Dan Pulick, Writer
Dan Pulick is a New York-based writer for film and television. He’s also an adjunct professor in the Dramatic Writing Department at NYU-Tisch School of the Arts.
Damon Shalit, Director & Producer
Damon is an actor, director, writer, producer. ‘ …whatever role I need to fill to make it happen’ . Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, raised in Houston, Texas, Damon studied at the University of Texas in Austin, and with acclaimed acting teacher, Larry Moss, in Los Angeles. Damon taught acting and filmmaking at NYFA for five years as well as privately in Chicago.
Damon wrote and starred in A-List, a comic and satirical take on the LA lifestyle- starring Sally Kirkland, Daphne Zuniga, Joanna Garcia, Renee Taylor, Kirsten Vangness, Leigh Taylor-Young, Eddie Albert, and David Carradine. The film was acquired by Cinetic Media (Little Miss Sunshine, Boys Don’t Cry). Before that Damon worked alongside Theresa Rebeck producing and starring in a collection of her one acts, Rebeck Revisited, at Theatre Neo in West Hollywood. Most recently Damon wrote and starred in African Gothic, an adaptation of Reza DeWet’s award winning Diepe Grond, directed by Gabriel Bologna. African Gothic won 11 international film festival awards including two best picture (Toronto African Int. Film Festival, Golden Door Int. Film Festival) 3 best actor (Salento Int. F Fest, Golden Door, Worldfest) and a best screenplay award (Golden Door).
Damon’s film and TV credits include Judging Amy, Bold and Beautiful, General Hospital, Night Man, Valley of the Dolls, Dreamer, Reluctant Justice, My Life As a Troll and others. Damon has directed a number of short films. Blood Brothers, which won a Silver Remi at Worldfest, is currently making the festival rounds. The World Without You is Damon’s third feature with his production company Senderwoodfilms / 12:21 Productions and marks his feature film directing debut. He has three projects in the works and is in development on a story about the plight of the Falashan Jews, which he hopes to be in shooting spring of 2018.
Suzanne C Johnson, Executive Producer
Working with her acting coach, Damon Shalit, they brainstormed how she could further her career. They decided that one great course of action would be to not only act but to produce a film in which she could star. Damon suggested she read some screenplays, and also recommended Joshua Henkin’s best-selling novel, The World Without You. She immediately connected with the powerful material, and the character of grieving mother Marilyn deeply resonated with her. Apart from great similarities in their personalities, Marilyn’s trajectory as a mother who loses her only son to a terrorist act was an emotional journey that Suzanne felt compelled to fulfill.
She optioned the rights to the novel and commissioned the screenplay. What followed exceeded her expectations: a compelling script that resonated with everyone who read it, including Suzanne herself. Shalit, who helped develop the project, went on to make his directorial debut with the film. The World Without You attracted an all-star cast and is currently in post-production.
For Suzanne, this has been an incredible journey for both her and her family, who have supported her throughout this process. She can’t wait to share this story – and her own – with the world. Stay tuned!
Bradley LaRocco, Producer
Bradley LaRocco was born in Chicago where he grew up and began his professional career in the areas of business and management. This foundation has been coupled with his creative intuition and experience gained in both narrative and documentary filmmaking as a producer and director. As a documentarian, he gravitates toward visual storytelling about complex characters that possess a strong sense of uniqueness and authenticity. His documentary producing and directing work includes Max’s Story (2015), followed by Languages of Graffiti, currently in development.
Empty Space (2016) was LaRocco’s first narrative feature film as producer, and initial collaboration with director James Choi. The award winning film would go on to be featured in film festivals all over the country and other parts of the world including France, Brazil, and South Korea. His most recent work as a producer is for the feature film titled The World Without You, based on the novel by Joshua Henkin, currently in post -production. LaRocco has also worked within commercial, television, and corporate production teams in many respects.
By Chance (a working title) is a narrative feature film that will debut LaRocco as a writer and director, looking to begin production in 2018. He currently resides in Chicago, is a film instructor at Tribeca Flashpoint College, and the owner of Chicago-based production company, Missing Button Media.
Charles Mudd, Producer
Charles Lee Mudd Jr. is the founder and principal of Mudd Law Offices which represents local, national, and international clientele in diverse litigation and transactional matters. Since forming his firm in 2001 and obtaining his first clients through Lawyers for the Creative Arts, Charles has continued to provide legal representation to clients within the entertainment industry. Over the last several years, he expanded his involvement in the creative and business aspects of film production, and has served as associate producer and producer on a number of documentary and dramatic feature length films. Charles also regularly writes and collaborates with industry professionals as well as operates Tanchakat Productions Company. He regularly speaks internationally on technology and law and teaches law in Chicago, Illinois. Recently, he has ventured into astronomy and astrophysics.
Kris Belchevski, Director of Photography
Kris is known for his cinematic and honest images. He recently wrapped the feature film THE WORLD WITHOUT YOU, with Director Damon Shalit. His film JEAN OF THE JONESES by Writer/Director Stella Meghie premiered at South by Southwest and the Toronto International Film Festival, was recognized by Variety for Kris’ cinematography. He was also the 2nd Unit DP on PUPPY LOVE with Director Michael Maxxis.
Kris’ short films SHADOW NETTES and DREDGER, with Director Phillip Barker both had their world premieres at TIFF in 2017 and 2016 respectively. Kris was awarded the Best Short Film Cinematography Award at the Canadian Society of Cinematographers for his work on DREDGER. He also lensed the soon to be released feature film COLD DECK, starring Paul Sorvino, plus many iconic commercial campaigns, including Adidas, Louis Vuitton, Samsung, Raptors and Guinness to name a few.
Valerie McCaffrey, Casting Director
Valerie McCaffrey is an independent casting director coming from the studio level, she has cast over 80 films. From April 1994-2000, Valerie held the position of Vice President of Feature Film Casting for New Line/Fine Line Films. During her tenure at New Line/ Fine Line, Ms. McCaffrey cast scores of films, developing strong relationships with all major talent agencies and management firms. Among the
many highlights of her career, she cast Edward Norton and Eddie Furlong in New Line Cinema’s AMERICAN HISTORY X which Edward Norton was nominated for an Academy Award. Previously, she was a casting executive at Universal Studios, amongst scores of films including BABE, which garnered James Cromwell an oscar nomination for his performance. Having an eye for talents, she cast Ellen Page in her first American film, HARD CANDY. In addition, Valerie uses her knowledge to a directing/producing/writing capacity. She is in post on the short film she wrote and directed called DIRTY BOMB. She directed a feature film called WISH YOU WERE DEAD distributed by Icon Entertainment International which starred Cary Elwes, Elaine Hendrix, Christopher Lloyd, Mary Steenburgen and Sally Kirkland. She wrote a screenplay called EVERYTHING IS GOING TO POT in which she is planning to direct. She produced a film LOST AND FOUND IN ARMENIA with Jamie Kennedy and Angela Sarafyan. She also produced and cast an award-winning film entitled NEO NED, starring Jeremy Renner and Gabrielle Union. She also has several films in development including MEN OF GRANITE, a true story of the first generation Americans whose family originally from Eastern Europe that won the state championship in basketball.