Ladue alum Joe Weil is the originator of Psycho Films in Los Angeles, CA. Joe has worked with rap artists, Drake, Kendrick and P. Diddy. His company professionally produce music videos, commercials, and other video projects for a dynamic client base in LA. Joe also serves as the President of Psycho Films, as well as one of its production company's directors. On this episode, Joe talks about the production process for a music video, from concept to creation, and takes us behind the scenes with a music video he produced for the artist Electric Guest. Joe also shared fantastic stories, memories, and advice from his Ladue High School, USC collegiate, and early professional days.
High School productions
Ladue alum Samantha Shanker has worked as an assistant to the widely popular comedian, Tina Fey, for the past three years, and is now developing her craft as a TV series writer. While working for Tina, Sam came on-board with Tina's production company during the popular Netflix show, "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" and was a part of the Broadway production of "Mean Girls." On this episode of Media Makers, Sam shares her incredible journey from Kenyon College, to interning for Seth Meyers, and now working for Tina Fey. Sam offers fantastic advice to students on why to take risks, how to create and maintain relationships, knowing your role at each step of the ladder, and being simply being a pleasant person to work with has allowed her to step into unbelievable opportunities.
Ladue View days in high school
Al Tompkins is one of America's most requested broadcast journalism, multimedia teachers, and coaches, so I'm thrilled to bring his expertise to students and educators everywhere. Al discusses the ethics behind any story we consume in the news, especially during the coronavirus pandemic and shares his insight on a story circulating through all of media, recorded from inside a New York hospital. In addition, Al talked about ways high student journalists are using their fact-checking skills right now to create videos and inform the public through the Instagram platform @MediaWise. Plus, Al and I talked about a plethora of ways our student journalists can cover stories while we are bound at home during the COVID-19 crisis.
Mike Stewart is the Executive Producer and Director for Big Deal Productions, and on this show of Media Makers, he shares his experiences producing national commercials, including working as a production manager for Super Bowl spots. Mike also said shared his knowledge of internal video departments with Fortune 500 companies as he spoke about his 30+ years of experience working for Anheuser-Busch and Bud Sports. If that weren’t enough, we also discussed his experience working the video scoreboard at Busch Stadium for the St. Louis Cardinals, including the number of people and aspects of the job it takes to successfully produce in-game entertainment for a professional sports team. Plus, we turn back the clock to see a young Mike producing stories during the beginning days of ESPN.
Mike's photo gallery
Ladue alum Claire Levinson discusses what it's like to be an animation editor in Los Angeles, CA. Claire offered a unique look into what it's like to edit animations for adult audiences, rather than cartoons for kids. She also reminisces about her time in the Ladue Broadcast Technology program, her college experiences, as well as her overall path to being a professional in the media industry.
Tom Ackerman is the Sports Director at KMOX radio, overseeing a department that serves as the flagship station for the St. Louis Cardinals and St. Louis Blues. He is also the lead sports anchor on KMOX’s “Total Information A.M.” and a host on the Cardinals Radio Network. On this episode of Media Makers, Tom discusses what it's like to be home with his kids during the pandemic shutdown and he shows us his home radio set-up. Tom shared what it's like to report on sports when games aren't occurring, and talked about replaying the 2011 improbable St. Louis Cardinals run to the World Series on KMOX radio every night now through this May. Tom also broke down the 2020 St. Louis Cardinals baseball team, if and when, baseball is played this year. It should also be noted that Tom's children attend Ladue Schools and we talked about Friday Night lights at the new stadium and Ladue High School.
Les Rose spent 20+ years as the camera photographer for Steve Hartman, and spent many years with the CBS News network, and as well as his first job in local TV in Tampa Bay, FL. He is now a successful professor of Broadcast Journalism at Syracuse University's Newhouse School of Public Communications. Les discusses "writing with your camera," how sound brings the story to the audience, tips to make connections and relationships with the strangers whom you will tell their story, and how to use the "hourglass" method for visual storytelling.
Ladue alumni Danny Spewak, who is currently a General Assignment News Reporter for KARE 11 in Minneapolis, MN, shares memories of his time at Ladue. Danny also reminisced about stories from his college days at Mizzou, his unbelievable first day on the job as a professional reporter in Buffalo, and updates on his work covering the coronavirus.
Examples of Danny' work
Cory Epps exoneration story Danny mentioned
The original Feb. 2014 story:
The 2017 exoneration story, including TV broadcast version and extended interview. Part 1 of the exoneration can be seen in the main video player, with Part 2 in the body of the text.
Channel 2 reporter winds up at hospital after earpiece gets stuck on his first day
Ladue alumni Lillian Donahue discusses her current position as a reporter for Live 5 in Charleston, SC. Lillian also discusses how her local stories have been picked up by national news, her national spots on Full Court Press with Greta Van Susteran, her time at Arizona State University and of course, her lessons and memories from Ladue's Broadcast Technology program.
Presentation by Ladue student Sandra Salib after watching Lillian's interview
(Quotes from Lillian)
CORONAVIRUS Drive through collection site
*This breaking story led me to doing 13 live shots on air between 4 pm to 7 pm across Charleston, Myrtle Beach, Columbia and Savannah. With this, we can talk about how it works to broadcast across different station's airwaves in cases of breaking news. I have been doing coronavirus stories for a month now and I have been able to look into virtually every way it has impacted our daily life: Homeless shelters, meal deliveries, air travel, beaches, parks and schools closing, homemade masks, even churches reactions."
National political correspondent, localizing the news
*This is the second national spot I have with Greta Van Susteren. RESEARCH IS KEY. I was broadcasted across the country in more than 100 TV markets. I had to know the latest polling trends, plus, I had to provide local insight the national news didn't know. How does a national story impact local issues and vice versa. Plus, I can touch on the importance of networking."
Want a guaranteed seat at the Democratic debate? It'll cost a lot of cash
"Nationally picked up story about debate ticket pricing, hold politicians, and political parties accountable. An example of investigative political reporting."
"I have interviewed the former president of Mexico, many US cabinet members, senators when I worked in D.C., EVERY 2020 democratic presidential candidate, they can ask about how to be prepared for high-stakes conversations. "
Hurricane coverage, 24/7 breaking news
*When a hurricane hits, it's live hits every 10 minutes for 12 hours straight in the middle of the storm. Keeping composure and allowing the story to lead your reporting."
High School stories
Ladue alumni Kendall Davidson interviews with host Don Goble about his music and video production career. Kendall also discusses the family business he helps run, what he's doing during the pandemic of 2020, and offers advice for aspiring media makers.
High school videos and film