Rachel McDonald is an award-winning film director and writer. Born and raised in a small coastal town in Mississippi, the traditions and rhythms of storytelling shaped her artistic personality starting from a very young age. Rachel’s creative work is inhabited by strong southern cultural spirits and an adept sensitivity to her subjects.
Using filmmaking as the main expressive form for her curiosity and urge to tell meaningful stories, Rachel’s creative quest started internationally where she filmed in Jordan, Uganda, and in Egypt before moving to Los Angeles.
Rachel started working in the American film industry learning the craft firsthand alongside acclaimed directors Frank Darabont, Nancy Meyers and Clint Eastwood.
Rachel is the writer and director of multiple award-winning short films including “Thirst” starring Melanie Griffith which was nominated for the Golden Pardino at the Locarno International Film Festival (2014) and won at the Emerging Cinematographer’s Awards.
Her “Behind the Post” PSA for the One Love Foundation earned multiple awards including a Silver Cannes Lion and continues to be used as part of the organization’s curriculum for recognizing and preventing relationship abuse.
In commercials, Rachel has worked around the world on notable campaigns for Facebook, Gatorade, BMW, Ikea, Microsoft, HP, and the Recording Academy.
She is currently finishing a narrative short, Hermanos, which follows the journey of two young brothers after they are separated from their mother at the U.S. – Mexico border. Additionally, she’s writing and developing a feature film, inspired by her own story, that explores a broken family’s struggle and journey during and after Hurricane Katrina.
Rachel lives in Venice Beach, CA.