ABOUT

About Us

Kirana Productions creates independent human rights films and media content for global awareness and education.

Our team of media and human rights professionals works with local organizations to amplify the voices of communities affected by social inequity, discrimination, and human rights abuses. 

The main objective of our work is to use the films as tools for change. We plan and deliver strategic distribution of films for advocacy and education through media outreach, speaking tours, and online platforms. 

Kirana has produced award-winning documentary films: Mother, Daughter Sister (2018), Sittwe (2017), This Kind of Love (2015), Into the Current: Burma’s Political Prisoners (2012), No Women No Peace (2006), Mercy (2002) and Burma Diary (1997).

We believe that personal stories from those less heard from in societies empower both those who share their journeys in the telling -as well as audiences who view our films. Our productions strive to move people's hearts to in turn, use their knowledge of human rights issues to take action, on a local, regional or global level.

 

We also train youth in creating digital media about their lives through the InSIGHT OUT! Photo Storytelling project.

Kirana has non-profit status in the US under the umbrella of Burma Humanitarian Mission, a registered 501(c)(3).

The Kirana team

The Kirana team has decades of experience creating documentary films. We offer seasoned field expertise in Southeast Asia, and a network of long-term partnerships with local NGOs, community groups, and activists in the region, particularly in Burma.  We also work with non-profit organizations in the United States that focus on informal education and leadership development for low-income and marginalized youth. 

 
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JEANNE HALLACY

Jeanne has lived and worked in Southeast Asia for 25 years, producing and directing documentary films about human rights and social justice issues. Her films are used as educational and advocacy tools by civil society and educational institutions.
 

Mother, Daughter, Sister, Sittwe, This Kind of Love and Into the Current were each released with an international speaking tour in the United States and Europe where the films were screened with engaged audience discussions.


Jeanne is also the Director of InSIGHT Out! digital media project for youth in conflict-affected areas. She is the former Director of Programs at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Thailand,

 
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GREGG BUTENSKY

Gregg is an avid traveler and long time Burma activist. He established a public lending library in the Philippines and is a co-founder of the non-profit Ethical Traveler.

Gregg co-founded Kirana Productions with Jeanne in 2018 and serves as Kirana's Operations Director.

 

In addition to being an Associate Producer and second cameraman for Mother, Daughter, Sister, Gregg worked with Jeanne on Better Homes, Better Lives (2019), Tackling TB in Yangon (2019), Sittwe (2017), This Kind of Love (2015), and Into The Current: Burma's Political Prisoners (2012).

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RARES MICHAEL GHILEZAN

A long-time student of Burmese politics and history, Rares jumped into the fray in May 2017 when he visited Northern Rakhine state to learn more about the Rohingya. Since then, he has been to the refugee camps in Bangladesh twice, including as a producer on Kirana Productions' Mother, Daughter, Sister.  Rares has lived in Yangon since 2018 where he lead Kirana’s film project covering the protest movement of Feb 2021.

A partner at Global Legal Law Firm, when he's not filming Rares is either practicing law or surfing. Ever since working at the UN's Human Rights Council in Geneva in 2006, Rares has been passionate about social justice activism and providing a voice for the voiceless.

 
 
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SAI KYAW KHAING

Kai was the Senior Cameraman and Editor at  the Democratic Voice of Burma TV, Chiang Mai bureau from 2008-2012 and at France 24 TV in Bangkok from 2006-2007.

His short documentary, Click in Fear, about an ethnic Karen photographer, received the Best Short Documentary Award at the Freedom Film Festival in 2012.

Kai received an award from the Nikon International Photography contest in 2012.

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THUREIN WIN

Thurein Win is a leading literary translator in Burma.  His translation of George Orwell’s essays was a bestseller in Burma. In 2020, he published a Burmese translation of poet Ilya Kaminsky’s Deaf Republic to critical acclaim.

He is also a freelance media professional working with international media - including the Asian Wall Street Journal and Reuters - and a regular contributor to The Chronicles, a leading literary magazine in Burma. 

Thurein Win worked on the Kirana Productions, Better Homes, Better Lives and Tackling TB in Yangon.

 
 
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TAK KOGATCH

Tak is a motion designer as well as a visual artist. He has been part of the Kirana Productions team since the 2018 film Mother, Daughter, Sister. His animation work in the films is vital to conveying the message in a visually creative and effective way.

 

As a visual artist, Tak utilizes his skills in motion design and creates multimedia installations that focus on a range of subjects from social justice to environmental issues.