Chris is one of our co-founders. An accomplished filmmaker, Chris’ films include American Job (1996 Sundance Film Festival), American Movie (1999, Sundance Film Festival Grand Jury Prize, Sony Pictures Classics), Home Movie (2001, Sundance Film Festival), The Yes Men (2004, United Artists), The Pool (2008, Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival), and most recently Collapse, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2009 and was on numerous top ten lists as one of the best documentaries of 2010. In 2017 he directed Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond.
Smith is also a Producer for Chris Thompson‘s The Jeffrey Dahmer Files (IFC Films) which premiered at SXSW in 2012 and Collin Schiffli’s dramatic feature Animals, which premiered at SXSW in 2014 and won a Special Jury Prize for Courage in Storytelling.
In 2002 the International Documentary Association named American Movie as one of the top 20 documentaries of all time; in 2003 American Movie was designated by The New York Times as one of the “1,000 Greatest Movies Ever Made”; and in 2016 it received the prestigious Cinema Eye Honors Legacy Award as one of the most influential documentaries of all time.
Chris is also highly regarded as a commercial director and is represented by commercial production company Smuggler Films in Los Angeles. He has directed national television commercials for companies such as Geico, Intuit, Volkswagen and Qwest.
In 2004, native Texan Jeremy Coon produced and edited a film that would win fans of all generations: Napoleon Dynamite. Napoleon premiered in Dramatic Competition at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival, where it was acquired by Fox Searchlight Pictures and released the following summer; it became one of the most profitable and culturally impactful indie films in history.
In 2006, Jeremy produced and edited The Sasquatch Gang, a teen comedy he co-produced with Academy Award winner Kevin Spacey. Sasquatch won the audience award at the 2006 Slamdance Film Festival as well as Best Director (Tim Skousen) and Best Actor (Justin Long) at the 2006 HBO U.S. Comedy Arts Festival. Humble Pie was Jeremy’s third feature as a producer and won Best Film at BendFilm and Audience Award for Best Feature at the Sidewalk Film Festival. The film played over 30 film festivals around the world and was released in 2009. Thunder Broke the Heaven’s, Jeremy’s fourth feature film as a producer, won the Audience Award for Best Narrative Feature at the 2015 Dallas International Film Festival.
After getting his MBA, Jeremy helped launch MovieClips.com (one of Time Magazine’s Top 50 Websites of 2010 and rebranded as ZEFR in 2014) and executive produced the animated television series Napoleon Dynamite for 20th Century Fox Television which aired after The Simpsons in primetime. Most recently, Jeremy co-directed and produced the feature-length documentary Raiders! which premiered at the 2015 SXSW Film Festival and was released theatrically by Drafthouse Films to rave reviews in June 2016.
Poltermann is a producer, director and editor, primarily working in documentary. He has edited six feature films that are Certified Fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, including American Movie, The Life of Reilly, The Pool, Collapse, Raiders!: The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made, and Jim & Andy – The Great Beyond.
His first feature as a director/editor was the indie-horror film Aswang, which premiered at the 1994 Sundance Film Festival. In 1996, he produced and edited documentary segments for John Pierson’s IFC show Split Screen, which would later be re-released by Criterion/Filmstruck in 2016.
In 1997 he became a producer and editor on Chris Smith‘s American Movie, which would go on to win the Grand Jury Prize at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival. In 2002 the International Documentary Association named American Movie as one of the top 20 documentaries of all time; in 2003 American Movie was designated by The New York Times as one of the “1,000 Greatest Movies Ever Made”; and in 2016 it received the prestigious Cinema Eye Honors Legacy Award as one of the most influential documentaries of all time.
In 2004 he was asked to executive produce and consult on the edit for the Wu-Tang-Clan profile Rock the Bells (Warner Brothers). Later that year, he would co-direct & edit The Life of Reilly, a performance documentary featuring game show fixture Charles Nelson Reilly. Both films were released in 2006, with a SXSW premiere for The Life of Reilly and a premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival for Rock the Bells. Both films appeared on numerous end of the year “Best Documentaries” lists, with The Life of Reilly being lauded by Rotten Tomatoes as the best-reviewed film of 2007.
In 2006 Poltermann spent six months in India editing on location with director Chris Smith, helping to craft the highly improvised dramatic feature The Pool, which would win a Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival in 2007.
In 2009 Poltermann would continue his collaboration with Smith by editing the feature documentary Collapse, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and was on numerous top ten lists as one of the best documentaries of 2010.
Poltermann then worked as an Executive Producer for Chris Thompson‘s The Jeffrey Dahmer Files (IFC Films) which premiered at SXSW in 2012. Poltermann also did additional editing and creative consulting for both The Jeffrey Dahmer Files and Collin Schiffli’s dramatic feature Animals, which premiered at SXSW in 2014 and won a Special Jury Prize for Courage in Storytelling; and Chris Thompson’s ESPN 30 For 30 MECCA: The Floor.
In 2014 he collaborated with filmmakers Tim Skousen and Jeremy Coon (Napoleon Dynamite) by editing Raiders! The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made, which premiered at the 2015 SXSW Film Festival and was released in the summer of 2016; and in 2016 edited ZEDD: True Colors — a feature documentary about the meteoric rise of the EDM star Zedd, which premiered at the 2016 Los Angeles Film Festival.
2017 saw the premiere of The Blood Is At The Doorstep at SXSW, which Poltermann Executive Produced, as well as the theatrical release of Don’t Break Down: A Film About Jawbreaker, in which he acted as Supervising Editor.
His most recent film as an editor is the feature documentary Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond, again working with director Chris Smith. The film was produced by Brendan Fitzgerald, Danny Gabai and Spike Jonze, and premiered at the 2017 Venice Film Festival and the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival.
If you’ve ever heard songs by influential indie band The Promise Ring or his current acclaimed band Maritime, you’ve heard Dan’s music — he was a founding member and drummer for both bands.
Dan’s primary role at September Club is as the Post Production Supervisor, which means that he oversees all editorial projects for the company. So if you’ve ever seen any September Club work, you’ve seen Dan’s editing and storytelling magic at work.
Dan recently produced Don’t Break Down, the story of the seminal punk band Jawbreaker.
Dan is married with two kids.
Michael directed The 414s for CNN, which premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, was the director of photography on The Jeffrey Dahmer Files, and was the editor on the ESPN 30-for-30 MECCA: The Floor. He recently completed editing a feature documentary on the police shooting of Dontre Hamilton in 2014, The Blood is at The Doorstep, which premiered at the SXSW Film Festival in 2017.
As a kid, Michael and some of his friends used a VHS camcorder to make a film. The film, which he describes as, “Something about the C.I.A, some ambiguous ‘papers’, and a lot of ketchup-blood,” went on to win the Betty Brinn Children’s Museum Film Festival in Milwaukee. He was an overnight success. But that early luck didn’t convince him to go into film.
Instead, he went into the University of Minnesota, and then worked in Chicago as an assistant at a high-end wedding photography studio. “I learned a surprising amount about photography, composition, lighting, and really, filmmaking and documentary,” Michael says. “I learned how to cover events with wide shots, close-ups, and reactions – and that even in a wedding there are main characters and a supporting cast that make up the visual story of an event.”
Next came four years working in Los Angeles as an editor in “the television machine.” He worked on a slew of shows, including one during which he had to blur out Bobby Brown’s privates and then met him an hour later over lunch.
“When I begin any edit, I have two main goals – to make you cry or to make you pee your pants. Or both if I’m really successful.”
Matt Prekop is an editor at September Club. He is the editor of Operation Allie, which premiered at the Big Sky Film Festival in 2016 and is our master trailer editor.
Erin Elders is a director, writer and editor who studied film / video at Columbia College in Chicago, where he helped found the band Maps & Atlases. The band released two EPs, two full length albums, and toured internationally.
Editing and directing music videos and web content for M&A brought Elders back to the world of filmmaking and he left the band in 2014 to pursue that passion full time.
He recently finished work editing his first feature documentary, Don’t Break Down, the story of the seminal emo-punk band, Jawbreaker.
Amanda Griffin is a film editor based in Los Angeles. Originally from the Midwest, she graduated from The University of Iowa with a BA in Cinema and Comparative Literature in 2010. She found that Filmmaking was a way to combine her interests in fine art, film theory, and photography. She has edited multiple award winning feature-length and short films, including: Animals (2014) SXSW Film Festival Special Jury Award Winner for Courage in Storytelling, A Light Beneath Their Feet (2015) Mill Valley Film Festival Audience Favorite, the documentary The 414’s: The Original Teenage Hackers (2015) Sundance Film Festival, and American Fable, which recently premiered at the 2016 SXSW Film Festival.
Manny Marquez fell in love with storytelling around the age of 7. A family friend gifted him a subscription to Ranger Rick Magazine, and Manny couldn’t wait for the newest issues to come in the mail. Inspired, he began to write his own Ranger Rick stories.
Soon after, his mother gave him a Fisher Price 110 camera. It wasn’t long before he and his cousins started production on a video series, an attempt to create their own Star Trek spin off.
An Eagle Scout, Manny received a scholarship for a film he made as part of his cinematography merit badge. He soon headed to California to pursue a degree in film writing and directing from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. His final project Rudolph Florence premiered on the PBS series Fine Cut and was one of 5 films chosen for the USC Crossroads Film Festival in 2003.
His writing and directing experience helped him become a part of Film Independent’s program, Project Involve. Manny’s mentor was Larry Karaszewski, screenwriter of Ed Wood, Man on the Man, The People vs Larry Flint, and many other screenplays. Manny was honored by the First Americans in the Arts association, and also received the Barbra Boyle Scholarship.
Manny was soon working in the camera department on reality shows as he spent his free time making music videos for his friends bands in the Echo Park and Silverlake area of LA.
The real defining moment of his career came when he decided he was going to make his own documentary, Psychopath. Manny’s uncle, a garbage man that had wanted to be a special effects make-up artist, was taking his life savings and building a haunted house theme park. This led him to meeting Barry Poltermann, who began helping on the post-production of the project.
His recent short film, Operation Allie, played festivals across America after premiering at the prestigious documentary festival, Big Sky.
Manny now lives in Hood River, Oregon with his wife Leigh, and three children. He likes to ride his bike around the Columbia River Gorge, walk the riverbanks with his dog Cima, and enjoys the many breweries around town. He’ll be drinking an IPA.
Casey Suchan co-directed Rock The Bells, a Warner Brothers documentary on the final performance of hip-hop artists Wu-Tang Clan. Rock The Bells was a Tribecca Premiere and picked up for distribution by Warner Brothers.
Suchan previsously produced a series of best-selling documentaries on Hip Hop culture and history with Quincy (QD3) Jones, III. Thug Angel, the first documentary to explore Tupac Shakur’s life, broke sales records for its distributor, Image Entertainment.
The Freshest Kids has become an underground favorite on the development of East Coast breakdancing, and Beef and its sequel Beef 2, are considered by most Hip Hop fans to be definitive explorations of the MC battle from Kool Moe Dee to 50 Cent.
Beef was certified double platinum and awarded Best Music DVD of the Year by VIBE Magazine.
Currently, Casey is in production on a feature documentary about a precedent setting case brought against the activist organization “Stop Huntington Animal Cruelty USA”.
Jack Davidson has been directing film and video since 1997.
His work in both the commercial and documentary arenas has taken him all over North America and Europe. He has created works for numerous clients including Sears, Ivy Funds, Perkins + Will Architects and many more. Specializing in day-in-the-life storytelling of real people, Jack has an eye for the beauty and humor in the unusual and in the everyday.
His non-commercial works include a documentary currently in production on the acclaimed still photographer Art Shay.
Away from the camera Jack spends his precious free time teaching himself piano and Greeenland kayaking, and playing with his preschool son Jasper.
Erik Ljung is a Producer and Director of Photography who has directed / produced / shot content and short documentaries for the New York Times, VICE News, Al Jazeera, PBS and the Wall Street Journal. He is a current Mary L. Nohl Fund Fellow, and is currently working on a documentary on the police shooting of Dontre Hamilton in 2014, titled The Blood is at the Doorstep.
Understatement Alert: Frank has led an interesting life. Born in the Philippines. Raised in rural Wisconsin. Played pedal steel guitar bars and beer halls as a teenager. After a stint as a ranch hand at a working cattle ranch he attended San Francisco State University, majoring in Japanese language and literature. He moonlighted as a sideman for country western performers and spent the ‘80s freelancing for several Bay Area-based animation houses including Colossal Pictures. Was an in-demand session musician in the ‘90s, playing on dozens of recordings for legendary record producer Butch Vig (Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Green Day). He directed live action commercials for Purple Onion Films and animated interstitials for Tricky Pictures, the animation subsidiary of Backyard Productions in Chicago. He co-directed the critically acclaimed feature film, The Life of Reilly, based on the life of comedian Charles Nelson Reilly. Taught animation and film studies at MIAD,sequential art at Lawrence University and wrote two books about Wisconsin history. He has made frequent appearances on NPR and Wisconsin Public Television and has lectured on film at several Universities. He has run the popular website wisconsinology.com since 2006 and writes, narrates and scores the wisconsinology podcast. His currently works out of a former 100 year old Monastery producing and directing documentaries and national stop motion commercials.