IN THIS SECTION
Over 30 guest speakers will be speaking in the upcoming program. The following guests have taught for this program consistently over the years. Due to the nature of the industry, we are unable to confirm that all listed below will be available to teach in the upcoming program. The full roster of guest instructors will be available on the first night of class. It will include the majority of these guests, as well as additional notable industry professionals.
BOB BIBB (Television Marketing)
Bob is an executive who helped create two broadcast networks from the ground up: FOX and The WB. He has led the creative and media strategy for over 300 primetime television series across broadcast, cable, and digital platforms. Along with longtime collaborator, Lew Goldstein, Bibb now runs BG Company, a marketing consulting firm with clients including DreamWorks Animation, Microsoft, and Endemol Studios. Some of the long-running series Bibb managed as head of marketing include: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Gilmore Girls, Smallville, Supernatural, Dawson’s Creek, Charmed, Felicity, and Project Runway (Lifetime). Bibb has twice been awarded “Entertainment Marketer of the Year” by Advertising Age. He is a graduate of New York University’s Tisch School and a Louie B. Mayer Fellow.
PETER BRODERICK (Alternative Distribution)
Peter is a leading distribution strategist. He spearheads the distribution of exceptional documentaries and consults with independent filmmakers around the world. He helps design and implement customized plans to maximize revenues, audience and impact. He is President of Paradigm Consulting, which specializes in state-of-the-art distribution techniques, including innovative theatrical service deals, hybrid strategies and new approaches to global distribution. Previously, Broderick was President of Next Wave Films, which supplied finishing funds and other vital support to filmmakers from the U.S. and abroad. He helped launch the careers of outstanding directors including Christopher Nolan and Amir Bar-Lev. Broderick’s reports, Welcome to the New World of Distribution and Declaration of Independence are concise guides to the latest distribution strategies. Read his articles and subscribe to his Distribution Bulletin at www.peterbroderick.com. He is a graduate of Brown University, Cambridge University, and Yale Law School.
CATHERINE DENT (Working With Actors)
Catherine Dent arrested audiences as Officer Danny Sofer on The Shield (2002), playing a single woman in a world that understands brutality more than beauty. Born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and trained at the North Carolina School of the Arts, Dent made her film debut in 1994, playing Paul Newman's daughter-in-law in Robert Benton's Nobody's Fool. Since then she has appeared in a number of features, co-starring opposite Greg Kinnear in Paul Schrader's Auto Focus, starring opposite Jean-Claude Van Damme in Replicant, playing Ashley Judd's sister in Tony Goldwyn's romantic comedy Someone Like You... and appearing with Jim Carrey in Frank Darabont's The Majestic. Her independent film credits include appearances in A Girls' Guide to Sex, Jaded, A New Game , The Debutante and Dangerous Proposition. When she was based in New York, Dent appeared frequently on East Coast-based based television shows including The Sopranos, Third Watch, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and New York Undercover. Since moving to Los Angeles she has guest-starred on such series as Dharma & Greg, The X-Files, Frasier, The Pretender, Chicago Hope and The Invisible Man. In addition to her starring role on the acclaimed drama series The Shield, she also starred in Steven Spielberg's Taken on the Sci-Fi Channel. Her theater credits include the title role in Baby Doll, Maggie in Cat On A Hot Tin Roof and roles in Bang The Drum Slowly and The Street of the Sun at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. In New York she starred Off-Broadway in Amoeba Concerto and understudied for the Sofya and Yelena roles in Uncle Vanya on Broadway.
CHRIS DONAHUE (Producing the One Hour Television Drama)
Chris Donahue is an Oscar & Emmy winning producer, educator and consultant. Chris’s producing credits are extensive in film, television and new media. He began his career as a producer in television news and documentaries. He transitioned to narrative film and television at the American Film Institute. His love for documentaries has him returning to the form often. Donahue’s work has been honored with numerous awards including an Oscar and an Emmy. Chris has led and advised both for profit, non-profit companies, large and small. Most recently he served as President of Paulist Productions where he sourced, negotiated and established a multi-million dollar, three picture co-financing and co-production arrangement with MarVista Entertainment, sourced and performed due diligence on potential internet and digital media investments, including streaming video platforms and other early and mid-stage digital media companies. He has consulted with filmmakers at every stage of production.
ALLEN FISCHER (Representation)
Allen Fischer is a partner at Artists First, one of the leading management and production companies in the business. After graduating from the prestigious Wharton School at the Universal of Pennsylvania, he started his career at Creative Artists Agency and transitioned into the growing field of management and production in 2000. Allen is a committee member in the Representation Peer Group of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, and his clients are some of the top writers and directors in the business. Director clients include F. Gary Gray (STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON, FAST & FURIOUS 8), Jon M. Chu (NOW YOU SEE ME 2, JUSTIN BIEBER: NEVER SAY NEVER, upcoming CRAZY RICH ASIANS (Warner Brothers)) Amanda Lipitz (STEP), Doug Pray (DEFIANT ONES), Ari Sandel (Academy Award winning director of THE DUFF, WHEN WE FIRST MET (Netflix), upcoming GOOSEBUMPS 2), Sylvain White (STOMP THE YARD, upcoming SLENDER MAN (Sony)), Mike Tiddes (NAKED, FIFTY SHADES OF BLACK, A HAUNTED HOUSE 1 & 2), Dan Attias (THE AMERICANS, TRUE DETECTIVE, WALKING DEAD, HOMELAND), Matt Shakman (GAME OF THRONES, FARGO, IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILIDELPHIA), Tim Hill (HOP, upcoming WAR WITH GRANDPA and SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS 3), and Lev Spiro (MODERN FAMILY, ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK). Allen has clients who excel in writing and directing, such as Jeff Wadlow (TRUE MEMOIRS OF AN INTERNATIONAL ASSASSIN, KICK ASS 2, TRUTH OR DARE (Universal)) and Laurie Collyer (SUNLIGHT JR., SHERRYBABY, FURLOUGH (IFC)). Screenwriter/Television writer clients include Patrick Somerville (MANIAC, THE LEFTOVERS, THE BRIDGE, 24), James Greer (UNSANE ) and Zach Rice (HILARITY FOR CHARITY). Allen has clients involved in such TV shows as: STRANGE ANGEL, BILLIONS, JUST ADD MAGIC, LAST SHADOW HUNTERS, SNOWFALL, INSATIABLE and many other network shows. Allen also represents actor/comedian/writer Ed Helms, who starred in THE HANGOVER movies and was a cast member of THE OFFICE. Allen’s THE SEA OF TREES, directed by Gus van Sant and starring Matthew McConaughey was released in 2015. Allen is attached to produce numerous features at every major studio and is responsible for selling many scripts and pitches every year.
ADAM FOGELSON (Feature Film Marketing)
Adam was chairman of Universal Pictures from October 2009 to 2013. He oversaw worldwide operations for the motion picture group, including its global theatrical, home entertainment, partnerships & licensing, finance, human resources and communications divisions. Fogelson had been with Universal since 1998, beginning as Vice President of Creative Advertising and rising to President of Marketing and Distribution before his promotion to Chairman. Fogelson's succeses include an impressive array of worldwide box office hits, such as Dr. Seuss' The Lorax, American Reunion, Safe House, Contraband, Bridesmaids, Fast Five and Despicable Me.
KAREN FOSTER (PRODUCING THE ANIMATED FEATURE)
Karen has produced a variety of projects for Dreamworks Animation including feature, TV and themed attractions. Her producing credits include: Kung Fu Panda: Secrets of the Scroll, Secrets of the Masters, and Secrets of the Furious Five; Scared Shrekless and How to Train Your Dragon (Co-Producer). Her themed entertainment credits include Shrek’s London Adventure, Dreamworks’ Dreamplace, multiple attractions for Dubai Parks & Resorts’ Motiongate theme park and she is currently working on a Kung Fu Panda land for Universal’s Beijing park. Karen came to Dreamworks in 2003 as a development executive for such films as Shrek 2, Sharktale, Wallace and Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Over the Hedge and Kung Fu Panda. Previously she was Director of Development for Walt Disney Feature Animation working on Treasure Planet, Home on the Range, The Tigger Movie and Atlantis, among others. Prior to her career in animation, Karen worked in live theater on both coasts. She is a graduate of UCLA and The Juilliard School.
ADAM FRATTO (INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVES ON TELEVISION)
A seasoned creative executive with a proven track record in TV development, programming, and production, Adam recently launched a series division for international distribution and production studio Reel One Entertainment. There, he has rapidly built a serious presence in the drama space, hiring experienced executives and assembling a buzzy slate of high profile projects. Before that, he was Head of Drama for Pukeko Pictures, affiliate of New Zealand's Weta (LORD OF THE RINGS, AVATAR, DISTRICT 9). The first of these, the award-winning CLEVERMAN, airs on Netflix, SundanceTV, BBC3, and Australia's ABC. As an independent producer and consultant, Adam consulted with clients from tech startups to established networks. He Exec Produced YA movie SEA CHANGE and was co-EP of HAVEN, a hit supernatural drama based on Stephen King’s “The Colorado Kid," for Syfy.
TIMOTHY GOOD (Post Production Editing)
Timothy was born and raised in Chicago, IL, and graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Radio/TV/Film. He traveled to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film editing. After 7 years of apprenticeship with some incredible mentors, he began editing on television series such as The O.C., Gossip Girl, Fringe and Under the Dome. He co-edited his first feature film, Dead Man Down, directed by Niels Arden Oplev of the original Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. Next up, he will be co-producer on Believe, a television series from J.J. Abrams and Alfonso Cuarón. He will supervise all creative post-production. He was recently inducted into the American Cinema Editors, an honorary society of elite editors in the industry. Tim is also a visiting professor at UCLA, teaching editing to all directors and cinematographers in UCLA’s graduate MFA program.
PAUL GREEN (CASE STUDY: THE REVENANT)
Paul was the president & COO of Anonymous Content. He joined Anonymous in April 2004, after having previously worked with Anonymous CEO Steve Golin at Propaganda Films. At Anonymous, Green oversaw the operations of AC's film, television and talent management divisions, and was responsible for strategic planning for film, commercial (broadcast and internet) and music video production. He assisted with development, financing, production and distribution of films, television, commercials and digital projects. His duties included securing and negotiating outside capital and production financing. In addition he has executive produced or produced the recent films The Revenant, Fun Size, Big Miracle, 44 Inch Chest, The Beaver, Laggier, Adult World, Scenic Route, U Want Me 2 Kill Him?, The Loft and The Fifth Estate. Previously Paul served in executive positions with Icon Productions, Beacon Communications, Propaganda Films and the Walt Disney Motion Pictures Group.
RANDY GREENBERG (Theatrical Distribution)
Randy is a strategic, senior entertainment executive and creative marketing & distribution executive, with demonstrated expertise in those areas consulting for entertainment companies with multi-million dollar brands driving marketing strategy, media strategy, investment, marketing operations, business development, PR strategy. His past work experience also includes P&L responsibility for multi-billion dollar entertainment divisions for global entertainment companies. Over the past decade, Greenberg has run The Greenberg Group, an entertainment content and investment strategy and marketing/distribution and business affairs consultancy. Before starting The Greenberg Group, Greenberg was the Senior Vice President / Head of International Theatrical Distribution and Marketing for Universal Pictures, where he synergized and led stakeholder alliances for international theatrical box office growth by developing strategic marketing campaigns and restructured the division to align with fast emerging digital marketing platforms and opportunities. His cutting-edge digital and traditional international marketing campaigns drove the international theatrical division to $2.7 Billion in box office. In one year alone, Greenberg’s strategies produced six $100M+ international box office releases: breaking a company record and tying an industry record. Greenberg strategized and executed the overseas releases of such films as The Mummy Returns, Jurassic Park III, American Pie 2, The Fast and the Furious, The Bourne Identity, Red Dragon, 8 Mile, The Hulk, 2Fast 2Furious, American Pie: The Wedding and Intolerable Cruelty among over 40 others. Prior to Universal Pictures, Greenberg served as Vice President, International Theatrical Marketing for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM), where he synergized and led the Los Angeles international theatrical offices coordinating between all international stakeholders in home entertainment, international TV and international consumer products to drive international theatrical box office growth for the newly resurrected division. Greenberg began his career as an accounting intern at Warner Bros. Pictures and was a senior publicist/account director at DDA Public Relations representing clients including Carolco Pictures and its films Terminator 2, Total Recall, Basic Instinct, Narrow Margin, Jacob’s Ladder and Field of Dreams; Morgan Creek International and its films Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and Last of the Mohicans among others and Miramax Pictures and its film Reservoir Dogs among many others. Greenberg received his Bachelor’s degree in Marketing/Finance from the University of Denver. He is a member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, the voting membership for the Academy Awards/Oscars and sits on the Animation Nomination Committee.
SHEILA HANAHAN-TAYLOR (Creative Producing and PITCHING)
Shelia is the founder of Practical Pictures, a Production Company specializing in studio pictures with a global appeal. Known as a cradle-to-grave producer, Sheila’s skill set includes story development, marketplace analysis, fundraising and budgeting, on-set creative producing, and editing room savvy. Sheila has been involved with numerous studio franchises including Universal’s American Pie and New Line’s Final Destination 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Sheila also recently produced Breaking In, starring Gabrielle Union, and the Australian-set family film Oddball. In total, the films Sheila worked on as an executive or a producer have grossed over $2 billion dollars in World Wide Box Office, from a total production cost of $448 million. Prior to establishing Practical Pictures, Sheila was a Senior Executive at Zide/Perry Entertainment, a production company and management firm known for grooming young screenwriters. During her 6 years at Zide/Perry she was responsible for the development and coaching on some of the industry’s highest-profile pitches and spec scripts, leading to numerous sales including an unestablished writer’s idea to Touchstone Pictures for $1 Million. Prior to Zide/Perry, Sheila worked for Steppenwolf Theatre, writer/director Garry Marshall, and Oscar Nominees Gil Netter and the Zucker Brothers, developing such films as My Best Friend's Wedding. Sheila also sits on numerous film boards and teaches at Universities around the globe. From 2000 to 2008 Sheila was a visiting associate professor for UCLA’s graduate Producers Program, teaching core curriculum and serving as thesis chair. Sheila currently works with Film Independent, Carnegie Mellon, Pixar, USC’s Stark School, Columbia College Chicago L.A. and Fox Studios. At Fox, Sheila develops TV pilots with their Writers Intensive Program and films with their Global Directors Initiative.
SIMON HERBERT (CASE STUDY: INDIE FILM)
Simon is the co-writer/director/producer (with fellow UCLA screenwriting alums Phil Guidry and David Whelan) of the horror feature Savageland-- released by Terror Films, internationally. Savageland has screened at numerous festivals including: Comic-Con; Morbido Festival, Mexico; and FilmQuest Film Festival, Utah. It has won eight awards including: Best Director at the New Orleans Horror Film Festival; and Best Feature in: Nevermore, NC; Independent Filmmakers festival, CA; Eerie Horror Fest, PA; and the Atlanta Horror Film Festival, GA.
NANCY KIRHOFFER (Post Production Supervision)
Nancy is an accomplished post-production supervisor who believes "Movies are three things: picture, sound and music -- and two of those happen in post-production." Her credits include Memento, 50/50, Bernie, Tracers, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, The Rum Diary, Soul Surfer, Drag Me to Hell, Milk, Jeepers Creepers, Donnie Darko, I know What You Did Last Summer and many more.
NEIL LANDAU (Crafting Your Pilot)
Neil’s film and television credits include the cult teen comedy "Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead” starring Christina Applegate; Melrose Place, The Magnificent Seven, Doogie Howser, M.D., The Secret World of Alex Mack, Twice in a Lifetime, MTV's Undressed, The Young & the Restless, Monarch Cove, and one-hour drama pilots for CBS, ABC, ABC Family, Warner Bros., Disney, Lifetime, and Freemantle. Neil also served for several years as Executive Script Consultant in the international divisions of Sony Pictures Television and Columbia Pictures. His animated movie projects include the 3D animated feature Tad: The Lost Explorer (aka Las Adventuras de Tadeo Jones) which earned him a Spanish Academy “Goya” Award and Cinema Writers' Circle Award for Best Adapted Screenplay. He co-wrote and Co-Executive Produced the 3D animated feature Capture the Flag for Paramount. Neil is also credited as screenwriter on the new animated movie, Sheep & Wolves, for Wizart Animation (The Snow Queen). Neil is a professor in the M.F.A. in Screenwriting and Producing Programs at UCLA School of Theater, Film & Television (his alma mater). He is the author of the bestselling books 101 Things I Learned in Film School, The TV Showrunner’s Roadmap, The Screenwriter’s Roadmap, and TV Outside the Box: Trailblazing in the Digital Television Revolution.
WEIKO LIN (How to Work Creatively With China’s Film Industry)
Born in Taiwan and fluent in Mandarin Chinese, Weiko immigrated to the United States when he was eight years-old. A finalist of AMPAS Nicholl Fellowship and recipient of a Samuel Goldwyn Writing Award, he has written projects for The Walt Disney Company, The Mark Gordon Company, Reason Pictures, Madhouse Entertainment, Ivanhoe Pictures, Don Mischer Productions, Wanda Pictures, and The Unison Company. He produced and wrote the original story for the Chinese language romance film 100 Days 真爱100天 which was released nationwide in Taiwan and was an official selection at the prestigious 2014 Golden Rooster Hundred Flowers Film Festival in Mainland China. As producer and original story writer, Weiko is following up his next Chinese language film with the action thriller Retroactive 追击日 at China-based Wanda Pictures set to film in 2019. His other China-related writing credits include 2016 Shanghai Disney Park Opening Ceremony and 2014 Huading Global Film Awards produced by Emmy winner Don Mischer. Recently, he adapted the U.S./China co-production feature film based on the New York Times best-selling memoir River Town by Peter Hessler for Fugitive Films and acclaimed director Lu Chuan (City of Life and Death, Disney's Born in China). Currently, Weiko is writing a TV pilot for Super Deluxe (Digital Studio of Turner/Time Warner).
ERIC MARIN (Post Production Sound/Sound Design)
Eric is a film editor with extensive experience in both feature and documentary picture and sound editing and mixing. He has edited, among other films, Wedding Dress (based on the play by the renowned Brazilian playwright Nelson Rodrigues), The Monk and the Hangman's Daughter (based on a story by Ambrose Bierce), and the documentaries Breaking the Maya Code, Mysterious California (examining four novels by California mystery writers) Women of Mystery (featuring three leading American female mystery writers) and Looking Like the Enemy (about the war experiences of Asian American veterans). Most recently, Eric served as the picture and sound editor and re-recording mixer on the documentary Something Like a Sabbatical as well as the sound editor on the feature documentary Occupy the Farm and as the re-recording sound mixer on the feature documentary The Art of Observing Life about the founders of the direct cinema movement. Additionally, Eric has produced, directed, shot and edited several contemporary music and performance documentaries including Baschet: The Transfiguration of Daily Life (awarded Best Art Documentary at the Parnu International Documentary Festival 2004 and Grand Prix de la Recherche at the Festival International du Film d’Art, Paris, 2003). His works have been seen on PBS and The Learning Channel and have been screened at festivals and various venues worldwide. Other film awards include the Nissan FOCUS documentary award, the Bronze Apple from the National Education Festival, the CINE Eagle award, and the Western States Regional Media Fellowship. Eric Marin has been teaching various courses in picture editing, sound editing and sound recording at UCLA since 1997. Eric is also the recipient of UCLA’s prestigious “Distinguished Teaching Award” for 2007.
GABE MICHAEL (Digital Media: Indie)
Gabe Michael is a Director, Producer, Strategist, and Showrunner who specializes in creating digital series, sharable video content and branded entertainment programs. Recently he served as the executive producer and creative director of Forge Apollo, the video content agency. Prior to Forge Apollo, Gabe was a producer at Break Media (now Defy Media) and a producer for former YouTube multi-channel network Maker Studios, where he oversaw the popular Epic Rap Battles vertical. Praised by New Media Rockstars as having been “involved with just about every established YouTube happening on Earth lately,” Gabe’s shows and videos have amassed over 446 million views and counting. Gabe holds an MFA from UCLA’s Producers Program and an undergraduate degree in Film & Electronic Art from Cal State Long Beach.
MATTHEW MILAM (NAVIGATING THE STUDIO SYSTEM)
Matthew Milan serves as Vice President, Creative for Colombia Pictures. In his three-year tenure, Milman has brought key creative talent into the studio including James Wan, Andy Muschietti, Rick Famuyiwa, and Alex Garland. He has been at the forefront of the studio’s genre initiative, spearheading Columbia’s foray into micro-budget horror and science fiction. Milam has also taken initiative in creating local language co-productions with the London, Paris and China offices. Prior to Columbia, Milam served as Vice President, Creative at David Ellison’s Skydance Media. While there, he packaged HITMAN’S BODYGUARD, which grossed more than $200M world-wide and was a three-week number one domestic hit. He also served as liaison between Skydance and Paramount Pictures on STAR TREK: INTO DARKNESS, G.I. JOE 2, MISSION IMPOSSIBLE: GHOST PROTOCOL and TERMINATOR: GENISYS. Milam also worked at Warner Brothers under Jeff Robinov. While there, he was deemed the go-to “genre” executive and helped oversee CLASS OF THE TITANS, WRATH OF THE TITANS, SUPERMAN, JUSTICE LEAGUE, TERMINATOR: SALVATION and NINJA ASSASSIN. Milam started his career working for Joe Drake and Nathan Kahane at Good Universe. There, he worked hand in hand with the international sales team to identify worldwide film content. Additionally, Milam was the executive on the Sam Raimi Ghost House Pictures’ account where he oversaw BOOGEYMAN 2, GRUDGE 2, and GRUDGE 3. In 2013, Milam was named to Variety’s “Hollywood’s New Leaders and Executives to Watch” list. In 2015 Milam was also named to the Hollywood Reporter’s “35 under 35: The Next Generation” list. Milam grew up in Knoxville, TN where his single mother, a movie theater manager, would leave him to spend his days in the projector booth, thus fostering his love for film.
CHRIS MODOONO (Case Study: Indie Film and TV)
Chris has to be among the tallest directors working today. At a towering 6 feet 5 inches, he possesses the unique competitive advantage of being able to spot colleagues in a crowded area quickly. An experienced Writer/Director, Chris’s most recent project was the feature film Tenured which he co-wrote and directed for Fox Digital. It premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, won the audience award for comedy feature at the Maui Film Festival, and is now on Netflix. He co-wrote and directed the pilot Its A Hit! for The Orchard starring Abby Elliott, Tim Matheson, and Tyler Hilton. In the commercial world Chris worked on Tide’s Super Bowl campaign with Hungry Man Productions, directing several online companion spots. He has also worked with the CBS Early Show, The CBS Evening News, Food Network and HGTV on their promotional campaigns.
TOM NUNAN (Career Planning)
Tom Nunan is a former network (THE CW) and studio (NBC-UNIVERSAL) president, and has held high-ranking positions at both FOX (running all of prime-time and late night) and ABC (running their TV movie division), prior. An alumni of UCLA's TFT (class of '84, via the undergrad program), Tom left the exec ranks 15 years ago to become an independent writer, producer and consultant for media companies and universities. Best known in the producing ranks for his multiple Oscar winning Best Picture film CRASH, Tom has produced lots of independent films, mainstream TV series, reality shows and written over 15 pilots for cable and network. Tom co-founded THE WRITING INTENSIVE with playwright and director LISA EBERSOLE - - available to writers here and around the world. Tom has been giving back to his alma mater UCLA by teaching in the Graduate Producing Program and in the Professional Program in Producing over the last 23 years. Tom has seen Bruce Springsteen perform over 90 times.
ROBIN PELLECK (New Media)
As Vice President, Digital Content for TNT & TBS Original Programming Robyn oversaw the creative development of digital extensions and custom content for all scripted drama, comedy and unscripted series for both of these Turner networks. She served as the primary contact between both networks' series productions and TNT & TBS’ advertising sales, marketing and social media teams to create digital content for linear series. Pelleck’s career began in live news at CNN, leading to many years in network sports. She is proud of her years learning from the sports television legends at Moxie Video Productions, CBS Sports and ABC Sports. NFL, NCAA, NBA, MLB, PGA Golf, Nascar, the Super Bowl, World Series, Monday Night Football, The Final Four, U.S. Open Tennis, The Masters, Indy 500 and The NBA Finals are just a few of the hundreds of live events she has covered from network control rooms. As technology revolutionized the way television is watched, digital and streaming came next. Pelleck produced the first live webcast and interactive smartphone app from New York’s Times Square on New Year’s Eve, covered the 2012 presidential election on YouTube and The Breeders Cup Enhanced Experience live at Santa Anita. Her award-winning, vast and diverse background as a writer, director and producer also includes sports documentary, commercials, television series, studio and remote production, as well as marketing for film and television. She was the founder of order24 productions, a creative and production services company that focused on multi-platform production; integrating and extending traditional television, and creative and remote production with digital and new media. Partners and clients included: Viacom, BET, CBS Sports, ABC Sports/ESPN, NBC, Court TV/TruTV, Sundance Channel, AOL, YouTube, OWN, JWT, Publicis, Edelman Digital, BBDO and Ogilvy. Pelleck began sharing her experiences at the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television in 2013. Her classes in Developing Digital Content launched the UCLA Producers Program Original Productions, YouTube Channel, generating sports and entertainment original content as a joint venture between MFA producing, directing and screenwriting students. She is a member of the Directors Guild of America and Producers Guild of America. A native New Yorker, she is a graduate of The City University of New York at Queens College.
CHRISTOPHER PEREZ (LEGAL ISSUES)
Christopher joined Donaldson & Callif, LLP in 2009 and became a partner in the firm in 2014. Christopher specializes in all aspects of the firm’s practice, including representing independent filmmakers through financing, production, rights clearance and distribution. Since joining the firm, Christopher has helped hundreds of productions secure the errors and omissions insurance policies necessary for distribution. Christopher has also contributed to several of the firm’s advocacy projects, including co-drafting an amicus brief on behalf of documentary filmmaker Joe Berlinger in Chevron Corp. v. Berlinger in the Second Circuit; co-drafting an amicus brief of documentary filmmaker Lee Storey in Storey v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue in the United States Tax Court, and assisting the International Documentary Association on its submission to the Federal Trade Commission regarding net neutrality. Beginning in 2009, Christopher and Michael Donaldson successfully appealed to the U.S. Copyright Office to allow documentary filmmakers to secure an exemption from the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) for extracting material from commercial DVDs for use in their documentary films under the doctrine of fair use. In 2012, Christopher and Michael were able to renew the exemption and expand access to online sources, and in 2015 they secured an even broader exemption for documentary filmmakers so they may access material from Blu-ray discs. Christopher has lectured on fair use and other production, distribution and clearance issues at UCLA, USC, UC Irvine, Cal Arts, Columbia College of Chicago and other institutions. He has also lectured for members of the International Documentary Association and Film Independent and appeared on panels at various film festivals and the Producers Guild of America. Christopher has also written several op-ed pieces for the Daily Journal, LA Lawyer and Realscreen. In 2015, Variety named Christopher one of "Hollywood's New Leaders," recognizing outstanding entertainment industry insiders in various categories. Christopher was one of eight honorees in Law & Finance. Christopher graduated from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor with a BA in American Studies and a minor in Film and Video Studies, where he produced, directed and wrote several student films. After college, Christopher returned home to Los Angeles to work in marketing and membership development for the American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO). He studied law at the Gould School of Law at the University of Southern California. Christopher was Academic Chair of the Latino Law Students’ Association and an active member of the Public Interest Law Foundation, where he had the opportunity to participate in several legal assistance projects for the National Lawyers’ Guild, the AME Church, and Homeboy Industries in Boyle Heights. During law school, Christopher worked for California Lawyers for the Arts, Technicolor, and the Cyberlaw Clinic at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School, where he worked on an array of cutting-edge entertainment, Internet, intellectual property and privacy issues. Aside from his legal work, Christopher enjoys managing and playing for his soccer team Esquire FC. He is particularly proud of the Donaldson + Callif team that won first place at the 2015 Los Angeles Film and Entertainment Soccer Tournament (LAFEST) hosted by the LA Galaxy Foundation. Christopher lives in Los Angeles with his wife Maria and his dog Bill Paxton.
BILLY RAY (Story Structure)
Billy's most recent project is this season's Overlord. He wrote and directed Secret In Their Eyes (starring Nicole Kidman, Julia Roberts and Chiwetel Ejiofor), received an Oscar Nomination for writing Captain Phillips (starring Tom Hanks), co-wrote the feature adaptation of the hit book The Hunger Games (starring Jennifer Lawrence, wrote Shattered Glass (starring Hayden Christensen and Chloe Sevigny), and wrote/directed Breach (starring Ryan Phillippe, Chris Cooper, and Laura Linney). He graduated from UCLA’s School of Theater, Film and Television.
ADAM SAUNDERS (Case Study: Making Your Film)
Adam Saunders is the CEO of Footprint Features (www.footprintfeatures.com). He has served as the lead producer of Footprint’s first four films: the 2018 Netflix Original When We First Met (dir. Ari Sandel) starring Adam Devine (Workaholics, Pitch Perfect) and Alexandra Daddario (True Detective, Baywatch) which debuted at #1 on the platform in 120 countries for the entire first month of its release; the 2017 Netflix Original Shimmer Lake (writer/dir: Oren Uziel (22 Jump Street) starring Benjamin Walker, Rainn Wilson, Rob Corddry, and Ron Livingston), About Alex (writer/dir: Jesse Zwick, starring Nate Parker, Maggie Grace, Aubrey Plaza, and Max Greenfield) alongside Oscar winning filmmakers Edward Zwick and Marshall Herskovitz, which played the 2014 TriBeCa Film Festival and was sold to Sony Worldwide, and Family Weekend (dir: Benjamin Epps, starring Kristin Chenoweth, Matthew Modine, Joey King and Shirley Jones) also alongside Bedford Falls, which was sold to Paramount worldwide and released in 2013. He was the co-founder and Artistic Director of the professional theater company Footprint on the Sun, upon whose foundation Footprint Features was built. He holds a BA in Drama from Duke University and an MFA in Acting from the Yale School of Drama.
KATE P. SERFOSS (Legal Issues)
Kate Serfoss joined Donaldson + Callif in 2016. She works in all areas of the firm’s entertainment law practice, representing production and media companies in the motion picture, scripted and unscripted television and digital media industries, as well as representing producers, directors, writers and actors. She guides clients through all stages of production, including rights acquisition, clearance, development, production and distribution. Kate received her B.A. in Art History and International Studies from Pepperdine University. Her experience in the art world and her studies of the political, legal, social, and economic factors that shape creative output inspired her to pursue a career in art and entertainment law. Kate received her J.D. from Loyola Law School, Los Angeles where she concentrated in Entertainment and Digital Media Law. During that time, Kate volunteered for California Lawyers for the Arts and worked for leading media corporations, including Paramount Pictures, Viacom Media Networks, and Legendary Entertainment.
Eric W. Shamlin (IMMERSIVE MEDIA)
LINDA SILLS (DOCUMENTARIES)
Linda is Series Producer on the BBC’s foreign affairs documentary strand Our World which reaches a global audience of 330 million. As part of her brief, she executive produces and co-manages a slate of 38 films per year, overseeing the commissioning and production of stories from inception to air. As a filmmaker she has more than 30 documentary credits for producing, writing and directing, including Saudi’s Secret Uprising which won the Best Investigative Documentary award from the Association of International Broadcasting - and the ground-breaking Fallout 9/11 which earned her a nomination in the environment category from the Foreign Press Association. Prior to Our World, Linda was Senior Producer on the BBC’s flagship interview program, HARDtalk, producing more than 250 interviews on location around the world with leading figures including Nelson Mandela, Donald Trump and the Dalai Lama. She holds a Master’s in International Journalism from the City University in London and studied International & Comparative Politics at the London School of Economics. In 2002, Linda took a career break from the BBC and completed the UCLA Professional Program in Screenwriting.
ANGELA SOSTRE (Line Producing/Low Budget Filmmaking)
Angela works as a freelance Producer/Line Producer. With her UPM Joel Henry, the two have produced commercials, music videos, as well as over twenty five feature films such as Spork, God Bless America, and Almost Kings (Netflix competition winner). Their recent projects include Behaving Badly, starring Elisabeth Shue, Dylan McDermott, and Heather Graham; Cold Turkey, starring Peter Bogdanovich, Cheryl Hines and Alicia Witt; and Camp X-Ray, starring Kristen Stewart.
JOHN STRAUSS (CREATING A TV SERIES)
John credits as a screenwriter include There's Something About Mary, Santa Clause II, Santa Clause III, starring Tim Allen and The Lizzie McGuire Movie starring Hillary Duff and Freebirds, a computer animated feature, starring Owen Wilson and Woody Harrelson. Box office receipts of the aforementioned films total in excess of a billion dollars internationally. Additionally, with Free Birds partner David Stern, John is currently writing a computer animated feature, Renaissance, for Prana Studios. He also produced You Again for Touchstone Pictures, starring Kristen Bell, Sigourney Weaver and Jamie Lee Curtis at Disney. He's currently producing a feature film comedy, The Brag, for 5x5 Media. On the television side, John executive produced, the Golden Globe winning series, Mozart in the Jungle for Amazon Prime and has also executive produced , In Plain Sight for USA Network, as well as The Client List, for Lifetime Network. John is currently writing a television pilot, Over the Top, for the Freeform network, featuring several YouTube stars. He's also writing a pilot for truTV, called Playa del Sol, based on a Swedish format of the same name, and starring Rhys Darby. He is also adapting There's Something About Mary as a Broadway musical.
HOWARD SUBER (Strategic Thinking)
During his 52 years on the UCLA faculty, Howard Suber helped establish and also chaired the Critical Studies and Ph.D. programs, UCLA Film & Television Archive and the UCLA TFT Producers Program. He is a former UCLA TFT associate dean. He is a recipient of UCLA’s Distinguished Teaching Award as well as the prestigious 2013-2014 Dickson Emeriti Professorship Award, the highest honor bestowed upon a retired UCLA faculty member. He has also been a consultant and expert witness to all the major film studios on copyright and creative control issues, and he continues to teach the UCLA TFT courses Film Structure and Strategic Thinking in the Film and Television Industries. He is the author of The Power of Film and Letters to Young Filmmakers.
MATT TAUBER (GETTING INDIE FILMS MADE)
Matt is currently producing the AMC /Sony Pictures Television series Preacher created by Sam Catlin, Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. He is also developing and producing a series with Fox International Channels based on the novel The Prop about a female poker player who gets caught up in the dangerous world of the Indian reservation gaming industry. In film, Matt recently produced Meadowland written by Chris Rossi. The film features Olivia Wilde, Luke Wilson, Giovanni Ribisi, John Leguizamo and Elizabeth Moss and premiered at Tribeca Film Festival. Matt previously produced The Great New Wonderful featuring Maggie Gyllenhaal, Edie Falco, Tony Shalhoub, Jim Parsons, Stephen Colbert and The Architect featuring Viola Davis, Anthony LaPaglia, Sebastian Stan and Walton Goggins which Matt wrote and directed with the assistance of the Sundance Institute.
EVETTE VARGAS (Multiplatform Storytelling)
With a repertoire spanning TV, digital, Virtual Reality and more, Evette is emblematic of Hollywood’s new breed of multiplatform storytelling talent. Described by the NY Times as an “Artist to Watch,” Evette is an award-winning writer, director, producer and co-founder of Digital-Reign, a multiplatform production company. Evette’s work includes mobile apps/games for Fast and Furious and Lord of the Rings trilogy; 360 content for Madonna.com, Interscope/Geffen/A&M and Looney Tunes; series for Bravo and DirectTV. Evette EPed, wrote and directed her digital series, Dark Prophet, starring Henry Rollins, which was in contention for two Emmys in the interactive category, premiered at Sundance and won an NBC/UNI Production Award. The Virtual Reality comic series is in the works. Evette is developing projects with Viacom/MTV and A+E Networks. A member of the Television Academy, WGA and PGA, Evette grew up drawing, painting and telling stories at the dinner table where the imagination ruled. Follow @VargasGirl @HearTheWarning.
KURT WOOLNER (COMPLETION BONDS)
Kurt Woolner is President of Film Finances Inc. Film Finances provides financiers with a service that gives them an assurance that the film will be delivered on time and that the over-budget costs will not be the financier’s responsibility. Film Finances has given completion guarantees to all leading banks in the entertainment industry, major film studios and distributors. In all, they have guaranteed nearly 6,000 Feature Films, Television Series, Documentaries and Streaming Productions. Notable films include: Arrival, Slumdog Millionaire, Pulp Fiction, La La Land, King’s Speech, Beasts of No Nation, Kingsman: The Secret Service, Divergent, The Grand Budapest Hotel, 12 Years a Slave, The Hunger Games, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Descendants, 127 Hours, Black Swan and many more.
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Applications are now being accepted for the Winter 2018 Professional Program in Producing.