DEVELOPMENT: HOW CAN CHRISTIANS IN ENTERTAINMENT CREATE PROJECTS THAT ARE RELEVANT TO POP CULTURE?
ALAN CARTER – Director, The Voice
For the past 13 years Alan has been one of the premiere live directors in television, from specials such as The Teen Choice Awards, The Screen Actors Guild Awards, CMT Music Awards, and Miss America, to the Biggest Loser and the highly successful prime-time series, The Voice.
The Voice, currently in its 14th season, is the most popular live competition show in America, and Alan has directed over 300 episodes. He has also directed some of the most popular prime-time game shows in history with 65 episodes of Deal or No Deal, and 80 episodes of Minute to Win It.
DARREN MOORMAN – Producer, Same Kind of Different
Darren grew up Maryland with a passion for film and media and began acting at age 19. Over the years, he found his true calling to producing and ventured out to L.A., to continue pursuing his dreams. Within two years of being in Hollywood, he produced his first feature film, “All Over Again”, starring Craig T. Nelson and Academy Award nominee Robert Loggia. The movie was the winner of the Santa Clarita Film Festival.
Darren has worked for industry leaders like MGM, where he worked as the Production Supervisor on various film projects like, “Out of Time”, with Denzel Washington. He later worked with DIRECTV where he oversaw in-house production and produced the monthly Barker Video, “What’s On DIRECTV”.
By 2006, Darren’s growing list of accolades included feature films like “Marilyn Hotchkiss Ballroom Dancing and Charm School”, an official selection of the 2005 Sundance Film Festival, “The Fifth Patient” which premiered at Cine-Vegas and IFC, “Jack and the Beanstalk” starring Chevy Chase as well as “Sensation of Sight” starring Academy Award nominee David Strathairn. His more recent work includes two other feature films including “Unconditional” which opened nationwide in theaters, and “Crackerjack” with Jeff Foxworthy, winner of the Knoxville Film Festival.
But Darren’s success is not limited to just feature films. Darren has successfully produced several comedy shows such as, “Thou Shalt Laugh”, starring Patricia Heaton, “Thou Shalt Laugh The Deuce”, starring Tin Conway and “Thou Shalt Laugh 3”, starring Sinbad. He was also the Executive Producer for a TV Pilot called “Seven Days of Change.”
Darren’s latest films includes an adaptation of the New York Times’ Best Selling Book, “Same Kind of Different as Me” with Paramount Pictures, starring Renee Zellweger, Greg Kinnear, Djimon Hounsou and Jon Voight, which will be released in theaters on October 20.
He is currently in pre-production on Cesar Millan’s compelling story called “Dog Whisperer” and is in production with Season 2 of TV series, “Mark Hamill’s Pop Culture Quest” with Lionsgate. Simultaneously, Darren is in post-production with his two movies, “Run the Race” and “Indivisible.”
Darren is the Co-Founder of the “Everybody Can Help Somebody Foundation”, a non-profit organization that was created in line with “Same Kind of Different as Me”. The foundation aims to help the homeless all across America.
Darren lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two boys.
Amanda Ashley Meiss – Producer, Development Professional, Writer
Amanda Ashley Meiss is a producer, writer and development professional currently working at Warner Brothers. She has worked professionally in almost every facet of filmmaking, from development through distribution, and has a wide range of experience in film, TV and digital media. Ms. Meiss has worked for some of the most influential names in the industry, including Jerry Bruckheimer, Walt Disney Studios, and Di Bonaventura Pictures. She has been a buyer at Sundance and other major film festivals and has worked on such films as The Muppets (2011) and Dallas Buyers Club (2013). Currently, Amanda is a contracted producer for Machinima and writes and produces digital shows for Warner Bros. She also develops projects under her own label, Falling Free Productions. A graduate of USC with a B.A. in Communication, Amanda has created four short films and over ten years of digital media.
Phil Cooke – Producer, media consultant, author, theologian
An internationally known writer and speaker, Phil Cooke has actually produced media programming in more than 60 countries around the world. In the process, has been shot at, survived two military coups, fallen out of a helicopter, and in Africa, been threatened with prison. And during that time – through his company Cooke Pictures in Burbank, California – he’s helped some of the largest nonprofit organizations and leaders in the world use the media to tell their story in a changing, disrupted culture.
Phil was Executive Producer of “Let Hope Rise – the Hillsong Movie” released to theaters nationwide in 2016, and Producer of “The Insanity of God,” a feature documentary that premiered nationwide as a Fathom Event. According to former CNN journalist Paula Zahn, Phil is rare – a working producer in Hollywood with a Ph.D. in Theology. He’s appeared on NBC, MSNBC, CNBC, CNN, Fox News, and his work has been profiled in the New York Time, The Los Angeles Time, and the Wall Street Journal.
Phil has lectured at universities like Yale, University of California at Berkley, UCLA, and many others. In addition to writing his blog at philcooke.com, he also blogs for the Huffington Post, and has been a contributor to Fast company, Forbes.com, Wired.com and FoxNews.com.
Phil is on the Advisory Board for The Salvation Army and has been a long time member of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and The Producers Guild of America in Hollywood, and is a member of the Board of Directors for Image Journal.
Jonathan Bock – Producer, Media Expert, Author
The founder and President of Grace Hill Media, Jonathan Bock has marketed more than 500 major motion pictures and television projects to Christian audiences worldwide – including titles like THE BLIND SIDE, the NARNIA films, the LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy, THE BIBLE series, UNBROKEN, LADY BIRD, THE CONJURING universe of films, NOAH, and the upcoming A WRINKLE IN TIME Recognized by CNN, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, NBC News, Christianity Today and ABC News for his marketing acumen, Bock has been called “Hollywood’s go-to marketing executive for faith-infused projects” by the Los Angeles Times and “The man who helps Hollywood get religion” by Time magazine. He produced the film, “Hillsong – Let Hope Rise,” and is an Elder at Bel Air Church in Los Angeles.
FAITH IN ENTERTAINMENT: WHERE DO WE BEGIN?
Guests: Jim O’Doherty and Rick Bonn
Hosted by: Ryan O’Quinn (MC) and Brian Hull.
Jim O’Doherty – Creator, Show Runner, Producer, Writer, Comedian
Jim O’Doherty grew up on Long Island New York where he started his career as a stand up comic at Governors comedy club in Levittown . Jim began his writing career as one of the driving forces behind the NBC show “Third Rock From the Sun”. His work on Third Rock” won him two Golden Globes, and three Emmy nominations. From there Jim went on to be a Co Ex producer on the Fox comedy “Grounded for Life”. Jim has written TV comedy for all of the Major Networks and was one of the creators of the “Tracy Morgan” show for NBC.
In 2011 Jim Created the show “Kickin it” for the Disney channel where it remained their number one show for boys through 2015 .
After that He ran the show “Gamers Guide to Everything” for Disney XD through 2017.
Jim has recently set up a dark half hour comedy with Blumhouse the company behind such movies as “Get Out” and “Split”. It is about a family of struggling undertakers who will do what ever it takes to keep the doors to their mortuary open.
Jim is also currently working with the Farrelly brothers on a new show. Jim is married and has three daughters and lives in Los Angeles.
Rick Bonn – VP Acquisitions & Development, Pure Flix Entertainment
Rick is the current Head of Development and Acquisitions for Pure Flix Entertainment where he develops feature films and streaming content and acquires completed media for distribution. He’s consulted on 4000 screenplays for companies like Disney, Nickelodeon, and Wind Dancer Films and has developed dozens of films, including Pure Flix’s THE CASE FOR CHRIST and SAMSON, Keystone’s AIR BUD, as well as animated series like JAY JAY THE JET PLANE and JETCAT. His writings on film have been published by Westminster John Knox Press, Prism Magazine, Christianity & Theatre and the websites aint-it-cool, hollywoodjesus and upperleftedge. He’s taught at Pepperdine University, Los Angeles Film School and the Act One Program, and has coordinated conferences at Wheaton College and Fuller Seminary. He’s also an optioned screenwriter, published author, and creator of indie comic books.