Act One has blessed over our history to have a wide ranging and diverse faculty of writers, producers, executives, agents, industry professionals and more. Each session, our faculty rotates. Over the coming days and weeks, we will be adding to the faculty pages to reflect those that have blessed our students with their knowledge and grace.
SHERYL J. ANDERSON
Sheryl J. Anderson is the creator and executive producer of Ties That Bind, UPtv’s first original scripted series. She began her writing journey as a playwriting major at The College of William & Mary in Virginia. Lured to Los Angeles by the intrigue of television and the promise of 300 sunny days a year, she has worked as a television studio executive, screenwriter, and half-hour series writer (Parker Lewis Can’t Lose, Dave’s World). Moving to writing and producing hour-long series, she has worked on a wide range of series (Charmed, Flash Gordon, When Calls the Heart), and has sold pilots to Disney, SyFy, NBC, and Lifetime. She wrote the UPtv movie, The Town That Came A’Courtin’, based on the best-selling novel by Ronda Rich.
Caleb Brown is a writer and producer with a goal to make not just films but filmmakers. His company, The Story Locker, develops feature film and television scripts in addition to video essays and podcasts on story analysis.
Before working at The Story Locker, Caleb worked as a development intern at Lin Pictures (The Lego Movie, The Gangster Squad, Sherlock Holmes) and started teaching a class at their Warner Bros. office called “How to Watch a Movie.” Caleb enjoyed teaching that class so much that he enrolled in grad-school, took classes in Linguistics and Anthropology at UC Berkeley, and finished an MA in philosophy and an MA in theology from the DSPT — one of Berkeley’s affiliated seminaries. He started his writing and producing career at the TV Guide Network in 2007. He’s from Midland, TX and lives with his wife (Professor of Philosophy at UC Berkeley) and daughter in Oakland, CA while maintaining a strong network in LA.
New York Times best-selling author Jim Krueger is a graduate of Marquette University, an award-winning filmmaker, story/script doctor, copy-writer, video game developer and comic book writer best known for his epic works and ability to adapt the mythologies/characters of DC, Marvel Comics, Dark Horse and other companies. He’s worked on everything from the X-Men to Batman and Superman to the Avengers, Star Wars, and the Justice League of America.
Krueger also launched two new comic book formats, both which were later utilized by DC and Marvel. He is a former Creative Director at Marvel Entertainment Group.
• The Runner (DRAMA/THRILLER about a man on the run from Death for 80 years) has a first/last-look deal with FOX. Graphic novel coming out this year.
• Jack ‘N’ Ape development deal with Disney as well as other undisclosed development projects for Disney
• Wrote Earth X trilogy for Marvel – Best series of the year award from Wizard Magazine. Brought him to the attention of Marvel Studios.
• Wrote Justice for DC – Most famous collaboration with Alex Ross — won the Eisner Award for Best Graphic Novel of the Year. Gem award for Best Comic Of The year.
• Writer on the Satellite Award-winning videogame – Mortal Kombat: Shaolin Monks (Best Video Game of the year). Also nominated by GAME PLAY as The Most Surprigly good game of the year. Also developed REMNANT KNIGHTS for Funimation.
NEW PROJECTS: Old Leaf, The Wicked Witch Of The Midwest, and the Golem
Andrea Nasfell is the screenwriter of 8 produced movies, but the one you might have seen is the family comedy MOMS’ NIGHT OUT, which won a Dove award for Inspirational Film of the Year. She’s written a slew of Christmas TV movies, including SILVER BELLS, CHRISTMAS ANGEL and CHRISTMAS WITH A CAPITAL C. Her movie WHAT IF… was selected by Movieguide as one of 2010’s “Ten Best Films for Family Audiences” and CHRISTMAS WITH A CAPITAL C won their Faith & Freedom Award. Both were nominated for Epiphany Prizes in TV and film. Andrea loves teaching screenwriting for her alma mater, Asbury University. She is also a graduate of Act One: Writing for Hollywood, and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Spalding University. She lives in the Valley with her husband Brady, a television producer, and their two kids.
Barbara Nicolosi is the Founder and Chair Emeritus of Act One, Inc., a nonprofit program to train and mentor Christians for careers as Hollywood writers and executives. She is an Associate Professor in the Honors College at Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, CA.
Barbara is a member of the Writers Guild of America-West and has written screenplays for production companies in and beyond Hollywood. Her most recent project is a feature-length adaptation of the memoir A Severe Mercy for Origin Entertainment of Manhattan Beach, CA. Her screenplay Fatima, is scheduled to be shot in late 2016 in Rome, directed by Marco Pontecorvo and produced by Frida Torresblanco (Pan’s Labyrinth)
Barbara will receive her Ph.D. in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University in the UK in February 2017. She has a Masters in Film and Television from Northwestern University in Evanston IL, and a B.A. from the Great Books program at Northeast Catholic College in Warner, NH. She has been a script analyst, production company executive, and consultant on scores of entertainment and media projects including The Passion of the Christ, TV shows Joan of Arcadia (CBS) and Saving Grace (TNT), and the animated video series Antenna Tales. In 2015, Barbara Executive Produced the award-winning short film In Memory for the Genesis Initiative, and the web series Ask J and Judgmental Moose for Franciscan University. She has produced five plays for the award-winning Actors Co-op Theater in Hollywood, including As You Like It, Fools, and The Devil’s Disciple.
A highly sought public speaker on art, culture, media and spirituality, Barbara has delivered hundreds of addresses at universities, conferences, churches and assemblies all over the world. She has been a panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts, a judge for both the Gabriel Awards of the Catholic Academy of Communication Arts Professionals, a Blue Ribbon Panelist for the Angelus and Windrider Student Film Festival, and a reader for the Humanitas Prize for screenwriting. She has received numerous awards including two Catholic Press Awards, the John Paul II Gravitas Award from the Diocese of Trenton, and the Lay Person of the Year Award from Legatus International.
Barbara has appeared as a cultural commentator on ABC, NBC, CBS, NPR and in the pages of The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and Premiere magazine, among many others. Released in January, 2015, her most recent book, Notes to Screenwriters, was published by Michael Wiese Books.
Leo Partible is a versatile storyteller. He tells stories of fantastic worlds, emotional journeys, and explorations of truth through his screenwriting, comic books, music, and filmmaking. He began in the entertainment industry as a storyboard artist, mentored by legendary comic book and animation artist Nestor Redondo. In the film industry, Leo was a film executive for various production companies, developing comic books into feature films. He is also a writer for film and comic books and contributed to several books including Behind the Screen: Insiders on Faith, Film and Culture, The Gospel According to Superheroes: Religion and Pop Culture (with a Forward by Stan Lee), the Forward to Who Needs a Superhero, Filipinas: A to Z and co-wrote the story for the comic book series Killer Stunts, Inc. He has also written for InfuzeMag.com, IESB.net online and Risen Magazine in print.
His public speaking includes panels and lectures at U.C. Berkeley, Azusa Pacific University, Palm Beach Atlantic University, and Biola University, as well as pop culture gatherings such as the Damah Film Festival, Sunscreen Film Festival, Stan Lee’s Comickaze, Hollywood Black Film Festival and the San Diego Comic-Con. Leo has been interviewed by NPR, The Atlantic Monthly, Publisher’s Weekly, World Magazine, The Washington Post, Fanboy Radio, and many other outlets. He is a screenwriting consultant and has taught screenwriting online at Regent University and Act One.
Tom Provost wrote the screenplay for Under Suspicion, a thriller starring Academy Award winners Morgan Freeman and Gene Hackman, adapted from the French film, Garde A Vu. The screenplay was nominated for an Edgar Award. He wrote, directed and produced the independent feature The Presence, starring Academy Award winner Mira Sorvino, Shane West and Justin Kirk. The movie won numerous Best Picture and Best Director awards on the festival circuit, where it was picked up for distribution by Lionsgate. He currently has two movies in pre-production, Mr. Clark and Exile. Currently a graduate professor in Pepperdine University’s Graduate Screenwriting Program, his website is cinemalanguage.org. He also writes the popular blog onfoodandfilm.com
Writer/director Nathan Scoggins likes to make stuff; fortunately, people seem to like the stuff he makes. His first film, THE LEAST OF THESE, starred Isaiah Washington, Bob Gunton and the late Robert Loggia, and was released on DVD in 2011 by Universal after premiering on the Starz network and streaming on Netflix; REDLINE, which he produced, was released around the world in 2013, while THE PERFECT SUMMER, a TV film he wrote, aired to 3M viewers on the UP network before being released on DVD. He has written projects for various producers including Andrew Panay (WEDDING CRASHERS), John Rickard (HORRIBLE BOSSES, HOW TO BE SINGLE), and Scott Bernstein (STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON, RIDE ALONG). He has been involved in the creation of several winning commercials for the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl competition, and has directed Web spots for clients including Focus Features. Several of his award-winning short films were released on DVD by Lionsgate. The projects he continues to most proud of however continue to be his three daughters, a co-production with his wife of 15 years, Katheryne.
LAUREN C. SNOWDEN
CHRISTINA LEE STORM
Christina Lee Storm is an award-winning international independent producer who has collaborated with filmmakers from around the world. While living in Hong Kong she was Head of Creative Development and Vice President of International Production while producing for legendary Hong Kong director Johnnie To on films including Running Out of Time, The Mission, and Second Time Around. A pioneer in bridging the East and the West through film, Christina worked closely with local screenwriters and directors to develop international films that carried a broad appeal for Asian and North American audiences. Some of Christina’s U.S. producing credits include The Least of These, To Save A Life, Flesh: Bought & Sold in the U.S., and Life After Pi.
Christina was Production Supervisor for 2012 Oscar-winning film The Artist. She has worked as line producer, UPM, production manager, and production coordinator on over a dozen film projects giving her insight and expertise in feature film production.
Christina was Manager of Digital Production at Rhythm & Hues Studios where she worked with all in-house feature film productions to hire, staff, schedule, and build strategic and efficient teams related to the Lighting pipeline including key supervisors, leads, and digital artists. While at Rhythm & Hues Studios, Christina worked on over a dozen films including Life of Pi (which won the Oscar for Best Visual Effects), The Hunger Games, The Chronicle of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, Moneyball, R.I.P.D., Snow White and the Huntsman, and Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters to name a few.
Her latest producing project, Life After Pi, is a short documentary about the award-winning, visual effects studio Rhythm & Hues which won the Academy Award for its ground breaking visual effects work on Life of Pi, two weeks after declaring bankruptcy. The documentary won the Best Documentary Short Film Award at both the 2015 Santa Barbara
International Film Festival and the 2016 Oscar qualifying Cleveland International Film Festival. Life After Pi has also been selected for competition at the 2015 Nashville Film Festival, Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival, and St. Louis International Film Festival.
Christina is a Production Executive at DreamWorks Animation where she is a part of senior leadership for studio-wide initiatives and helps lead the Production Strategy Team for the studio. She is the former President of Act One where she provided leadership and vision for the 17 year innovative training and incubator for writers and producers in film, television, and digital media. Act One teaches writers and producers to be Creators and Innovators with unique voices. She is Founder/Executive Producer for the Act One Digital Lab and Fellowship that combines science, story, and technology to develop and create the most engaging and impactful original online stories for youth 14-18 years old.
Christina has spoken at numerous Universities including University of Southern California, Pepperdine University, Loyola Marymount University, UCLA Extension, and Azusa Pacific University as well as speaking on Panels and at Conferences and Festivals on film, culture, pre-production, physical production, visual effects, and technology in storytelling.
Christina’s current projects in development include a faith-based adventure based on the book “Blind Courage,” a teen-comedy, an animated children’s feature, and a documentary “prequel” to Life After Pi.
Christina has a passion for making films with profound themes. She is an alumnus of Act One: Writing for Hollywood program, served on its Advisory Board for the Producing and Entertainment Executive Program, and currently serves on its Board of Directors.
She is an active member of the Producers Guild of America and has served on the guild’s National Board of Directors for 6 years. She is Chair and Mentor for the PGA’s Diversity Workshop, a member of the PGA’s China Task Force, Women’s Impact Network, and PGA’s Digital VIP Award Committee which determines the top visionaries, innovators, and producers in the digital space. Christina received the AP Council Commitment Award, the highest award given by the AP Council of the PGA, and is currently the re-elected Treasurer of the Producers Guild of America.
She balances being a Mom of two rambunctious children, wife to Story Consultant and Screenwriter Steve Storm, and a passionate producer of films.
Steve is a graduate of USC’s School of Cinema-Television and a veteran story consultant who has spent over 15 years helping clients build tightly crafted entertainment experiences across a variety of platforms. In addition, he spent six years on the core leadership team of a diverse inner-city church that helped to transform and enrich the personal stories of hundreds of people. Serving with Act One gives him a unique opportunity to combine his gift for spiritual nurturing with his extensive story training to help our many talented students and alumni succeed in their creative pursuits.
Originally from Iowa, Jonathan has a B.A. in Communications from Wheaton College, and a Masters of Professional Writing from USC. He has also completed certificates in screenwriting in both the Act One and Advanced Act One programs.
Jonathan has worked for DreamWorks, CBS, Big Idea Productions (VeggieTales), and Sony Animation during his career. While at Sony Animation, he worked on CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS and THE SMURFS while developing three new features for the production pipeline. As a writer, his scripts were finalists for the Warner Bros. TV Workshop, the McFarland Fellowship, the Nashville Film Festival, and the Act One Competition. He is currently shopping the feature adaptations of the books The Magic Bicycle and Hope Unseen, rewriting the play What Comes After, completing his first novel, and recently published a children’s book.
Michael Warren began writing for television as executive story consultant on HAPPY DAYS. He went to Warner Bros. as executive producer of PERFECT STRANGERS. He co-created and executive produced two of the longest running shows on ABC: STEP BY STEP, and FAMILY MATTERS. TV GUIDE listed Steve Urkel as one of the 50 most popular television characters of all time. He also executive produced HANGIN WITH MR. COOPER, GETTING BY, THE FAMILY MAN, KIRK, MEEGO and TWO OF A KIND. He presently has over 800 episodes of television in syndication.
Michael is currently consulting with international Christian organizations, including Christian Associates International and Africa Renewal Ministries, in the use of media. He is also adjunct professor at BIOLA University.
Kevin T. Willson loves directing funny stories and eating gluten. He has directed three top rated Super Bowl commercials. Sling Baby received the #1 Super Bowl Commercial from the Facebook/USA Today Ad Meter, and also “Most Liked” and “Most Memorable” Super Bowl spot from Nielsen Ratings. Kevin has directed hundreds of projects in fifteen countries, including action comedy commercials, web films and series, online shows, and mini documentaries for clients such as Nescafe, Jeep, Phillips-Norelco, Spike, Cheetos, Doritos, Habitat For Humanity, Purina, P&G and many more. Kevin writes comedy scripts, draws his own story boards, and is attached as Director to an action buddy comedy feature film. He graduated from the UCB Improv comedy program, and in college, while earning a film degree, interned and worked for Ridley Scott at Scott Free. Recently he directed 24 live action episodes for Tom Clancy’s The Division: Operation ISAC video game. Kevin has worked with Andy Samberg on comedy story ideas and has had the pleasure to direct two time Emmy Award winner Tony Hale, Zoe Saldana, Adam Pally, Cristelo Alonzo, Zachary Quinto and many others. Kevin lives in LA with a grumpy housemate, a French Bulldog named Walter.