Photo by Janet Donovan
Ryzewicz with fellow filmmakers
Ryzewicz with fellow filmmakers

“My faith has been a lifeline for me. It says in scripture ‘I’ve set before you blessings and curses, life and death – choose life.’ And that’s when I had to make a decision to do when I was 20,” film-maker Betsy Kennedy Ryzewicz told Hollywood on the Potomac at an evening presentation on the power of film to change culture at The Fund for American Studies DC’s headquarters!  “I didn’t have a conventional home. My father had died when I was young. I was estranged from my mother and really I just had to lean on a savior. So that’s my personal connection to my faith, and I didn’t come from a religious background. My father was Catholic and I grew up going to a Presbyterian church.”

Betsy graduated from Stanford University and received her MFA from USC School of Cinema Television in Production. At USC, Kennedy was awarded The Jacob Javitz Scholarship and The Harvey Fellowship. She spent most of her time there working on her thesis film on the band Switchfoot. She began her professional career working for Mel Gibson’s Icon production and then The Robert Simonds Company in feature film development. In 2008, Kennedy also created and produced an original 13-episode extreme sports television series starring Kyle Loza.