Valerie Brandy, ’11

Valerie Brandy is director, screenwriter, and actress based in Los Angeles. Her award-winning feature film, Lola’s Last Letter – which she wrote, directed, and starred in— was distributed by Sony’s indie label “The Orchard” after a successful festival run. The film was shot in the mobile home park Brandy lived in as a teenager, and has since become a beloved installment in the mumblecore movement. As a screenwriter, her career began when she sold a spec script at age 20, becoming one of the Writers Guild of America’s (WGA) youngest members at the time. She recently served as a staff writer for Walt Disney Studios live action feature division under an exclusive deal, developing multiple projects for their Disney+ platform. She’s worked on comedies and dramas for many studios and networks, including Warner Brothers, FX, Universal, Disney Channel, and many others, and her writing has been honored by the Nichol Fellowships in Screenwriting. As an actress, she appeared as “Trixie” in multiple episodes of FX’s Emmy-Winning drama Justified in scenes across from Mykelti Williamson (Forrest Gump). For her work in the independent film space, Brandy was nominated for a Best Principal Actress award from LA Film Review. In reviewing Brandy’s work as a filmmaker, the Huffington Post stated, “… the key word when describing Brandy in unflinching.”

Her second feature film, “A Unified Theory of Love,” wrapped post-production in 2023, and is expected to enter the festival circuit next year. The movie stars Richard Karn (Home Improvement) and Eric Isenhower (Parks & Recreation). Brandy writes, directs, and also stars.

In 2022, LA Live Film Festival named Brandy a “director to watch,” awarding her the laurel for Best Director’s Demo. Her microshort film Sales Tactics— which she wrote, directed, and produced— won the award for best Horror Comedy Short at Austin Microshort Film Festival, and honorable mention for best Microfilm at Los Angeles Film Awards. Brandy’s ambient content series Travel California — which she directed and produced — will soon appear on SlingTV’s new ambient channels. The series features drone footage of landscapes, slow motion video of animals, and 4K footage of athletes in California’s most beautiful natural environments.

Brandy is a member of the WGA west, where she serves as a Feature Strike Captain, as well as SAG-AFTRA and the Alliance of Women Directors. A subject matter expert in film & media, Brandy holds multiple visiting professorships and academic appointments in the film departments of universities like Loyola Marymount, Syracuse, and UCLA Extension. She received her B.A. from UCLA as a prestigious Alumni Scholarship recipient, and is an M.F.A. candidate in Film & Television Production at Asbury University.

As an author, her feminist thriller trilogy “Animals We Are” has sold over 10,000 copies worldwide, and was chosen as an Indies Today five star read.