Cheryl Boone Isaacs – President of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences – has been named the Fall 2014 O.L. Halsell Filmmaker-in-Residence at Chapman University’s Dodge College of Film and Media Arts, recognized as one of the premier film schools in the United States. The announcement was made today by Dodge College Dean Bob Bassett.
Every semester, Dodge College hosts an expert filmmaker to meet with and counsel 10 selected scholars, as part of its Filmmaker-in-Residence program. The popular program includes regular, bi-weekly meetings with the filmmaker in a one-on-one setting where the student and mentor have the opportunity to creatively develop a specific project throughout the semester. In addition, the filmmaker interacts with the larger Dodge College community at weekly dinners open to students and screenings of the filmmaker’s films followed by an in-class Q & A led by professor Jim Frederick, marketing executive/trailer editor (Sony Screen Gems, Warner Bros. Pictures and Castle Rock Entertainment)..
“As the industry continues to grapple with changing platforms and new methods of distribution, Cheryl Boone Isaacs is in a unique position to help aspiring young filmmakers understand the world of film marketing,” says Dean Bassett. “It is a privilege and an honor to have her as our Filmmaker-in-Residence.”
Cheryl Boone Isaacs was recently re-elected for a second term as President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences by the organization’s Board of Governors. She is beginning her 22nd year as a governor representing the Public Relations Branch. During her tenure as a governor, she served as First Vice President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer as well as President of the Academy Foundation, the educational and cultural arm of the Academy. In 2012, Isaacs produced the Academy’s prestigious Governors Awards.
Isaacs has been a respected motion picture marketing executive for over 30 years. For the last nine years, her company, CBI Enterprises, Inc., has consulted for companies such as MTV Films, Paramount Pictures, Universal Pictures, Lionsgate, The Weinstein Company and Sony Entertainment. Her clients have included Troika Pictures, Andrew Lauren Productions, Linden Productions, Laika Entertainment, Film Bankers International, KTLA, Success Films, Robson Entertainment, Rangeland Productions, and Cube Vision. She has consulted on marketing efforts for such films as The Call, The Artist, The King’s Speech, Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ by Sapphire, Spider-Man 2 and Tupac: Resurrection.
During her tenure as President of theatrical marketing for New Line Cinema (1997 – 1999), she developed and executed the campaigns for such films as Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me, the company’s highest grossing film at that time, The Wedding Singer and such critically acclaimed motion pictures as Wag the Dog, Boogie Nights and American History X. Largely through the efforts of Isaacs and her marketing team, New Line was one of only two studios to have four films – Lost in Space, Blade, Rush Hour, andPleasantville – open No. 1 at the box office in 1998. Rush Hour’s $33 million opening was, at the time, the largest in the company’s history.
Prior to joining New Line Cinema in 1997, Isaacs served as Executive Vice President, Worldwide Publicity, for the Motion Picture Group of Paramount Pictures. In 1995 and 1996, she orchestrated acclaimed publicity campaigns for Forrest Gump and Braveheart, each of which won multiple Academy Awards®, including Best Picture. In addition, the campaigns were recognized by the Publicists Guild of America as the “Best” in 1995 and 1996.
From 1990 to 1994, Isaacs was Senior Vice President, Publicity, and held the title of Vice President, Publicity between 1986 and 1990. During her tenure at Paramount, Isaacs publicized the launch of such blockbusters as First Wives Club, Mission: Impossible, The Firm, Ghost, The Addams Family, Coming to America, Fatal Attraction, and the Beverly Hills Cop trilogy. Isaacs joined Paramount in 1984 as Director, Publicity and Promotion, West Coast, and was quickly promoted to Executive Director one year later.
In addition to her long tenure at Paramount Pictures, Isaacs served as Director of Advertising and Publicity for The Ladd Company where she worked on The Right Stuff, Police Academy and Once Upon a Time in America. Prior to that, she spent five years at Melvin Simon Productions (The Stunt Man, Love at First Bite, Porky’s) where her last position was Vice President, Worldwide Advertising and Publicity. She began her career in 1977 as a publicist at Columbia Pictures.
In 2014, she was inducted into the NAACP Hall of Fame, was awarded the Trailblazer Award from Essence Magazine and was recipient of the AAFCA (African American Film Critics Association) Horizon Award. In 2013, she was honored by BESLA (Black Entertainment Sports Lawyers Association).
She currently serves as a Trustee for the American Film Institute.
She was a member of the Corporate Board of the Motion Picture and Television Fund and served as Secretary for three years.
Past notable Filmmakers-in-Residence at Chapman have included Academy Award®-winning producer Cathy Schulman (Crash, The Illusionist, Salvation Boulevard), Academy Award®-nominated producer JoAnne Sellar (There Will Be Blood, Boogie Nights, Magnolia), award-winning director Donald Petrie (Miss Congeniality, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days, Grumpy Old Men, Mystic Pizza), Hollywood producer Cathleen Summers (The Sandlot, Stakeout, Another Stakeout), director and producer Betty Thomas (Dr. Doolittle, Private Parts, Brady Bunch Movie, I Spy), screenwriter and producer Leslie Dixon (Mrs. Doubtfire, Hairspray, Limitless), director and producer Jonathan Sanger (Vanilla Sky, The Elephant Man, The Producers), director Sheldon Epps (Friends, Frasier), producer Michael Phillips (Taxi Driver, Close Encounters of the Third Kind), and director Martha Coolidge (Real Genius, Rambling Rose, Valley Girl).