“The thing that serves Sam so well is his theater background,” says three-time Emmy-nominee David Ogden Stiers, who first rode to fame in the long-running TV series, M.A.S.H. “His ability to comprehend layers and bring them together – without bothering you about how they got there – is remarkable.”
“Working with Sam was an actor’s dream. It’s true what they say, that an actor as a director is great for actors, because they know how you work,” says NOT DEAD YET co-star Sherilyn Lawson.
"What I loved about Sam is that he kept a real vision of where things were going. Where I needed to be, when,” says Susan Hess Logeais, who stars in and produced NOT DEAD YET. “So it was really helpful to trust him. He’d say, ‘I don’t believe it. Try it again. Go deeper. You’re not there yet.’ Which is why I hired him. I felt in my past work that I never went as far as I could. I always stopped short. And it wasn’t because I wasn’t capable.”
The recipient of a M.F.A. in Acting from the University of Florida, Sam Hull is a classically-trained actor and director who crosses over into film with NOT DEAD YET. Among the dozens of plays and musical productions he has staged to date, Hull was responsible for the 1998 and 2000 “Sabre Latin America” extravaganzas at Walt Disney World and Miami’s International Centre. He has also been part of a team that produced The National Seven Pleasures of the Casbah Fashion Show Event in Las Vegas.
Named to the Who’s Who Among University Professors in 2005, Hull has taught the craft of acting and directing at St. John’s University, Portland Community College, The Art Institute of Portland, The University of Central Florida, The University of Florida, Rollins College, and The College of St. Benedict. He has presented at the American Theatre in Higher Education Conference in New York City as well. As an actor, Hull has also been in more than 60 shows, sung in numerous operas and starred in national commercials.
Known for his intuitive understanding of women’s material, Sam Hull’s association with the production actually began as one of the actors participating in an early reading of Logeais’ screenplay. As the script progressed through rewrites and Hull continued to provide feedback on the characters’ development, Logeais says he became the obvious choice for two reasons.
“I knew that all three of us would need a real actor’s director to give us the confidence to take risks we’d never had the chance to take before. And Sherilyn’s husband, who works on studio films, was impressed at how Sam was capable of getting the three of us to listen and take direction. Which was not an easy thing!”
The normally-difficult transition from stage to screen was much easier for Hull, due to the five years he spent freelancing as a ‘ghost coach’ on pilots and films shooting in Orlando. “I would get called in when they had a new director or someone who didn’t like dealing with actors – or an actor who was taking a really big risk needed help,” he says.
Few who knew Hull growing up in the Midwest could have predicted what he would study in college, but most would have guessed performance of some sort. He studied music throughout his childhood and won various awards in vocal and saxophone performance. He grew up in a small steel town on the Mississippi River, where young men were expected to head into the mills to join their fathers and uncles. “When you turned 18, it was – ‘Well, what mill would you like to work in?’ When I went to college instead, my uncles said, ‘When are you going to stop wasting your time! We’ve got a job opening, do you want it?” he says with a wry chuckle.
Hull remembers visiting St. Louis just five times, even though it was a mere 12 miles away. “My idea of what the world was like came only from watching the black-and-white TV we had until I was 14,” he recalls. Yet he somehow sensed that his destiny was elsewhere. “When I was in the 10th grade, I can remember standing in the band room, looking out the window at the rain– and thinking, I’m leaving here.”
Hull spent his undergraduate years at Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois, earning two B.S. degrees, in theatre arts and communications advertising. He also got his first break into directing with campus productions of The Informer and Torch Song Trilogy. From there he spent several years acting professionally, ending up in Gainesville, to get his M.F.A. at the University of Florida. Sam was the first graduate student to direct in the UF- Constans Theatre Mainstage Season and was named The Outstanding Graduate Student of the Year in 1996. Following graduation, he moved a short distance away to Orlando, then settled in Portland in 2001.
During the last decade, Hull expanded into the visual arts as well. In 2003, his glass and mirror art sculptures were featured in a solo exhibition at the Jules Gallery in Portland. Hull also opened an interior design studio that specializes in historic mansions and high-end contemporary residences. To learn more, visit www.samhulldesigns.com.
In addition to her acting career Susan Hess Logeais has spent years developing her writing talents with the likes of Con Sellers, Robert McKee, Cynthia Whitcomb, and most recently Jackie Blain. NOT DEAD YET is Logeais’ fourth feature length script and her first to be produced. She has studied with LA’s Groundlings and continues to study Spacial Dynamics in addition to her acting and voice work.
She is currently hard at work on what she hopes will be Hot Flash Films PDX next feature release. Past producing credits include her work with Two Chicks with Cameras, where she focused on shorts films with dance themes and music videos.
ROLAND SARRAZEN | Producer
Roland Sarrazen found his way to Portland from El Toro, CA. He graduated from the University of California at Irvine with a BS in psychology. Sarrazen has also written, produced, shot, and edited several solo projects, including The Artic Wolf Encounter – an introduction video for White Wolf Sanctuary in Tidewater, OR, which is seen daily by all guests to the park. Other solo work includes Retired a short film project completed in 2003. He attended the Art Institute of Portland where he produced Another Reason I Don’t Have a Gun in the House, and the first ever live television program originating for Ai-pdx, The Topping Hour. He completed a feature documentary titled Larke Ellen Circle in 2007 that chronicled the lives of four brothers and the childhood home that brought a blended family together in 1926. Sarrazen lives with his wife and twin daughters in The Virgil and Beulah Crum House, a National Historic Property in Portland’s Beaumont District. Not Dead Yet marks Sarrazen’s first feature film producer credit. He is currently in pre-production on his feature directorial debut which pays homage to his favorite television show, The Twilight Zone.
JACKIE BLAINE | Associate Producer
Jackie Blain is a member of the Writers Guild of America with over 40 hours of produced network television as a staff writer-producer on such shows as Diagnosis Murder and Martial Law. She also wrote the short film Vocalise, has a feature in development, and is pursuing an MFA in screenwriting at Goddard College. Her real passion is teaching and working with screenwriters one-on-one. Through her firm Yellow Lab Ltd., she does script consulting and runs classes and workshops in the Portland area. She spent 4-1/2 years on the faculty of The Art Institute of Portland, taught for the UCLA Writers Program, and runs the Pitch Practice Room at the annual Willamette Writers Conference. She has also been a judge for numerous screenwriting and filmmaking competitions, and participated in selecting interns for the prestigious Television Academy Internship Program. Her students’ films, both shorts and features, have been accepted by and won awards at numerous competitions and festivals, including the New York Film Festival, the San Francisco Film Festival, the Longbaugh Festival and the Salem Film Festival.
Brian Liepe began his career behind the camera in Denver, Colorado where he worked as the Director of Photography for the music television show The Noise Floor and for ABC’s Hot on Homes! After earning a Bachelors degree from the Colorado Film and Video Institute, he became more familiar with the production protocol of television, and began networking all over the country, eventually moving to Washington State where he assumed a Director of Photography/Editing position at PBS. There he shot and edited over 20 short-form documentaries. In 2007 Liepe started his own production company, Assigned Value Productions, and in less than a year, he had traveled all over the country producing and shooting commercials for companies like Nestle, Microsoft and Harley Davidson. Liepe is an award winning Cinematographer and Editor who has no plan B - “it’s filmmaker or bust!” Not Dead Yet is Brian’s first feature film as Director of Photography. www.assignedvalue.com
Although he “grew up” in L.A., Gary Damron was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. A self-taught musician at the age of 13, he was 16 when he played in his first band. Over the years, he’s been asked to play in many bands, exploring styles from rock and progressive rock to progressive jazz, blues, and even rockabilly. With the initial goal to play cello in the Cleveland Orchestra, Damron attended music school to learn theory and composition. However, when he was approached by a playwrite to compose acoustic pieces for stage, the bug of “writing to visual” took over. As a multi-instrumentalist, he focused on developing his own unique sound while working within the early stages of Oxygen Media Network Library and releasing CD’s independently. Damron’s work can be described as a mood-based, multi-genre blend of textures with everything from gentle soundscapes to scorching guitar melodies. Some pieces are edgy while others are symphonic with a grim intensity. Whatever the project, it’s the creativity that fuels him. studio78music.com
Johanna Kunin is a writer of songs living in Seattle. You might hear her on your radio on stations like KEXP, WFMU, or KCRW, or see her play at a local club, art space, or house show. She grew up in Minneapolis with neighbors like Dave Pirner of Soul Asylum mowing her lawn and vice-presidential candidate Walter Mondale handing out Halloween candy. She was an avid listener of music that sounded nothing like her own would come to be. She also spent some of her youth at a family cabin near the Boundary Waters. She didn’t start writing songs until 2004, after going to school for jazz, and that background as well as the classical piano music she grew up playing can be heard in her songwriting. The surreal atmosphere of her songs along with her melodic vocal lines and often minimalist piano accompaniment have brought about comparisons to a lot of different-sounding musicians - Tori Amos, Laurie Anderson, and Cat Power, to name a few - but she has also been described as “doing something you’ve never heard before” (Casey Jarman, Willamette Week). She doesn’t remember stories very well, so her songs don’t usually tell them. Instead they tend to proceed in a dream-like fashion from one image to another, often dealing in the parodoxical and/or ambiguous. www.johannakunin.com
Director | Sam Hull
Screenwriter | Susan Hess Logeais
Executive Producer | Olivier Logeais
Producers | Susan Hess Logeais, Roland Sarrazen
Associate Producers | Jacquelyn Blain, Mark Anderson, Sherilyn Lawson, Betty Moyer
Director of Photography | Brian Liepe
Editor | Jonathan Collins
Editing Consultant | Kelli McClean
Casting Coordinator | Molly Ellis
Music | Gary Damron
Featured Vocalist | Johanna Kunin
Line Producer | Darren Demetre
1st Assitant Director | Shelly M. Heyward
2nd Assitant Director | Carolyn Golden
Production Manager | Emily Weston
Production Coordinator | Aimee Barneburg
1st Assistant Camera | Jerry Turner
Steadicam Operator | Greg Schmitt
Art Director | Licia Hauss
Leadman | John Kirkley
Art Department Coordinator | Stephani Norwood
Property Master | Timothy Oakley
Set Dresser | Timothy Oakley
Key Makeup & Hair | Alison Binford
Assistant Key Makeup & Hair | Jennifer Gill
Media Manager | Jonathan Collins
Post-Production Sound Mixer | Gary Damron
Sound Designer | Gary Damron
Sound Mixer | Tyler Stephens
Boom Operator | Morgan Hobart
Script Supervisor | Kay Taylor
Gaffer | Phil Gerke
Electric Swing | Brad Reeb, Brian Mohr
Key Grip | Dirk Wallace
Swing Grip | Joe Timko
Costume Designer | Marychriss Mass
Set Costumer | Cindy Bagby
Music Supervisor | Amara McCarthy
Location Manager | Mark Anderson
Production Accountant | Bonnie Burlew
Cast Personal Assistant | Alex Klaue
Videographer | Rene LeBas
Trapeze Rigging | John Klein
Trapeze Rigging Assistan | t Aaron Zinder
Still Photographers | Stephen K. Shefrin, Louise Demetre, Sarah Behr
Set PA’s | Steven Bauer, Tami Galvin, Natalie Holzer, Jason Ruffalo, Karen Jackson Shorb, Tomas Soderberg, Erin Van Dyke, Meggin Williams
Catering | Catering by Caprice, Madison’s Grill
Craft Service | Catering by Caprice, Celebrity Services, Bob & Hollie Olsen, Eco|Crafty
Grip and Electric Equipment | Pacific Grip & Lighting, BLT Grip
Legal Services | Jamie Swisher
Production Insurance | Hays Company
Finishing Sevices | Indent Studios