Tag: talent

Telling a Life Story, “What Happened Miss Simone”

Telling a Life Story, “What Happened Miss Simone”

Jayson Jackson What Happened Miss SImone
Emmy’s Creative Arts 2016 Red Carpet Jayson Jackson

Jayson Jackson joins us on the red carpet at the Emmy® Creative Arts Awards. What Happened, Miss Simone? Is a documentary after the personal life of Nina Simone.

Jayson Jackson produced and created, What Happened, Miss Simone, a film that discusses the woman behind the performer. Jayson says, “The story needed to be told and the timing was now” (Dolly).

Jackson states, “The lives of many performers is just their performance. Many forget that they have personal lives, struggles, and moments. This was the time to show that Miss Simone was a strong courageous woman, that lived a personal story.”

Jackson goes on to explain that telling the story required capturing the classical artist that suffered from mental illness and domestic violence. Hercivil rights voice is strong in regards to the movement. Her life impacted millions with her talent and music, but her story will bring honest living. The story reminds us that we are all human beings living and working within our own skin.

The film based on Nina’s diaries, notes she wrote on napkins, newspapers, and hotel pads. This brought the film to the life of Nina Simone. Jackson states, “The best that we can walk away from this film is honesty. That person will have a respect for the artists that honestly wear their emotions on their sleeves.”

Producing this film took on the idea of searching for footage and stories from Simone’s Life. He states, “We did not write a script. We wanted Nina Simone’s life to show us the story.” The film became just that her story. This story is about a strong woman who performes with a talent that allowed her to sing in any genre and understand the music better than some composers.

What Happened, Miss Simone took home 1 Emmy at The Creative Arts for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special.

Photo credit Raymon L. Forchion Jr.

To Bring Pleasure ~ Jerry Lewis

To Bring Pleasure ~ Jerry Lewis

Gregory Monro, writer and director presents an insight to Jerry Lewis, filmmaker and actor, with the film Jerry Lewis The Man Behind The Clown at Prescott Film Festival (PFF). The title fits the complex talent and childlike nature of Lewis. The film brings an insight to the comedian, filmmaker, and his ability to bring pleasure to his audience. 

Prescott Film Festival 4Chion Lifestyle
Prescott Film Festival

Capturing the early days of the 1950 and 1960s with personal clips brings laughter to the audience at PFF. His work with Dean Martin, a partnership develops after bar incident, capture the gentleman and childhood fun. When this partnership comes to an end, Lewis took on a new direction.

He steps into behind the scenes role of filmmaking. Lewis takes time to learn all areas of filmmaking: directing, acting, camera, and production. His films included The Bellboy,  The Ladies Manand much more.

Lewis took direction and acting to a serious  level by creating “Jerry’s Noisy Toy.” This invention changed filmmaking forever. His ability to frame a film, create films years ahead of their time, and direction of this film is groundbreaking. He states, “If you think talking to me is easy, you’re crazy,” about directing himself.

The personal interviews with Sean Hayes, an actor who played Lewis a TV biopic, Pierre Etaix, a French clown, and Martin Scorsese are personal. The interview brings complexity to the clown face. Lewis was not only an American comedian but internationally honored as an extraordinary filmmaker. Monro’s film shows Lewis as many Americans see him, the childhood comedian, and the international view, an exceptional filmmaker. 

Often misunderstood and criticized for his work, but he brings brilliance to entertainment with laughter, art, and innovation to film. Lewis says, “If you give love to your audience they will give it back.”He was always a child. Lewis states, “I have always been 5.” You could see this in his comedy personality.

Lewis, a humanitarian, actor, comedian, influence in film, a child, and man is in this film. He never lost his childhood spirit. This brought pleasure to his audiences enjoying his films.


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“That’s All Folks” The Talented Bob Bergen Voice of Porky Pig

“That’s All Folks” The Talented Bob Bergen Voice of Porky Pig


Bob Bergen, the voice of Porky Pig, joins us on the red carpet at the Emmys® Creative Arts Awards with a little voice over of Porky Pig. His talent is vastly beyond Porky Pig. His voice overs include television and movies. His résumé includes commercials, Wall E, Toy Story, and Star Wars: The Clone Wars to name just a very few.

His dream to do the voice of Porky Pig started at the age of 5. He told his mother he wanted to be Porky Pig. When he was 14 he started by reaching out to Mel Blanc, the voice-over actor for Porky Pig, at the time. He took the advice provided by Mel Blanc and when the time was right he achieved his dream. This voice over actor performs the iconic role providing tears, laughter, and memories that will live on for generations to come.

Bob Bergen’s talents have benefited from the Television Academy for decades. He is a member of the Board of Governor for Television Academy Performers Peer Group. Bob Bergen, an active member since in 1994, provides service on the:

  • Daytime Committee
  • Executive Committee
  • Governors Ball Committee
  • Governors Award Committee (Chair)
  • Membership Committee
  • Co-host and announce of Daytime Creative Arts Emmys® Awards
  • Membership Committee

He states, “there are 107 events held with the Television Academy.” Each event takes the time to honor and celebrate each nominee, show, and talent.

Bob Bergen is excited to share that Lily Tomlin Television Academy Governor, is honored during the 23rd Screen Actors Guild (SAG) Awards show in January. She will be receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award. He also had great accolades for Kathy Bates and her exception career.

Bob Bergen’s daily success is showing up and being present. This daily success is present in his life since his first phone call with Mel Blanc. He ended the interview with the classic Porky Pig, “That’s All Folks!”


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Time Behind The Scenes ~ Gary Kordan

Time Behind The Scenes ~ Gary Kordan

Gary Kordan and his wife, Justine Ungaro, join us on the red carpet at the Emmy® Creative Arts Awards. Kordan provides production design on Key & Peele on Comedy Central.

Kordan and his wife wear matching colors (black) and leather for their red carpet looks. They are a successful busy creative couple. They manage their busy lives very well. Ungaro is a professional photographer just returning from Lake Tahoe to attend The Emmy Creative Arts. She states, “It is easy for us to match our entire closet is black including the closet itself.” She is excited about the evening events and thrilled for her husband’s nomination.

Kordan started his career working at CBS. He got the positions while attending college for visual arts in New York City. He saw a flyer on a bulletin board at school. It stated that CBS was looking for an intern. He took the flyer because he wanted to be the only one applying. He interviewed and is hired for the Joan Rivers’ Show.

The show needed visuals about two weeks into the internship, Joan Rivers said, “Make the art student intern do that.” That was his first credit in production on television. Kordan states, “Joan Rivers was so supportive. She was someone to look up to and admire. She was there for you. If an up and coming artist needed food, cab fare, or scarf she was right there.” Kordan learned a lot from the experience.

This was 25 years ago. He uses those lessons to help many shows with his creativity. He enjoys the intensity on Key & Peele. Kordan breaks down the set requests, design, get approvals, find locations, and research for each set. There are two sets designed each day totaling 10 designs a week. The team travels all over the LA area to set up the designs and film the series.

Key and Peele Gary Kordan
Emmys® Creative Arts 2016 Red Carpet Gary Kordan and his wife.

His success for every day is wearing black, #wewearblack. He must dress the part for ruffling feathers, being demanding, and self-confident. Kordan states, “I wear black like my role model, Johnny Cash. This is Kordan’s first Emmy nomination.

Key & Peele nominated for 7 Emmys this year. They include: Outstanding Art Direction For Variety or Music Program, Outstanding Writing for a Variety Series, Outstanding hairstylist For Multi-Camera Series or Special, Outstanding Makeup For A Multi-Camera Series or Special (Non-Prosthetic), Outstanding Editing For Variety Programming, Outstanding Production Design For A Variety, Nonfiction, Reality or Reality-Competition Series, Outstanding Supporting Actor in A Comedy Series, and Outstanding Variety Sketch Series.


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Photo Credit Raymond L. Forchion Jr.