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MARTIN SPOTTL - Biography

 

Biography


MARTIN SPOTTL

Martin Spottl began making movies as a student at Dartmouth College, where his first short film, White King of Harlem, won him an honorary citation for academic excellence. His first screenplay, Elegy, garnered the Laing Award and a cash prize. And his stage production of Sam Shepard’s Cowboy Mouth sold out all shows at the Hopkins Center

Thus encouraged, Spottl moved to Los Angeles to attend USC Film School. While earning his MFASpottl made several award-winning shorts, including Stones in my Passway: The Robert Johnson Story, which premiered at the Chicago International Film Festival, was honored at festivals across the US and abroad, and was distributed nationally in video stores.

During film school and immediately after, Spottl worked on a wide variety of productions in a wide variety of roles. Among the more memorable was working as a production assistant on Michael Jackson's short film/music video for "Thriller" and operating camera on "Date Rape" -- the classic/notorious music video by Sublime. 

During this time, Spottl also worked in development as a story consultant on some great projects that got made, like a John Cassavetes screenplay that became "She's So Lovely" starring Sean Penn, and some that did not, like the wonderful but still unproduced screenplay "Angel of Oxnard" by Cheech Marin.

His first two feature screenplays, The Battle of Evermore and Lotus, both advanced to the late rounds of the Nicholl Fellowship and generated some industry buzz. Neither got produced, but they did lead to representation at a leading agency and some writing gigs. The most interesting of these was in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, where Spottl worked with a team to help create and write the original series Hotel San Miguel, a "surreal telenovela," for Televisa, the largest media outlet in the Spanish-speaking world

Inspired by his experiences south of the border, Spottl co-wrote the screenplay for Across the Line, and then returned to the US to direct and co-produce the award-winning feature film starring Brad Johnson, Sigal Erez, Brian Bloom, and Adrienne Barbeau. A highlight for Spottl was working with Southern Rock legend Charlie Daniels on the soundtrack and original score. Across the Line was distributed domestically by Lionsgate and sold in over 30 foreign territories (and is now available in HD on The Roku ChannelTubi, Amazon Prime and other outlets). Spottl was the founding partner of the production company High Water Films and Managing Partner of Across the Line Production, LLC. 

Currently, Spottl is working on a new one-hour drama series for television and an action-fantasy movie he adapted from a classic source. In addition to his work as a producer, director, and writer, Spottl sits on the Advisory Board for the UCLA Extension Directing Certificate Program. He enjoys camping and lives in the Hollywood Hills with his wife Lauren, kids Lou and Sam, and dog Mojo.



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