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We are badass best friends who run our own eco-friendly production company.

Besties Make Movies centers on protagonists who live in the grey, beyond the black and white binary. Through the female and non-binary gaze, we tell stories that explore the complex and provocative nuances that make us human.

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The work we do spans features, shorts, and episodic content.

Our work has screened at festivals worldwide including Oscar Qualifying Cinequest, Series Fest, NewFest, Bentonville Film Festival, and more. Our feature film TRIPLE THREAT called "a visual comparison to Tick Tick Boom", "Totally Unique", and "fun & provocative" is now streaming on AppleTV.

Featured Work


Margarita "MARS" Zhitnikova - CO-FOUNDER
MARS (they/them) is a non-binary performer, writer and producer. Born in Stalingrad, Russia, MARS came to America with their family as Jewish refugees when they were six. They found acting and creating to be a salvation of sorts, to see the world from many angles and to figure out what drives their characters. MARS is passionate about leaving the world better than they found it, for everyone. Through their art they strive to cultivate empathy and action. MARS Co-Founded BMM to tackle their mission from all sides. Most recently MARS appeared on the final season of NBC’s acclaimed show New Amsterdam and as a lead character in the award-winning feature film Triple Threat, distributed by Gravitas Ventures. Zasha, the screenplay they co-wrote was a finalist for the Sundance Development Track in 2022. MASHED, a digital series, which they performed in and produced with their partners at BMM has won awards at Bushwick FF, Nashville FF, and Buffalo FF. They have also served as a judge for Revolution Me FF and Run & Gun FF.
Stacey Maltin - CO-FOUNDER
Stacey Maltin (she/her) is an award-winning filmmaker and performer. She has been creating antics on stage since she was eight and after graduating NYU Tisch School of the Arts, she realized that she wanted to create new and authentic stories from the ground up. After a stint living in Tel Aviv, she became immersed in the film world and became passionate about directing gritty and entertaining projects. Through her work she strives to show that humanity is nuanced and empathy is universal. Stacey Directed, wrote, and starred in the feature film Triple Threat which, after winning several awards on the festival circuit, was distributed by Gravitas Ventures in 2022. She Directed the mini-series MASHED which has won awards at Series Fest, Nashville FF, Bushwick FF, and Buffalo FF. Her first feature film Landing Up, was a finalist for the Tribeca All Access Grant and was distributed by The Orchard. Her feature script The Other Side, was produced as a radio play by The Black List starring Darren Criss.
On the acting front, she can be seen in the newest season of The L Word: Generation Q. She is a proud member of
Film Fatales. 
Jackie Schwartz - VP of Development
Jackie Schwartz is an award-winning producer and writer. Her projects have premiered and won awards at festivals including: Sundance, Toronto International Film Festival, SXSW, Outfest, SeriesFest, Cinequest, Bentonville, and more. She co-created, produced, and sold a digital series called Rare Birds of Fashion to NBC Comedy. Her film Dusty participated in the Outfest Screenwriting Lab. She was also a finalist in the Sundance Creative Producing Lab. Jackie is the VP of Operations & Development at Besties Make Movies. Their feature film Triple Threat was acquired by Gravitas Ventures and is now streaming on Peacock. They are currently in development on a feature documentary with the Geena Davis Institute called NOTHING FITS that explores how Hollywood and the fashion industry dictates the idealized body type and shapes our desires in ways that harm and uplift us.
Jackie is also passionate about eating disorder prevention. She is a board member of Realize Your Beauty, an organization dedicated to promoting positive body image to youth through theater arts. She also spoke on a panel about body representation in media at the 2023 Bentonville Film Festival. 
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