Director BIO: Marcus C. W. Chan (PENTHOUSE SWEET)

Director Biography – Marcus C. W. Chan

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Marcus was born and raised in Hong Kong. After completing law school in Hong Kong, he practiced real estate financing law for nearly a decade before moving to Los Angeles to pursue an MFA in film directing & production at UCLA in 2012.

Marcus is primarily interested in the finer details and open-ended nature of everyday life. He prefers the psychological to the material and wishes to explore with his work the fragility of life and the lack of easy answers the world offers.

During his time at UCLA he wrote, directed, produced and edited a number of short films that have been accepted by film festivals around the world. His UCLA thesis, “Palace”, is executive produced by James Franco and features Academy Award winner Whoopi Goldberg.

He has also been honored with numerous awards during his time at UCLA, including a Hollywood Foreign Press Association Award, a Motion Picture Association of America Award and the Cirque du Soleil Fellowship. Since graduating from UCLA in 2016 he has continued to develop his own projects and also took part in Francis Ford Coppola’s experimental project “Distant Vision”.

In 2016, he was selected to join BAFTA LA’s Newcomers Program, an initiative by BAFTA to help promising British nationals fully realize their potential in the industry.

Director Statement

I was constantly asking myself the question: is total honesty in relationships really possible or is it something that you can only find in fiction? This eventually led to the sitcom vs reality story.

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Director BIO: Dana Nachman (THE FINAL SHOW)

Director Biography – Dana Nachman

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Nachman’s 2015 film “Batkid Begins” was bought and distributed by Warner Brothers. Previously she wrote, directed and co-produced the documentaries “Witch Hunt,” which was executive produced by Sean Penn and premiered at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival; “Love Hate Love,” which premiered at the 2011 Tribeca Film Festival; and “The Human Experiment,” which screened at the Mill Valley and IDFA Film Festivals. She has won a number of awards over the course of her career, including three regional Emmy Awards, The Edward R. Murrow Award, and more than a dozen Jury and Audience Awards at film festivals.
Nachman’s films have also been seen on various television networks, including MSNBC, The Oprah Winfrey Network and PBS. In addition to her film work, Nachman is a guest journalism lecturer at Stanford University.
In 2016 Nachman was chosen to participate in the American Film Showcase where she will travel as a US envoy as a part of this prestigious film diplomacy program.
Born and raised in New York, Nachman graduated from Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut with a dual degree in Middle Eastern Studies and International Relations. She went on to earn a Master’s Degree from NYU in Broadcast Journalism.
“Batkid Begins” premiered at the 2015 Slamdance Film Festival and has since been honored at film festivals across the country, winning Audience Awards for Best Documentary at the Cinequest, Omaha, Dallas, Ashland, and Rincón International Film Festivals. Additionally, it has been an official selection at the Bentonville and Chicago Critics Film Festivals and received the Heartland Film Truly Moving Picture Award and the Common Sense Media Seal and the Dove Foundation Seal.
Nachman is currently in production on a feature documentary called “Pick of the Litter” which follows a litter of puppies from birth until they make the cut to become Guide Dogs for the Blind or get cut from the program (think Spellbound or Hoop Dreams for dogs.) Nachman is also on the film festival circuit with her first two short films. The documentary “Washed Away” about a man whose only relief from excruciating chronic pain is to make magnificent sand mandalas that are swept away by the tide hours later. “The Final Show” is Nachman’s first foray into fiction filmmaking and stars Marion Ross who plays a woman who has died at the breakfast table and gets catapulted into The Between where she has to quickly decide which of her loves to take along to eternity.

Director BIO: Ali Presley Paras (AUTOMATED IRRITATION)

Ali Presley Paras is an MTVu nominated/VEVO featured Director that believes music videos must be visceral and conceptual.

In addition to creating music videos, Ali Presley Paras has worked with Billboard Music, Wells Fargo, Top Chef, Gordon Biersch, NBC Digital. etc. Ali Presley Paras most recently wrapped as Jr. Camera Operator on a pilot for Magical Elves.

Ali has spent his childhood growing up all over the U.S., living in states such as California, Massachusetts, Oregon and even Alaska. Despite his travels, he strongly identifies with the charming nature of his native Bostonians, where his family was raised and currently resides.

Instagram

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Director: Lance Khazei (NAMCAR NIGHT RACE)

Director Biography – Lance Khazei

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Lance Khazei is an Emmy nominated writer, award winning producer and festival festooned director with produced credits in television, feature film and new media. A prolific writer and creator, Lance has developed and written television comedy for Fox, ABC, MTV, Dreamworks, Disney Animation, Klasky Csupo, Jim Henson Productions, Cartoon Network, Comedy Central, and NBC Studios. He has written late night and sketch comedy for the Emmy Award winning “Politically Incorrect” with Bill Maher, the Emmy nominated “House of Buggin’ with John Leguizamo,” as well as ABC’s Emmy nominated animated shorts series “Great Minds” with Robin Williams. Lance made a splash in feature film when he sold his first two original screenplays. Khazei sold “Romantic Comedy,” the first screenplay he ever penned, to MGM. The scribe set up his second original screenplay “Baby Formula” at New Line. While Khazei did not participate in the production rewrites, “Baby Formula” was redeveloped as the theatrical release “Son of the Mask.” Lance has written additional feature films for New Line, Warner Brothers and Columbia Pictures, working primarily in the comedy and action genres. Lance sold his action comedy graphic novel “Dionysus” to Archie Comics Entertainment. Lance produced HuffPost Live for its run in Los Angeles. The show was named Mashable’s Best Media Innovation of 2012 and earned a Webby Award in 2013. Lance was named a producer to watch in 2015 by Indie’s UNITE! Lance Khazei is breaking through as a director of ascending comedy talent. Fox Digital hired Lance to write and direct the sports competition comedy “BRA League” featuring Rob Delaney (Amazon’s “Catastrophe”) and Brittany Furlan (the Queen of Vine). “NAMCAR Night Race”, an independent television comedy Lance wrote, directed and executive produced has screened to 25 wins and honors on the festival circuit worldwide. The show features Theo Von (Netflix’s “Theo Von: No Offense”), Scout Durwood (MTV’s “Mary + Jane”), Whitney Rice (Amazon’s “The Last Tycoon”), Ian Abramson (Comedy Central’s “Seven Minutes in Purgatory”) and James Morosini (FX’s “American Horror Story”). Lance is the son of an Iranian-American surgeon and an Italian-American nurse who met in the operating room in Pittsburgh. Lance was born in Boston and raised in Bedford, New Hampshire. Before his work in the entertainment industry, Lance graduated from Harvard with honors and worked for City Year, a domestic Peace Corps.

 

Director Statement

NAMCAR NIGHT RACE 
Writer Director’s Statement

Saturday Night Live’s “Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer.” Tim and Eric Awesome Show’s “Original Child Clown Outlet.” David Letterman’s Alka Selzer suit. These irreverent, odd and absurdist bits of late night comedy amuse me, and I’ve always wanted to create a show that elicits laughs by flouting convention and serving up inspired moments of ludicrous nonsense. That’s the comedic sensibility beneath NAMCAR Night Race, a mock reality competition show depicting a league of adults who take racing toy cars so seriously their heads will explode. After all, reality programming has been with us now, and seemingly omnipresent, for more than two decades. Isn’t it time we take the piss out of the genre in the same way that “Spinal Tap” and “Best in Show” define landmark mockumentary comedies? Don’t expect meaty, independent drama, or even a traditional narrative. Instead, I am shooting for satire, a funny sports entertainment league, and relentlessly fresh sketch and bit comedy. And while NAMCAR is a postmodern, dadaistic comedy, the aesthetic of model car racing is rooted in yesterday’s charm.

Growing up in the 80s, it seemed every red-blooded kid in America dreamed of being a race car driver and the toy of choice for a child’s birthday was an electric race car set. Like many children, I recall lying down at eye level with the track and watching the cars rush by as I gunned my controller. The daydream and escapism was intense. And it was surreal because one was living out the fantasy in miniature. Killing the lights and watching tiny toy car headlights streak around the track was mesmerizing. Smelling the burn of those tiny engines, even today, gives one an enthusiast’s high and a whiff of nostalgia.

Today, those children of NASCAR, Indy Racing and Formula One are adults and many worldwide are throwing fun money at the hobby and competing in garages, basements and slot car clubs, some on incredibly detailed modeled tracks through miniature racing worlds. It is both a testament to how powerful the dream remains and also amusing to see adults take the toy experience so seriously. My fascination with the hobby inspired a feature film comedy which I’ve written and hope to direct. And the slot car racing subculture led me to this project, a comedy about a league of adults who compete tooth and nail, after hours, in a fictional model car racing league.

In NAMCAR Night Race, drivers push the limits of their slot cars, friendships and bitter rivalries as they brave extremely fake conditions and the last frontier in racing, a frontier of plaster, plastic and diecast metal. A “NASCAR on acid,” the show introduces itself as a mock sports league, but slowly devolves into more and more bits of surrealistic comedy, inspired by the mind bending nature of this hobby’s small scale and the fact that we’re watching adults engrossed in child’s play.

While I wanted to create a comedy that was character driven and rooted in a simple racing competition plot, my intention is to also be humorously disorienting with the form. As such, NAMCAR Night Race is a show which can take unannounced left turns into unexpected terrain. It’s a show in which comedic takes on entertainment tropes blend one into another and in which anything might be a head trip. That postmodern sensibility and the challenge of making a miniature car race both amusing and adrenaline pumping implied a fresh show stylistically and excited me as a filmmaker.

This is the first time I’ve directed an extended piece, and I’m hoping it not only launches a NAMCAR Night Race series, but that it also lays the groundwork for my feature film inspired by model car racing. My other motivation in attempting this project was to escape the constraints of the studio system. As a professional comedy writer, I’ve had the pleasure of writing for television and feature film and some extraordinarily talented actors and comedians. But like many writers, especially in feature film, I’ve been frustrated by the sausage making factory. If you have ever written an original screenplay, only to watch it become a studio sequel to a pre-existing franchise, a Frankenstein monster of what you originally intended, then you can relate. That experience created a desire to attempt a piece from start to finish I could call my own, infused with a fresh cast of comedic talent and an original brand of comedy. That’s NAMCAR Night Race.

thank you for your consideration,
Lance Khazei
writer, director, producer

Short Film: ALTERNATIVE MATH, 9min, USA, Comedy

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A well meaning math teacher finds herself trumped by a post-fact America.

  • Film Type:
    Short
  • Runtime:
    9 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    May 22, 2017
  • Production Budget:
    9,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Film Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    RED
  • Aspect Ratio:
    16:9
  • Film Color:
    Color

Director BIO: CJ Colando

Director Biography

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CJ Colando graduated with a film degree from Penn State University in 2014 and has since worked behind the scenes on large scale productions such as the films of Woody Allen, Comedy Central’s INSIDE AMY SCHUMER and Amazon’s MOZART IN THE JUNGLE.

Director Statement

Let’s be honest. Far too often, reading a director’s statement for a short film is an exercise in tolerating unhealthy levels of self-indulgence from undeserving filmmakers. Perhaps I’m one of them. I actually yelled “Yuck!” out loud, several times, while writing the first pass at this. But if you’re still reading this far, I appreciate you sticking it out. I promise I’ll be quick.

The screenplay for JAKE & JULIA was written quite spontaneously as an exercise in short, comedic narrative writing. Eventually, enough successful industry professionals, whose opinions I considered to be more than worthy, suggested it be made into a short.

I knew actors Swann Gruen (Jake) and Booker Garrett (Chelsea the bartender) through my tenure in the AD department on Comedy Central’s INSIDE AMY SCHUMER, and once they had expressed their enthusiasm after reading the script, I conceded that this film should probably come to life. Actress Sarah Pribis (Julia), of the viral “Shiney Hiney” fame, became the last piece of the puzzle after throwing her into a successful blind rehearsal with Swann and Booker. Together, they made the characters into what I perceived them to be on paper: ones that skate the line of tired cliche, but just miss. Jake is almost the stupid pervy boyfriend archetype, but never fully goes into paint chips territory. Likewise, Julia just narrowly avoids being the stereotypical annoying, nagging, fun-hating girlfriend.

What some may hopefully find refreshing, and others will find juvenile, is the semi-superficiality of JAKE & JULIA. There is no existential theme, no social commentary, but rather has the single goal of being entertaining to an audience. Every stand-up comedian I have ever gotten to know has emitted an attractive, irrefutable desire to become a pleasant distraction from the stresses and horrors of real life. In many ways, we can argue this is the goal of JAKE & JULIA. If you can forget about real life for 12 minutes, we’ve done our job. If you find it funny, that’s just a bonus.

(So that wasn’t too bad, huh? I admit it got a little douchey by the last paragraph. I apologize.)

Director BIO: Gonzaga Manso (EDEN HOSTEL)

Biography   Biography
My name is Gonzaga, I’m a director and photographer and I work mainly in advertising and art. I have had the pleasure of working for clients such as Pepsi, Movistar, Sony and Smart, and with agencies such as DDB, McCann-Erickson, Contrapunto BBDO and TBWA. Some of those works have been awarded in important international festivals, others not. As a cinematographer, I have worked together with prestigious Spanish directors such as Javier Fesser, Borja Cobeaga and Julio Medem. Hostal Edén is my first short film.