The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2005 and was an Official Selection at the Palm Springs International Film Festival as well as countless other film festivals nationwide. Selena was awarded an Ohio Arts Council Fellowship Grant for her work with Saving Jackie the same year.
In March 2006, Selena was one of 22 artists awarded the prestigious Rockerfeller Foundation Media Arts Fellowship Grant to produce a feature focused on the dangers facing the health of adolescent girls in impoverished environments. As her next film project, Selena co-directed a documentary short entitled The True Body Project. This film follows thirteen teenage girls through a creative writing and physical fitness program, which led the girls through the process of self-discovery and challenged them to identify with their bodies from a holistic perspective. This film premiered at the Cleveland International Film Festival in 2006.
To gain additional experience working on independent feature films, Selena moved to Shreveport, Louisiana in 2008. While there, she worked on several film productions, including director Oliver Stone's biopic of former President George W. Bush, entitled W. After production on W ended, Selena moved back to Ohio to focus on developing her own feature film projects and to re-energize her child advocacy campaign. After receiving an Audience Engagement/Website Development Grant from Chicken & Egg Pictures and The Fledgling Fund, Selena launched her website, www.savingjackie.org.
Films by Selena Burks-Rentschler
Saving Jackie is a snapshot of a recovering addict’s attempt to strengthen her damaged relationship with her two estranged daughters. Jackie, single mother to Selena and Lorita, recovers from a 20-year crack cocaine addiction as her daughters transition into adulthood. Selena, the elder daughter, documents her and Lorita’s raw reconciliation process with their mother as it unfolds.