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© 2019 American Issues Initiative.

MEET THE FILMMAKERS

Mac Heller

Executive Producer

Before starting American Issues Initiative, Mr. Heller was co-head of Goldman Sachs Investment Banking Division, and after Goldman, he went on to become Executive Chairman of CODA Automotive, an electric car manufacturer. His interest in starting the film project stems from his belief in fairness and the simple notion that democracy only works when everyone can vote. His mantra is “voters should choose their politicians, not politicians their voters.”  

Tim Smith

Executive Producer

Tim Smith is an accomplished and award-winning television producer, having worked for The PBS NewsHour, Unapix Entertainment, Newsweek Productions, Docere Digital Studios and MSNBC, where he executive produced their documentaries and series. He has also produced for HBO, NBC, A&E, National Geographic Channel, CNBC, History Channel, AMC as well as NHK, BBC, Channels 4&5, CBC, SABC &  TV Global. His work has merited two Emmys and five Emmy nominations, two Gracie Awards, a Grierson, a Cable Ace and Genesis Award nominations.

Barbara Friedman

Senior Producer

 

Barbara has covered politics as a producer and writer for most of her distinguished television news career – at Al Jazeera America, and at ABC where she is working currently. She has won two Peabodys, a Dupont and an Edward R. Murrow Award for her work. She has also taught journalism at Stony Brook University.

Michael Kasino

Director / Editor

 

Michael Kasino is an editor and director based in NYC, who has worked in the industry for the past 10 years. He is best known for directing Pay It No Mind: The Life and Times of Marsha P. Johnson, which screened at the British Film Institute and the IFC Center in New York.

Jesse Moss

Producer / Cinematography

 

Jesse Moss is a critically acclaimed documentary director, whose films include The Overnighters (Sundance Special Jury Prize, DGA Nomination); Full Battle Rattle (Berlinale Panorama, SXSW Special Jury Prize); and Speedo: A Demolition Love Story. He is a creative adviser to the Sundance Documentary Film Program, and a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Sam Pollard

Consulting Producer

Sam Pollard has been an accomplished director and editor of documentaries and non-fiction television series for 30 years. Some of his best known work includes When the Levees Broke, Four Little Girls, and Rise & Fall of Jim Crow. One of his most recent documentary films, ACORN and the Firestorm, premiered in 2017 at the Tribeca Film Festival. In addition, Sam has edited numerous feature films for Spike Lee including Jungle Fever and Mo’ Better Blues. He has won numerous Emmys and been nominated for an Oscar. He is also a professor at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.

Ann Collins

Story Consultant

 

Ann Collins is best known for her work as an editor on Griffin Dunne's documentary, Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold and on the vérité documentary Swim Team. Her work has premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, the New York Film Festival, and the Berlin Film Festival, and has been nominated for an Academy Award.

Alex Ostroff

Associate Producer

 

Alex Ostroff came to Rigged with a passion for politics and journalism, and was lead producer and researcher of archival footage for the project. His background includes experience working in PR, as well as in theatrical production, and has been a sound designer and stagehand for a variety of off-broadway productions.