Joe Penna


Joe Penna (also known as MysteryGuitarMan) is a pioneering Brazilian filmmaker whose work spans feature films, short films, commercials, and music videos. He began his career on YouTube with innovative and entertaining videos that garnered a massive following. His creative storytelling and unique style led to over 400 million views, catching the attention of major brands and musicians, and eventually paving the way for his transition into mainstream filmmaking.

His debut feature film, ARCTIC starring Mads Mikkelsen, premiered to critical acclaim as an official selection at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival. Penna then co-wrote and directed the Netflix sci-fi thriller STOWAWAY, featuring stellar performances from Academy Award nominees Anna Kendrick and Toni Collette.

Most recently, Penna produced Anna Kendrick's highly anticipated directorial debut WOMAN OF THE HOUR, which had its world premiere this year at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

In addition to his social and directing success, Penna is involved in the emerging AI space, focusing on developing tools for filmmakers. He has co-authored several research papers and spearheaded the Applied Machine Learning team at Stability AI, contributing to the development of several generative models. 

Joe Penna's expertise in social media, filmmaking, and AI technology positions him at the forefront of the rapidly evolving entertainment industry.

Industry Track

Ending the Stream vs Mainstream Debate

Location: Anaheim Ballroom C

Friday, June 28

2:15 pm - 3:00 pm

Featuring: Alan Chikin Chow, Adam Rose, JT Casey and more

Digitally native creators are forging new paths, with careers that simultaneously span social media and more traditional forms of entertainment, including film, television, and print media. No longer is digital considered a jumping off point that should be “graduated” from — today’s multi-talented creators are building multi-platform careers, ultimately changing the nature of media and entertainment forever. How do these creators think holistically about the content they create, and about connecting authentically with their fans regardless of platform or context? Find out during this insightful conversation.