Ramesh Santanam | Director of Marketing & Public Relations, Conservatory of Performing Arts
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Point Park University-produced documentary series ‘The Chair’ will begin Sept. 6 on Starz
The 10-episode series will air at 10 p.m., Saturdays; follows competing film directors making 2 movies, ‘Not Cool’ and ‘Hollidaysburg’
PITTSBURGH – The Point Park University-produced documentary series, “The Chair,” will begin airing on Saturday, Sept. 6, on STARZ as the channel’s first original unscripted series.
The 10-episode series will air at 10 p.m., on Saturdays.
Created by veteran Hollywood producer Chris Moore, “The Chair” is a STARZ original filmmaking experiment that follows two first-time directors, Shane Dawson and Anna Martemucci, as they compete to make two separate feature films from the same script, “How Soon Is Now?”
“The Chair” will document the creation, marketing and theatrical release of both films - “Hollidaysburg” directed by Martemucci, who grew up in State College and attended Penn State, and “Not Cool,” directed by Dawson. Through multiplatform voting, viewers will ultimately determine which director will be awarded $250,000. Both films will also air on STARZ.
More than 100 Point Park students and alumni from a variety of majors supported the TV series and two feature films as interns, employees, and through class projects. Additionally, production offices were located on Point Park University’s campus in downtown Pittsburgh.
“Point Park University is proud to be a partner on ‘The Chair,’ and we are excited for Starz viewers to see a finished product that employed a number of University students and alumni,” said Paul Hennigan, president of Point Park. “This project acts as an economic driver and incubator for original entertainment that boosts the local economy while giving our students the kind of experience they need to thrive in the real world.”
The University plans to hold weekly screening parties of “The Chair” on campus.
“We are excited that the start of the show coincides with the start of our new academic year,” said Nelson Chipman, associate professor of cinema arts at Point Park University. “It will be thrilling to not only see Point Park and the City of Pittsburgh profiled on the national stage, but also a great way to highlight all the work current students and alums have done on the project and to share it with the University community at large."
“The Chair” is also produced by Pittsburgh native and renowned actor, Zachary Quinto, and his production company, Before The Door Pictures.
Written by Dan Schoffer, the film is a coming-of-age comedy about a group of former high school classmates who return home from college for Thanksgiving.
The directors will have creative leeway to develop their respective films using their own ingenuity and distinct experience. While they are both first-time feature film directors, Dawson is an Internet superstar whose YouTube comedy channels boast more than 10 million subscribers and more than a billion views. Martemucci is a writer, actor and filmmaker who most recently received critical recognition for her independent film "Breakup at a Wedding," which she co-wrote, produced and starred in.
Moore has served as producer or executive producer on such films as “Good Will Hunting,” “Glory Daze,” “Best Laid Plans,” “Joy Ride,” “American Pie,” “Waiting” and “Reindeer Games.” He formed LivePlanet alongside Ben Affleck, Matt Damon and Sean Bailey, and was the creator of “Project Greenlight.” Since 2005, Moore has directed or produced “American Reunion,” “The Adjustment Bureau,” “The People Speak,” “The Last Resort,” and “Promised Land,” which also was filmed in Pittsburgh. He’s currently the co-founder and managing director of The Media Farm.
Quinto graduated from Central Catholic High School and Carnegie Mellon University. His television roles include Adam Kaufman on the Fox series “24” and Sylar on the science fiction series, “Heroes.” He also played Spock in the remake of “Star Trek” (2009) and “Star Trek into the Darkness” (2013). He recently starred on Broadway as Tom in Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie.” His production company, Before the Door Pictures, produced the Academy Award-nominated film, “Margin Call,” in which Quinto also starred, and last year’s critically acclaimed film, “All is Lost,” starring Robert Redford.
About Point Park University – Founded in 1960, Point Park University is a comprehensive master’s-level university with a strong liberal arts tradition. Located in Downtown Pittsburgh, Point Park enrolls 3,841 full- and part-time students in 82 undergraduate programs and 17 graduate programs offered through its School of Arts and Sciences, School of Business, School of Communication and the Conservatory of Performing Arts.
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