Experts on "Film"

Christopher Davidson

  • Chair, Department of English

Chris Davidson is associate professor of English and co-director of first-year writing at Biola. He teaches courses in critical thinking and writing, writing for competency, and creative writing. He has a bachelor's degree in English from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from University of California, Irvine. His work has appeared in several journals and anthologies, including Monster Verse: Poems Human and Inhuman. A chapbook, Poems, appeared in 2012.

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Gerald R. Fisher

  • Interim Director School of Cinema and Media Arts

“Art is created in infrastructure whether a frame, an altar, a chapel ceiling or a 90-minute feature.” Gerry has 35 years of experience in media education and is using that to expand CMA's infrastructure in equipment, faculty, facilities, courses, and funding since taking over the leadership role in 2016. The CMA program has since been endorsed by several industry publications, students are winning in film festivals, and classes and enrollment have been expanded. PhD UCI, MA Regent, BA FWBC.

Professor Fisher has over 35 years of experience in media as a faculty member, interim chair, production company owner and manager of media technology infrastructure.

He pursued a Ph.D. when film was still film, but his program included studies in artificial intelligence, human and technology interface, computer programming, decision making and statistics because he believed some day computers would play a role in media production.

At Biola he has been responsible for the department’s transition from analog to digital and now to cloud based media production. In his classes he has introduced mobile applications, compression and streaming science, digital cinema standards, augmented and virtual reality and many other topics.

As interim chair, Professor Fisher is charged with developing the five year plan to expand enrollment, develop new programs offered by Cinema and Media Arts and turn CMA into one of the top film schools.

Professor Fisher is a member of the Broadcast Educators Association and actively involved in the emerging technologies interest division.

Professor Fisher and his wife, Ellie, live in Irvine, California, have five children and seven treasured grandchildren.

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R. Douglas Geivett

  • Professor of Philosophy

R. Douglas Geivett's interests range over the philosophy of religion, philosophical theology, epistemology and the history of modern philosophy. He is the author of Evil and the Evidence for God and co-editor of Contemporary Perspectives on Religious Epistemology and In Defense of Miracles: A Comprehensive Case for God's Action in History. Geivett has contributed chapters to God Matters: Readings in the Philosophy of Religion; God Under Fire; The Rationality of Theism; and Does God Exist? The Craig-Flew Debate. Geivett is the former president of the Evangelical Philosophical Society. In the past, Geivett has served as minister to college students at churches in the Pacific Northwest and in Southern California and continues to speak in churches and on university campuses on subjects related to apologetics and the Christian life.

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Artemiza Hernandez

  • Associate Professor of Modern Languages

Artemiza Hernández de Zúñiga earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degree in Spanish at California State University, Fresno. She then earned a doctorate in Spanish from the University of Arizona, Tucson with secondary studies in literature and Mexican and Mexican-American literature. Her doctoral dissertation is entitled “El personaje femenino chileno de mediados del siglo XX como promotor de un discurso constructivo y desmantelador del discurso patriarcal.” Her research interests include indigenous studies, power structure and Latin American film. She teaches intermediate-level general education Spanish, as well as all minor/major Spanish for Biola’s Department of Modern Languages. She also occasionally guest teaches for Biola's English department.

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Peggy Medberry

  • Associate Professor, Cinema and Media Arts

Peggy Medberry has been a literary agent, manager and producer for the past 25 years and worked as the Vice President of one of Hollywood's premiere agencies, Shapiro-Lichtman. She has been a featured speaker at many forums including the WGA, DGA, Flash Forward and the Hollywood Screenwriting Conference, and a judge for the ACE Awards and the Humanitas Awards.

Before her work at Shapiro-Lichtman, Peggy had a variety of jobs in the entertainment industry which include teaching commercial acting classes, freelance reading for a number of production companies and temping at most of the major studios. She also found time to act in a few commercials and one Japanese music video.

Currently, she is a managing partner with award winning novelist Bill Myers of Amaris Media International, a media company that has multiple projects in various stages of development.

Peggy came to Biola in 2005 and teaches classes in storytelling, entertainment business and media management. Peggy has two daughters, Anna and Christina, and a beloved granddaughter, Jillian.

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John Schmidt

  • Associate Professor, Cinema and Media Arts

“A film is never finished. It's just finally abandoned in post.” John and has worked on over 40 films in various capacities as director, writer, producer or editor. His current feature script Mountain of Fire is in development. John was a producer on Trade of Innocents, a drama that explored sex trafficking and post-production supervisor on Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius. He wants to see students excel in every aspect of life and to work on projects which affect culture. MA Fuller, BA UCLA.

John Schmidt has taught at Biola since 2002, and brings over 35 years of film industry experience into his teaching.

A graduate of the UCLA film school and Fuller Theological Seminary, John was founder and president of Dean River Productions and John Schmidt Productions, and has worked on over 40 films in various capacities: director, writer, producer and editor, having won numerous awards in the process.

“Each of us in the film industry have a limited amount of time on this earth, and a limited number of films on which to work," John says. “At the end of the day, I want the ones on my filmography to have told stories that matter, which are needed messages for our time, and which are a reflection of God's grace in the world.”

"The projects I've worked on which I consider the most significant never made a dime at the box office," he says. "One was a feature documentary about the needs of children living in the slums of Nairobi, another a short on the life of a deaf orphan boy who had surgery to allow him to hear. Projects like these were a privilege to work on."

A feature screenplay Schmidt wrote, Mountain of Fire, is based on a true story and currently in pre-production. John teaches cinematography, editing, documentary production, pre-production, production, post-production. “I love teaching, and finding that balance between theory and practice. I want to see my students excel in every aspect of life, and to work on projects which affect culture. I also desire to see their own lives of character affect others in the industry, or whatever walk of life on which they embark.”

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Michael Steffen

  • Assistant Professor of Game Design

“Game design is a powerful storytelling medium because players become part of a story and explore consequences of choices.” Michael is a narrative game designer prototyping his independent game, Telmahre, which explores using virtual space as a metaphor for a character’s mental state. In his first year at Biola, he has developed the new Game Design program for CMA. Michael has also taught game design, digital technology, digital art or computer science at several colleges. MFA USC, BA UCSD.

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Camille Tucker

  • Associate Professor of Writing for Film and TV

“Nothing in this business happens without the writer.” Camille’s most recent feature was picked up by Lifetime and produced by Queen Latifah. She sold seven other screenplays and a TV pilots. Camille was selected for the PGA's Power of Diversity Master Workshop, was a semi-finalist in the Academy's Nicholl Screenwriting Competition and is an instructor for The Del-York Academy in Lagos, NGR. As a writer/director she is passionate about breaking barriers for women. MFA LMU, MA Fuller, BA UCLA

With a B.A. in English literature and creative writing from UCLA and an M.F.A. in writing for the screen from Loyola Marymount University, Camille Tucker brings both academic and industry experience to her role at Biola. While an assistant at Walt Disney Studios, she first launched her filmmaking career with the short film Sweet Potato Ride, executive produced by Bill Duke (Predator, Deep Cover, Sister Act II). She has since sold seven screenplays and a TV pilot to major studios including Sony, Universal, New Line, Fox TV and Disney Studios and has worked with producers such as Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal, Marc Platt, Todd Garner, Debra Chase and John Singleton.

A writer/director, Camille has completed seven short films. Her short film Cellular won Best Narrative Short at the 2013 Roxbury International Film Festival, and she has also been a semi-finalist in the Motion Picture Academy's Nicholl Screenwriting Competition and a two-time Sundance Writer's Lab semi-finalist.

In the fall of 2014, Camille came on board as full-time faculty as a professor of screenwriting at Biola, teaching beginning, intermediate and advanced screenwriting, as well as classes that help students to hone their skills in character development and screenplay coverage.

Recently, Camille directed a trailer for the TV series Sorority Sistaz, a project that utilized both Biola students and industry professionals as cast and crew. She is shopping this project, as well as crime thriller, Unseen, sci-fi, Launch and a host of other projects.

Camille is passionate about breaking barriers for women in front of and behind the camera. She writes and directs female characters in strong, imaginative and courageous roles. She is a member of the Writers Guild of America. In her spare time, she loves giving back by volunteering to help at-risk youth and women in crisis. If you’re a friend, she just might make you a pot of her dirty south gumbo.

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