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Motion Picture Institute Faculty & Staff is comprised of working industry professionals who know the practices and tools of the trades.

They bring their experiences and skills into the class to teach our students how to succeed. Motion Picture Institute is a school designed by Filmmakers, for Filmmakers.

Motion Picture Institute Instructors

Douglas Schulze

Instructor Film Directing 1, 2, 3, 5 and Feature Producing- (MPI Co-Founder / CEO / Film Director)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - MPPP_Cat_pg_11_pic_Doug_ii_0809Award winning filmmaker and Motion Picture Institute co-founder Douglas Schulze brings twenty-eight years of real world experience to the classroom. His first feature film credits include Hellmaster (HBO and Cinemax) 1993, Dark Heaven (ThinkFilm) 2004, Dark Fields (Lionsgate) 2011, Mimesis Night of the Living Dead (Anchor Bay) 2012, The Dogs’ Fighter (Amazon Prime) 2013, The Dark Below (featuring Veronica Cartwright) 2015 and is currently directing the comedy tv pilot The Monster Show. Doug’s tenure in the film industry has included collaborations with a wide variety of Hollywood professionals including Michael Goi (former ASC president/DP of American Horror Story), Academy award winning special effects artist Chris Walas (the Fly) and the late David Carradine (Kill Bill). He is currently in post production on Mimesis 2: Nosferatu. Doug holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Cinematic Arts from Eastern Michigan University.

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Kurt Eli Mayry

Instructor Production Lab 1 & 4, Film Directing 4 - (MPI Co-Founder / CFO / Producer / Writer)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Kurt_Mayry_Faculty_Pic_Kurt is co-founder of Motion Picture Institute and a graduate of the University of Michigan with BBA in Business Administration. He produced the 1993 feature film Hellmaster, the 2004 film Dark Heaven, the 2011 film Dark Fields, the 2012 Mimesis: Night of the Living Dead, the 4th season of the Chiller Drive-In television show in 2010, the 2013 The Dogs’ Fighter documentary, the 2015 The Dark Below, and he is currently working on the sequel Mimesis 2 featuring Kristi Swanson (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), and reality television pilot based on the Chiller Drive-In show entitled The Monster Show. Kurt has worked in the film industry for over thirty years starting out in the commercial production industry working for companies like Victor Duncan in the mid-80s and working on independent films. Kurt is president of the Ohio-Michigan Association of Career Colleges and Schools and a board member of the DAFT (Digital Arts Film and Television).

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Kathryn J. McDermott

Career Services /  Instructor Production Management 1&2, Feature Producing - (Producer / UPM / formerly VP Production - Columbia Pictures)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Kathryn_McDermott_smKathryn has worked in feature film production for over 27 years in Los Angeles. From 1995 to 2005 she worked as Vice President of Production Administration at Columbia Pictures overseeing the productions of Charlie’s Angels 1 & 2, Memoirs of a Geisha, Fun with Dick & Jane, Closer, Hitch, & Spiderman 1 & 2 just to name a few.  Prior to that she has worked as Production Manager on Striking Distance (starring Bruce Willis), assistant to the producer on Last of the Mohicans, A League of Their Own, Only the Lonely, Career Opportunities and was associate producer on First Knight (starring Richard Gere and Sean Connery) and My Life (starring Nicole Kidman and Michael Keaton.)

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Ric Viers

Instructor Production Lab 1 Sound Dept | Field Audio Recording -
(Location Sound Mixer | Author of The Location Sound Bible)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - RicViersHeadshot(1)Ric is producer, international author, sound designer and world's largest independent producer of professional sound effects libraries.  He is the author of the Location Sound Effects Bible, The Location Sound Bible and Make Some Noise.  He is the founder of Blastwave FX one of the world's leading sound effects publishers. Known as the "Rock and Roll Professor of Sound" Ric was inducted into the Full Sail University Hall of Fame in 2014.  He has hosted several video series like Rode University, Crash Course in Location Sound and most notably The Detroit Chop Shop Video Diaries - a reality series about the interns at this studio.  His career focuses heavily on giving back to the next generation of filmmakers and sound designers.  His sound work continues to be used in major motion pictures, television shows, radio programs and video games worldwide. 

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Robert Skates

Instructor Cinematography 1, 2, 3, Production Lab 1 - (Cinematographer freelance )

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Robert_SkatesRob brings over 26 years of production experience as both a camera operator and cinematographer. His cinematography credits include Rachael’s Attic, Cain’s Children, Dark Heaven, Dark Fields and numerous music videos and commercials. Rob has also been a camera assistant on a number of independent features including the films Narc (starring Jason Patrick) and Time Quest (starring Bruce Campbell) and camera operator on Mimesis.  Rob also works as a camera technician at Stratton Camera and is a freelance cinematographer for Two Penny Productions. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Wayne State University.

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Jeremy Schroeder

Instructor Production Lab 1, 2, 4a & 5 - (Film Electrician & Best Boy IATSE)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Jeremy_Schroeder_smJeremy has worked for 15 years as a film technician in New York city putting in 10 seasons on the television show Law & Order as Best Boy and Key Grip, and as a key grip on the feature Enchanted (Disney), The Girlfriend Experience (dir. Steven Soderbergh), Possible Side Effects (dir. Tim Robbins), Then She Found Me (dir. Helen Hunt) and many other television shows. Jeremy holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Photography and Cinematography from the prestigious Ithaca College Film School in New York.

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Patrick Elliott

Instructor Production Lab 3 - (Camera Operator freelance)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Patrick_Elliott_CompPatrick for the last eight years has worked all over the Midwest as a professional cinematographer and camera operator. His clients include Ford Motor Company , Chrysler, Big Screen Entertainment, the band Srkillex and Eminem. He has traversed between many different types of productions from corporate commercials, music videos, television pilots, reality shows and independent feature films. Patrick is the owners of Diakonia Productions a graduate of the University of Michigan - Dearborn and a 2007 graduate of Motion Picture Institute.

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Joshua Bowren

Instructor Edit Lab 1, 2, 3a, 4, 5 - (Editor)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Joshua_BowrenJosh brings over 25 years of editing experience to the school. He works both at WXYZ Channel 7 as an editor and at Media Network of Waterford as executive director. Josh has literally cut over a thousand projects from PSA’s to independent feature films. His advanced training and experience with Adobe Premiere CC, AVID, Final Cut, Davinci and Adobe After Effects have been an integral part of developing our editing curriculum.

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Jennifer Martin

Instructor Production Lab 1 - (Script Supervisor)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Martin_Jen-w2Jen has been working as a professional script supervisor since 2012. Her credits include such feature films as North, Moontrap Target Earth, The Pickle Recipe, The Dark Below, Dial a Prayer, Saugatuck Cures, and Anagram.  Other credits include short films, commercials, music videos and working as an accounting assistant on the feature film Eloise.  Jen also has a bachelor's degree from Saginaw Valley State University in English.

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Karri Brantley

Instructor Acting - (Actor)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - JoannaDeGeneresPhotography_KarriBrantley_(1_of_1)Karri has been actively working in the arts and entertainment industry as a professional Actress, Director, Producer, and Voice Over artist for 23+ years. She holds a BFA in Acting from Wayne State University and is also a graduate of the prestigious Second City Conservatory and Writing Program. Karri was also a co-founder of a professional theatre company that gained national notoriety due to it’s focus on making important historical and current issues accessible to our country’s youth. She was a high school theatre teacher and an arts educator for thousands of youth's across the country developing countless theatre programs for libraries, museums, and summer camps. She is a proud member of SAG-AFTRA and her credits include work on The Hunger Games (Lionsgate), Scary Movie 5 (Dimension Films), American Girl Doll Saige Paints the Sky (Universal), Love & Honor (Red 56), Secret Life of the American Teenager (ABC Family) and many other television, industrials, and commercials performing on camera or using her voice over talents. Other credits include Producer of several award-winning web series and Director of Photography of a mulit-award winning webs series in Los Angeles. She also leads the Voice Acting department at Goteri Creative Arts and is a professional headshot photographer working out of her home studio in Grosse Pointe, Michigan.

Patrick Neff

Instructor Edit Lab 3 - (Editor / After Effects Artist)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Neff_Patrick-WPatrick was a Project Manager in the electrical contracting industry for 23 years. Lifelong movie buff and editing enthusiast, he graduated from MPI in 2014. Owner/operator at CLASSY DOG PICTURES LLC., he currently freelances as an editor and VFX specialist. Short films include: Beer Run, Scripting Slingwell, and The Poker Table Observations. His VFX work includes work on the films The Colonies and Distortion. His commerical clients include Henry Ford Health Group, Ya-Ya’s Chicken, Teta Foods, Goyette Mechanical, Village Motor Sports and Goods Roofing.

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Lindy Lenk

Instructor Crew Call & Film Career Preparation - (Production Coordinator / Hair/Make-up / Independent Producer)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Lenk_Lindy-wLindy began working in the film industry ten years ago as a hair stylist, make-up artist and wardrobe assistant. After attending Motion Picture Institute and graduating in 2010, she turned her focus to other aspects of filmmaking. Lindy has written and directed short films, local commercials, corporate communications and music videos. She is a member of IATSE local 161 working as a Production Coordinator and APOC for film and television. Some of her credits include the comedy central series The Detroiters starring SNLs Jason Sudeikis and the feature films Eloise (Eliza Dushku and Robert Patrick) and Grain (starring Jean-Marc Barr). Lindy’s other credits include working as a production assistant on the AMC series Low Winter Sun and as a producer’s assistant on Family Weekend (starring Kristin Chenoweth and Mattew Modine). Lindy holds a degree in Video Production from Macomb Community College, Certificates from Motion Picture Institute in Film and Acting, and attend Wayne State University in pursuit of a Master of Arts degree in English.

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Jeffrey Staebler

Instructor Advanced Production Lab - (Assistant Director / Production Manager / Production Designer)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Jeff_Staebler_Pic-wAfter spending 20 years in the corporate world as a partner of an Architectural / Engineering firm and in Product development, Jeff ventured in to film. After graduating from MPI in 2013 Jeff has worked on numerous films and commercials as 1st AD. He has also gained experience working in almost every department on a film set, thanks to his hands-on experience at MPI. Jeff has worked on feature films including: Transformers 5 The Last Knight, God Bless the Broken Road, Camp Manna, Rush (Battlefield), Liberty’s Secret, The Dark Below and more. He has experience working in the commercial world for: Ford, Chevy, Cadillac, Genesis, Quicken Loans, Chemical Bank and Fathead. Also music videos for: Royce da 5’9, and Travis Scott. All giving Jeff the various set experiences that help to link the lessons learned at MPI with the expectations on a film set. 

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Scott Norman

Instructor Acting - (Actor / Filmmaker)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - Scott_Norman_Headshot-wScott has been a professional actor for 13 years. He trained as an actor through various workshops in New York City with Broadway directors and industry casting directors before moving to Southeast Michigan where he has performed on a variety of professional stages, films and television programs. He resume includes starring in a number of independent films such as The Art of Power to featured roles in network television shows like ABC’s Detroit 1-8-7 and AMC’s Low Winter Sun. His most recent credit was appearing in the acclaimed indy horror film “It Follows”. Scott is also an indepdendent filmmaker having studied documentary filmmaking at State University of New York-Buffalo earning a Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies. Scott is also a 2016 graduate of Motion Picture Institute having earned a certificate in The Motion Picture Production Program making him uniquely qualified as an instructor for the Acting Thesis: Production course.

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Rob Winkworth

Instructor Acting - (Actor / Talent Agent)

Professional Film Instructors - Troy, MI | Motion Picture Institute  - RobWinkworthRob Winkworth is a talent agent at The I Group Model and Talent agency and has over 8 years of experience in commercial, industrial and theatrical work in both on-camera and voice over, with a particular focus on introducing new talent to the entertainment business.  A graduate of Wayne State University, Rob is a former middle school teacher and a long time Detroit area resident. 


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