15 MINUTES WITH A POWER BROKER
Presented with the participation of the Independent Production Fund
FROM SET TO SCREEN PANELIST
BEYOND THE BOX PANELIST
BEYOND THE BOX PANELIST
FROM SET TO SCREEN PANELIST
FROM SET TO SCREEN PANELIST
BEYOND THE BOX PANELIST
BEYOND THE BOX MODERATOR
BEYOND THE BOX PANELIST
FROM SET TO SCREEN MODERATOR
BEYOND THE BOX PANELIST
FROM SET TO SCREEN PANELIST
FROM SET TO SCREEN PANELIST
BEYOND THE BOX PANELIST
FROM SET TO SCREEN PANELIST
EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT OF COMEDY DEVELOPMENT
Kate Adler was named Executive Vice President, Comedy Development, CBS Studios in 2013. In her position, Adler oversees the development of all comedy series for broadcast, cable and streaming. CBS comedies include THE UNICORN, starring Walton Goggins, and THE NEIGHBORHOOD, starring Cedric the Entertainer and Max Greenfield. Adler developed the critically acclaimed Netflix series “Dead to Me,” starring Christina Applegate, now going into its third season, as well as the Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning series “Crazy Ex Girlfriend” and the Emmy-nominated Netflix series, “American Vandal.”
Prior to CBS Studios, Adler served as a producer for CBS’ “Survivor: Palau,” “Survivor: Guatemala” for CBS, and “Crime & Punishment: Real-Life Law & Order” for NBC. In 2002, she was a producer on the Oscar-winning documentary “Twin Towers,” which told the story of the NYPD’s Emergency Service Unit and their heroic acts on September 11th.
From 1997 to 2000, Adler was Vice President, Creative Affairs for Worldwide Pants Incorporated, where she supervised all new series development, oversaw production of “Everybody Loves Raymond,” for CBS, and “Ed,” and recruited writers for “The Late Show with David Letterman” and “The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn,” also on CBS. In 1994, Adler was Director, Comedy Development for Walt Disney Network Television, where she developed network comedies as well as served as the current programming executive on “Ellen.”
Prior to Disney, Adler worked at Creative Artists Agency as an assistant to the head of the television literary department.
Adler received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Harvard University.
VICE PRESIDENT OF DEVELOPMENT
Kesila Childers is Vice President of Development for Paul Feig’s Powderkeg. She is a member of the PGA, produces live comedy and is a board member for birdbrain, a non-profit for people impacted by sexual trauma.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
REFORM MEDIA GROUP
Deniese Davis began her career producing music videos, short films and digital content including Issa Rae's award-winning web series The Mis-Adventures of Awkward Black Girl. She is currently a Co-Executive Producer on the HBO Emmy-nominated comedy series Insecure and a Producer on HBO’s Emmy-nominated A Black Lady Sketch Show. After 8 years of producing for Hoorae Media (fka Issa Rae Productions), she recently launched her own production company Reform Media Group while continuing to support ColorCreative, a management company for diverse and emerging writers and filmmakers that she co-founded with Issa in 2014. Originally from Las Vegas, NV, Deniese is an alumna of CUNY-Brooklyn College and the American Film Institute Conservatory. She sits on the board of Black Public Media and is a founding member of AFI's Alumni Council for the Lawrence Herbert Alumni Center (LHAC).
HEAD OF PRODUCTION, ORIGINAL PROGRAMMING
Sarah Fowlie leads the development of comedic productions to air across Bell Media's family of channels, including CTV, The Comedy Network, SPACE, MUCH, Bravo, TMN and CraveTV.
Fowlie began her career at Bell Media in 1997 at The Comedy Network and has developed strong relationships with the Canadian and International comedy community. She has held a range of positions in Acquisitions, Original Development and In-House Production. She has acted as Production Executive on many original independent productions for Bell Media, notably, The Indian Detective, Letterkenny, and Jann.
EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT & GENERAL MANAGER
Devin Griffin is the EVP and General Manager of BET+, BET Networks’ subscription streaming service. He sets the company’s vision, business goals, and strategy while leading all aspects of the operation, including managing the P&L, original programming, content acquisition, brand & title promotion, performance marketing, communications and social.
Under Devin’s direction, BET+ launched in 2019 and features thousands of hours of premium
Black content, including 13 BET+ original programs from renowned creators including Tyler
Perry, Tracy Oliver, Will Packer, and Lena Waithe. A joint venture between BET and Tyler Perry Studios, BET+ enables users to stream hit movies, TV series, stage plays, stand-up comedy, documentaries, and specials, all in one place, commercial-free.
Prior to BET+, Devin was EVP of the Story Lab (part of Dentsu), where he built a premium content studio and led the company’s foray into long-form content production. There, he developed original series with Anonymous Content, ITV, and Stephen David Entertainment while forging partnerships with Procter & Gamble, Jaguar Land Rover, and the NBA Players Association.
Devin has also served in various senior content roles at Netflix. He formed and led the company’s unscripted group, commissioning and/or executive producing more than 40 series, including the Emmy Award-winning Queer Eye, The Last Dance (Michael Jordan), Down to Earth with Zac Efron, and the Peabody-winning Hip-Hop Evolution. In addition to his leadership in the unscripted space, Devin worked extensively on scripted TV series, stand-up comedy, and genre fare. Bringing a distinctive curatorial lens to the service, he was responsible for programming global hits like the Emmy Award-winning series Black Mirror, Designated Survivor, Chewing Gum, The Great British Bake-off, The Seven Deadly Sins, and original specials from Tom Segura, Chelsea Peretti, Nick Offerman, and Wyatt Cenac.
Earlier in his career, Devin served as Head of Business Development at Broadway Video, legendary producer Lorne Michaels’ production company, where he conceptualized, cofounded, and oversaw Above Average, a premium comedy network and studio.
Devin holds a BA from Stanford and an MBA from Wharton. He resides in Los Angeles with his wife, Sarah, and two young children.
SENIOR DEVELOPMENT MANAGER OF SNAP ORIGINALS
Erin Keating leads development and production of scripted Snap Originals, original shows created exclusively for Snapchat. She is responsible for helping to shape the creative strategy and execution of made-for-mobile shows for Snapchat’s 265 million daily active users.
Erin has helped grow Snapchat’s slate of exclusive shows to nearly 150 series over the past 4 years, including CBS’ James Corden’s Next James Corden, which garnered two Emmy Awards in 2018; Makeready’s drama Class of Lies, which received a 2019 WGA Award for best short form new media original, and Two Sides, which won the 2019 Streamy Award for best directing.
Erin joined Snap Inc., the parent company of Snapchat, in 2017 from Big Beach TV, where she was the West Coast Executive and originated the half-hour dramedy Vida (Starz) and was Co-EP of the documentary Fatherless (Fusion) directed by Dawn Porter. Prior, she served as Director of Development and Production at IFC TV. In this role, she developed and oversaw the network’s brand-defining comedy series, including the Emmy-nominated, WGA and Peabody Award-winning Portlandia and Funny or Die’s The Spoils of Babylon. Erin has also been Director of Programming and Development at Magna Global Entertainment, where she oversaw the award-winning Johnson & Johnson Spotlight films on TNT.
FOUNDER AND CEO
Ajay Kishore is the founder and CEO of Stareable, the new home for digital creative talent in the TV industry. Through its festival, Stareable Fest, and industry partnerships, Stareable honors the year’s best content, and provides a space for the next generation of creators to connect with industry executives, grow their network, learn new skills, and build community. Stareable is dedicated to creating a representative, inclusive, and dynamic TV landscape. Ajay is a Yale and Bridgewater alumni, unabashed produce enthusiast, and TV nerd.
DIRECTOR OF DIGITAL DEVELOPMENT IN ORIGINAL PROGRAMMING
Mike McShane is the Director of Digital Development in Original Programming at Bell Media. As part of this role, Mike and his team work with non-traditional partners and producers to bring Creators and the digital world into Bell Media’s development pipeline. Prior to this, Mike has held various roles at Bell Media, including Director, Much Studios and as Director of Marketing for Bell Media’s Entertainment Specialty Channels.
PROJECT 10 PRODUCTIONS
A twenty year veteran of the Canadian film and television industry, Ben has served previously as a programmer at the Toronto International Film Festival, Director of Business Affairs & Development at Serendipity Point Films and as Director of Business Development at Halfire Entertainment. During his time at Halfire, he was as a Producer of the ½ hour comedy, Working the Engels for Global and NBC. Since joining Project 10 in 2015 he has served an Executive Producer of the multiple award-winning documentary Spirit Unforgettable, currently available on CraveTV and iTunes. He is an Executive Producer of the hit ½ hour comedy, JANN for CTV/Bell Media, which recently wrapped filming of its third season in Calgary and is now available in the US on Hulu. He will also serve as aCo-EP on the highly anticipated revival of the iconic sketch comedy series, Kids in the Hall for Amazon and Executive Producer of the upcoming Son of a Critch for CBC. Ben leverages his considerable experience and strong relationships within the industry in overseeing Project 10’s development and production slate and in managing all business and operational matters related to the company. He is a graduate of the Cinema Studies program at the University of Toronto.
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT FOR ANIMATION
Daniel Weidenfeld was named Senior Vice President, Animation, for FOX Entertainment in September 2019. In this role, he is responsible for overseeing all animated production and development for FOX Entertainment and third-party platforms. Among the series under his purview are FOX’s iconic comedies THE SIMPSONS, FAMILY GUY and BOB’S BURGERS, as well as DUNCANVILLE, THE GREAT NORTH and the upcoming series HOUSEBROKEN.
Prior to joining FOX Entertainment, Weidenfeld was a writer and producer on a number of series, including Adult Swim’s “Lazor Wulf,” “Brad Neely’s Harg Nallin’ Sclopio Peepio,” “China, IL” and “The Eric Andre Show”; TBS’ “The Pound Hole”; and Netflix’s “Trigger Warning with Killer Mike.” From 2008 to 2010, he was Vice President of Content Development, TV & New Media at Generate, LLC. Weidenfeld graduated from Tufts University with a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature.
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, COMEDY DEVELOPMENT AND HEAD OF ANIMATION
Alec is currently a Senior Vice President, Comedy Development and Head of Animation at CBS Studios. He joined the studio in 2015 as Vice President, Comedy Development. Prior to that, Botnick had been an agent in the Television Literary Department at WME since 2009. He got his start in entertainment in the mailroom at Endeavor while earning his J.D. at Loyola Law School. Alec got his B.A. in Theater at SUNY Binghamton.
DIRECTOR OF PRODUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT
Ally Engelberg is the Director of Production and Development at Above Average, a New York based comedy production company born out of Broadway Video. At Above Average, she oversees creative development and production of original programming, both maintaining the development slate and seeing projects through physical production. Most recently, she served as an Executive Producer on Season 3 of LIZA ON DEMAND, a half-hour comedy co-created by Liza Koshy, Deborah Kaplan & Harry Elfont. In 2020, she was a Co-Producer on COLIN QUINN & FRIENDS: A PARKING LOT COMEDY SHOW for HBO Max and was the Co-EP of an Untitled WarnerMedia pilot for truTV. In addition to TV production, she's produced countless Above Average Live! stand-up shows in New York City and Austin, for audiences of 150+. She has sold and/or produced both scripted and nonscripted projects for WarnerMedia, Amazon, NBCU, Viacom, Audible, and Snapchat, amongst others.
BEST COMEDY SERIES
Andrew Barnsley is an Emmy and Golden Globe winning Executive Producer (Best Comedy Series) based in Toronto and Los Angeles. He is a multi-nominated/six-time Canadian Screen Award winning Executive Producer. Barnsley is currently an Executive Producer on CTV/Bell Media’s 22 x ½ hour comedy series Jann starring Jann Arden, Amazon’s Kids In The Hall reboot, CBC/PopTV’s 80 x ½ hour series Schitt’s Creek starring Eugene Levy and Catherine O’Hara, Family Channel/CBBC's 15 x ½ hour tween series My Perfect Landing. His 2021 development and production slate includes series with CTV/Bell Media, CBC, City TV/Rogers Media, Amazon Studios, and Hulu. He has served previously as an Executive Producer on CTV’s 26 x 1/2 hour sitcom Spun Out starring Dave Foley, the TMN/Movie Central documentary series Sports On Fire and the HBO Canada documentary feature Spirit Unforgettable (2016). Since 2001, Barnsley has produced content across multiple genres and formats including comedy, animation, live-action, children’s, documentary and multiple live concert specials.
In addition to Andrew’s role at Project 10 he is also the President of Toronto Film School. He is a member of the Producer’s Guild of America, the Canadian Media Producers Association, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (USA) and the Academy of Canadian Film & Television. He holds an MA in Communications and Culture from Ryerson and York Universities, a BAA from Ryerson University’s Radio and Television Arts Program and a BEd from St. Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick.
ORIGINAL PROGRAMMING COMEDY
Ariel Jacobson is Coordinator, Original Programming Comedy at Showtime Networks where she works on original series such as DESUS & MERO, ZIWE, and FLATBUSH MISDEMEANORS. Ariel previously held roles at WME and MGM Studios. She is a graduate of Wesleyan University and currently resides in Los Angeles with her cat Pickles.
DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT
Director of development at Starburns Audio, Brian Baldinger is a comedy producer and development guy. In addition to his work at SBA, he produces stuff for TV, festivals, and even the internet! Some fun credits include The Meltdown with Jonah and Kumail, This Is Not Happening, Harmonquest, and Laugh Aid 2020.
DIRECTOR OF COMEDY DEVELOPMENT
Cameron Tang is director of comedy development, Adult Swim, WarnerMedia’s network offering original and acquired animated and live action series for young adults. In this capacity Tang is responsible for developing and producing live-action and animated programming for Adult Swim and overseeing original titles including Joe Pera Talks With You, which originally premiered in May 2018 with great success and was picked up for a third season; The Eric Andre Show which just completed its fifth season in 2020, Three Busy Debras, which premiered in March 2020 with great success; beloved Emmy award-winning adult animated series Rick and Morty, which is currently in production on its fifth season. Season three of Rick and Morty was the #1 comedy across all television adults (P18-24 and P18-34) and also delivered the highest ratings in the network’s history.
Tang led the charge of brining comedian Joe Pera to Adult Swim, starting with his animated special Joe Pera Talks You to Sleep, which led to his network series Joe Pera Talks to You and a COVID-19 special Relaxing Footage with Joe Pera to help everyone get through this turbulent time. Tang saw an opportunity to continue Adult Swim’s mission to discovering up and coming comedians, giving them a platform to create and develop original content. Tang is also responsible developing original content for Adult Swim’s 4am “infomercials” with comedians Sarah Squirm, Joe Firestone, Aaron Chen and more. Currently Tang also has several shows in development with up-and-coming talent Nathan Min, Whitmer Thomas, Jay Howell, Ben Coruse, Jacob Sluka, Jim Dirschberger, among others.
Additionally, Tang was part of the team that lead the charge on brining the animated series Tuca & Bertie which originally released on Netflix. Tang saw an opportunity and embraced Adult Swim’s history of taking shows such as Family Guy (and now Tuca & Bertie), to grow a show's audience while keeping true to the creative genius of the show’s creator, Lisa Hanawalt (BoJack Horseman).
Through participating in comedy panels and workshops over the years, Tang has shared his valuable perspective and insights at industry events. Tang has a knack for discovering new up-and-coming talent, finding diverse voices and maximizing direct to fan transparency. Throughout his career, Tang has championed young comedians and diverse storytellers and has leveraged technology and data to change the way audiences engage with content, regardless of the platform or format. He has had the freedom to work with different formats (both long and short form) to deliver the best episodes possible for Adult Swim audiences.
With an already impressive track record under his belt, over the next five years, not only will Tang continue to push boundaries and experiment with new formats, but he will excel at it. He will continue to elevate and empower creators, drive change and discover new, talented voices ready to break into the entertainment industry. Since joining Adult Swim in 2013, he has been thriving in the corporate sphere at WarnerMedia and plans to continue developing and producing content for Warner’s premiere brands that will allow them to discover new audiences, create new engaging formats and push the limits of what’s possible in launching shows that attract massive audiences.
CANDICE WILSON CHERRY
HEAD OF DEVELOPMENT AND PRODUCTION
LAUGH OUT LOUD NETWORK
Candice Wilson Cherry is a Producer and Executive who previously served as Vice President of Acquisitions & Development at Lionsgate’s Codeblack Films, where she oversaw the company’s entire development and acquisitions slate. From inception to completion, Ms. Wilson Cherry brings her extensive knowledge of script development, physical production, post-production and distribution to her projects, most recently overseeing production on Die Hart, starring Kevin Hart, John Travolta and Nathalie Emmanuel, as well as one of Netflix’s top ranking comedy specials of 2020, Kevin Hart: Zero F**ks Given.
Ms. Wilson Cherry is a trail blazer in the entertainment industry, continuously discovering bold and original materials, and collaborating with unique and diverse creative talent to bring exciting stories to life. She is interested and experienced in the creative and practical side of entertainment, which enables her to discover new and unheard voices, and bring them into the mainstream.
Wilson Cherry previously served as a Co-Chair of the Lionsgate Women’s Empowerment Group and Board member of Colour Entertainment, Ms. Wilson Cherry advocates for more women in leadership positions and an increasingly inclusive and diverse work environment. She is a recipient of the 2018 TRAILBLAZER AWARD from Infinity Film Festival for commitment to diversity and inclusion in front of and behind the camera. Ms. Wilson Cherry also co-founded the Steven D. Olensky Memorial Fund, which since 2011 has biannually awarded scholarships to single parents pursuing their college degrees.
Ms. Wilson Cherry holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Temple University’s School of Media and Communications and a Television Development Certificate from UCLA.
VICE PRESIDENT, COMEDY DEVELOPMENT
Christina Smith was most recently made VICE PRESIDENT, COMEDY DEVELOPMENT after joining ABC in July 2019. In her position, she works closely with creators to develop original ideas and oversees pilots for the network. In addition to her work in comedy, Christina also helped develop and roll out ABC’s Inclusion Standards.
Christina, who was formerly Director of Current Programming NBC Entertainment, began her entertainment career as a West Coast NBC page. During her time at NBC she oversaw the creative process of a wide range of scripted comedy, drama, and daytime series. Programming highlights included working on the Emmy nominated series “This Is Us” and co-leading “Days of Our Lives” through its historic 50th season in which it won an Emmy for Best Daytime Series. Christina also shepherded the critically acclaimed series “Good Girls” and Marlon Wayans’ self-titled comedy series, “Marlon.”
Mrs. Smith graduated from Florida State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Media Production.
SCRIPTER ORIGINAL PROGRAMMING
Colin Davis oversees Scripted Original Programming for the Roku Channel. Roku’s robust offering of original comedy shows include: DUMMY (Anna Kendrick), DIE HART (Kevin Hart, John Travolta), ROYALTIES (Darren Criss), and the RENO 911! reboot.
Prior to Roku, Davis was in charge of a large development slate and 20 scripted series for Quibi. He helped the former streamer secure multiple 2020 Emmy nominations and was recognized in Hollywood Reporter’s Next Gen 2019: Hollywood’s 35 Rising Executives 35 and Under.
Davis began his career at Fox Broadcasting Company in their inaugural Opportunity Fox program as a full-time Apprentice to the Chairman of Entertainment. In 2014, he moved to Turner and was a key contributor to the successful TBS rebrand ushering in new series including SEARCH PARTY, WRECKED, MIRACLE WORKERS and the HBO Max animated series CLOSE ENOUGH.
He is a graduate of UCLA's School of Theater Film and Television with a concentration in screenwriting.
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, ORIGINAL CONTENT
One of the first hires for the Original Content division at PARAMOUNT+, DANNY FELDHEIM is responsible for shepherding such dramas as Star Trek: Picard and Star Trek: Discovery, The Good Fight, The Stand, the upcoming The Offer, and has led the streamers push into original comedy with No Activity, from Funny or Die, a Star Trek animated series called Star Trek: Lower Decks, Stephen Colbert's Tooning Out The News, and the upcoming premium dramedy Guilty Party starring Kate Beckinsale. Additionally, he has been a key player in expanding the streamers unscripted offering, overseeing the Emmy nominated Texas 6 docuseries and bringing in the documentary film Console Wars. Before joining P+, Feldheim worked in drama programming at Fox.
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT
NETWORK COMEDY, ABC ENTERTAINMENT
Erin Wehrenberg is Senior Vice President, Network Comedy, ABC Entertainment. In this role, she leads the comedy series development team and oversees the department’s day-to-day operations, including creatively supervising production of new comedy series for ABC. Prior to this role, Wehrenberg was senior vice president and head of Comedy Development at Warner Bros. Television, where she oversaw the development of ABC’s “Splitting Up Together” and “Suburgatory”; plus “Trial & Error,” “Two Broke Girls,” the reboot of “Murphy Brown,” and “Shrill,” starring Aidy Bryant. Prior to that, Wehrenberg was head of Comedy Development and Current Programming at Universal Media Studios. Wehrenberg began her career at NBC, where she spent more than a decade rising through the executive ranks, from manager to executive vice president, Current Series, for nearly four years. During her tenure there, she supervised creative aspects of several celebrated series, including “Friends,” “Freaks and Geeks,” “Friday Night Lights,” “The Office” and “30 Rock.” She earned a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from UCLA and serves on the board of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.
VICE PRESIDENT OF DEVELOPMENT
PARAMOUNT TELEVISION STUDIOS
Gary is a seasoned executive who has overseen development and production across tv, features and short-form digital content for several companies. A versatile creative who has worked in live-action, unscripted and animation, both as a network exec and a producer. He is currently serving as Vice President of Development for Paramount Television Studios.
Projects he’s overseen include TRANSFORMERS: WAR FOR CYBERTRON TRILOGY (a Netflix original series), season 3 of DISNEY XD ESPN SPORT SCIENCE, the pilots for Disney XD's PARKER PLAYS and POLARIS PRIMETIME, the short film incubator FREE PERIOD for Disney Channel, as well as the independent features IN THE BLOOD and HOUSE BY THE LAKE.
King began his career at New Line Cinema and has spent time as an executive at Warner Bros. and Disney Channel, in addition to working with producers such as Fast & Furious filmmaker Justin Lin, and former NBA All-Star Baron Davis.
JAMES A. FINO
STARBURNS INDUSTRIES, INC
James A. Fino is a founding partner of Starburns Industries, inc. He served as executive producer on the Emmy award-winning stop-motion animated ABED’S UNCONTROLLABLE CHRISTMAS for NBC’s comedy COMMUNITY as well as Adult Swim’s stop-motion series, MARY SHELLEY’S FRANKENHOLE and BEFOREL OREL. Fino assembled a fierce animation team and pushed the envelope of TV animation for Adult Swim’s RICK AND MORTY before continuing to executive produce Starburns Industries’ first documentary feature, HARMONTOWN, its first stop-motion feature, ANOMALISA, HBO’s animated series, ANIMALS, VRV’s animated series, HARMONQUEST, and recently, WOMAN IN THE BOOK, an animated Mexican Gothic horror series for Facebook Watch produced with a majority LatinX cast and crew."
BOARD OF DIRECTORS, ABOVE AVERAGE
Jennifer Danielson is a Leading Content Creator And Strategist who has been fortunate enough to work with the most prolific and iconic comedy brands and creators throughout her career.
During her most recent role as Senior Vice President, Digital for Comedy Central, Paramount Network and TV Land, Danielson built and lead her team to be named The Webby’s 2021 Media Company of the Year. Danielson lead the strategy, development, and expansion of original content and intellectual property for all digital platforms for Comedy Central, Paramount Network, and TV Land, with a focus on driving scale, engagement, and revenue opportunities. Danielson was also responsible for aligning the brands’ digital strategy with ViacomCBS’s overall initiatives.
Danielson joined Comedy Central in 2017 and grew total digital viewership for the brand by over 300%. In addition to supporting Comedy Central franchises online, she has also built well known digital-original properties such as Mini-Mocks, Tales from the Trip, Sex Fails and more. In 2019 she added oversight of Paramount Network and TV Land.
Prior to joining Comedy Central, Danielson served as the president of Broadway Video’s digital comedy studio, Above Average, overseeing all aspects of the business which she helped build from the ground up starting in June 2012. With Danielson at the helm, Above Average evolved into a leading entertainment company boasting premium partnerships with top brands, networks and publishers.
Danielson began working for Lorne Michaels at Broadway Video in 2001, earning her first credit on the now-iconic film Mean Girls. She subsequently went on to earn credits on two Peabody® Award-winning shows: 30 Rock and Saturday Night Live, the latter of which as co-producer by the end of her tenure in 2012. Danielson was named to Variety’s 2016 Power of Women Impact LA Report, Variety’s 2017 Digital Entertainment Impact Report: 30 Execs to Watch and Cynopsis’ 2017 Top Women in Digital list. Additionally she has been featured by Vanity Fair as a profiled founder for its inaugural Founder’s Fair and in 2019 was named one of CableFax’s top women in Digital.
Joe Lewis is an Emmy and Golden Globe-winning producer and the CEO of AMPLIFY PICTURES. Lewis has produced series such as Fleabag, Transparent and Too Old To Die Young and is currently in production on the Chris Smith directed docu-series 100 Foot Wave, which will premiere in 2021 on HBO. Lewis also recently produced Giphy’s first original video content, Dina Martina, which premiered on Valentine’s Day 2021.
Prior to Amplify, Lewis was a co-founder of Amazon Studios, running comedy, drama, casting and mixed reality for six years. Series commissioned by Lewis include The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Jack Ryan, Catastrophe, Transparent, Fleabag, Homecoming, Good Omens, Mozart in the Jungle, Modern Love, Hanna, The Tick, Bosch, Carnival Row, Undone, Red Oaks, I Love Dick, One Mississippi, Tosh.0, The New Yorker Presents, Long Strange Trip and Barry Jenkin’s upcoming The Underground Railroad. Series under Lewis have won four of the last six Golden Globes for Best Comedy Series as well as multiple Emmys, BAFTAs, Critics Choice, Peabody Awards and more.
Prior to Amazon, Lewis co-founded Bark, a startup comedy network, was the Director of Production at 20 th Century Fox and Manager of Development at Comedy Central. He was named to Variety’s “Hollywood’s New Leaders” list in 2013. He received his B.A. in Cinema-Television from the University of Southern California. He grew up in Washington DC and even went to high school TV camp if you can believe it. He and his wife live in Los Angeles.
If you want to see him talk about TV, you can do so here.
For more on Amplify Pictures visit amplifypics.com
Jonathan Stern is as an Executive Producer and/or co-creator of over 18 series since founding Abominable Pictures in Los Angeles in 2006. Abominable Pictures is a production company that develops and produces comedic content for television, podcasts and film, both scripted and unscripted.
Past projects include “Wet Hot American Summer" (Netflix), the feature film "A Futile and Stupid Gesture" (Netflix), all seven seasons of “Childrens Hospital” (Adult Swim), “Mystery Science Theater 3000” (Netflix), “Medical Police” (Netflix), “The Hotwives of Orlando/Las Vegas” (Hulu), “Burning Love” (Yahoo! and E!), “Shrink” (Seeso), "Brews Brothers" (Netflix), "Rob Riggle's Ski Master Academy" (Sony Crackle), “Garfunkel & Oates” (IFC), “Do You Want to See a Dead Body” (YouTube Premium), "Critters: A New Binge" (Shudder), “NTSF:SD:SUV::” (Adult Swim), “DriveShare” (Verizon Go90), “Newsreaders” (Adult Swim), “BEEF” (Paramount Television), “Filthy Preppy Teen$” (Fullscreen), multiple award-winning digital series, dozens of late night shorts, and segments for “Funny or Die: Presents” (HBO).
Prior to starting Abominable Pictures, Stern produced numerous indie films in New York including “The Vagina Monologues” and the Sundance-premiering “Scotland, PA” and “The Ten.”
Currently, Stern and Abominable are in production on an untitled new comedy series for Netflix and “The Scooby-Doo Reunion Special” for the CW, and in post-production on the documentary feature “Film Geek.” Stern is developing new television series under his overall deal with Warner Bros. Television. and comedy podcasts for iHeart Media.
Stern has been recognized for his work with three wins and five nominations at the Emmy Awards, as well as Webby Awards, Streamy Awards, and a Comedy Award.
Land Romo is CEO of Starburns Audio and co-founder of the Los Angeles Mucho Musica group. With more than 20 years' experience launching several successful live music, nightlife and entertainment brands, Land's mission is to highlight diverse voices across the industry.
Marc Lieberman is the President of Above Average, an award-winning New York based comedy production company born out of Lorne Michaels' Broadway Video.. At Above Average he oversees all long form development and production as well as company operations and revenue growth.
Since joining Above Average 7 years ago, Marc has successfully produced projects for top and emerging comedy networks including HBO Max, NBCU, Paramount +, Comedy Central, IFC, TruTV and Hulu. These projects have featured series from established and rising stars in comedy including Alec Baldwin, Vanessa Bayer, John Cena, Kate McKinnon, Colin Quinn, and Liza Koshy.
Prior to joining Above Average, Marc was The Onion’s Vice President of Business Development and Producer of the Onion News Network. His work at The Onion was critically acclaimed, garnering a Peabody, numerous Webbys, and recognition as the best video satire available in digital or television. Marc's work spearheading partnerships and video expansion across the company ultimately led to a successful sale of the company to Univision.
Marc previously co-founded the financing and production company Cavalier Films where he raised, managed and deployed a multi-million dollar production and distribution fund. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia’s McIntire School of Commerce and began his career working finance at Intel and Macromedia.
DIRECTOR OF FINANCE AND OPERATIONS
Melanie Greene is the Director of Finance and Operations at Above Average, a New York-based comedy production company born out of Lorne Michaels' Broadway Video. At Above Average, she oversees production accounting for all projects, which range from one-day shoots to large-scale, multi-week productions. In this role, she works to ensure the on-budget completion of all projects by providing streamlined structures, resources, and systems for each individual production. Additionally, she runs the corporate finance and operations of the company, which includes oversight of staff hiring and recruitment as well as physical office space.
DIRECTOR, ORIGINAL CONTENT
MTV ENTERTAINMENT STUDIOS
Samantha Schles is Director, Original Content at MTV Entertainment Studios. In this role she develops comedy and alternative series, and movies and limited series for MTVE’s nine brands including Comedy Central, Paramount Network and MTV as well as Paramount+. In addition, she serves as point on various executive producer deals dedicated to developing original movies helmed by first time BIPOC, female and LGBTQ+ directors and focused on multi-cultural narratives. Previously she was based at Comedy Central focusing on half-hour series development encompassing scripted narrative, animation, unscripted and sketch, as well as original digital content. She oversaw the series Broad City, The Other Two and Doing The Most with Phoebe Robinson, and Comedy Central’s first ever limited series Time Traveling Bong. She is especially passionate about elevating queer and female comedic voices. In her spare time she can be found trying various hobbies until one of them sticks.
HEAD OF TV DEVELOPMENTCRIPTER ORIGINAL PROGRAMMING
JUST FOR LAUGHS
JFL’s Head of TV Development has sold and developed scripted and unscripted projects for HBO, Amazon, Hulu, Starz, CW, SyFy, NBCU, Sony Pictures Animation, Freeform, TruTV, E!, CBC, Comedy Central, Audible & more. And has been an Executive Producer for shows Adam Ruins Everything (TruTV), Comedy Music Hall of Fame (IFC), Humour Resources (CBC), The Middle of the Night Show (MTV), Hot Date (PopTV), Bad Internet (YT Red), Rhett & Link's Buddy System (YT Red), I Want My Phone Back (Facebook Watch), & more. Spencer has previously held executive and development positions at Stoopid Buddy Stoodios, Big Breakfast, and CollegeHumor. He was recognized with a Webby and Telly Award for his co-direction and production of a rap video starring a rapping First Lady Michelle Obama.