Bio

AN INDUSTRY HYPHENATE

Chicago newspaper reporter (Observer) once wrote that if you place Abiiba Howell in a bag, shake it up and turn it upside down, she would still come out standing on both feet. From a path that includes marathon running, modeling, motherhood, stock car racing and martial arts to makeup artist and motion picture industry veteran, Abiiba has always charted her own course.

Bio - Abiiba HowellThe native Chicago filmmaker was the publicist for Mr. T until he was selected for the movie, ROCKY III. At the time, she owned and ran a limousine service and child care service from home, while a full time night student at Northwestern University. Her first limo booking was the Rolling Stones and O’Jay’s Chicago tour stop. Abiiba’s career was launched years later as a film and television Makeup Artist before her rise to writer, producer and director, working on Chicago, Texas and Hollywood film and television projects.

Founding Dominion Films in 1997 as a means to develop and produce her own projects, she began making her mark right away by writing, producing and directing four of her own short movies.  The company soon began providing production services for production companies and record labels, among other clients. However, after being stiffed on final payment from a record label years ago, the company stopped working on music videos, instead focusing on movies, documentaries, commercials and television programming.

Brand marketing and production services (movie and live) now form the heart and soul of Dominion Films. As Senior Producer, Abiiba wrote, produced and directed her own: Aging With Grace; Total Control (screened at the Museum of Fine Art, Houston); Fantasy in Pink (Finalist, Gulf Coast Film Festival) and The Accident (based on the award-winning story, by James Garcia, of the same name).

Abiiba’s work as producer includes commercials, television talk shows, music projects, documentaries, independent movies, PSA’s and interactive multimedia content for the internet.  She has been the Production Supervisor for several projects, including: VISA: China to Houston with Yao Ming; Learning About for the Family ChannelGeorge Foreman’s Knockout Household Cleaning infomercials and other projects.Artist, Charles Washington

Her profile of the, formerly homeless and now respected environmental artist, Charles Washington, has garnered awards and recognition, including at the Gulf Coast Film Festival in 2011.  Documentary projects include: The A.F. Project, Career School Nightmare, Don’t Get Hurt in Texas, and more. She has written eleven screenplays and collaborated on one, Mind of  Lunatic, in which her screenplay interest is for sale.

Abiiba was the Texas Assistant Production Coordinator for HBO and Billy Bob Thornton’s film Don’t Look Back; Production Coordinator for London Weekend Television‘s, The Jogger; and Production Coordinator for House on Todville Road (before moving over as Key Makeup/FX). She was the Production Manager for The Dark Dancer (Third Coast Entertainment/Showtime), Material Witness; Holyfield: Showdown at the Garden (Showtime Networks); Pirate Island of Jean Laffite (playing continuously in Galveston, TX since 1997); Prithvi (India) and for numerous other movies and projects.

Abiiba’s award-winning makeup and hair work may be seen on numerous projects including: Boo Boo Bandits, The Billion Dollar Buyer (CNBC), Love Land, Return to Vengeance, Burned Soul, Somebody Up There Likes Me, *The Trap, *It’s About Life on Earth (NASA), Space Troopers, Destitution, *The Big Picture Review With Fiskel and Hebert, The Man Who Came Back, (Carol Alt, Sean Young, George Kennedy and Jennifer O’Dell), MindSight, Suddenly Unexpected, Arlington Road, Hope, Children of the Corn: The Gathering (Karen Black, Naomi Watts, Samaria Graham), House on Todville Road, Rough Riders, Two for Texas, The Chase, *Hurricane in a Double-Wide, Space Marines, America’s Dream, Hidden Obsession, The Independent Jury (trailer) and countless other features and short films, as well as numerous music videos and commercials. (See: IMDB listing). Abiiba has worked directly with talent at all levels of celebrity. (*=award winning)

Under her Casting Director hat, Abiiba: cast more than 450 people for TIN CUP; cast Houston’s 2012 Olympic Bid commercial; was the Texas Casting Director for HBO’s Breast Men; the Casting Director for William Katt’s The Clean and Narrow; Casting Director (also Production Manager) for Pirate Island of Jean Laffite and many others.

Speaking at eventIn 2002, Abiiba founded Film Expo Texas, an annual film industry event, including workshops, exhibits, screenings and contests, to help raise production standards and make the industry and its resources more accessible to everyone. She continues to help open doors for industry newcomers through her signature, Getting Into the Movies workshops, offered through Dominion Films, some of which she has led since 1991.

She has been an invited guest speaker at: University of Houston, Houston Independent School District, Hightower High School, Houston Community College Filmmakers Academy, Lee College, Aldine Independent School District, Scriptwriters/Houston, Texas Southern University and others. She has appeared as herself on Candid Camera and was featured on the Debra Duncan Show with Shelly Duvall and Loretta Devine, in addition to hosting episodes of The Independent Movie Show.

A former voting member of the Independent Spirit Awards and a current Blue Ribbon Panel Judge for the Emmy Awards since 2010, Abiiba has held longtime memberships in various industry organizations and associations while remaining active in two IATSE local unions. In 2011, Abiiba took on the challenge of helping to bring attention to the plight of homeless people by writing and publishing an extensive research article on homelessness, garnering an award fro professional communication and presentation.  While Abiiba’s specialty areas lie in motion picture and multimedia production management and marketing, she still continues to wear her Makeup Artist hat as time permits.

Armed with a B.S. in Business (Entertainment, Finance, Marketing); a M.A. in New Media Journalism and a M.S. in Marketing from Full Sail University, Abiiba is currently completing a doctorate in Business Administration: Marketing. Prior education includes: HR Management and Organizational Behavior (Northwestern University); Communications and Labor Relations (Roosevelt University) and Business Planning (City Colleges of Chicago). Her goal is to merge production operations management with strategic brand marketing to help grow little known projects and nonprofits.

Abiiba believes that knowledge and skills should be shared and volunteers her time when available.  In her spare time, she creates art from recycled materials for her mobile studio, Re-Think Art, when she’s not working, volunteering or spending time with family and friends.