Ben Nelson, Director
Ben Nelson is a filmmaker based in New York City and a recent NYU graduate. His made his first film, a remake of The Wizard of Oz, at the age of eight. The film, which saw a limited release both in his parents' bedroom and in his first grade classroom, was widely praised by audiences. Since then his craft has only improved, as evidenced by the several "likes" his recent films have received on Facebook. In 2013, Ben directed "A Mail Tale: The Untrolled Story," an urban musical fairy tale, which won first place at the Tisch 48-hour film festival. His junior-level film, Bowl Me, won the audience award at the 2013 New Visions and Voices Festival. His most recent film, "Karkass Karts," is a southern dark comedy inspired by his former years in Dixie.
Craig Clayton, Writer
Born and raised in Knoxville, TN, Craig has been writing stories since he learned to read, and writing movies since he learned that people could actually do that for a living (around 5th grade). He produced his first (admittedly rough) feature film at the age of 12, but was winning awards with short films by 15, and working hard on his goal of getting into Tisch School of the Arts. As a Dramatic Writing Major at Tisch, he wrote and produced several award winning short films and spent equal time in film and television writing courses. Writing and producing Karkass Karts has been a life-changing experience for Craig, especially since he now has to refer to himself in the third person. When not making movies, he writes prose and indulges his fascination with history through a few excellent podcasts and books.
Oren Soffer, Director of Photography
Oren’s second feature film as a cinematographer, ‘No Letting Go’ – featuring Alysia Reiner, Kathy Najimy, Richard Burgi and more – recently wrapped post-production and will be hitting the 2015-2016 film festival circuit. Oren has served as Director of Photography on numerous short films, commercials and music videos that have screened in film festivals around the world. In 2013 during his studies at NYU’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts, Oren was a finalist for the Arri Volker Bahnemann Award for Cinematography. Oren has also served in a variety of camera crew positions on countless projects – both student and professional, for clients including Discovery Channel, A&E, The Economist, Weight Watchers, Republic Records, Target, MTV, Nickelodeon, and L’Oreal – and has interned on multiple feature films working with acclaimed Director of Photography Reed Morano, ASC.
Zac Gobetz, Producer
Zac Gobetz is a producer who has worked on a plethora of shoots. Looking back on all of those hours spent pushing paperwork for Karkass Karts, he couldn't be more excited for the film that has come out of the twisted minds of Ben & Craig. When they approached him first about the project, all Zac could think about was: how much Southern cooking could he consume before he could no longer move? Luckily due to the overwhelming support this movie has received, you could see this project floating seamlessly from location to location, meal to meal, and joke to joke, all to finish in one of his favorite memories: Zac was sitting in hearse with production designer Madeline Wall, using the wings of faith to propel the hearse to the top of a large hill. As he threw it in reverse, she died only 50 feet from her final destination. Flagging down Ben & Craig, the Director and Writer duo rallied the entire crew and in metaphorical brilliance pushed the hearse to her final resting place.
Madeline Wall, PRODUCTion Designer
Madeline Wall is a Seattle-born, New York City based filmmaker. She received her BFA in Film from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts in 2013. She currently works as a production designer, director, and editor for short films and commercials. She was recently named one of the 2015 Undergraduate Craft Award Winners in The First Run Film Festival for her production design work on Nora Unkel's The Goblin Song, and her production design and editing work on M. Louis Gordon's Girl in the Chair.
Ian Bouillion, Box BIRCH
A native of Houston, Texas, Ian would like to thank Ben, Craig, and the great state of Tennessee for their fine bourbon and hospitality. When not in the back of a hearse, or vomiting, or faking his own death, Ian is a student at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. At NYU, Ian has studied at the New Studio on Broadway, the Classical Studio, and will be continuing his training at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, England. No KKK members were harmed in the making of this film.
Noam Thomaschoff, Elder Birch
Noam Tomaschoff wants to welcome everyone to the Birch Family Funeral House, we make our living caring for the dead! A recent graduate of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, Noam is currently on tour with Theatreworks USA, and is a founding member of Shakespeare in the Square. You can catch him in the upcoming feature Viral, due out in 2016. He'd like to thank Ben and Craig for inviting him on this wild ride, and Colin and Ian for being the best hearse buddies anybody could ask for. Represented by Michal Zecher Management.
Collin Medford, Jake Birch
Collin is a native of Chicago. He attended Virginia Tech and graduated with a degree in business and a minor in Theatre Arts. He continues to hone his craft and is currently pursuing higher education with a focus in acting. In his free time he enjoys playing poker, golfing, bowling, dance, and working out.
Stephanie Barton-farcas, Sheriff Nancy Nulty
Stephanie Barton-Farcas recently directed ‘Red Noses’ and ‘The Cherry Orchard’ and her company Nicu’s Spoon is the subject of the documentary ‘Two and Twenty Troubles’ which premiered in NYC this September. Other NYC directing includes ‘Bad Seed’, ‘Buried Child’, ‘The Little Prince’, ‘George Orwell’s 1984’, and the OOBR winning ‘SubUrbia’. She is the creator of a new performance style called co-playing for both deaf and hearing audiences and will be guest director at The University of Hawaii in 2016. As an actress: Off-Broadway: ‘Talk Show’ (Actors Playhouse), ‘Nuclear Family’ (Abingdon Theatre) and Queen Elizabeth I in ‘Elizabeth Rex’ for which she won the 2008 NY Innovative Theatre Award for Best Actress, playing Queen Elizabeth I in both the off-off and off-Broadway premieres. Off-Off Broadway as Vivian Bearing in ‘Wit’, Miss Meacham in ‘Separate Tables’ among many roles. Recent film work was Sheriff McNulty in ‘Karkass Karts’ and Judit in ‘After Midnight, Before Dawn.’ She is an active teacher and can be booked at http://www.takelessons/profile/stephanie-b28 and is online at http://sbartonfarcas.weebly.com/