James Runde is an independent filmmaker, photographer, and musician from Madison, WI. He loves: cows, greasy spoons, the R&B/Soul section of a record store, Robert Altman, and tube amplifiers. He hates: sugary beverages, the interstate highway system, smart phone addiction, and Mitch McConnell.

While a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (B.A. 2015), he directed his first short film White and Lazy (2016), a slacker comedy shot on 16mm. His follow-up film Played Out (2019, 42 mins) won a Golden Badger Award at the 2019 Wisconsin Film Festival.

His latest project The Last Milk (2023, 11 mins) is a short documentary about his aunt and uncle retiring from small-herd dairy farming after over 38 years. The film explores the rewards and challenges that come with dairy farming, as well as the technological innovations of the past few decades and how they’ve affected small farmers.


  • Wisconsin Film Festival
    04/16/2023 | Chazen Museum of Art | Madison, WI
  • Wisconsin Film Festival
    04/09/2022 | Chazen Museum of Art | Madison, WI
  • Wisconsin Film Festival
    04/21/2020 | Online Stream | Madison, WI
  • Driftless Film Festival
    11/03/2019 | Mineral Point Opera House | Mineral Point, WI
  • Thursday Night Movie Club
    10/10/2019 | Madison Public Library – Central Branch | Madison, WI