The Listeners is an intimate animated documentary following a young volunteer at a legendary LGBTQ+ helpline. In a creative, time-hopping journey through queer history, 50 years of anonymous calls and texts come to life in animated recreations that are woven through the volunteer’s journey to find community and, ultimately, themselves.
About the Filmmakers
Lindsey Dryden (she/her) is a British Emmy®-award winning filmmaker based in Austin TX. She’s a proud member of Queer Producers and QueerDoc, and co-founder of FWD-Doc: Filmmakers with Disabilities. She’s the 2019 Simon Relph Bursary winner, 2020 BFI Vision Awardee, a 2022 Sundance Institute Documentary Producers Lab Fellow, a full voting member of the film & TV chapter of BAFTA and a frequent advisor and mentor. Her directing credits include award-winning feature documentary Lost and Sound (SXSW, 2012); Jackie Kay: One Person Two Names for Tate’s groundbreaking Queer British Art (2017); and Close Your Eyes And Look At Me (True/False, 2009). As a director, her films have screened at SXSW, True/False, Sheffield Doc/Fest, Napa Valley and Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Art Of The Real, amongst many others. As a director she is represented by Hannah Boulton at The Agency. Lindsey produced Emmy®-winning Trans In America (ACLU/CondeNast, 2019) and Sundance Special Jury Award-winning Unrest (Netflix/PBS, 2017); co-produced Unrest VR (Best VR, Sheffield Doc/Fest 2017); and Exec Produced BIFA-nominated short The Forgotten C (2020), feature doc Ahead of the Curve (Frameline/Starz, 2020) and short doc Tegan (Netflix, 2022). She founded indie production company Little By Little Films, which specialises in authentic storytelling by LGBTQ+, women’s and D/deaf and disabled voices.
Samantha Steele is a producer working between London, UK and Marseille, France. She has worked across feature documentaries, broadcast and digital projects for Netflix, Channel 4, Al Jazeera, CNBC and Facebook, Channel 4, including documentaries funded by Creative Europe and BFI. She is currently producing The Listeners, an animated documentary directed by Lindsey Dryden, and co-producing My Extinction, an upcoming feature documentary directed by David Proud and Paul Viragh. Her experience includes working in creative shorts and mixed-media art film. In 2021, she worked as assistant director on House of Deon, directed by Madison Bycroft, selected for the official competition as part of Ann Arbor Film Festival. And recently produced Wake for a Horse, a two-part short directed by artist and emerging filmmaker Célia Hay. In 2021, she directed Mother Tongue, a mixed-media animated documentary short which was selected as part of the Lift-Off Global Network 2022. She is one of the co-founders of women-led collective Alternative Fictions that supports filmmakers and visual anthropologists, and curates events/workshops on fairer representation in film and wider social themes. These events have taken place at: London Migration Film Festival, Radical Film Network and Creative Interruptions.
Nora Wilkinson (she/her) is a multimedia producer and nonfiction researcher. She was an associate producer on the Emmy®-winning short film TRANS IN AMERICA: TEXAS STRONG (SXSW 2018), a co-producer on director Sam Green's 32 SOUNDS (Sundance 2022), and a producer on Green's short documentary ANNEA LOCKWOOD / A FILM ABOUT LISTENING (Telluride 2021). In addition to her work on THE LISTENERS, she is currently co-producing Sam Green’s forthcoming feature THE OLDEST PERSON as well as Melissa Langer’s feature directing debut IN EXCESS. Nora has worked as a coordinator and script reader at the Independent Filmmaker Project, a screener for SXSW, a researcher and associate producer on documentary series at VICE and RadicalMedia, and as a festival coordinator on the Sundance Special Jury Award-winning and Oscar-shortlisted documentary feature UNREST (2017, PBS/Netflix). She also worked at the American Civil Liberties Union, where she produced short films and videos, and developed and co-produced a weekly podcast, At Liberty. Nora came to film from a background in art history, and received her Master’s degree from the Courtauld Institute of Art in London and her bachelor’s degree from Harvard University.