Morgan Spurlock is a New York based writer, director and producer. His first film, Super Size Me, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2004 and won him Best Directing honors. The film went on to win the inaugural Writers Guild of America best documentary screenplay award as well as garner an Academy Award nomination for best feature documentary.
Since then he has directed, produced and distributed multiple film and TV projects, including the critically acclaimed FX television series, 30 Days, and the films Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden, Confessions of a Superhero, Czech Dream, Chalk, The Future of Food, What Would Jesus Buy?, and Freakonomics.
In 2010 Morgan was nominated for a primetime Emmy Award as well as a Writer’s Guild Award for The Simpsons 20th Anniversary Special: In 3-D! On Ice!. His film The Greatest Movie Ever Sold and its accompanying TED talk explore the world of product placement and advertising, while being completely funded by product placement and advertising. The film premiered at Sundance 2011 and was the first film to sell. Morgan’s latest feature film, Comic-Con Episode Four: A Fan’s Hope, is now in theaters as of April 6th, 2012.
Jeremy Chilnick is an Emmy nominated film and television producer. He is a partner at Morgan Spurlock’s production company, Warrior Poets, where he currently oversees all aspects of production and development.
After co-producing the Shopocalpyse-chronicling documentary What Would Jesus Buy?, as well as the official Cannes selection The Third Wave, Jeremy has gone on to write, produce, and executive-produce multiple films and television shows. Since 2008, Chilnick has co-written and co-produced Where in the World is Osama Bin Laden?, The Simpsons 20th Anniversary Special: In 3-D! on Ice!, the documentary adaptation of The New York Times best-selling Freakonomics and, most recently, POM Wonderful Presents: The Greatest Movie Ever Sold. Chilnick also was nominated for a Writer’s Guild of America nomination for his work on The Simpsons 20th Anniversary Special: In 3-D! on Ice!.
Actor, Producer and Director Jason Bateman earned an Emmy Award nomination, two Screen Actor’s Guild nominations and was honored with a Golden Globe Award in 2004 for Best Actor in a Comedy Series for his work in the Mitch Hurwitz created, multi-award winning comedy series, Arrested Development.
While Bateman’s starring role in the Emmy Award-winning FOX comedy series Arrested Development brought a newfound appreciation with the public, it also caught the attention of the motion picture industry and reinvigorated their interest in Bateman. As a result, Bateman has attained “leading man” status on the big screen while maintaining his roots in television by continuing to produce, write and develop projects for the small screen.
Most recently in February, 2012, Bateman was bit by the producing bug. He secured a two-year first look producing deal with Universal Pictures and Universal Television for Aggregate Films, the production company he formed. Bateman’s first major film credit at Universal will come on Identity Theft, a project written for him to play a man who has his identity stolen and life turned upside down. Bateman also set up Under the Banner of Heaven, a drama based on the Jon Krakauer nonfiction book at Warner Bros, which has Ron Howard attached to direct with Dustin Lance Black writing, and Bateman producing with Brian Grazer, Shannon Costello and Stephanie Davis. In addition to Identity Theft (which Bateman is producing with Scott Stuber), they have set up The Disappeared, a film Aggregate will coproduce with Imagine, with Oren Uziel and Rob Letterman writing.
In 2011, Bateman co-starred in the Warner Brothers’ ensemble comedy Horrible Bosses alongside Jennifer Aniston, Colin Farrell, Jamie Foxx, Charlie Day and Jason Sudekis. Also that year, Bateman was seen opposite Ryan Reynolds in the Universal Pictures comedy, The Change Up and in the Greg Mottola directed, Nick Frost and Simon Pegg written Universal and Working Title comedy Paul.
In August 2010, Bateman starred with Jennifer Aniston in the Mandate Pictures romantic comedy film, The Switch. Moving off-screen in January 2010, Bateman and his longtime friend and Arrested Development co-star, Will Arnett, announced the creation of their digital content and production company, DumbDumb Productions. DumbDumb, working in partnership with Ben Silverman’s multimedia studio Electus, allows Bateman and Arnett to create and produce commercials, shorts and original content to be distributed on the internet and for the film industry.
In 2009, Bateman was seen in a variety of film roles including in a supporting role opposite George Clooney in Paramount Pictures’ Golden Globe and Academy Award-nominated film Up in the Air, co-starring alongside Vince Vaughn, Kristen Bell, Jon Favreau, Kristin Davis and Malin Akerman Couples Retreat, and headlining the Miramax feature, Extract directed by Mike Judge and produced by Bateman through his F+A Production banner. Later that year, Bateman had a memorable cameo in the Ricky Gervais penned and directed comedy, The Invention of Lying, and delivered an emotionally charged performance in Universal Pictures’ crime drama State of Play directed by Kevin Macdonald.
Earlier in his career, Bateman played a starring role in one of the biggest success stories in independent filmmaking with Fox Searchlight’s gem, Juno. The film was nominated in 2008 for Best Film by most major film critics’ groups, as well as by the Hollywood Foreign Press and Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. Juno came on the heels of Bateman co-starring in the Peter Berg directed action film Hancock. Teaming up once again with Berg, Bateman showed his dramatic side. In 2007 he co-starred opposite Jamie Foxx, Chris Cooper and Jennifer Garner in the Universal Pictures drama The Kingdom, an action-thriller set in Saudi Arabia. Prior to this, Bateman starred opposite Dustin Hoffman and Natalie Portman in the Fox/Mandate Pictures family fantasy film Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium for ingénue director and writer Zach Helm.
Bateman’s other recent film roles include a scheming boyfriend in the Miramax comedy The Ex starring with Zach Braff and Amanda Peet; a mutual friend torn between Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston’s characters’ sinking relationship in The Break Up; and a loose-lipped sports commentator in 20th Century Fox’s comedy Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story starring Vince Vaughn & Ben Stiller. Bateman also co-starred in the Warner Bros. film Starsky & Hutch andin the romantic comedy, The Sweetest Thing.
Dating back to his adolescent and teenage years, Bateman’s portrayal of the charming schemer, Derek Taylor, in Silver Spoons prompted NBC to create a spin-off, It’s Your Move, starring Bateman. He then starred with Valerie Harper in her serial series, Valerie, Valerie’s Family and The Hogan Family from 1986-1991 and, prior to this, was a series regular on the iconic television series with Michael Landon that has become an American treasure, Little House on the Prairie.
Will Arnett can currently be seen on NBC’s hit comedy Up All Night opposite of Christina Applegate and Maya Rudolph. Arnett plays Applegate’s stay-at-home husband in the show which explores parenthood through the eyes of an acerbic working mother.
Off-screen, Arnett partnered with Jason Bateman to form DumbDumb Productions, a digital content and production studio in partnership with Ben Silverman’s multimedia studio Electus. DumbDumb creates and produces brand-inspired entertainment content that reaches audiences across all forms of social, digital and traditional media.
Arnett is best known for his work on the critically acclaimed Fox sitcom Arrested Development, where he portrayed “Gob Bluth” for three seasons and earned his first Emmy nomination. He also starred in Fox’s comedy series Running Wilde opposite of Kerri Russell where he also wrote for the series alongside writer/director Mitch Hurwitz. Arnett frequently guest stars on NBC’s 30 Rock playing ‘Devon Banks, a role which last year earned him his third Emmy nomination, this time for “Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series.” Teaming again with creator Mitch Hurwitz, Arnett lent his voice to Fox’s animated sitcom Sit Down, Shut Up.
Arnett’s film credits include Jonah Hex, When in Rome, G-Force, Semi Pro, Monsters vs. Aliens, Blades of Glory, Horton Hears a Who and The Brothers Solomon.
His additional television credits include guest-starring roles on Parks and Recreation, Sex and the City, The Sopranos, Will & Grace, Boston Public, Third Watch and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. Arnett’s other feature credits include Ice Age 2: The Meltdown, R.V. opposite Robin Williams, Monster-In-Law, The Waiting Game, The Broken Giant, Southie and Ed’s Next Move.
Ben Silverman is an Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning producer, show creator and Founder and Chairman of Electus, a multimedia production and distribution studio created in partnership with Barry Diller’s IAC. Electus is at the forefront of cross platform content and global IP distribution. Prior to Electus, Silverman served as Co-Chairman of NBC Entertainment and Universal Media Studios from June 2007.
During two strike hampered seasons, Silverman delivered extraordinary results by extending the lives of shows such as Friday Night Lights, 30 Rock and launching Celebrity Apprentice. Silverman also created the innovative business model of connecting advertisers to the development process earlier, thus addressing the DVR led technological hurdles –a model that has since by adopted by all four major networks.
Before his work at NBC, Silverman launched Reveille, a production and distribution company focusing on exploiting worldwide intellectual property rights through scripted and alternative television formats where he created The Biggest Loser and Golden Globe nominated The Tudors as well as executive produced The Office and Ugly Betty. At Silverman’s Electus he is the co-creator and executive producer of the hit reality series Fashion Star, Mob Wives and the upcoming epic action/adventure series Marco Polo, slated to premiere on Starz in 2013.
Jack Passion is an American musician, author, speaker, and media personality, most recognized for his award-winning beard.
Jack’s first book, The Facial Hair Handbook offers beard growing and grooming tips for the beard in and on every man, rookie or champion. Part motivational treatise, part how-to manual, the book is a fun and quick read that makes a great gift.
Now in its second printing, The Facial Hair Handbook is available wherever books are sold.Jack Passion stars in IFC’s Whisker Wars, a reality docu-series that follows members of Beard Team USA around the country on their way to the World Beard and Moustache Championships. Coming August 5, 2011. Sign up to stay posted.Passion has won first prize Natural Full Beard twice; first at the World Beard and Moustache Championships held in Brighton, England, in 2007, and then again Anchorage, Alaska in 2009. Most recently, he placed second in the category in Trondheim, Norway. In addition to the world titles, highlight honors include a first place victory at the European Championships, and a first place, perfect score victory at the German Championships, both firsts for any American.
Also notable: “Big Red” has placed, if not won, every event it has been entered in.
In 2008, after an entire life of dedication to the art and craft, Jack Passion quit music. If it sounds dramatic, it’s because it was: “I couldn’t even listen to music… even one note would call to mind years of the tired beaten-dead-horse cliches that line the record-store-mausoleums of dead, failed dreams.” Yikes! And so the silence from the award-winning bass player was as golden as the fleece that grows from his face. Cynical about music, and preoccupied with his advancing beard career, it wasn’t until being dragged in as producer on a friend’s musical project did Jack agree to dust off the tapes of his grand opus.
A lyrical interpretation of a 19th century impressionist painting, set to a truly American-influenced backdrop of rock ‘n’ roll, Jack Passion’s tentatively-titled “At the Opera,” is an ambitious concept album that is dripping wet with vibe.
Will Passion regroup the Jack Passion Sextet, or even release the record described as “Hot, sweaty, oiled bodies dancing whilst their hearts break and/or they find God?” Nobody knows, not even Jack himself.
Shawn Daivari was born on April 30th 1984 in Minneapolis, MN. He’s the middle child with one older and one younger brother. Born a full blooded Iranian, Shawn’s Mother and Father immigrated to the United States from Tehran in the 70′s where they hoped to find more opportunity for themselves and for the children they had planned to raise.
At age 15 Shawn began training to become a professional wrestler. Wrestling at small independent shows in front of crowds of 20 to a 200 people. Shawn perfected his craft wherever he could, often driving hundreds of miles on his own dollar just to get some ring time, then driving all through the night to get home just in time to shower and head off to school. In August of 2004 Shawn signed a contract with the World Wrestling Entertainment where he was seen performing on a regular basis on their blockbuster prime-time TV programs Monday Night RAW and Friday Night Smackdown as well as monthly WWE pay-per-views. Since signing with WWE Shawn has had the opportunity to work with many of the industry’s top performers including John Cena, Shawn Michaels, The Undertaker, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Rowdy Roddy Piper, Hulk Hogan and many others. In early 2008 Daivari completed several succesfull tours of the Orient wrestling for All-Japan Pro Wrestling. There he worked with the likes of Japanese wrestling stars Keji Muto, Kaz Hayashi, Kenski Sauski and was part of the largest heel stable in Japan, the Voodoo Murderers. June 2008 Shawn Daivari signed a contract to wrestle for TNA Wrestling. Daivari, now going by Sheik Abdul Bashir on TNA broadcasts, performed every Thursday night on SpikeTV on TNA’s weekly broadcast show, TNA iMPACT! as well as on TNA live events, international tours, and pay-per-views. In 2010 Shawn Daivari returned to Ring of Honor Wrestling, where he wrestled a brief stint in early 2004. Now wrestling as his own man, under his real full name, Shawn Daivari has made a big impact upon his return and can be seen performing every Monday night on HDNet, as well as on ROH live events around the U.S.
Laura Caraccioli is the Executive Vice President of Advertising for Electus. She is responsible for changing the way content creators and advertisers interact and creating, developing, and producing top-quality programming in digital, TV and film. She is an Executive Producer on the hit NBC fashion competition series Fashion Star, NBC’s holiday special A Michael Buble Christmas, and on the Syfy hit Ultimate Gamer.
Prior to joining Electus, Laura served as Executive Vice President of Starcom MediaVest Group, one of the largest brand communication companies in the world, driving innovation in content, programming and branded entertainment for blue chip clients such as Kellogg’s, Disney Studios, Applebee’s, Walgreens, Bank of America, Samsung and Blackberry to name a few.
Before Starcom MediaVest Group, Laura served as Director of TV Programming at Leo Burnett USA where she executive produced all client-funded programming. In previous years, Laura served as Director of International Co-Production & Sales at PBS/WTTW-TV and Director of International Co-Production & Sales for PBS/WTTW-TV respectively where she was responsible for selling television formats and negotiating co-production deals.
Drew Buckley is the Chief Operating Officer and Head of Digital of Electus where he is responsible for all digital content delivery in addition to overseeing finance, acquisitions, and all transactions within Electus and their partner companies.
Prior to Electus, Drew served as Executive Vice President of Windsor Media, Terry Semel’s, former Chairman and CEO of Yahoo!, investment firm. Windsor Media is a holding company of controlling assets in the Media, Entertainment and Luxury brand Industries. Before Windsor, Drew was the General Manager of Yahoo! Originals within the Yahoo! Media Group. Drew joined Yahoo! for the launch of Yahoo!’s first entertainment original content program, THE 9. During his tenure, Drew developed and launched a number of original content productions within Yahoo! Entertainment including, Nissan Live Sets, Pepsi Smash, Answers on the Street, Buzz Sessions along with promotional events like the MTV Movie Award Spoof Contest. As the General Manager of Y! Originals, Drew managed a talented team of over 35 Creative, Development and Production professionals who produce compelling content and experiences for Yahoo! Entertainment properties, including Yahoo! Movies, Yahoo! TV, Yahoo! Games, Yahoo! Music, Yahoo! Sports and Yahoo! Video.
Drew served as a Principal of Shelter Capital, a $200 million wireless and technology fund, and previously was Vice President of iXL Ventures, a venture capital spin-off of iXL Enterprises, a NASDAQ traded company. Drew received an MBA from USC in Finance and a BBA/BBS from Southern Methodist University.