Casting director Russell Boast, producer Annabelle K. Frost, producer Nana Greenwald, writer-director Tamar Halpern, animator David Kuhn, producer-director Sheldon Larry and broadcast journalist May Lee have been hired as full-time faculty at Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film and Media Arts.
The new faculty members have worked on some of the most prominent film and television projects of the past 20 years, including the Harrison Ford starrer The Fugitive, David Fincher’s Seven and Disney’s Pocahontas. They will assume their new roles on Monday, Aug. 28, at the start of the 2023-24 academic year.
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“This is an awe-inspiring group of teachers, whose range of experience adds a wealth of valuable knowledge to our already-impressive faculty,” said Stephen Galloway, dean of Dodge College. “I can only wish I’d had professors like this when I was in film school.”
Russell Boast, CSA, head of casting and co-head of the Screen Acting program at Dodge College, is a former president of the Casting Society of America. He has worked as an independent casting director for all the major Hollywood networks and studios for more than two decades. Recent casting credits include the upcoming feature films Park Avenue and Fresh Kills. In his new role at Dodge, Boast will teach students the art and craft of casting. He will also oversee casting for all undergraduate and graduate thesis films, connecting students to Screen Actors Guild members as well as independent casting directors.
Annabelle K. Frost, assistant professor of producing, is a talented multihyphenate producer, writer, director and post-production producer who has worked in theater, film and television. Her small-screen credits include CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, Undercovers, God Friended Me and Gotham, on which she directed and also built a successful post department from the ground up. As a writer-director, she created the short film G[R]O[W]ING Up, which premiered at the LA Shorts International Film Festival. She is a graduate of American Film Institute.
Nana Greenwald, assistant professor of producing, has worked as an executive and producer in Hollywood for more than 20 years, including on such high-profile projects as North Country, Outbreak, The Fugitive and Seven. She has served as chair of the BFA film program at Brooks Institute and was previously associate dean and director of the BFA creative producing program at Chapman University’s worldwide campus in Singapore. She received her BA in theater arts from Mount Holyoke College.
Tamar Halpern, artistic assistant professor of film and television production, has written and directed 12 feature films, including five female-driven thrillers for A&E Networks. Her work on commercials includes projects for clients such as YSL, Amazon and DeBeers. In 2022, she sold a series to HBO Max (now Max) based on her adaptation of the YA book Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus. Her forthcoming novel, California Girl, will be published in the fall, and she is now developing an adaptation of another novel: S.E. Hinton’s Some of Tim’s Stories. Awarded an American Film Showcase fellowship, Halpern has taught writing and directing to Jordanians and Syrian refugees in Amman, Jordan. She received her MFA in production from USC School of Cinematic Arts.
David Kuhn, artistic assistant professor of animation and visual effects, is an artist and animator with more than 16 years of experience in film and television. He began his career as a character layout artist for Warner Bros. As an animator and supervising animator at Walt Disney Animation Studios, he worked on projects such as Pocahontas, Hercules, Fantasia 2000 and The Tigger Movie. Other credits includeWarner Bros.’ Scooby Doo and Looney Tunes: Back in Action as well as EA Games’ AAA title Medal of Honor. Until recently, Kuhn served as a professor and chair of animation at Laguna College of Art & Design; he has also taught at California State University Long Beach. He received his degree in film and television production from USC School of Cinematic Arts.
Sheldon Larry, artistic assistant professor of film production, has had a distinguished 45-year career on and Off-Broadway, and in film and television as a producer and director. He got his start in London, where he worked for many years at the BBC, and later segued to the U.S. market. His on-screen credits include 500 hours of television including An American Daughter, starring Christine Lahti; Split Images, based on the Elmore Leonard novel; the Bradley Cooper rom-com I Want to Marry Ryan Banks; The First Circle, starring Christopher Plummer; and The Color of Love: Jacey’s Story, starring Gena Rowlands. His indie film musical Leave It on the Floor was embraced by critics and film festivals alike and it holds a deep connection to the Black and LGBTQ+ communities in Los Angeles. He previously taught at USC School of Cinematic Arts for 12 years.
May Lee, artistic assistant professor of broadcast journalism, is an award-winning journalist who has worked as an anchor, host, correspondent and producer for NHK, CNBC, Oxygen Media and CNN, where she was the first Korean American anchor. Her production company, Lotus Media House, currently produces Shoes Off Inside, a vodcast that explores the API experience. She has authored two books: May Lee Live and In Person (2009); and So You Want to be On Air? A Guide to Anchoring, Hosting, Voice-overs, and More (2023). She received her BA in communications from Mills College and was previously an adjunct instructor at USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.
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