Ever since his grandfather gave him a video camera for his Bar Mitzvah (after years of relentless pestering), Todd Strauss-Schulson has been a one-man movie-making machine – directing, writing, shooting and editing all of his own work.
Born and raised in Queens, he attended Emerson College; where he won numerous awards, including Panavision’s prestigious New Filmmakers prize. Upon graduating, Todd moved to Los Angeles. It wasn’t long before he was helming high-concept music videos for major label artists. His music video work led to a 6-month stint in China and Thailand, where he wrote and directed MTV Whatever Things, a more stylish version of Jackass with an all-western cast. It became the most popular show on MTV Asia with an international audience of over 250 Million.
Back in the States, Todd has directed short films and TV shows with comic greats like Stephen Colbert, Amy Schumer, Seth Macfarlane, Jeffery Tambor, Jimmy Kimmel, Ellen DeGeneres, The Onion, Lewis Black, Patton Oswalt, Thomas Middleditch, Adam Devine, Eric Andre, Laura Silverman, Natasha Leggero and Damon Wayans. Todd’s personal project Mano-A-Mano was a selection of the 2008 SXSW Film Festival. In 2009, SXSW invited Todd back to premiere his new short film Big Pussy, which was subsequently selected to screen at the world famous Just For Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal.
At 29 years old, Todd teamed with New Line Cinema and Mandate Pictures to spearhead his first feature film, A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas. The film – which was released by Warner Brothers in 2011 in stereoscopic 3D (the first stoner movie ever shot in 3D and the first Christmas movie ever shot in 3D and arguably the first comedy ever shot in 3D and this is the longest sentence to ever use the term 3D this many times) – boasts an all-star comedic cast including Kal Penn, John Cho and Neil Patrick Harris.
His sophomore effort, The Final Girls for Sony Pictures and Groundswell Productions, had its world premiere on Friday the 13th at SXSW’s opening night. It won the Audience Award at the Stanley Film Festival, was a Gala Premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival, and was the closing night film at the 2015 Midnight Madness series at the Toronto Film Festival. In the years since, it has amassed cult status—counting Stephen King, Sam Raimi, and Quentin Tarantino as vocal fans.
Todd’s new feature film Isn’t It Romantic starring Rebel Wilson, Liam Hemsworth, Adam Devine, and Priyanka Chopra was released Valentines Day 2019 breaking hearts nationwide.
Todd will write and direct his next feature titled, “Silent Retreat” for Miramax.
Producer/Director. Born in Johannesburg (ZA) in 1955, he studies Architecture in Torino, Italy and founds film production company Stefilm in 1991.
He recently directed the documentary series Food Markets – In the Belly of the City (20×52); A World of Pasta, Doctor Ice (Science Film Festival – Milano 2009), and co-wrote Food Makers go Global! (5 x26′). He produced Exemplary Behaviour (winner of Golden Dove, Fipresci and Interreligious award, 2019).My Home, in Libya (Locarno FF 2018); Wonderful Losers (Lithuanian candidate Academy Awards 2019); The Strange Sound of Happiness (Special Mention Next Masters DOKLeipzig 2017); The Queen of Silence (IDFA 2014, Silver Horn, best feature length doc Krakow FF 2015, Golden Nanook IDF Perm 2015); Char, no man’s island (Berlinale Forum 2013), Vinylmania (IFF Rotterdam 2012), Mostar United (IDFA 2009).
He tutors for: Biennale Cinema and VR College Venice, Marchè du Film Cannes, Documentary Campus, EsoDoc, Films 3 Continents-Produire au Sud, Med Film Factory, New Chinese Film Talents, Ouga Film Lab, Torino Film Lab, Scuola Holden, ZagrebDox Pro, ZELIG Film School and several other institutions.
Raphaël Berdugo has more than 30 years of experience in the movie business, especially in production and international sales. He has coproduced around 30 movies through various production companies, mostly Arthouse films that have been selected by prestigious festivals such as Cannes, Berlin, Venice and Toronto, winning numerous awards. For more information, you can visit his IMDB: https://www.imdb.com/name/