home  |  links  |  film submission  |  email sign-up  |  facebook       
Sycamore Film Festival
2013 Filmmakers

mark Mark Medoff
Mark Medoff is a playwright, screenwriter, and director. He received a Tony Award for CHILDREN OF A LESSER GOD as well as London’s Olivier Award for Best Play. He was nominated for an Academy Award and a Writers Guild of America Best Adapted Screenplay Award for the film script of CHILDREN and for a Cable ACE Award (now EMMY) for his HBO Premiere movie, APOLOGY. He received an OBIE Award for WHEN YOU COMIN BACK, RED RYDER.

Among his movies are CLARA'S HEART, OFF BEAT, and CITY OF JOY.

He has written one novel, DREAMS OF LONG LASTING.

In 2000, Mark directed and co-produced the documentary film, WHO FLY ON ANGELS’ WINGS, about a mobile pediatric unit traveling through the underserved areas of southern New Mexico.

In 2001, he directed the feature film, CHILDREN ON THEIR BIRTHDAYS, based on the story by Truman Capote. Among other awards, it received the Houston World Film Festival Award for Best Family Film.

His play PRYMATE ran briefly on Broadway in 2005 and almost convinced him to get out of the theater.

He was Reynolds Eminent Scholar in the School of Theatre at Florida State University 2003-2006. He was Distinguished Professor of Playwriting at the University of Houston 2006-2013. He is now a Distinguished Achievement Professor in the Creative Media Institute for Film & Digital Arts at New Mexico State University. He formerly taught at NMSU for 27 years and was Co-Founder and Artistic Director of the American Southwest Theatre Company and Head of the Department of Theatre Arts for 9 years, following 12 years in the English Department.

In 1974, he received NMSU’s highest faculty honor, the Westafer Award. In 1980, he was honored with the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, New Mexico’s most prestigious lifetime artistic honor. In 2005, he received The Kennedy Center Medallion for Excellence in Education and Artistic Achievement.

In 2006 he directed the short film 100 MPG, which was selected to a number of film festivals.

In 2007, he directed BOOM, a training film for the military, produced by the Creative Media Institute at NMSU and the Department of Justice. More recently, he directed the premiere of the stage musical EXTINCTION: A LOVE STORY, by Bob Diven; THE MEN OF MAH JONGG, a new play by Richard Atkins, that ran at New York City’s Queens Theater in the Park in December 2008; DISPOSABLE NUT, by Ross Marks, and his own THE SAME LIFE OVER at Las Cruces’ No Strings Theater Company.

August 2009, he directed the feature film REFUGE, which he wrote. The movie features Linda Hamilton, Christopher McDonald, Chris Payne Gilbert and Lena Georgas. It went to a number of film festivals, including the Sycamore Film Festival, and was bought by Celebrity Video and Warner Bros On-Demand. It is available on most distribution systems.

Most recently, he directed HATCHING MAX, written by Anna Pattison, a recent grad of the NMSU MFA Creative Writing Program. The 33 minute short is intended to draw attention to its mostly student above and below the line personnel. The movie features JD Hinton and Tania Raymonde ("Lost", "Death Valley").

He is now working on a novel and three plays and is a producer of the movie ROSWELL FM, just now seeking distribution and film festivals. He has been married for forty-one years to Stephanie Medoff; they have three daughters and six grandchildren.

annaAnna Pattison
Anna Pattison is a writer for the screen and fiction. She graduated from the MFA program in creative writing from New Mexico State University in 2012.

Her hometown is Muscatine, Iowa. After graduating from Muscatine High School in 2003, she moved to Columbia, Missouri, and began the undergraduate program in journalism at the University of Missouri. Her focus was magazine editing, and she worked as a reporter for The Columbia Missourian and as a screen editor for VOX magazine. She graduated in 2007 with her Bachelor of Journalism with a minor in creative writing.

In 2009, Anna entered the MFA program in creative writing, emphasis fiction, at New Mexico State. Her thesis was a novel, To the Brim, which she is currently editing and plans to send out in the next year. During her time at New Mexico State, she worked as a graduate assistant for Dr. Azadeh Osanloo, assistant professor at New Mexico State. Anna, Dr. Osanloo and others collaborated on a guide for higher education to supplement the teaching of the documentary Prom Night in Mississippi, directed and written by Paul Saltzman. It is completed and in the works of being published.

Her screenplay, HATCHING MAX, was chosen by classmates in Mark Medoff’s screenwriting course at New Mexico State to be made into a short film. It was directed by Mark Medoff (Children of a Lesser God; Clara’s Heart; Children on Their Birthdays), and stars JD Hinton (musician and actor) and Tania Raymonde (Lost; Switched at Birth). The crew was made up of mostly students and local performers and artists. It has been shown at The White Sands International Film Festival and will be shown at the upcoming Sycamore Film Festival.

Anna is currently living in Columbia, Missouri. She loves her family, friends and animals, which includes her two dogs and rats.

michael Michael Dunker
Born outside Chicago, Illinois, Michael graduated from Sycamore High School in 1999 and enlisted in the United States Air Force as a radio communicator. After receiving an honorable discharge from his military service in 2003, Michael graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in psychology and film in 2007. Since relocating to Los Angeles, Michael won the 2012 High Concept Screenplay Competition for his script, Girl Code, while his first short film Hard won Best Short Film at the 2011 Sycamore Film Festival and Honorable Mention at the East Lansing Film Festival. Michael’s latest short film, Best of Both Worlds, has been accepted into over twenty film festivals including screenings in Hong Kong, London, Chicago, Los Angeles, Perth, and New York City

Best of Both Worlds: Logline: Struggling to find a normal woman, Charlie meets Michelle and questions if he can accept the 'Best of Both Worlds' when she reveals she turns into a guy named Michael during the day.

carolin heffernenCaroline Heffernan
Caroline's performance as Scout in Steppenwolf Theater's "To Kill a Mockingbird" was quoted by Chicago Tribune critic Chris Jones as "among the best work I've seen from a kid ever ... ". Heidy Weiss, Chicago Sun Times critic, has called Caroline's work "astonishing".

Caroline, at age 13, is already a well established stage and screen performer with credits including her current Lincolnshire Marriott debut as Jane Banks in their upcoming production of Mary Poppins. Caroline just finished performing as Young Fiona/Ugly Duckling in Shrek the Musical on Navy Pier at the Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. Caroline wowed audiences and critics with her performance as Annie in Annie at the Paramount Theatre in Aurora this past winter. Other Chicago credits include Skillings daughter in Enron (Timeline Theater Company); Young Kim in Showboat (Chicago Lyric Opera); two seasons as Emily Cratchit in A Christmas Carol (Goodman Theatre); Leah in Wonders Never Cease (Provision Theatre); and Jenny in Rhymes with Evil (Infusion Theatre Company). Caroline has appeared in the film comedy Toilet Paper and is featured in Expired, both written and directed by her brother Edward Heffernan, an award winning student filmmaker. Caroline has also been featured in Commercials including Flintstones Vitamins and Kellogg's Eggo Waffles. Caroline received an outstanding actress award in Collaboraction Sketchbook, Chicago's annual festival of plays and has participated in multiple staged readings with Chicago Dramatists. She is also an award-winning USAG gymnast since the age of five.

nancy hays Nancy Hays
Nancy Hays is President and CEO of Nancy Hays Entertainment, Inc., a corporation that specializes in producing celebrity talent for private events. Nancy received her BS with highest honors from University of Illinois in Communications and a Masters Degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in Advertising. She worked as the Directory of Entertainment for the Chicago office of Jack Morton Productions before founding Nancy Hays Entertainment, Inc. in 1993.

In the film industry, Nancy Hays Entertainment, Inc. works closely with director Edward Heffernan and was Executive Producer of the award wining short film, The Letter as well as Executive Producer of Edward Heffernan's latest film, EXPIRED. In recent years Hays has also appeared in acting roles in the short films Videodollars and EXPIRED. NHE has also produces CD and DVD dance instructional products that have received critical acclaim in national publications including Billboard, the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, theWashington Post and many others. Ms. Hays has also appeared on national network TV shows as a guest and worked as a professional singer in major venues throughout the US and Europe. In the 1980s Ms. Hays also appeared as an actress and singer in a made-for-TV film The Minnesota Connection and has worked as a voice-over and commercial talent.

seth deming Seth Deming
Seth Deming began his journey into film after watching a short film by Neill Blomkamp. Seth always loved story, and after seeing this early film on the internet, he was bit by some sort of this-is-what-you-need-to-do bug. Quickly, he ditched all other creative pursuits and focused solely on film making. He met with filmmakers, and production studio owners and asked for guidance and advice. He read books. He took classes, and somewhere along the way he began making media that wasn't terrible. Other people were drawn to it, and slowly but surely Seth began getting more and more work until it became his career.

Seth believes that the work you do will inspire the work you’ll end up doing. So every frame he shoots, every piece he makes has to be engaging, unexpected, and dramatic in some way. Seth is interested in engaging people in a story. He cares about what he does not only because he cares about the people he works for, but also because it’s part of who he is. In a very real sense, that is what Seth believes in. His work includes short films, documentaries, television commercials, internet branding pieces, and more.