In late 2012, while producing a feature film, writer/producer Cornelia Ravenal found that most grants, incubator, financing programs and resources were geared toward emerging artists, and practically none to mid-career independent producers -- in essence, rewarding potential rather than enduring experience. She realized she was not alone in that thought when she invited two dozen women producers to meet in her home for networking, food and drink. Although Ravenal knew all of the women there, many of them did not know each other. During the dinner meeting they shared insights and experiences working in the entertainment industry. They discussed the trials and tribulations of being an independent producer, offering each attendee an opportunity to connect on a personal level. Ravenal dubbed the group the “Women Producers Group” and invited them into her home every month over the next two years.
In March 2015, the meetup joined forces with Film Fatales, a similar meetup of creatives who a year ago had exploded onto the scene as a collective of female directors. With new sub-chapters forming across the U.S. and internationally, to now include documentary filmmakers and cinematographers, there was great potential for brand recognition, growth and support for the newly formed Film Fatales Producers Chapter. However the merging of the two groups was short lived as it was realized that the inherent needs and path for producers were very different than that of a director. As Fatales scaled down its organization with a singular focus on directors, the steering committee of the producers chapter led by co-founders Adetoro Makinde, Brandi Savitt, Cornelia Ravenal, Danelle Eliav, Kelly Bachman, Rachel Watanabe-Batton and Stephanie Dawson met to strategically rebrand itself.
In January 2016, Women Independent Producers , (aka "WIP") was officially launched with a clear mission to support, collaborate and promotes the work of independent producers who identify as women through strategic partnerships and equitable access to resources worldwide.
WIP members have comprise of 160 awarding-winning producers having screened approximately 125 films at major festivals including Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, Berlin, Venice, Cannes and many more. The group now includes seasoned film and television executives involved in business affairs, financing, marketing and distribution, as well as, film festival programmers, in both the narrative and documentary space. With prestigious nominations, wins and accolades, including Oscar, BAFTA, Golden Globe, Gotham and Spirit Awards, WIProducers champion the way of independent filmmaking.