The Netflix Emerging Filmmaker Initiative (EFI) is an annual program designed to foster and accelerate the careers of the next generation of marquee filmmakers working in high-demand genres such as science fiction, action, horror, and thriller films. Hebru Brantley’s Erax, Ashley Eakin’s Forgive Us Our Trespasses, and Marielle Woods’ Heart Shot are all now available on Netflix as short films developed, funded, produced, and distributed by EFI.

The first three films produced by EFI were released worldwide on Netflix on February 17. Netflix has provided more information about the films and the filmmakers behind them. Get into it below!

Director: Hebru Brantley
Writers: Hebru Brantley, Henry G.M. Jones

During a sleepover, Auntie Opal and her niece Nina accidentally release the mythical and dangerous Erax creatures that must be returned to the storybook from which they escaped.

About Hebru Brantley 

Hebru Brantley is a multi-disciplinary visual artist from the South Side of Chicago whose work explores a contemporary and distinct narrative that challenges the traditional view of the hero or protagonist. Brantley has exhibited around the world and been featured in publications such as the New York Times, Forbes and CNN. Brantley has collaborated with brands such as Nike, Hublot and Adidas, among many others, and collectors of his work include top athletes, celebrities, and filmmakers. Brantley currently resides in Los Angeles where he is expanding into content creation with the adaptation of his flagship character FLYBOY through his media company, Angry Hero. He is also developing several original projects including Hype with Peter Chernin at Netflix, Kankakee with Seth Rogen at Lionsgate and several TV projects set up at HBO and HBO Max.

Forgive Us Our Trespasses
Director: Ashley Eakin
Writers: Ashley Eakin, Shawn Lovering

In 1939 Germany, a disabled farm boy is pursued by Nazi soldiers after Hitler enacts Aktion T4; a program to euthanize people with disabilities.

About Ashley Eakin

Ashley Eakin is a writer/director with a physical disability. She is currently developing a half-hour TV show with 20th Century for FX, inspired by her AFI Directing Workshop for Women short film Single that won the SXSW Special Jury Recognition award and has played over 40 festivals. In 2021, Eakin directed two episodes of television for Apple and one episode for Disney+. In addition, Eakin and her husband Shawn Lovering are currently co-writing a feature for Wayfarer Studios and will partner on the development of a Netflix thriller. 


Heart Shot
Director: Marielle Woods
Writers: Marielle Woods, Lauren Ludwig

High school seniors Nikki and Samantha are in love and planning their future — until Nikki’s violent past comes back to threaten everything she holds dear.

About Marielle Woods

Marielle Woods is an award-winning, queer filmmaker who thrives in the high-stakes world of action storytelling. She loves to push emotional buttons and visual boundaries, telling stories that make audiences think — with a few explosions and car chases along the way. In addition to the HBOAccess Fellowship, Woods has been recognized as a member of the Universal Director’s Initiative and the AFI Directing Workshop for Women. She has directed episodes for Seasons 4 and 5 of Netflix’s Cobra Kai from Sony Pictures Television.


Photos and images courtesy of Netflix