Dawn Wilkinson is an award-winning filmmaker currently based in Los Angeles. She is an alumnae of Norman Jewison’s Canadian Film Centre and the University of Toronto. Most recently, Dawn served as the Director and Executive Producer for Season 3 of Step Up for Lionsgate and Starz and directed 5 episodes of the season, including the season finale.
Dawn is a trailblazer and the first Canadian black woman to break into dramatic series directing in Canada and since then has become a prolific television director in Hollywood. Her short experimental film Dandelions is iconic in black Canadian filmmaking, has screened at over 200 film festivals internationally including the 2020 International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, and is often taught as course curriculum in Canadian universities. Her short comedy Instant Dread won the Audience Award at The African American Women In Cinema Film Festival in New York and screened at the Conch Shell International and Caribbean Film Festival in 2022.
Devotion, her first feature film, won Best Feature at the San Francisco Black Film Festival’s Urban Kidz film festival and the Audience Award at Toronto’s Reel World Film Festival. Dawn made the transition from indie filmmaker to TV director by winning the Director’s Guild of Canada’s Emerging Television Director award and then went on to direct DGC Award nominated episodes of Degrassi, Kim’s Convenience and Lock and Key.
Since then, she has directed episodes of Bel-Air, Power Book II: Ghost, Truth Be Told, How To Get Away with Murder, The Mysterious Benedict Society, All American and All American: Homecoming, Riverdale, Why Women Kill, The Gifted, Empire, The Good Doctor, The Resident, Nashville, Greenleaf and many more. In 2022, Dawn Wilkinson directed the BET+ Original film Block Party, a Juneteenth family comedy feature starring the Academy Award Nominated Margaret Avery. Block Party is the first film of its kind to have a theatrical, streaming, and linear release in the same month.