Jessica Lappin

Season 2 | Episode 9
18m | Feb 2, 2024

I talk with Jessica Lappin, president of the Alliance for Downtown New York executive! The Alliance manages the country's largest Business Improvement District (BID) and recently came out with a Filmmaker In Chief program.

Jessica is modest on this podcast, but she's knows great films and Lower Manhattan.

Here are the details on the Filmmaker in Chief program:

One filmmaker will win up to $50,000, plus two months in a paid luxury Mint House apartment and two months’ stipend to produce, direct and edit a short film in New York City’s Lower Manhattan neighborhood.

Applications close February 16, 2024 at 11:59 pm.

To enter:

  • Create a one-minute video uploaded to YouTube explaining why you should be our Filmmaker in Chief.
  • Submit a 3-5 page film treatment outlining your unique concept and links to samples of your past completed films.
  • Your short film can run between 8-40 minutes, with the sweet spot between 8-15 minutes.

More information can be found on their website:

In this podcast, Jessica and I discuss:

  • how much we both love Lower Manhattan;
  • the judges behind the program;
  • what it REALLY means to be the Filmmaker in Chief (are you producing? do you have final cut? what are the standards?)
  • what happens to the film after you finish;
  • the indie film highlight of this amazing leader in the NYC community.

Jessica could have very well put up the resources devoted to this project to an advertising agency, but she didn't. And an indie filmmaker wins.

Jessica's Indie Film Highlight: Rob Peace (


The Filmmaker In Chief Program (

Jessica Lappin (

Alliance for Downtown New York Instagram (

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