My Tale of Two Cities is the directorial debut of Carl Kurlander who spent the previous two decades
working in Hollywood as a screenwriter (St. Elmo's Fire) and television writer/producer (Saved By
the Bell) before returning to his hometown to teach at the University of Pittsburgh for what he
thought would be a one year Hollywood sabbatical. This journey was chronicled in Po Bronson's
best-selling book What Should I Do With My Life? which led to Carl appearing as a guest on The Oprah
Winfrey Show. He is currently a Visiting Distinguished Senior Lecturer at the University of
Pittsburgh where he is working on documentaries on how Dr. Jonas Salk and his team conquered polio
and on McArthur Genuis and Manchester Craftsmen's Guild founder Bill Strickland's success story, as
portrayed in his recent book Making the Impossible Possible. Carl graduated from Duke University
Magna Cum Laude where he wrote a short story about a waitress he had met while bell-hopping at the
St. Elmo Hotel. That story helped him win the MCA-Universal Studios Scholar Award that would take
him to Hollywood and eventually inspire the movie St. Elmo's Fire, which Carl co-wrote with director
Stephanie Dangel Reiter
A graduate of The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and Yale Law School, Stephanie
Dangel Reiter is a former Rhodes Scholar, law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun, and
attorney. Her involvement in My Tale of Two Cities began when she took a graduate screenwriting
class with Carl Kurlander to work on a screenplay she was writing on civil rights pioneers Marian
Anderson and Walter White. Stephanie subsequently became involved in the Steeltown Entertainment
Project, serving as the research coordinator on Pittsburgh: Hollywood's Best Kept Secret, a short
film featuring Shirley Jones, Chicago director Rob Marshall, E.R. producer John Wells, 300
producer Bernie Goldmann, and other Pittsburgh expatriates talking about how Pittsburgh nurtured
them as artists and their hometown's potential for becoming a hub in the entertainment industry.
This short film premiered at the Andy Warhol Museum during the "Steeltown Entertainment Summit."
Stephanie is now Board Chair of Steeltown Entertainment Project, a non-profit working to develop a
sustainable entertainment sector in Southwestern Pennsylvania (See www.steeltown.org). She also
continues to work with Carl on documentaries about the conquering of polio and the work of
Manchester Craftsmen's Guild and Bill Strickland.
Janet Driscoll Smith
Janet Driscoll Smith began her film and video production career at her hometown public television
station, WQED/Pittsburgh. After four years of working on nationally broadcast television
documentaries for WQED, she embarked on a freelance career that found her working with a wide
variety of television and documentary production companies, including WGBH, the BBC, The Discovery
Channel, the National Geographic Society, WETA, the World Wildlife Fund, Sea Studios, and
NBC/Dateline.Ý As a producer and production manager, Smith has coordinated the efforts of both small
and large teams of diverse people, often working in extremely challenging locations. Highlights
include the WGBH/BBC biotechnology series "The Secret of Life" and the Emmy-nominated PBS
environmental special "Web of Life." She recently produced the NOVA program "Car of The Future" with
writer/producer Joe Seamans (who was also the consulting producer for "My Tale of Two Cities.")
For 25 years, Joe Seamans worked at Pittsburgh's WQED producing and photographing award winning PBS
programming, including filming some of the classic "picture picture" segments for Mister Rogers'
Neighborhood. His long list of credits for Emmy and Peabody award winning National Geographic
classics includes producer, writer, and director of photography for Great Lakes, Fragile Seas,
Treasures from the Past, and co-producer and director of photography for Serengeti Diary and In the
Shadow of Vesuvius. He has produced many PBS programs dealing with social and environmental issues
such as Road to the Future, which traces the impact of the car on the urban development of America.
Most recently he co-produced, directed, and wrote The Great Robot Race for NOVA, and the upcoming
Car of the Future, featuring Tom and Ray Malliozzi of Car Talk on NPR. Joe is married to Elizabeth
Seamans, who continues to work with Family Communications, Fred Rogers' production company, and
appeared on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood as "Mrs. McFeely."
Mark Knobil has been the cinematographer on numerous award-winning projects, and has individually
been nominated twice for an Emmy for outstanding cinematography. His extensive credits include the
award-winning independent feature The Bread, My Sweet, Director of Photography on the Discovery
Channel special Titanic: Anatomy of a Disaster, Supervising Director of Photography on an eight-part
National Geographic Series for PBS, The Shape of Life, about the science of evolution, as well as
Strange Days on Planet Earth, a four-part series, hosted by Edward Norton, about mysterious changes
in the ecosystems of the planet. Mark served as videographer for many years on Mister Rogers'
Neighborhood and considers his work on Mister Rogers Visits USSR a career highlight.
Director of Photography
Tjardus Greidanus directed his first feature at the age of 16 after his family emigrated from
Holland to Alberta, Canada. The Fire Within, an historical epic about the Spanish invasion of
Holland, won the Alberta Motion Picture Industry Award for best amateur film and opened the door to
film school. Graduating with honors, Greidanus moved to Vancouver, where he worked as an assistant
director on TV series and features including The X-Files and This Boy's Life. He began a new
career in Los Angeles writing and editing HBO specials and DVD content for such films as Almost
Famous, Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, Ali, and Collateral. Four years ago he returned to the set
as a DP, shooting behind-the-scenes for Memoirs of a Geisha, Miami Vice and The Golden Compass. He
has since photographed several feature documentaries and is currently shooting the cutting-edge PBS
series, Wired Science.
Having grown up in Pittsburgh where she was Allderdice High School Senior Homemaker of the Year,
producer Laura Davis first found success as a disc jockey for the legendary L.A. rock station KLOS.
She then segued into a career producing "behind the scenes" documentaries for some of the world's
most respected directors including Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese, Jim Brooks, Cameron Crowe, and
Michael Mann. Over two decades, Laura Davis Productions has done countless productions that have
ended up on HBO and Showtime for such movies as Collateral, Miami Vice, Memoirs of a Geisha, As Good
As It Gets, Ali, and Dances With Wolves. She has also produced several television movies for CBS
as well as the one-hour special The Architect and the Chef for the Food Channel. Laura also
volunteered her services to produce Steeltown's short film, "Pittsburgh: Hollywood's Best Secret,"
as described above and is currently involved in producing the documentary on Manchester Craftsman's
Jonathan Wayne is a 2002 University of Pittsburgh graduate and a full-time freelance webdesigner and
independent filmmaker. In addition to designing the site for "My Tale of Two Cities", Jonathan has
designed many other innovative websites including that of U2Station.com which was nominated for a VH1
website award. He also co-founded the student organization Pitt In Hollywood of which Carl
Kurlander is a faculty adviser and created Pittinhollywood.org which connects Pittsburgh with
Hollywood. Jonathan is currently filming his own documentary that is being shot in both Israel and
the United States of America.