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IN MOTION (backup) V.3 - USC School of Cinematic Arts - University ...

IN MOTION (backup) V.3 - USC School of Cinematic Arts - University ...

IN MOTION (backup) V.3 - USC School of Cinematic Arts - University

L OF MA ISION SCHOOL OF CINEMA TELEVISION Stark at 25 We’ve Only Just Begun! By Meredith Goodwin SUMMER 2005 Ray Stark and Art Murphy won’t be there when the Peter Stark Producing Program holds its 25th anniversary reunion celebration on October 1. But their spirits will be present when 25 years of successful Stark Program graduates come together to celebrate what is inarguably the premier producing program in the academic and film world. Producer Andrew Licht ’81 (The Cable Guy, Waterworld), one of the first class of Stark graduates, has been tapped to produce the festivities under the guidance of Lawrence Thurman, who has directed the program since 1991. (Details will be coming soon, so stay tuned to http://www.cntvalumni.net) As entertainment insiders have long known, “Starkies” are entrenched throughout the industry on both the creative and business sides. Some, like Polly Cohen (Senior Vice President, Warner Bros.), Robert Greenblatt (President of Entertainment, Showtime), Peter Kang (Vice President, 20th Century Fox), and James Whitaker (President of Production, Imagine), are executives at major companies. Some, like Evan Katz (24) and John Making the Grade Drew Casper Receives Major Teaching Award By Meredith Goodwin The School’s Academy Award winners aren’t the only ones who’ve been basking in the celebrity spotlight recently. Rapturous applause greeted legendary critical studies professor Drew Casper in March as he received the Associates Award for Excellence in Teaching during the USC Academic Honors Convocation. Before, during, and after the elegant ceremony, Casper was surrounded by legions of admiring friends and fans, including USC President Steven B. Sample, the evening’s emcee. “What a love-fest for Drew!” one awed spectator was heard to utter. Casper is the first cinema-television faculty member to receive this prestigious award, which is the highest accolade the USC faculty bestows on its members for outstanding teaching. Casper was presented with a beribboned medal, a formal citation hand inscribed on vellum, and a check for $5,000. In selecting Casper from a highly competitive field of nominees, the award committee cited the “extent of (continued on page 4) Declaration of Independence By John Zollinger, M.F.A ’02 Addressing a sea of eager faces packing the Shrine Auditorium for this year’s commencement ceremony, veteran independent filmmaker Saul Zaentz gave the class of ’05 a bittersweet send-off, lauding them for finishing their studies, but cautioning them about potential pitfalls on the path ahead. “Upon your graduation, many of you are saying ‘free at last, free at last.’ Not so. Not so,” mused the avuncular producer, wagging his index finger at the crowd. “You alone will keep yourselves responsible for all you must do to be even partially free as a human and as a professional.” (continued on page 11) Above: Ray Stark surrounded by an early group of “Starkies” circa 1989 Below: Jay Roach at the 2005 commencement ceremony Wells (ER, The West Wing), are writer-producers in television. Some, like Neal Moritz (XXX, The Fast and the Furious) and Stacey Sher (Erin Brockovich, Pulp Fiction), are producing feature films. And others, like Emmy-winning sound editor Thierry Couturier (The X-Files), have gone on to great success in what some might consider non-traditional Starkie fields. (continued on page 2) What’s Inside 3 Scribe Support Writing students beat the odds with help from Operation Win 6 In the Right Mood Animation Chair Kathy Smith receives prestigious USC honor for Indefinable Moods 7 Going Global Looking at the world through cinema with Assistant Professor Priya Jaikumar 12 Lost and Found Alumnus Javier Grillo-Marxuach on getting Lost and finding success 14 The Look of Love Audiences are falling in love with the passionate seniors of Backseat Bingo 15 Picture This Close encounters with Tom Hanks, Michael Moore, Bruce Rosenblum, and John Wells

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