Writer, Director, Editor
As a teacher at Millikan Middle School in Sherman Oaks, California, I felt the troubling trends in public education needed to be explained as my coworkers and I faced repeated pink slips over the state budget crisis. The documentary asks the question, "Who will be left to teach our children?" Pink Slip is aimed at bringing awareness to the community and politicians and convince lawmakers to provide a stable annual budget for education. It was shared by UTLA and showcased at the Occupy Wall Street demonstration.
Go Public: A Day in the Life of an American School District
I was one of 50 directors on the Go Public documentary project. The goal was to show school life from the point of view of the students, teachers, parents, administrators, and school staff. Filmmakers followed their subjects for one complete day to create a full picture of what goes on with our students inside our schools. It showcases the struggles and triumphs of public education in our modern world.
Produced by Jim and Dawn O'Keeffe at Blue Field Productions, this documentary continues to be screened all over the country.
Planet of the Apes
Assistant Music Editor
In 2001 I was hired as an assistant music editor for Danny Elfman on Tim Burton's Planet of the Apes. It was my second big studio film and the first time I ever had to sign a non-disclosure agreement due to the avid interest in entertainment media over the plot. I have a ton of fond memories of working at the Fox Newman Scoring Stage and to this day my favorite place in the world. It's not the prettiest scoring stage but it just smelled like film history to me. I believe to this day our scoring session on this film holds some kind of record at the studio for the most musicians on one film score. There were sessions of the orchestra, chorus, percussion, and of course a ton of synth tracks to manage. My job was to get the takes organized, labeled correctly, sorted into a ProTools session for editing, and quite frankly...to stay out of everyone's way.
Every now and then at mealtimes we got to have a break and I would strain my ears to learn whatever I could from everyone around me. Absolutely brilliant.
Catch Me If You Can
Assistant Music Editor
From 2002-2004 I was lucky enough to get to work with my hero, John Williams, on several film scores as his assistant music editor. While Catch Me If You Can might not be the most famous film on that list, it is my favorite. I love the way the cool, quirky 1950's jazz score enhances the wonderful performances of the actors and brilliant storytelling of Steven Spielberg.
Having the experience of working with these people gave me a foundation for what I came to expect later on of my film students: always keep your eye on your artistic vision, don't create or tolerate drama from anyone, be kind, work hard, remember the names of all of your cast and crew, and give the people you hired to work with you what they need to do their best work.