Written and directed by John Ira Palmer, the six-minute short film Pitbull follows Javi (Josué Jiménez), a young man from East Los Angeles who is being harassed by his deeply homophobic neighbor. As tensions escalate, he must decide whether to finally confront his tormentor or turn the other cheek.
A writer, director and producer, Palmer created the short film Elwood Takes a Lover, which screened at festivals around the world and was an official selection of The American Pavilion Emerging Filmmaker Showcase at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival. He was named a quarter-finalist for the 2019 Academy Nicholl Fellowship in Screenwriting, and is also a co-writer of Samir, the Warner Bros-funded USC feature film adaptation of The Count of Monte Cristo.
Palmer also produced the documentary Al Imam, which became a Vimeo Staff Pick, aired on National Geographic, and earned KCET Fine Cut’s top prize. He also co-produced The Dare Project, directed by Adam Salky and written by David Brind, which screened at Outfest and Frameline in 2018.
In 2016, Palmer was invited to the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Artist Academy for emerging filmmakers at the New York Film Festival. John’s experimental 16mm and super-8 short films have screened at venues such as REDCAT, Blum & Poe, and Pacific Film Archive. He has been selected for artist residencies at Echo Park Film Center and AICAD’s New York Studio Program, and awards including the ARRI Emerging Filmmaker Grant, the James Broughton Film Award, and a Princess Grace Foundation Film Honorarium. John earned his MFA at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts and his BFA at San Francisco Art Institute.