film festival awards and a Midwest Regional Emmy for Best Documentary. Dodson currently resides in Minnesota as Owner/Operator of his production company Triumph Pictures, LLC, where he specializes in documentary-style marketing and branding content.

Jansel Hutton

Make-Up & Hair Artist for ADULTHOOD

Jansel is an international hair and makeup artist. She has been in the film industry over a decade, starting from Europe to all the way to the States. On top of working on films, she also loves working on commercials, corporate video shoots, and doing some headstands in between. She is very excited to be attending the South Dakota Film Festival for the first time.

Dan Cleberg


Dan Cleberg has a passion for building a supportive and diverse community through the arts. He is a co-owner of the Red Rooster Coffee House in Aberdeen and the Director of the Fallout Creative Community, an arts nonprofit that bridges people who tend to be marginalized to creative experiences. Through the Fallout he founded and plays guitar for the band Better Ride which is a musical outlet for dozens of people with developmental disabilities. Along with members of the band, Dan will be representing the short documentary film BETTER RIDE ON TOUR and the music video BURNING HEART.

Mike Sorenson

Writer/Director of COMING APART

Mike Sorenson spent two decades in advertising before discovering the world of filmmaking. As a commercial director and copywriter, the transition to movie writing felt very natural and led to his first script for CARPOOL, which was nominated for Best Screenplay at the 2017 Z-Fest and screened at the 2017 SDFF. While he still spends his days convincing people to buy things they may or may not need, he is actively writing new scripts and is proud to have his second finished film at the South Dakota Film Festival.

Joe Kessler


When he’s not rolling the camera making home videos with his two adorable daughters, you’ll find Joe directing, writing, and producing content for Uptop Films. Aside from all things Uptop, Joe spends his free time cheering on any sports team that starts with Philadelphia (born and raised), while still hustling the audition scene to continue his passion of being on camera in a mix of commercials, TV shows, and films happening in his now hometown of Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Owen Royce

Writer/Director of CRIME SCENE INSPECTORS, Writer/Director/Producer of THE MOMENT YOU WAKE

Owen Royce is a Minnesota-based Writer/Director for narrative feature, short film, and commercials. He has received many awards and accolades for his work from both film competitions and festivals.

Kyle Odefey

Director of DOOR JAM

Kyle Odefey is a current sophomore at Minnesota State University Moorhead majoring in Film Production and Theatre Arts. He is the creator of Kodefey Digital Studios, a freelance videography company that specializes in filmmaking, graphic design, and web design. Kyle also is the current Dragon Mentor for MSUM’s Film and Animation Living Learning Community and the Vice President of the MSUM Cinethuiasts Organization.

Edward Linder

Producer and Lead Actor for ECHO, Producer of REST AREA, Cameo in LEADING MAN

Edward is happy to be back at the SDFF. Some of his films that have shown at the SDFF were TOURVALL II; INTO THE DARKNESS, HELP DESK, DEAR DADDY, THE NEGATIVE, and A FISTFUL OF DONUTS. He just completed a super short film called ZIPPERMAN, coming to a festival soon. Please visit www.tmjproductions.com or @tmjproductions on Instagram or Twitter. Edward lives in Minneapolis with his wife Stacey and their three cats.

Alexis Walstrom

Lead Actress in FINALE OF SEEM

Alexis Walstrom is 21 years old, from Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is currently in her third year studying Multimedia Journalism and Photojournalism at Minnesota State University Moorhead. “Finale of Seem” is one of many productions Alexis has been in over the years, including “Wilson,” starring Woody Harrelson, “Paper Plane,” entered into the 2017 48-Hour Film Challenge, and “Gun-Chuck Danger,” a senior seminar project at MSUM. Alexis has been acting since age eight, getting her start at John Robert Powers in Bloomington, Minnesota, and is currently represented by Privileged Model Management in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and Crawford Talent Management in Los Angeles, California.

Photo courtesy of Privileged Model Management:

Zachary Howatt

Writer/Director/Producer of FINALE OF SEEM and THIN ENOUGH, Director of DOOR JAM

Since he was just a young boy growing up in Argusville, North Dakota, Zachary Howatt has loved telling stories. He continues with that passion today as he pursues his Film Production and English degrees at Minnesota State University Moorhead. In his films, he aims to attain a certain level of theatricality or surrealism in order to express emotion. “Thin Enough,” “Finale of Seem,” and “Door Jam” are three of his most recent films, all of which will be showcased this year at the South Dakota Film Festival.

Photo by Eyenoticed – Abby and Adam Photo

Tess Wagman

Director of GREAT! LAKES

Independent filmmaker Tess Wagman is a New York native and currently works in Manhattan in the worlds of fashion and art. A recent graduate of Rhode Island School of Design, she is making her directorial debut with “Great! Lakes”. Her insatiable love of candy inspired her to make the film, along with her lifelong relationship with artist and candymaker, Patricia Canelake.

Becca Flinn-White

Writer/Director of HUTTERITE, Director of THE CANDLELIGHT WITCH

Becca Flinn-White is a Director, Writer, and Producer living in Studio City, CA. She is a Producer’s Guild Diversity Fellow and holds a BFA in Theater from Webster Conservatory in St. Louis, MO. Becca created a dual-language television series called Journey to the East for XRM Productions. She is the Co-Founder of SulliFlinn Productions and has most recently directed the short film, The Candlelight Witch, and a web-series called Period’s Big Adventure. She is currently developing a television series called Legs with her producing partner, Katy Sullivan.

Elizabeth Flinn

Inspiration for HUTTERITE

Elizabeth Wipf Flinn was born and raised at new Elmsprings Hutterite Colony, Ethan, South Dakota. At the age of 21, she left the confines of the colony. She pursued her dream of becoming a nurse, and over time she obtained a Masters degree in Nursing from Augustana University. Elizabeth stayed connected to her Hutterite roots, and as part of her Masters work she developed a model for connecting the health care community and the Hutterite Community, developing understanding of each unique culture. Elizabeth worked at various health care organizations in Sioux Falls. She retired from The Department of Veterans Affairs and is now a full-time caretaker for her elderly mother. In her spare time she spends time with her four grandsons, reads, or has coffee or other adult beverages with friends.

Sirada Tritruengtassana

Writer and Director of INVISIBLE MURDER

Sirada is a director and writer living in Bangkok, Thailand. She is currently in her senior year in Communication Arts at Chulalongkorn University, majoring in Film and Photography. Her short films include Invisible Murder(2017) and Let’s Have Lunch (2018). Sirada has also worked as an assistant director in many films.

“Invisible Murder is my first short film. It is based on my life and my interest in crime and psychology. I believe this film is my way of making my existence visible to the world.”

David Mair

Writer/Director/Producer of MI-FI

David Mair is a human, male, husband, father, psychiatrist, tall guy, and filmmaker. He lives near Minneapolis with his wife and three daughters. His favorite “Star Wars” movie is “Return of the Jedi,” mostly because of the awesome space battle and the delightfully evil Emperor. So excellent. His other favorite movies include “The Silence of the Lambs,” “The Incredibles,” “Aliens,” “The Return of the King,” “Mad Max: Fury Road,” and “Babe.” “Mi-fi” is his third film to screen at the South Dakota Film Festival.

Dominic Wieneke

Writer/Director of MR. POINTY

Dominic Wieneke is a writer/director/editor from Lismore, Minnesota. He feels at home in the horror genre with his influences being Stephen King, Wes Craven, and Robert Rodriguez. He has been writing stories since age 10. His current short “Mr. Pointy” has been getting rave reviews on the festival circuit. In addition to his current short film, he has crafted a handful of shorts and a feature horror film. He and his wife Ari Show live in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, with their four cats.

Ari Show

Producer of MR. POINTY

Ari Show is a writer and producer from Sioux Falls, South Dakota. She’s the wife of filmmaker Dominic Wieneke, and while the horror genre isn’t her preferred genre, she grew up in a house with her father as a musician, so supporting your spouse having a crazy hobby was something she knew how to do. She’s put up with late-nights, outdoor shoots, and freezing shoots with a rain machine, supplying food to cast and crew, organizing dates, dressing sets, helping the writer/director stay sane and motivated (with snacks and lots of hugs), and only opposed buying a second camera once, maybe twice. Being the supporting character in a filmmaking family isn’t an easy job, but it’s one she does proudly.