Contessa Gayles

Filmmaker
Cocomotion Pictures

I'm a New York City-based documentary filmmaker and non-fiction storyteller. I tell stories about identity and social change.

My work has covered social and political movements, race and ethnicity, gender, economic inequality, health care and tech.

I earned my B.A. from Columbia University, and an M.A. in Journalism from New York University, with a concentration in Documentary Film. My thesis documentary, School of Yoga, screened at the 2015 DOC NYC film festival student showcase, and my student-produced PBS NewsHour feature on gender parity efforts in Senegalese government was awarded the 2015 National Mark of Excellence Award by the Society of Professional Journalists.

From 2014 - 2018 I was a producer at CNN, where I created, produced, directed, filmed and edited acclaimed original digital video series, documentaries and multimedia interactives, including The Feminist on Cellblock YWomen Who MarchWomen Who March: The MovementThis Is Birth with Lisa LingThis Is Sex with Lisa LingUnstereotyped and the Emmy-nominated Feeding America's Most Vulnerable Children

In 2018, I founded my non-fiction film production company, Cocomotion Pictures.