est. 1994 

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email: rooneyelmi[at]


Rooney Elmi is a writer and programmer who specializes in film and pop cultural criticism. Her essays and interviews have been published in Film Commenti-D, DAZED, Real Life Magazine, FADER, Hyperallergic, among many others. She’s also the recipient of the 2017 New York Film Festival Critics Academy co-hosted by Film Society of Lincoln Center and indieWIRE. 

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 has held the title of director of development of Ohio Film Group, a state-of-the-art post production studio, handling film acquisitions and marketing. As well as interning with prolific film studio, IM Global during the 2016 Berlin Film Festival/ European Film Market circuit.


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!

Arundhati Roy (a.k.a me) hard at werq

as founder + managing editor of SVLLY(wood) 

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

Read Digital Issue
Buy Print Issue

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