Casting director Lora Kennedy tells about her project, Batman Begins
Laura Herlovich ‘79 promotes
A reception with Hollywood alumni
Though the students were expected to research each of the entertainment industry professionals they met and be prepared with questions during the sessions, their work didn’t stop there. They also were required to write a 20-page research paper once they returned from L.A. As they waited for a taping of The New Adventures of Old Christine to begin, several of Koperski’s students commented on the overall experience of the Entertainment Industry Seminar:
Lauren Greene ’07, a music business major with a minor in French, said, “I’m going to law school and am interested in entertainment law, so this is great to see every part of the entertainment industry.”
Lijana Labanauskas ’08, a journalism major, said meeting with consumer advocate Horowitz was her favorite part of the seminar. “It was interesting to see the variety of work he’s had in his career as a journalist. He made me see I don’t have to go down one specific path. I would like to do an internship, and I would love to do one with Mr. Horowitz,” said Labanauskas, who hopes to pursue a journalism career in the entertainment industry.
Bethany Stagen ’08, an advertising major with a marketing minor, said, “Keeping up with the entertainment industry has always been a hobby for me. It’s been great hearing real life stories and being able to ask questions I’ve always had. It was interesting to see how the professionals view this as a business. They don’t get wrapped up in the glitz and glamour. This seminar opened my eyes. There is business in everything. This has caused me to rethink what I want to do with my career.”
Caitlin Solomon ’07, an organizational communications major, said, “A lot of people talked about the importance of being willing to start at the bottom, introduce yourself to people, make contacts, and work on networking skills. This seminar has taught me that if I am patient and work hard, I will be in a position I will be proud of. It’s very refreshing to meet all these important people who can still be genuine and appreciative and be so willing to help and give advice to students.”
Students from Jacobs’ seminar also commented on their experiences. All are electronic media majors.
Laura McCully ’08 said, “Being out here and seeing what L.A. has to offer has been helpful. We’ve been to shops I really like—post-production houses and special effects houses. We also met author Ray Bradbury.”
Landon Battles ’08 said, “I am a DJ [on BU Edge 98.9 FM], and I have a passion for music and sound. At Warner Bros., we saw how sound effects are done. We went behind the scenes, and the sound effects area looked like a junkyard. But, they use all those objects to make sounds. They use celery sticks to make bones crunch.”
Brandon Kurzweg ’07 said, “We’ve been able to have a lot of close conversations with alumni who have been out for two or three years. They told us exactly what it’s like to be in L.A. They also would be the best connections if we come out. I’m definitely considering coming to L.A. I’m also looking at grad school for radio/TV.”
Anna Diep ’07 said, “Being in Hollywood is important, because we get to see another side of the industry that we don’t see at school. When we started planning to go to L.A., I never thought I would be interested in the entertainment industry [as a career]. I thought I would go the news reporter route. But, I found this more interesting, and I know that if I work hard, I can be here.”
Koperski summed up the impact of the expedition courses. “One of my greatest satisfactions from offering this expedition class in the fast-paced, creatively charged Hollywood environment has been to see students broaden their scope of interest in the overall field of communication. By having unprecedented access to these on-site conference room meetings with high-level entertainment industry executives, students see first-hand, a variety of non-classroom real world settings. What they have already learned in the classroom is now validated—that successful, profitable, and artistically pleasing entertainment products are a magical blend of ethical public relations, appealing advertising, and solid communication principles and skills.”
He concluded, “A large number of Department of Communication ‘expedition alumni’ are now working in various parts of the industry and are making their mark on what we see, hear, and enjoy on the screen and behind the scenes.”
Oscar winner Tami Lane ’96, center, demonstrates working with prosthetic make-up and hair as Bradley students look on. They visited Lane’s studio while in Los Angeles with the Commercial Film and Television Seminar. Lane also made a recent appearance on NBC’s Identity, a game show in which contestants size up a group of strangers in an effort to match their identities and win a top prize of $500,000. Contestants did not guess that 31-year-old Lane had won a 2006 Oscar for her prosthetic make-up work in The Chronicles of Narnia. Anthony Maggiore ‘04, casting associate for Identity, read about Lane’s Academy Award in the Summer 2006 issue of Bradley Hilltopics and contacted her about appearing on the show.