Cauleen Smith's feature film debut, DRYLONGSO, was selected for the American Spectrum at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival, won the Silver Armadillo at the 1999 SXSW Film Festival, and won Best Picture at both the Pan-African and Urbanworld Film Festivals. DRYLONGSO subsequently premiered on Sundance Channel in August 1999. In March 2000, Smith was awarded the "Someone to Watch" Award at IFP/Los Angeles's Independent Spirit Awards.
Smith has been awarded grants from the National Black Programming Consortium, Northwestern States Regional Arts Grant, American Film Institute and the Rockefeller Foundation.
Smith is developing several screenplays, which include an eco-apocalyptic science fiction adventure called THE CLOUD, SWEEP, a DV ensemble piece about a tribe of Gen-X'ers who must reunite to track down a missing friend, and a classical tragedy embedded into the mythological imagery of Texas entitled EURYDICE.
Smith currently teaches film production at The University of Texas at Austin.