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email: rooneyelmi[at]


Rooney Elmi is a culture writer and film programmer with a hyperfocus on nonfiction cinema. Her essays and interviews have been published in Film Comment, i-D, DAZED, Real Life Magazine, The FADER, Hyperallergic, among many others.

Interests in internationalism, cyber culture, and anti-capitalism lead to her brainchild, SVLLY(wood), a annual print and digital movie magazine, geared toward curating a radical cinephilia. The self-published editorial has been read and housed around the world and remains one of the extremely rare, feminist print film publications in circulation.
Additionally, she’s the co-founder of NO EVIL EYE,a underground traveling micro-cinema that aims to redefine the creative and social parameters of non-metropolitian film scene(s) by curating an eclectic mix of films that vary in style and substance.

Elmi is currently gearing up to produce a documentary short about the omnipresent police state in Central Ohio. 

interests include:

film criticism.
festival coverage.
detailed interviews.
profiles + features.
pop culture. 
cyber culture.
black feminism.
african + islamic diasporic cinema.
politics + migration.
race + gender + class.  
anti-capitalism theory.
etc! etc! etc!

as founder + managing editor of SVLLY(wood) 

issue.1: THE FEMININE MYSTIQUE REDUX [october 2016]

Read Digital Issue
Buy Print Issue

HyperallergicIn Maine, a Space to Spur Change in Documentary

Hyperallergic - What Happened When a Filmmaker Asked Black Women Whether They Feel Safe

Reverse Shot - First Look 2019: Ambulante Más Allá

Wexner Center for the Arts
- Examining‘Personal Problems’

The FADER - In a year obsessed with skating, this film is a true peek into the always-evolving subculture

Wexner Center for the Arts
Grace Jones & Jean-Michel Basquiat: Iconoclasts in motion

Film Comment - Interview: Khalik Allah for BLACK MOTHER

The 2000s lesbian strip club party that helped define club culture today

Film Comment - The Night Walker *behind a paywall*

- A History of Protest and Activism at the Oscars 

The Lily/Washington Post - These Black women are working to take down R. Kelly 

Wexner Center for the Arts - Soleil Ô and the expansion of the African image 

Fandor - Love, Uninterrupted 

Reverse Shot - First Look 2018: Taste of Cement 

Filmmaker Magazine - Keeping Print Criticism Alive in the Digital Age 

afterHOURS - 10 subversive, feminist horror films to check out this Halloween 

indieWIRE - Race, Religion, Immigration: 5 New Documentaries That Capture Our Divided Times 

i-D - where were all the female directors at the vmas?

Okay Africa - ‘Your Story Matters:’ Heidi Saman’s Blueprint to Making a Successful Debut Feature 

MUBI - Women in Revolt: An International Women's Day Film Syllabus 

Real Life Magazine:

1) Defending Your Life
2) Body Cam

Media Diversified - Angela Bassett, the genius that defies age 

TIFF/The Review - Med Hondo is the African Auteur You Need to See 

Little White Lies - Is Western cinema ready to challenge Muslim stereotypes? 

cléo journal - Permission, Power, and Privilege: An Interview with Kirsten Johnson 

Socialist Worker -
War from thousands of miles away