RYAN O’NAN is an award-winning actor, screenwriter and playwright with a diverse array of credits.
As an actor, O’Nan recently finished filming a lead role in the 2012 release FREELANCERS, opposite Robert De Niro, Forest Whitaker, Dana Delaney and 50 Cent, and 513, opposite Taryn Manning, Tom Sizemore and Michael Madsen. Other notable film credits include the lead role in THE DRY LAND (Official Sundance Film Festival 2010 Selection) starring America Ferrera, Melissa Leo, Jason Ritter and Wilmer Valdarrama, YOU’VE GOT MALE, which won him the award for Best Actor at the Asian American Film Festival, as well as EAT PRAY LOVE, starring Julia Roberts and WATCHING TV WITH THE RED CHINESE, based on the critically acclaimed novel, starring Gillian Jacobs and Leo Nam. His television work includes ABC’s THE UNUSUALS opposite Jeremy Renner, Adam Goldberg and Amber Tamblyn.
O’Nan spent the last year as a writer on the MTV hit series SKINS, based off the award-winning UK series. His feature screenplay CHU AND BLOSSOM took the Grand Prize for Best Feature at The Expo Screenwriting Conference. His comedic play ANIMALS, which premiered at the 2007 International New York Fringe Festival, has been produced on both coasts, and his latest play UNDER A FULL PINK MOON: CHRONICLES OF A GAY WEREWOLF, has received a public reading at The Atlantic Theater Company in New York. Other produced works written by O’Nan include: I LOVE YOU MORE THAN BRAINS: A ZOMBIE MUSICAL (book/lyrics/music) at the George Street Playhouse, and 1984 AND THE LITTLE PRINCE at the 2011 Humana Festival.
In addition to writing and directing theater, O’Nan has appeared on stage in New York, where he starred as Konstantin in Chekhov’s THE SEAGULL, alongside Dianne Wiest, Alan Cumming, Annette O’Toole and Kelli Garner. During his theater studies, he received Best Lead Performance for Peter Shaffer’s EQUUS, Best Director for The APOLLO OF BELAC, and The Betty Joe Tucker Award for Excellence in Performance.
Born and raised in San Diego, California, O’Nan now resides in New York. He received a BFA from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, which he attended after studying at The Mesa College Theater Company in San Diego.
BROOKLYN BROTHERS BEAT THE BEST is his feature film directorial debut.
Since beginning his career in producing, Jason Michael Berman has produced numerous feature films that have debuted at premiere film festivals around the globe, including the Sundance Film Festival, the Toronto International Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, Berlinale, and Edinburgh. Jason was named by Variety in 2011 as one of the Top Ten Producers to Watch and by Deadline Hollywood in 2012 as one of the Top Ten Producers to Watch at Sundance.
In 2009, Jason co-produced his first feature film The Dry Land, written & directed by Ryan Piers Williams, which starred America Ferrera, Melissa Leo, Wilmer Valderrama, Jason Ritter and Ryan O’Nan. The film premiered at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival in the US Dramatic Competition and won the Grand Jury Prize at the Dallas International Film Festival and at the Edinburgh International Film Festival in Scotland. Jason also was part of the producing team on the independent film JESS+MOSS, directed by Clay Jeter, which premiered at the 2011 Sundance film festival and the Berlinale in Berlin, Germany. JESS+MOSS then went on to win the Grand Jury Prize at the Dallas International Film Festival and was released in first quarter 2012.
Additional credits include the inspirational drama, Seven Days In Utopia, directed by Matthew Dean Russell, and starring Robert Duvall, Lucas Black, Melissa Leo, Deborah Ann Woll, Brian Geraghty and Kathy Baker, which was released in September 2011; The Brooklyn Brothers Beat The Best, written, directed and starring Ryan O’Nan, which premiered at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival; LUV directed by Sheldon Candis, and starring Common, Meagan Good, Dennis Haysbert, Charles S. Dutton and Danny Glover, which premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in the US Dramatic Competition; Struck By Lightning, directed by Brian Dannelly, written by Chris Colfer, and starring Chris Colfer, Allison Janney, Christina Hendricks and Dermot Mulroney. Struck By Lightning, which premiered at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival. The Brooklyn Brothers Beat The Best, LUV, and Struck By Lightning will all be theatrically released in the US in late 2012.
Jason just wrapped production on Kilimanjaro, written and directed by Walter Strafford, and starring Brian Geraghty and Abigail Spencer. The film was lensed in New York City, and is expected to be on the film festival circuit in early 2013.
Prior to producing, Jason started his career in the agent training program at the William Morris Agency in Beverly Hills, CA. His understanding of the entertainment business was further honed under the Chief Operating Officer at MGM Studios, where Jason witnessed the rebirth of the United Artists label and gained a wealth of knowledge about legal, business affairs, management, distribution, acquisitions, and the marketing departments of a major motion picture studio. Jason also worked for writer/director Gary Ross at Larger than Life Productions and assisted Ross with the animated feature film, The Tale Of Despereaux.
Jason is a 2006 graduate of the University of Southern California, School of Cinematic Arts, and is a member of the Producers Guild of America. Jason is originally from Baltimore, Maryland.
Kwesi Collisson has been a producer for feature films, broadcast television and commercial advertising more than 15 years. His works include collaborations with Paramount Pictures, NBC/Universal, USA Networks, MTV Networks, Saatchi & Saatchi and Y&R. Kwesi’s television experience includes promoting the launch of cable channels, series and producing thousands of promos and commercial spots. As a creative and technical producer, Kwesi’s expertise combines his specialized skills and experience in production and post-production management, and hands-on visual effects and editing. Kwesi’s accomplishments have garnered him awards as well as out standing recognition from esteemed colleagues in television, independent features and studio arenas. These awards include THE SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL, TOKYO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL, SXSW and the TELLURIDE FILM FESTIVAL. Kwesi’s feature film portfolio contains domestic as well as international productions such as a CONVERSATIONS WITH OTHER WOMEN, with Helena Bonham Carter, Aaron Eckhart and Olivia Wilde and MEMOIRS OF A TEENAGE AMNESIAC, filmed in Japan and the U.S., starring Anton Yelchin, Emma Roberts and Kenichi Matsuyama.
Collisson’s most recent projects include 7 DAYS IN UTOPIA, starring Robert Duvall and Melissa Leo and BROOKLYN BROTHERS BEAT THE BEST.
Sergio Agüero comes to film and television production from a successful career packaging, financing and distributing motion pictures. He has produced QUARANTINE at Sony Screen Gems (2008) and NO RESERVATIONS at Warner Brothers (2007).
Under a producer deal at Latino mini-major Maya Entertainment he has executive produced THE DRY LAND (2010) starring America Ferrera and Wilmer Valderrama and is working on a slate of youth driven multicultural genre movies.
In 2010 he also produced QUARANTINE 2: TERMINAL at Sony, and executive produced Venezuela’s all time #1 box office hit, the action thriller LA HORA CERO, as well as BROOKLYN BROTHERS BEAT THE BEST.
Agüero was an executive producer on “Y TU MAMA TAMBIEN” a 2003 Academy Award nominee for Best Original Screenplay, and “PRINCESAS” a 2005 multiple Goya Awards winner in Spain. He also developed the series pilot RED BALL, at 20Th Century Television, and the international bestseller THE QUEEN OF THE SOUTH at Warner Independent.
At the Endeavor Agency, Agüero established their independent financing and international efforts, representing talent, financing companies and completed films. He also sold distribution rights to a number of films, including the box-office hit THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT.
As Executive Vice President of Los Angeles based Trimark Picture he built international film and television sales and was instrumental in production and acquisition of art house movies. The company was acquired by Lion’s Gate Entertainment for $80 million. Prior to that, he served as Vice President of International Sales at Vision International and at Epic Pictures. He began his entertainment career in acquisitions at Bjorck Film representing in Los Angeles among others, media groups Shochiku in Japan and Village Roadshow in Australia.
Agüero earned his B.A. in economics and political science from Yale and became financial analyst at Salomon Brothers in New York, participating in valuation analyses of takeover targets as well as fixed income and equity financings. He worked and traveled throughout Asia before relocating to Los Angeles and entering the entertainment industry.
Mark G. Mathis brings over 20 years of experience to this project. He co-produced the critically acclaimed PRECIOUS, which won the 2010 Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress as well as Best Screenplay and was nominated for Best Picture. It also won the Independent Spirit Award for Best Feature, Best Screenplay, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actress and Best Director. Mark recently produced the inspirational family film SEVEN DAYS IN UTOPIA (starring Academy Award Winners Robert Duvall and Melissa Leo), and Mike Polish’s BIG SUR. Mark also produced the Sundance hit BRICK which was released by Focus Features, and he was nominated for the 2006 Independent Spirit John Cassavetes Award for Best Producer. Mark’s other past producing credits include the Sundance hit THE DRY LAND, Lee Daniels’ TENNESSEE starring Mariah Carey, CONVERSATIONS WITH OTHER WOMEN starring Helena Bonham Carter and Aaron Eckhart, and the Slamdance Grand Jury Winner GOOD HOUSEKEEPING. Mark also served as First Assistant Director on the Sundance acquisition WAITRESS and John August’s directorial debut THE NINES.
Thomas B. Fore has produced numerous feature films that have debuted at premiere film festivals including the Sundance Film Festival, the Toronto International Film Festival.
In 2011 Thomas co-produced his first feature film LUV written & directed by Sheldon Candis and starring Common, Michael Rainey Jr., Danny Glover, Dennis Haysbert, Meagan Goode, Charles Dutton and Michael K Williams and premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in the US Dramatic Competition and which was featured in the first Sundance International Film Festival in London. Thomas was also an Executive Producer of the independent film The Most Fun I Ever Had With My Pants On, written and directed by Drew Denny which was featured at the Seattle Film Festival in 2012.
Additional credits include the The Brooklyn Brothers Beat The Best, written, directed and starring Ryan O’Nan, which premiered at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival.
Thomas just wrapped production on Kilimanjaro, written and directed by Walter Strafford, and starring Brian Geraghty and Abigail Spencer. The film was lensed in New York City, and is expected to be on the film festival circuit in early 2013 and recently wrapped principal photography on Chu and Blossom, written by Ryan O’nan and Charles Chu and starring Ryan O’nan, Charles Chu, Annie Potts, Alan Cummings, Melanie Lynskey and Mercedes Reuhl which will be released in 2013. Thomas is in pre-production on several projects with Jason Michael Berman and Ryan O’nan.
Prior to producing, Thomas started his film career in 2000 on the set of Adam Yaffe’s The Book of Danny.
Thomas is a 1991 graduate of Towson University and is the CEO of Sora Development, a multifaceted real estate development firm based in Baltimore, Maryland and is Managing Partner of Tiderock Films, LLC, Fore Entertainment, a film finance company and Venus Mercari, LLC an artist Management firm Fore owns with partner, Sean Banks. Thomas is originally from Greenville, North Carolina.
Rob Simonsen is starting to make quite a name for himself in film music. Starting with his brilliant collaboration with Mychael Danna on the score to the hit Fox Searchlight project 500 DAYS OF SUMMER, and with more recent solo projects ALL GOOD THINGS (Kirsten Dunst, Ryan Gosling), LOVE, ETC. (Jill Andresevic documentary), and the upcoming Lionsgate feature LOL (Miley Cyrus, Demi Moore), Simonsen is being talked about as a composer of tremendous depth and diversity.
Since his first foray into filmmaking in 2003 with the lush, orchestral score for the independent feature Westender (“…unusually rich” -Variety, “resonant” -Combustible Celluloid and “vibrant and powerful” -dvdtalk.com), Rob Simonsen has written and contributed to the scores for numerous Hollywood films as well as television shows and major advertising campaigns. From quirky, Sundance award-winning films to major studio releases, Rob’s writing has ranged from small, eclectic ensembles to full 85-piece orchestras with choir.
Born into a musical family, Rob began playing the piano by ear at an early age. His early musical experiments were inspired by film scores, modern orchestral works, electronic music and jazz. Rob went on to pursue piano and composition while studying at Southern Oregon University, University of Oregon and Portland State University.
Rob met and befriended acclaimed film composer Mychael Danna at the 2003 Seattle International Film Festival at the premiere of Westender. Impressed by what he heard, Danna suggested that Rob relocate to Los Angeles, where, as Danna’s assistant and then as his collaborator, he refined his knowledge of the craft of scoring music to picture. During that time he collaborated with Danna on the scores to 500 DAYS OF SUMMER and MANAGEMENT (Jennifer Anniston, Steve Zahn) and provided additional music for many films, including THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS and SURF’S UP!.
In 2009 Rob opened his own studio in Hollywood out of which he continues to compose and produce for film and other music projects.
Originally from Australia, Annette graduated from Australian Film and TV School, with a degree in Editing, winning the Qantas Award for Excellence. She worked initially in Australia on a multitude of award winning films before going to Rome to work on the extremely successful and award winning TV series, “Notte Rock” for the Rai Network. Davey then came to Los Angeles at the invitation of Gabriella Cristiani, the Oscar-winning editor of the LAST EMPEROR. Since arriving in the United States, she has worked extensively on feature films in both Los Angeles and New York including GYPSY 83, SORRYHATERS, WAITRESS, BART GOT A ROOM, AND PRETTY BIRD. Davey is currently working on Season 3 of HUNG for HBO and has worked on many television series including BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, HUNG, HOW TO MAKE IT IN AMERICA and BLUE BLOODS.
Gavin Kelly is an A.S.C. honored, Emmy Award winning cinematographer who has shot a wide spectrum of feature films, music videos, commercials, documentaries, web and television projects around the world. A member of the International Cinematographer’s Guild, Gavin’s extensive background in visual arts, music, and film has helped him become a distinctive, dynamic filmmaker.
Gavin shot THE DRY LAND, starring Ryan O’Nan, America Ferrera, Wilmer Valderrama, Melissa Leo, and Jason Ritter, which premiered in competition at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival.
Gavin shot the Academy Award winning film WEST BANK STORY, a bold musical-comedy take on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The film premiered at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival and has won numerous international festival awards.
While in undergraduate studies in Visual Arts at U.C.S.D., Gavin was awarded two Student Emmys for his films. Gavin went on to receive an M.F.A. in film production at the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts in 2004.
In 2005 Gavin received the prestigious A.S.C. Heritage Award for Outstanding Cinematography, Honorable Commendation, from the American Society of Cinematographers.
Gavin recently wrapped shooting LEARNING UNCLE VINCENT, starring Common, Meagan Good, and Danny Glover, and SUGAR, starring Shenae Grimes, Marshall Allman, and Angus MacFadyan.
Gavin’s other feature credits include FRENEMY, starring Zach Galifiankis and Matthew Modine, PLAY THE GAME, starring Andy Griffith and Doris Roberts, and WAKE, starring Bijou Phillips, Danny Masterson and Jane Seymour.
Keith Freudenberger was born and raised in Berkeley Heights, NJ, a quiet suburb thirty miles from New York. Keith was forced to take piano lessons in 2nd, 3rd and 4th grade. He played the trumpet for one year, also in the 4th grade. He chose to play the bass in middle school, and continued to do so, quite poorly, throughout high school. He always enjoyed singing.
Brendan Leach was born in Staten Island and was quickly moved to Freehold, NJ. At some point he accidentally learned some guitar chords. Brendan liked to write songs, but needed someone to teach him how to sing.
Crayon Rosary was born in New Brunswick, NJ at Rutgers University when Brendan approached Keith about adding some additional instrumentation and backing vocals to songs he wrote and performed on acoustic guitar. He presented Keith with a few children’s toys and outdated, unwanted keyboards saved from the trash. Thrift store finds and garage sale purchases complimented Keith’s limited musical ability, yet perfectly translated into the feel and sound of Crayon Rosary. The two began to write new songs together and the band gained a small following. Keith taught Brendan how to sing.
Keith currently lives in Jersey City, NJ with his wife, Laura. He enjoys brewing beer, camping, hiking and complaining about the Mets. Brendan Lives in Brooklyn, NY. He works as an illustrator and write comics. Crayon Rosary has been on an indefinite hiatus since 2007.