Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile (2022) Production Notes

Director: Josh Gordon, Will Speck
Writer(s): Will Davies, Bernard Waber
Main Cast: Constance Wu, Scoot McNaiery, Javier Bardem, Winslow Fegley, Brett Gelman, Shawn Mendes
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Release Date: 2022-10-28
Runtime: 106 mins. / 1 h 46 m
Official Site: Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile
Release Status: Complete
Facebook: @LyleLyleCrocodileMovie
X / Twitter: @LyleCrocodile
Instagram: @lylelylecrocodilemovie

When the Primm family (Wu, Scoot McNairy, Winslow Fegley) moves to New York City, their young son Josh struggles to adapt to his new school and new friends. All of that changes when he discovers Lyle – a singing crocodile (Mendes) who loves baths, caviar and great music – living in the attic of his new home. The two become fast friends, but when Lyle’s existence is threatened by evil neighbor Mr. Grumps (Brett Gelman), the Primms must band together with Lyle’s charismatic owner, Hector P. Valenti (Bardem), to show the world that family can come from the most unexpected places and there’s nothing wrong with a big singing crocodile with an even bigger personality.

Please note: Some production notes may contain spoilers.

Based on the best-selling book series by Bernard Waber, Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile, starring Academy Award® winner Javier Bardem, Constance Wu, and Shawn Mendes, is a live-action/CGI musical comedy that brings this beloved character to a new, global audience.

When the Primm family (Wu, Scoot McNairy, Winslow Fegley) moves to New York City, their young son Josh struggles to adapt to his new school and new friends. All of that changes when he discovers Lyle – a singing crocodile (Mendes) who loves baths, caviar and great music – living in the attic of his new home. The two become fast friends, but when Lyle’s existence is threatened by evil neighbor Mr. Grumps (Brett Gelman), the Primms must band together with Lyle’s charismatic owner, Hector P. Valenti (Bardem), to show the world that family can come from the most unexpected places and there’s nothing wrong with a big singing crocodile with an even bigger personality.

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile features original songs performed by Shawn Mendes, Javier Bardem, and Constance Wu, written by the songwriting team behind The Greatest Showman, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul. Joining Pasek and Paul in writing original songs for the film are Mendes, Ari Afsar, Emily Gardner Xu Hall, Mark Sonnenblick, and Joriah Kwamé. Directed by Will Speck and Josh Gordon, the screenplay is by Will Davies. The film is produced by Hutch Parker, Will Speck, and Josh Gordon, and executive produced by Kevin K. Vafi, Dan Wilson, Robert J. Dohrmann, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, Tarak Ben Ammar and Andy Mitchell.

Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile has been rated PG by the Motion Picture Association for mild peril and thematic elements. The film will be released in theaters nationwide on October 7, 2022.


“What’s great about Lyle is that it's a bit of wish fulfillment,” says Will Speck, who, along with his creative partner Josh Gordon, directs and, along with Hutch Parker, produces the new comedy musical Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile. “It's the pet that you wish you had. It's the discovery you wish you had found in your attic.”

But more than that, it’s what Lyle stands for, says Gordon. “It's the agent of change that comes in and fixes the things in your life that aren't quite working, and brings joy and passion and music into your life.”

“Lyle is a great conduit for understanding that… your best version of your best self is when you’re sort of supported unconditionally, and that can be any shape, any form, any person, any gender,” adds Speck.

A classic since its publication over 50 years ago, Speck and Gordon have been fans of the Lyle books since they were children. “It’s a great story with great architecture,” notes Speck. “Lyle comes into the lives of so many different people. Once you can get over the intimidation and the fantastical idea that this crocodile can communicate in a human way, he influences change, in a timeless and relatable way.”

“There are certain projects that stand out as unique and distinct, but specifically when you have a film of scale that aspires to do something different that hasn’t been done before -- those projects are few and far between,” says Hutch Parker. “It’s not just an adaptation of a beloved children’s book, or the realization of this unique iconic character, or a movie that features original music or choreography, or is equal parts live action and the creation of a CGI character, or that it aspires to ground the tone in something real and relatable that can also carry fantasy and whimsy. It's the unique combination reflected in this project that has brought these people to the table and demanded everyone be on their A game.”

But also – it’s about a crocodile. That’s just cool. “There's something about becoming friends with an animal that has the capacity to eat you if it decides that you've said the wrong thing,” says screenwriter Will Davies, who – as a writer of How to Train Your Dragon – knows something about possibly lethal pets. “There's something about the danger in that that's really cool.”

Lyle isn’t just any crocodile. Baked into the DNA of the project is the fact that Lyle is a singing crocodile. “That came from the source material – Lyle was raised by a vaudevillian performer,” says Speck. “And it was a really exciting way to bring pop music into the narrative and make the film distinctive.”

There’s no better way to make a musical distinctive than to call upon the songwriting talents of Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, the Oscar®, Tony, and Grammy Award-winning songwriters behind La Land, “Dear Evan Hansen,” The Greatest Showman, and many other breakthrough musicals of the past several years. “They're doing something that really hasn't been in the movies for a while, which is to write towering new works for the movies of musical theater,” says Speck. “They're bringing music into movies in a unique, specific, incredible way. Ultimately, Benj and Justin are storytellers as much as we are or our screenwriter Will Davies is. Their songs elevate the project as they express all the excitement through the music.”

To that end, Speck and Gordon brought Pasek and Paul into the process very early – during the scriptwriting phase. “It's like being at summer camp, when you’re all creating a show together,” says Pasek. He says that by working on the film during the script phase, they, along with Speck, Gordon, and Davies, could identify the emotional high points of the film and build those moments around a song, and vice versa. “We would decide, ‘We really want a song that Lyle is going to sing in this moment. How do we collectively get there?’” Pasek continues. “They had such passion and enthusiasm for this world. For Justin and me, getting to work with other people, to enter into that sacred space with them, is really fun and unlike any process that we've ever had before.”

To bring Lyle the singing crocodile to vocal life, the filmmakers tapped award-winning vocalist Shawn Mendes. He describes Lyle as a character driven by love. “He just wants to have a family, a home, and feel connected to people,” says Mendes, “and love is the reason I sing, too – I sing when I feel comfortable, when I feel accepted. I relate to him a lot.”

“Hearing your own voice come out of an animated character is such a weird experience,” Mendes continues. It can be a bit of an out-of-body experience to hear your voice coming out of a crocodile, he continues, but what he wasn’t expecting was how much the animators would capture of Mendes himself. “While I was singing in the studio, the animators were filming my facial expressions, and then animating Lyle to make similar facial expressions that I was making.”

In the lead on-camera roles, Speck and Gordon cast Oscar® winner Javier Bardem as the magician Hector P. Valenti, Lyle’s owner, who is forced to leave his beloved pet in a New York brownstone, alongside Constance Wu, Scoot McNairy, and Winslow Fegley as the Primm family, who find Lyle when they move in.

What to say about Hector P. Valenti. “He's a bit of a charlatan, a bit of a con man,” says Gordon.

“He's got a gigantic showbiz dream,” says screenwriter Will Davies. “He thinks of himself as a huge star of stage and screen, which is how he introduces himself. But the truth is, he's not quite good enough to do it.”

A magician who makes his living by showing off Lyle’s incredible vocal skills, Hector becomes a fully realized character in Bardem’s portrayal, according to Speck. “The role has a lot of humor in it, but he comes at the character with a sophisticated approach and not just going for a joke,” says Speck. “In developing the character, Javier really found a full life, all of these idiosyncratic choices that make him completely unique.”

“Hector P. Valenti was a really fun part to play,” says Bardem. “The fun situations he gets into, the dialogues, his way of being on and off stage…it was a joyful ride"

When Hector has to travel to reverse his misfortune, he is forced to leave the crocodile in the brownstone’s attic, promising to return – and leaving him with a music player loaded with the singing reptile’s favorite songs. “That becomes the thing that Lyle starts to understand, and it becomes his language,” says Speck.

Lyle makes a go of things in the attic of the brownstone, enjoying his baths and his music, until the Primm family move into the house and he enters their lives. “Who expects to find a crocodile in their attic?” says Constance Wu. As a former cookbook author, Mrs. Primm is used to measuring ingredients and going by the book, so dancing around the kitchen and ripping up recipes is not what Mrs. Primm expected, but turns out to be the best thing she's experienced.

Elaborating, Wu says, “At the beginning of the movie, Mrs. Primm really wants to be a great mom. She wants to just have everything be perfect for her son because she loves him so much. What Lyle teaches her is it’s not about showing up perfect, it’s about showing up.”

“Kudos to the crew for getting it all done,” says Wu. “It just took a lot of preparation and a lot of creativity.”

Wu was excited to be singing and dancing, returning to her musical theater roots. Speck and Gordon first met with the actress to discuss the possibility of her coming onboard a different, dramatic project. “And her team said to us, ‘You know, Constance sings and dances.’ We weren’t aware of that – but it came through that she has a huge love and a soft spot for musical theater,” says Speck. “We wrote a complete musical number around her, and she arrived ready to dive into it.”

The directors cast actor Scoot McNairy as Mr. Primm. The actor and the directors go way back. “We met Scoot at the beginning of our career, when we worked in commercials, because he was a comedy improv guy,” says Speck. “We always thought he was so funny, and then we'd seen him in Argo and ‘Narcos.’”

“And now, everybody knows him as being a really powerful, dramatic actor, and we’d always say, ‘No, he's really funny!’” says Gordon. “He's hilarious. He has a great wrestling sequence with Lyle that's just hilarious – the crew was just busting out when we shot it. On the other hand, everyone is also right – he is also an amazing dramatic actor, and he lands the emotional bits in a very powerful way.”

As Josh Primm, whose friendship with Lyle is the heart of the story, the filmmakers cast Winslow Fegley. “Lyle breaks Josh’s comfort zone and pushes Josh to have all these crazy experiences,” says Fegley. “He helps Josh become a more adventurous person.”

“What was amazing about Winslow is there's an incredible translucence and sophistication,” says Speck. “He has a natural ability.”

Rounding out the human cast as the grumpy neighbor Mr. Grumps is Brett Gelman. “I told my niece about Lyle, and she said, ‘Are you the bad guy again?’ I’ve played a lot of villains – I don’t know what that says about my personality, though I think those close to me would say it fits perfectly,” says the veteran character actor. “But Murray’s not really a bad guy. He’s one of the most uptight people I’ve ever played, but he suffers from a major sense of loneliness and a feeling of being apart from everybody else. He’s an alienated character who, deep down, just wants to belong. I think everybody does – like anyone who claims to not like people, I think it stems from an initial starting point of rejection and heartbreak, and that is definitely the case with him.”

And then there’s Lyle. The filmmakers decided that Lyle would be a character with plenty to say, but who cannot speak – he can only express himself through music and physical gestures. “It’s in how his eyes move, his tail's personality, how he uses his physical space – Lyle's humor shines through,” says Speck. “He's a towering, very intimidating creature, but also radiates warmth, whether he's breaking your heart or singing Stevie Wonder.”

On set, Ben Palacios created Lyle’s movements and expressions as reference, captured for the animators to bring to life. “Ben is the most expressive actor we’ve ever seen,” say Speck and Gordon. “When we were on set, Ben made us forget that he was Ben and completely sold the idea that he was an enormous crocodile – a living, breathing creature with a vital internal life. And he did it without saying a word. He’s the movie’s secret weapon.”

Palacios wore a specifically designed crocodile helmet with a sensor that would track the location and angle of his head in space at all times; the helmet also featured a wire cage that gave the impression of Lyle’s giant croc snoot. “If I was doing a scene with another actor and they leaned in close to me, we had to make sure they didn’t disappear inside Lyle’s mouth,” explains Palacios. “At one point, with Javier, we were doing an intense, dramatic scene where we were really close to each other. We were face to face, but Javier kept accidentally looking in my eyes, rather than Lyle's, whose eyes are up high and far away. He said, 'Dammit. Your eyes are too pretty!’”

Palacios also wore a girth suit to create the boundaries of Lyle's body – again, to help the other actors keep the dimensions of Lyle’s body in their performances. But Palacios says it was all worth it. “I think it's helpful for the other actors. Instead of looking at a tennis ball, to be looking at a human who is expressive and physical and playful.”


Pasek and Paul Join with Top Songwriters to Help a Singing Crocodile Express Himself

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul are among the most successful songwriters of their generation. They were immediately captured by the magic of the project and the fact that they felt it was perfect material for a musical. “All of these characters collide on their paths and change each other,” says Paul. “This crocodile brings their lives so much joy, and color, and vibrancy, and they also change him in unexpected ways – ways he’s needing. And it’s all done through music – it’s music that Lyle brings to their lives, literally and figuratively. It’s how they connect, how they open up to feel vulnerable, to feel celebratory, to feel understood by someone. For us as songwriters, it’s a total joy to write songs where you’re unlocking a character’s true, human heart.”

But when that character is a singing crocodile? That’s perfect too, says Pasek. “Any time you hear a person bursting out into song in a musical, you're leaving the world of reality behind,” says Pasek. “When you're watching a crocodile with a voice and a heart of gold – a crocodile who can literally only express himself through song – you suddenly have permission to untether from reality.”

In pitching the project to the songwriting duo, the directors Speck and Gordon were able to offer Pasek and Paul a chance to become involved much earlier in the process than they usually are – and to help shape the story of the musical comedy around the songs that they would write.

With Pasek and Paul involved very early in the script stage, they got a sense of what the directors were aiming for with the story. “A song should not be an arbitrary choice. A song shouldn’t appear out of nowhere, with nothing leading up to it,” says Speck. “What Benj and Justin were able to do, as storytellers, was seamlessly thread into the narrative why somebody has to sing at that moment. What is it about this song that’s going to influence and change the characters?”

For Shawn Mendes, who would lend his pipes to Lyle, singing the work of Pasek and Paul brought to the fore the way that gifted songwriters can make the songs of a musical work a dual purpose, building on each other as part of a cohesive whole and also providing a discrete, joyful experience. “When you watch one of their movies or shows, you’re digesting the entire thing at once, and you may not realize just how smart they are,” says Mendes. “You don’t realize how complex and how beautiful these songs are, how lyrically astonishing they are, and how much effort they put into them. But when you’re in the recording studio, going through the songs, it’s an eye-opening experience.”

To put it another way, music supervisor Jordan Carroll says, “Benj and Justin are incredible careful to make sure that their songs are placed into the world of the film – that there is a reason someone is singing. But what they’ve done so masterfully is that all of the songs can live not only within the film, but outside of it as well. You can hear it and it will mean something to you. In that way, they pull on everyone’s need to connect, their need to feel a part of something bigger than themselves.”

For Paul, having an unabashedly earnest movie that he could share with his young children was an extra pleasure. “As cheesy as it sounds, we believe in corny things like hope and optimism,” Paul says. “There’s a lot of joy running through our music and the pieces we gravitate toward. There's a lot of cynicism in the world right now, so it’s exciting to have songs out in the world that are infused with Lyle's joy and his desire to live life vulnerable and honest and open – and does it via a singing crocodile on screen.”

To ensure that the songs would weave together a wide range of experiences and emotional threads, Pasek and Paul recruited top songwriters Joriah Kwamé, Emily Gardner Xu Hall, Mark Sonnenblick, and Arianna Asfar to collaborate with them on each of the songs. “Getting the opportunity to work with other songwriters is one of the best parts of our job.  We learn so much from these new experiences and relationships. Plus, we’re just huge fans of each of them. It was a thrill to work together, to bang ideas back and forth, and to come out with songs that feel truly unique and truly Lyle,” say Pasek and Paul.


Written by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul
Performed by Javier Bardem and Shawn Mendes

“Take a Look at Us Now” is an example of the way a songwriter can change a song’s meaning through setting, mood, and tone. “‘Take a Look at Us Now’ starts with an exclamatory character’s moment. Hector P. Valenti is a showman, and it's a showman's number,” says Pasek. But that’s just at the beginning. “It becomes a song of being in a sad, wistful and regretful place,” Pasek continues.

“‘Take a Look at Us Now’ gets reprised a number of times in the film,” says Mendes. “It starts with a big version of it, a phenomenal song-and-dance number that Lyle and Hector are going to perform, but Benj and Justin also use the same song to punctuate some of the film’s sadder, more melancholy moments. I found that really captivating and beautiful.”

“Pasek and Paul are truly amazing composers," says Javier Bardem. “I’m not a singer, so it’s tricky for me to learn such complex songs. It was a challenge, but I loved it. I loved the preparation it took to get into the songs, the lyrics, the rhythms, every bit of the recording experience."

Music supervisor Jordan Carroll agrees that it’s quite a difficult song to sing, and that it required an actor of Bardem’s caliber to nail it. “Typically, a musical number either has one emotion or a related few. Hector has to cover an entire spectrum,” he notes. “It really is an acting piece that has music accompanying it. Javier kills it as a singer and dancer.”

To prepare for the performance, Bardem worked for weeks with Carroll, executive music producer Ian Eisendrath, music associate Elizabeth Doran, and vocal coach Fiona McDougal to dive deep into a vocal interpretation of Hector’s numbers. “Javier threw himself into the singing and the dancing for months and months and months before we shot,” says Gordon. “It was just an incredible thing to watch him come to us with moves that he had been practicing in Spain and Rome for months.”

Of course, the filmmakers and songwriters knew they would be working with one of the most respected actors in the world, but watching that firsthand was impressive. “Seeing Javier commit in the incredible ways that he did – to the character, to learning the music, to learning the choreography – was a master class,” says Pasek. “The hardest-working person in the room was also the movie star. It makes you raise your game.”

“Javier playing Hector is totally unique,” adds executive producer Kevin Vafi. “He’s never done anything like this before. You’re watching a pure, bona fide actor doing something new and challenging.”

Written by Ben Pasek, Justin Paul and Joriah Kwamé
Performed by Shawn Mendes

In “Top of the World,” Lyle shows Josh the wonders of New York City. “Even though Lyle has to sneak out in the middle of the night, because the world is afraid of him, he finds refuge on the top of a theater,” says Paul.

Suddenly, with Josh, Lyle has someone to experience everything that magical city has to offer – including how to eat at the best restaurants in New York for free (a trick taught to him by Hector P. Valenti). “He’s just taught Josh how to dumpster dive, they’re walking through the city, and music pours up through the grate from a Broadway show downstairs,” says Pasek. “It’s Lyle’s favorite song, and he can’t wait to share it with Josh and celebrate this moment of finding someone to share his life with.”

“There is a certain magic and comfort to nightlife in New York City, especially as an artist,” says Kwamé. “It was an absolute treat to put ourselves in the mind and heart of Lyle, who at this moment on that Broadway theater roof, knows that he belongs. I hope the song gives hope to people worldwide who are still looking for that safe space.”

Written by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, Emily Gardner Xu Hall, and Mark Sonnenblick
Performed by Shawn Mendes and Constance Wu

“Rip Up the Recipe is that feel-good song you need when the world doesn't make sense,” says Emily Gardner Xu Hall. “We spend so much of our lives making plans and trying to pre-empt things that could go wrong, but things don't always go the way you planned. That can be hard, but one of the many joys that Lyle brings to the Primm family is a different way to enjoy life, to get away from the anxiety and stress, and re-frame the unexpected wrenches in the works as gifts to enjoy. And actually, maybe life can be more fun if you let go of trying to control everything, and let in some freedom and fun!”

“Rip Up the Recipe,” Lyle’s duet with Mrs. Primm, is, according to Paul, a clear example of the way a song can chronicle a character’s change moment – in this case, Mrs. Primm, who comes from the corporate world and is now taking on a new role as a mom. “Mrs. Primm is a prime example of a person who thinks there is a proper way to do life – to exist – with to-do lists and having everything tightly wound and managed,” says Paul. But ask any mom if that’s how reality works. “Lyle is there to shake it all up for her,” he continues. “Through this song, Lyle is saying, ‘You need to embrace a different way of life.’”

Performing a synchronized dance with a singing crocodile, it turns out, wasn’t as easy to pull off as it sounds. “Kudos to the crew for getting it all done,” says Wu. “It just took a lot of preparation and a lot of creativity. There are lot of different shot angles. And for me and Ben Palacios, a lot of rehearsal and making sure we really had it in our bones.”

“We knew a lot needed to happen during this song – Lyle had to charm Mrs. Primm, Mrs. Primm needed to start embracing the chaos of her new life, and food had to get all over the kitchen,” adds Sonnenblick. “Lists like that are sometimes intimidating, but they always lead to a song idea that's never been written before. In this case, ‘Rip Up the Recipe’ became an incredible set piece that the actors and filmmakers took way beyond anything we could have imagined. Collaboration!”

Written by Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, Arianna Asfar, and Mark Sonnenblick
Performed by Shawn Mendes

“Carried Away” comes at the characters’ lowest moment, when they have been separated and are realizing how much they meant to each other. “The second I heard “Carried Away” – before seeing anything of the film – it was a special song to me,” says Mendes. “It felt very sincere and very magical. That is the moment when you really, truly feel the heartbreak for Lyle’s situation. All he really wants is just to have a family that loves him. It’s my favorite song in the film.”

“As a Bangladeshi-American mixed race person, the ideas of belonging and feeling a sense of ‘home’ are particularly important to me, especially as a songwriter,” says Asfar. “In Lyle’s journey, ‘Carried Away’ is the moment that he questions where his home lies and where he truly belongs – a universal theme everyone can relate to. Working with this incredibly talented team, we discovered that we all have our own relationship and connection with the idea of belongingness, and I believe that vulnerability allowed the song to be undeniably heartfelt and emotional.”

“Great movies use the particulars of the character and setting to unlock something universal for an audience. Ideally, we do the same thing with songwriting for a musical story,” says Sonnenblick. “In the script, this moment for Lyle was both so specific – he's a singing crocodile locked up in the zoo! – and so relatable. He's feeling what we've all felt when something comes between us and people we care about: maybe the magic was too good to last, maybe I don't deserve the love I've found. So we knew immediately it was going to be a great song. And it speaks to the heart of the movie: ultimately, real friendships, no matter how strange, survive the highs and lows. Being yourself and getting carried away with another person – or crocodile! – is worth it, every time.”

Written by Shawn Mendes

For the closing credits, the filmmakers chose an original song by Mendes himself. “Heartbeat” is a song that Mendes wrote some time ago, but never seemed to find a home in any of his other projects. “It’s been close to my heart for a very long time – a song of light and love,” he says, “and for reasons I didn’t understand, it never felt like the right time to put it out. But when we started talking about an end-titles song, I realized, ‘Oh, this is what that song was meant for.’ It’s a song about the special connection that only a few people can give you, and felt perfect for the movie"


Speck and Gordon place the original Pasek and Paul songs alongside a selection of American classics. “it’s so much fun to have Lyle singing Stevie Wonder or James Taylor – and it goes really well with the original music,” says Speck. “We were drawn to the modern American songbook because these are songs that everybody knows. It also gives you a sense that this movie is set in the real world. This is the music that Hector left with Lyle when he was a tiny little crocodile – the great American songbook, a mix of Broadway and popular contemporary songs, is his only companion.”


Choreographer Shannon Holtzapffel was inspired by classic musical theater. “I threw it back to musicals like Kiss Me, Kate, Damn Yankees, Pajama Game, and Oliver! for inspiration, but I didn’t want to structure the dance sequences like stage performances,” he says. ““Instead, I wanted memorable moments in the characters’ environments – the brownstone, the attic – utilizing and experiencing the spaces three-dimensionally when imagining the scenography.”

Holtzapffel’s choreography was also born out of the characters’ personalities. For example, Hector P. Valenti, the larger-than-life magician, required choreography to match, without going over the top. “When I read Hector, I thought of Stromboli from Pinocchio and Salvador Dali, Tony and Joe from Lady and the Tramp, Charlie Chaplin. Hector’s dance movements are a throwback to Vaudeville, his ode to stage and screen,” he explains.

As the role would be played by Javier Bardem – not a classically trained dancer – Holtzapffel specifically designed choreography to his talents. “With Javier, I reverse engineered his choreography,” he says. “Javier had never danced in a movie before, so we worked on his strengths, which we learned in our prep time with him, while he was still in Spain. I loved seeing Javier’s passion for this project – he was very dedicated.”

Of course, the greatest challenge was the dancing of Lyle himself. “How do you dance like a crocodile? How do you make a human dance like a crocodile? And how do you make it believable?” asks Holtzapffel. Again, it was important to rely on the environment. “We’d have Lyle do a trick shot, or throw a spoon, rather than dance through space with cool moves. I wanted movement that people would laugh at.”

To bring this to life, the filmmakers turned to Luke Dockery, a trained dancer whose movements would be animated through motion capture. “Luke was just 21 when we shot the movie, young and hungry for it, and I’m not sure he knew what he was in for,” says Holtzapffel. The role isn’t just dancing, it’s also acting, which is a whole other challenge – of course he could do the dance steps, but being able to tell the story through movement is a whole other thing. But we threw him in the deep end with this massive responsibility, and he handled it like a champ.”


Part of the fabric of the story is that Lyle is a born-and-bred New Yorker. In the books, he and the Primms visit iconic Big Apple locations from Central Park to Tiffany's to Bloomingdale's to Times Square. “For us, New York was really a big character in the movie, so it was very important to shoot there and to capture the timeless vision of the city that’s such an important part of the books,” says Gordon.

Javier Bardem says he has always wanted to play a walk-and-talk scene in New York. And he finally got to do it: “With a crocodile no less!" he laughs. "It does not get better than that!"

At one point, Lyle takes a stroll through the crossroads of the world – Times Square. “You can’t get more New York than that!” says production designer Mark Worthington. “There’s nowhere else in the world that has that energy and the people. It’s who’s on the street, what is that street life like, the energy. There’s something about the way New Yorkers move, walk, talk, interact. It’s just different.” The filmmakers also shot at the picturesque Astor Place subway station – which filled in for the stop nearest the Primms’ 88th St. digs.

In addition to shooting iconic New York locations, the production recreated New York City in Atlanta on sound stages. After the filmmakers shot a real brownstone in New York, production designer Mark Worthington recreated it on Atlanta stages. For the home, initially belonging to Hector P. Valenti, Worthington imagined the character’s upbringing – likely performers like Hector himself. “The home is filled with the things he’s inherited,” he explains. When the Primms arrive, the house becomes a new opportunity for them. With Mr. Primm teaching at a local school, Mrs. Primm is trying to embrace a new life away from the corporate world. “There’s a lot of color in the Primm world,” Worthington continues, “but very different from Hector’s world. Brighter colors, lighter colors. There’s a sense of hope and a new beginning.”

Also in Atlanta, Piedmont Park also doubled for Central Park in certain areas – perhaps because in the early 20th century, Piedmont Park was redesigned by the sons of Frederick Law Olmsted, designer of Central Park.


As Spain’s most internationally acclaimed actor, Academy Award winner JAVIER BARDEM (Hector P. Valenti) has captivated audiences worldwide with his diverse performances.

Bardem most recently starred in Being the Ricardos as the larger-than-life entertainer and entrepreneur Desi Arnaz, for which Bardem was nominated for an Academy Award® and SAG Award for Best Actor. Written and directed by Academy Award® winner Aaron Sorkin the film chronicles a fraught week for Desi and Lucille Ball (played by Nicole Kidman) from table read to audience taping, as they face a series of professional and personal crises that threaten their show, their careers, and their marriage.

Bardem can also be seen in Denis Villeneuve’s epic science-fiction film Dune, his premiered at the 2021 Venice Film Festival to rave reviews. Bardem will reprise how role in the upcoming sequel, which is currently in production and will release in November 2023. Another upcoming role will include Disney’s live-action The Little Mermaid, featuring Bardem as King Triton.

Bardem was also seen in The Good Boss, directed by his friend and frequent collaborator Fernando León de Aranoa. The film was nominated for a record-breaking 20 Goya Awards in Spain. In this satire, Bardem plays Blanco, the charismatic owner of a family-run factory, under pressure as he covets a local award for business excellence. As the veneer of the perfect company cracks, Blanco has to deal with a vengeful fired worker, a depressed supervisor, and an ambitious intern. The film premiered at the San Sebastian Film Festival and is also nominated for a record breaking 20 Goya Awards in Spain.

In 2018, Bardem starred opposite his wife Penelope Cruz in Asghar Farhadi’s Everybody Knows, which opened the 2018 Cannes Film Festival. Also in 2018, Bardem and Cruz starred in Fernando Leon de Aranoa’s biopic Loving Pablo, which tells the true story of a dramatic love affair between notorious drug lord Pablo Escobar and Colombian journalist Virginia Vallejo.

Previously, Bardem starred in Darren Aronofsky’s Mother opposite Jennifer Lawrence, as well as the fifth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean blockbuster franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.

In 2012, Bardem took audiences by storm in Skyfall, one of the most touted installments of the James Bond franchise, in which he played the villain, Raoul Silva, opposite Daniel Craig, Dame Judi Dench, Naomie Harris, and Berenice Marlohe. He has continually received critical acclaim for his role, in addition to being nominated in the supporting actor category for both a Critics Choice Movie Award and a Screen Actors Guild® Award. The same year, Bardem co-produced and starred in Sons of the Clouds: The Last Colony, a film documenting how the colonization of the Western Sahara has left nearly 200,000 people living in refugee camps.

In October 2011, Bardem and his co-producer Alvaro Longoria, the film’s director, addressed the United Nations General Assembly’s decolonization committee, urging the delegates to end human rights abuses in the region. The film premiered at the 62nd annual Berlin International Film Festival and was acquired by Canal Plus in Bardem’s native Spain, and was released by GoDigital via iTunes in the U.S.

Bardem was awarded the Best Actor prize at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival for his performance in Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s Biutiful, a role which also earned him his third Academy Award nomination.

In 2008, Bardem received the Academy Award® for Best Supporting Actor for his chilling portrayal of sociopath killer, Anton Chigurh, in Joel and Ethan Coen’s No Country for Old Men. The performance garnered a Golden Globe Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, a BAFTA, and countless other film critic awards and nominations.

Bardem won the Best Actor Award at the 2004 Venice Film Festival for his performance in Alejandro Amenabar’s film The Sea Inside, making him the second actor ever to win the award twice. He also won a Goya Award and received a Golden Globe nomination for this role. Bardem has won the Goya Award, Spain’s equivalent of the Oscar, five times and has received a total of eight nominations.

In 2000, Bardem received his first Academy Award® nomination for his portrayal of the Cuban poet and dissident Reinaldo Arenas in Julian Schnabel’s Before Night Falls. He was named Best Actor at the Venice Film Festival, received Best Actor honors from the National Society of Film Critics, the Independent Spirit Awards, the National Board of Review, and received a Golden Globe nomination for this role.

His other notable film credits include Ridley Scott’s The Counselor; Terrence Malick’s To the Wonder; Eat Pray Love, opposite Julia Roberts; Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona, for which he was again nominated for a Golden Globe and Independent Spirit Award; John Malkovich’s directorial debut The Dancer Upstairs; Fernando Leon de Aranoa’s Mondays in the Sun, which was named best film at the San Sebastian Film Festival; Michael Mann’s Collateral; Mike Newell’s Love in the Time of Cholera; and Milos Forman’s Goya’s Ghosts, opposite Natalie Portman.

A vibrant and acclaimed actress, Constance Wu (Mrs. Primm) is steadily building her body of work in dynamic roles alongside some of the industry’s most respected creators.

Wu has penned a memoir-in-essays titled Making a Scene, which Scribner will publish on October 4, 2022. The book recounts Wu’s experiences of childhood, young love and heartbreak, sexual assault and harassment, and how she made it in Hollywood. Her stories offer a behind-the-scenes look at being Asian American in the entertainment industry and the continuing evolution of her identity and influence in the public eye.

Wu recently launched Tempo Wubato Pictures, a production venture alongside Justine Jones, who was tapped as the Vice President of Development. Under this banner, Wu struck a first-look deal with eOne where she and Justine are actively developing and producing scripted series for the studio.

Most notably, Wu starred in Warner Bros.’ romantic comedy hit Crazy Rich Asians, directed by Jon M. Chu. For this role, Wu received a Golden Globe nomination in the category of Best Actress in a Motion Picture in a Musical or Comedy and a Critics Choice nomination in the category of Best Actress in a Comedy. The film itself received many accolades, including a Golden Globe nomination in the category of Best Motion Picture – Musical or Comedy, a SAG Award nomination in the category of Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, and a Critics’ Choice Award nomination in the categories of Best Acting Ensemble and Best Comedy. The film also found tremendous box office success – the most successful studio romantic comedy in nearly a decade. Crazy Rich Asians also made Hollywood history as the first studio movie in over 25 years to star an Asian American woman.

Additional film credits include Christopher Makoto Yogi’s I Was A Simple Man; Lorene Scafaria’s Hustlers, which was recorded as the highest box office opening for STX; Eric Darnell’s Crow: The Legend; Jenée LaMarque’s The Feels; Christopher Leone’s Parallels; Zal Batmanglij’s Sound of My Voice; Matt Tauber’s The Architect; and Hilary Brougher’s Stephanie Daley.

On television, Wu was last seen in Amazon Studios’ conspiracy thriller series “The Terminal List” alongside Chris Pratt and Taylor Kitsch. Based on the bestselling novel of the same name by Jack Carr, the series followed James Reece (Pratt), whose entire platoon of Navy SEALs is ambushed during a high- stakes covert mission. Wu portrayed the role of Katie Buranek, a risk-seeking war correspondent who uses her byline to speak truth to power. She finds an unlikely ally in James as she seeks to bring the truth about the conspiracy he’s fighting against to light in mainstream media. Prior, Wu was in the thought-provoking Amazon anthology series “Solos” alongside Morgan Freeman, Anne Hathaway, Helen Mirren, Uzo Aduba, Nicole Beharie, Anthony Mackie, and Dan Stevens. The series explored the deeper meaning of human connection, as portrayed through the lens of the individual, each from a different perspective and moment in time.

Wu broke out on screen in her starring role as Jessica Huang in ABC’s comedy series “Fresh off the Boat.” The six-season run of the critically acclaimed series is loosely based on the life of chef Eddie Huang. For this role, Wu was nominated for a Critics’ Choice Television Award in the category of Best Actress in a Comedy Series and was honored as part of the TIME 100 Most Influential People of 2017. “Fresh off the Boat” also made Hollywood history as the first American network television show in over 20 years to center an Asian American family. As of 2018, it also marked another milestone as the first Asian American-led TV show ever to reach syndication.

Wu holds a BFA in Acting from SUNY Purchase's prestigious Conservatory of Theatre Arts and Film, where she trained in classical theater.

Grammy-nominated, Toronto-born, multi-platinum singer/songwriter SHAWN MENDES (Lyle) released his highly anticipated fourth studio album, “Wonder,” in 2020 to rave reviews. The album debuted as #1 on the Billboard 200 Chart and in multiple worldwide markets, marking Mendes’s fourth straight #1 album. In 2019, Mendes was nominated for a Grammy for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “Señorita,” his single with Camila Cabello. In 2018 he released his self-titled platinum album, which debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200 Chart as well as multiple worldwide markets. The album became one of the top best-selling album debuts of 2018 and made Mendes the third-youngest solo artist to ever have three consecutive #1 albums. Mendes was nominated in two categories for the 61st annual Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year for “In My Blood” and Best Pop Vocal Album for Shawn Mendes.  The same year, Mendes debuted his certified platinum single “If I Can’t Have You” at #1 on iTunes and #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. With “Señorita” at #1 and “If I Can’t Have You” at #2, Mendes is the first male solo artist ever to simultaneously hold the #1 and #2 place on the Top 40 chart. Most recently, Mendes released his track “When You’re Gone.” In December of 2021, he released his song “It’ll Be Okay,” which currently has over 265 million streams. On his last world tour, he sold out his first ever stadium show in minutes at Rogers Centre in his hometown of Toronto.


In April 2017, Mendes released his 3x platinum hit “There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back.” The track scored Mendes his second #1 single at Top 40 radio and on Billboard’s Pop Songs chart, joining his 7x platinum single “Stitches.”  Mendes has over 62 billion global streams and 10 billion video views. He topped Billboard’s 21 Under 21 in 2017 and 2018 and has been featured on Forbes 30 Under 30, Spotify’s 25 Under 25, and Time Magazine’s Time 100 Most Influential. In 2018, ROI Influencer Media recognized Mendes as the #1 Most Influential Artist and #1 Most Influential Teen across all social media platforms.

In 2019, Mendes launched The Shawn Mendes Foundation, which seeks to inspire Mendes’s audience, the youth generation of today—to learn about those causes that they are passionate about, and help empower them to use the voice they have to bring change to the world by taking action & giving back. As part of its ongoing mission, the Foundation provides resources and support to amplify the voices, messages, and platforms of young leaders driving positive change.

Scoot McNairy (Mr. Primm) is an award-winning actor and producer.

McNairy most recently played a pivotal role in the highly anticipated Mike Mills film C’mon, starring Joaquin Phoenix and Gaby Hoffman. He also reprised his role as the series lead in the third and final season of Netflix's “Narcos: Mexico.”

McNairy has a starring role opposite Mila Kunis and Finn Wittrock in the soon-to-be-released Netflix film Luckiest Girl Alive. He is also currently voicing a recurring role on the new hour-long animated drama “Pantheon” for AMC.

McNairy recently made a cameo appearance in John Krasinski’s A Quiet Place Part II; starred opposite Anna Kendrick in the HBOMax series “Love Life”; and had the opportunity to work again with Andrew Dominik on the upcoming Netflix feature Blonde, starring Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe.

Other recent projects include the highly anticipated miniseries “The Comey Rule” for CBS/Showtime, written and directed by Billy Ray, and the third season of the hit HBO series “True Detective,” opposite Mahershala Ali. He also shot a supporting role in the Nicole Kidman film Destroyer, directed by Karyn Kusama.

McNairy’s critically acclaimed AMC series “Halt and Catch Fire” came to an end in 2017 after four seasons. That year he also guest starred in the opening episode of the third season of FX’s “Fargo,” directed by Noah Hawley.

Previous films include The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter, directed by Jody Hill and starring Danny McBride and Josh Brolin; Sleepless, opposite Jamie Foxx and Michelle Monaghan; the lead opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger in Aftermath, directed by Elliott Lester and produced by Darren Aronofsky; and a reteaming with David Michod for Netflix’s War Machine, starring Brad Pitt.

He was a Best Actor nominee at the 2010 British Independent Film Awards for his performance in the acclaimed independent film Monsters, written and directed by Gareth Edwards. The year prior, In Search of a Midnight Kiss, which McNairy both starred in and produced, was honored with the John Cassavetes Award (the Best Feature Made For Under $500,000) at the Independent Spirit Awards. The movie was written and directed by Alex Holdridge.

He shared a Screen Actors Guild Award with his fellow actors from the ensembles of Ben Affleck’s Argo and Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave when they were voted Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture; in addition to many other honors, both films went on to win the Academy Award® for Best Picture, in 2012 and 2013, respectively.

On the production side, McNairy has formed The Group Films with John Pierce. They are currently in production on McNairy’s directorial debut. Their film Frank and Cindy, starring Rene Russo and Oliver Platt, premiered at the 2015 Los Angeles Film Festival. The film is now available on Netflix and iTunes. The company’s previous productions include James Cox’s Straight A’s, starring Ryan Phillippe, Anna Paquin, and Luke Wilson. Separately, McNairy recently reteamed with Gareth Edwards, joining with Pierce as executive producer of Tom Green’s Monsters: Dark Continent, the sequel to Monsters.

WINSLOW FEGLEY (Josh Primm) was born into a family of actors: he is the son of actors Michael Fegley and Merce Tonne, and brother to actors August Fegley and Oakes Fegley.

Fegley developed his skills in 2017 while starring in the stage production of “A Billion Nights on Earth,” a production he also added creative collaboration to, with avant-garde theater director Thaddeus Phillips. The show was developed at the Buntport Theatre in Denver over the summer of 2017, then toured to sold out houses in Philadelphia in September 2017, and was featured as part of the Next Wave Festival at the Brooklyn Academy of Music in November that year, where it again sold out its run.

In 2018, Fegley landed his first television role, guest-starring on the hilarious TV Land show “Teachers.” He then spent the spring filming eight episodes of the Disney Channel series “Fast Layne” in the role of Mel; the show premiered in 2019. After wrapping up on the limited series, he went directly into production in the title role of Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made, directed by Academy Award®-winner Tom McCarthy. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and then debuted in early 2020 as one of the first original features for the Disney+ streaming platform.

Fegley also co-starred in the Jacob Chase-helmed horror film Come Play, opposite Azhy Robertson and Gillian Jacobs, and in 2019, he guest-starred as a pre-teen in ABC’s hit show “The Good Doctor.”

His most recent work includes two films. In Nightbooks, he starred as Alex opposite Kristen Ritter and Lydia Jewett; the David Yarovesky-directed picture debuted in the Netflix Top 10 in the fall of 2021. Fegley also starred as Jake Doyle in HBOMax’s 2021 holiday hit 8-Bit Christmas with Neal Patrick Harris, Steve Zahn, and June Diane Raphael.

Fegley will next be seen in Disney’s The Naughty Nine for Disney. He stars as the troublemaker Andy, who finds out he's on Santa's "naughty list” and then masterminds a heist by assembling a group of "naughty list" kids to get the presents they think they deserve.

Brett Gelman (Mr. Grumps) can be seen in his fan-favorite role as Murray, an eccentric conspiracy theorist, on Netflix's hit series “Stranger Things,” which broke viewership records following its release. Gelman was upped to season regular for the series’ fourth season, which premiered in May 2022 on Netflix and earned seven Emmy nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series.

Also on Netflix, Gelman co-stars in “Metal Lords,” which released in April from executive producer David Benioff (“Game of Thrones”). He was also on the third season of David E. Kelley's Audience Network show “Mr. Mercedes,” opposite Brendan Gleeson and Holland Taylor.

Brett also plays Martin, the deliciously loathsome brother-in-law to Phoebe Waller-Bridge's titular "Fleabag," in the critically acclaimed Amazon series that swept awards season, winning the Best Comedy Series category at the Emmys, Golden Globes, and Critics Choice awards, as well as a SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series.

Gelman played the villain in Without Remorse, Paramount’s spy thriller starring Michael B. Jordan, which was the most streamed film in April of 2021. He was previously seen on HBO’s “Camping” opposite Jennifer Garner, David Tennant, and Juliette Lewis, and as Dr. Greg in Judd Apatow's critically acclaimed series “Love,” as well as a series of Adult Swim specials. He can also be seen in David Lynch’s “Twin Peaks: The Return.”

Gelman also starred in Lemon, which he co-wrote with director Janicza Bravo. The film premiered to rave reviews at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival. His credits also include the indie Wild Nights With Emily opposite Molly Shannon; the studio comedies Like Father (Netflix), The Other Guys (Sony/Columbia), and 30 Minutes or Less (Sony/Columbia); the FX comedy “Married,” opposite Nat Faxon and Judy Greer; Comedy Central’s “Another Period”; Starz’s “Blunt Talk,” opposite Patrick Stewart; and NBC’s “Go On,” opposite Matthew Perry. Gelman is a long-time company member of The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre.

Since Variety named him one of its 10 Comics to Watch in 2010, Gelman has shown film, TV, web and live audiences how he commits to every role with a signature intensity and fearlessness that continues to earn praise from critics and peers alike.


Will Speck and Josh Gordon (Directors / Producers), collectively known as Speck and Gordon, are the directing team behind such movies as Blades of Glory, The Switch, and Office Christmas Party. As veteran commercial directors, their work has won everything from Grand Clios to British Gold Arrows and over twenty Cannes Lions. They are founding directors at Santa Monica- and London-based Furlined, which was named Commercial Production Company of the Year at the One Show and as one of the top production companies in the world by Campaign Magazine. Their work in short form content has been nominated for both Academy Awards and Emmys.

In the television space, Speck & Gordon have directed episodes of “Flaked” for Netflix and are executive producing the upcoming A24 LGBTQ thriller Silverlake starring Zachary Quinto. Most recently, they created, executive produced, and directed “Hit Monkey,” starring Jason Sudeikis and Olivia Munn, for Marvel and Hulu, which is slated to start its second season.

WILL DAVIES (Screenplay by) was born and raised in England, and educated at Mercersburg Academy in Pennsylvania and Cambridge University.

After a career in journalism, he began writing screenplays, winning Annie Awards in 2007 and 2011 for his work on Flushed Away and How to Train Your Dragon. He was co-creator with Rowan Atkinson of Man vs. Bee for Netflix, and of the Johnny English movies for Universal. Other credits include Puss in Boots, Twins, and the Emmy-winning “Letter for the King.”

Bernard Waber (Based on the Books by) was the beloved author-illustrator of more than thirty picture books, including Courage, Ira Sleeps Over, and Do You See a Mouse? With the publication of The House on East 88th Street in 1962, his Lyle, Lyle Crocodile series of books became a mainstay of children's literature and was adapted for both stage and screen. A Literary Landmark plaque commemorating the adventures of this endearing New York City reptile can now be found on East 88th Street.

HUTCH PARKER (Producer) is a film and television producer whose films to date have garnered $3.28 billion in worldwide box office. His recent projects include Venom: Let There Be Carnage, Home, Home Alone, and critically-acclaimed features Logan, starring Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart, and Patriots Day, starring Mark Walberg. His films have garnered multiple Academy Award® nominations as well as numerous audience awards and accolades. Parker has a long history with the X-Men franchise starting with X2 in 2003 which he supervised as president of 20th Century Fox, and then later as a producer on the blockbuster X-Men: Days of Future Past, X-Men: Dark Phoenix, X-Men: Apocalypse, The Wolverine, Logan, and Fantastic Four. Parker’s producing deal is housed at 20th Century Studios with his producing partner Dan Wilson.

From 1995-2011, Parker served as an executive at 20th Century Fox, ascending to president and subsequently vice chairman of the Film Group, overseeing all of the studio’s film operations including the animation division. During his tenure, Fox enjoyed six record-breaking years with films such as Avatar, the X- Men franchise, Master and Commander, Live Free or Die Hard, Taken, Night at the Museum, Minority Report, Borat, Cheaper by the Dozen, There’s Something About Mary, The Day After Tomorrow, Ice Age, and I, Robot. In 2008, Parker was appointed co-chairman of New Regency Entertainment (co-owned by 20th Century Fox) heading film and television operations and began his producing career in 2011.

Prior to Fox, Parker held the positions of senior vice president of Production at HBO and senior vice president of Orion Pictures. Parker was born in New York and graduated from Princeton University.

KEVIN K. VAFI (Executive Producer) is a film and television producer based in Los Angeles. Born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, Vafi started his career as a production intern working on the Hunger Games franchise for Lionsgate Entertainment. The film went on to be the largest opening weekend for the company, grossing over $150M and spawned three sequels. In mid-2012, he was asked to be the production coordinator at Universal’s indie division, Focus Features, where he worked on their newest franchise, Fifty Shades of Grey, along with a number of other films. After nearly five years in the studio system, Vafi branched out to a more creative producing collaborating with directors Will Speck and Josh Gordon.

Together they worked on a number of short films and commercial campaigns for companies like Apple, Audi, Land Rover, and many more, all while he developed and oversaw their film and television slate.

In 2016, he was the Associate Producer on Paramount and DreamWorks’ ensemble comedy Office Christmas Party starring Jason Bateman and Jennifer Aniston, following it with the Marvel/Hulu animated television show “Hit-Monkey,” starring Jason Sudeikis, Olivia Munn, and George Takei.

In 2020, he co-produced Amblin and Universal’s sci-fi adventure film Distant, starring Anthony Ramos and Naomi Scott, which is set to release in 2023.

DAN WILSON (Executive Producer) is a film and television producer and partner of Hutch Parker Entertainment. Wilson served as a producer on Home Sweet Home Alone, the Dan Mazer-directed re-imagining of Home Alone, as well as an executive producer on the Boston Marathon bombing film Patriots Day with CBS/Lionsgate Films. The company is responsible for the recent films in the Venom, X-Men, and Wolverine franchises, including Venom: Let There Be Carnage, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and Logan. The company has numerous film and television projects readying for start in the next year. Wilson helped form the company with Hutch Parker, former Vice Chairman of 20th Century Fox and Chairman of Regency, in 2012.

Wilson started as an assistant at 20th Century Fox and then climbed the executive ranks during his eight years at the studio and their partner New Regency Enterprises. During his tenure there, he worked on films such as Taken, Borat, Live Free or Die Hard, and What’s Your Number.

Wilson graduated from USC film school in 2003.

A Southern California native and UCLA Alumnus, ROBERT J. DOHRMANN (Executive Producer) began his career in the 90’s in live TV, reality TV, commercial and documentary production.  He established commercial house Mad Molly Productions in 1996, recognized with Clio and Cine Lion awards and nominations for several public service announcement campaigns.  In the early 2000s, Dohrmann pivoted to feature production, first as a production coordinator and then production Ssupervisor, on such successful projects as Man On Fire and Mr. & Mrs. Smith, as well as the multiple award winners Little Miss Sunshine and Thank You For Smoking. Dohrmann made the jump to line producing in 2007 with the critically acclaimed Sunshine Cleaning, and has produced and/or managed features ever since, including creative and popular hit projects 10 Cloverfield Lane, Get Hard, 2 Guns, Lovelace, The Lucky One, A Star Is Born, and Uncharted. Dohrmann lives in Los Angeles with his wife Kathleen and their two wonderful children.

Oscar, Grammy, Tony, and Olivier Award-winning songwriters/producers Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Original Songs by / Executive Producers) are best known for their work on La Land, “Dear Evan Hansen,” and The Greatest Showman. Their songs “City of Stars” and “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” (co-written with Justin Hurwitz) from La Land were both nominated for the Academy Award® for Best Original Song, with “City of Stars” winning the Academy Award® as well as the Golden Globe in the same category. The following year, in 2018, Pasek and Paul won their second Golden Globe for Best Original Song for “This Is Me” from The Greatest Showman, which was also nominated for the Academy Award® for Best Original Song and a Grammy Award for Best Song Written for Visual Media.

Their previous projects include songs for Disney’s live-action movie musical Aladdin, Dreamworks Animation’s Trolls, Amazon’s documentary film Pink: All I Know So Far (for which they received a Grammy nomination), and Amazon’s comedy series “Harlem” (in collaboration with songwriter Sukari Jones). Upcoming films include Disney’s live-action musical Snow White, and Apple’s original live-action musical Spirited. Most recently, Pasek and Paul were awarded a Tony Award as co-producers of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Broadway musical “A Strange Loop.”

On Broadway, they composed the score for their original musical “Dear Evan Hansen,” which was honored with six Tony Awards including Best Musical. They also received an Obie Award, a Drama Desk Award, and the Tony Award for Best Score. The show broke box office records at the Music Box Theatre and became the longest-running production to play the venue in Broadway’s history. The “Dear Evan Hansen” Original Broadway Cast Recording won the 2018 Grammy Award for Best Musical Theater Album and is certified Gold. With the release of the novelization of Dear Evan Hansen, Pasek and Paul also became New York Times best-selling authors.

Their albums for La Land, “Dear Evan Hansen,” and The Greatest Showman each appeared in the Top 10 of the Billboard 200, with The Greatest Showman holding the #1 spot for multiple weeks in a row and eventually named the best-selling album in the world in 2018. The Greatest Showman Original Motion Picture Soundtrack won the 2019 Grammy Award for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media, the 2019 Billboard Music award for Top Soundtrack, and is certified Platinum in 22 countries, including quadruple Platinum in the US, Australia, and Taiwan, 5x Platinum in China, Hong Kong, and Indonesia, 6x Platinum in the Philippines, 7x Platinum in the UK, 8x Platinum in Singapore, 9x Platinum in Ireland, and 13x Platinum in Korea.

Pasek and Paul made their Broadway debut in 2012 with their Tony-nominated score for the Broadway musical “A Christmas Story,” an adaptation of the classic holiday film, further adapted into a live telecast for FOX in 2017. Their new song written for the telecast, “In the Market for a Miracle,” was nominated for the 2018 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Original Music and Lyrics. For television, they also contributed several songs to NBC’s “Smash” and a song for the CW’s musical episode of “The Flash”; they also received a Daytime Emmy Award nomination for the song “Unlimited,” featured in an Old Navy YouTube campaign.

Their theater careers include the acclaimed 2012 musical “Dogfight,” which was awarded the Lucille Lortel Award for Best New Musical. Their earlier theater credits include the children’s musical “James and the Giant Peach” and the popular song cycle “Edges.”

Among their numerous honors, in 2007 they became the youngest winners ever of the Jonathan Larson Award for most promising musical theatre songwriters, and in 2019, they became the first writers for stage or screen to be honored with the ASCAP Vanguard Award. They are graduates of the University of Michigan and serve on the board of the Dramatists Guild Foundation.

Javier Aguirresarobe, ASC (Director of Photography) was born in 1948 in Eibar, a small town in the Basque Country of northern Spain. From a young age, he has considered photography to be his natural medium for visual and artistic expression. Therefore, after studying journalism and optics, he decided to enroll in the Official School of Cinematography in Madrid, where he specialized in the Direction of Photography, graduating in 1973.

From the time he did his first feature film, ¿Qué hace una chica como tú en un sitio como éste?, until today, Aguirresarobe has participated as DP in more than 70 movies. His experience in Spanish cinema can be considered outstanding. He has won six Goya awards, the highest award given by the Spanish Film Academy, as well as the National Cinematographer's Award, the highest honor in the industry (2006).

After 2000, Aguirresarobe’s work gained recognition outside Spain. The Others and The Sea Inside by Alejandro Amendabar, Talk to Her by Pedro Almodovar, and Woody Allen's Vicky Cristina Barcelona opened the doors for him to Hollywood studios. He earned a BAFTA nomination for The Road (2008) by John Hillcoat, his first film as DP on American soil. Following that, he did New Moon and Eclipse from the Twilight Saga, allowing him access to the industry of large productions. A Better Life by Chris Weitz, Fright Night by Craig Gillespie, Five-Year Engagement by Nick Stoller, Identity Thief by Seth Gordon, Warm Bodies by Jonathan Levine, and Blue Jasmine, again with Woody Allen, are some of his credits before landing Goosebumps by Rob Letterman for Sony Pictures and The Finest Hours, again with Craig Gillespie for Disney. Finally, Thor: Ragnarok by Taika Waititi for Marvel Productions and Operation Finale, again with Chris Weitz, complete his extensive filmography until Dora and the City of Gold, directed by James Bobin, crowns his trajectory over the last ten years in the American cinematography industry.

Recently, Aguirresarobe was the cinematographer on Across the River and Into the Trees, by Paula Ortiz, based on the novel by Ernest Hemingway.

RICHARD PEARSON, ACE (Editor) is an Academy Award®-nominated editor who recently cut Ruben Fleischer’s action film Uncharted starring Mark Wahlberg and Tom Holland and Patty Jenkins’ Wonder Woman 1984. In addition to Godzilla: King Of The Monsters, Pearson’s recent credits include Zack Snyder’s Justice League, Jordan Vogt-Roberts’ Kong: Skull Island and Gavin O’Connor’s The Accountant. He has collaborated with Paul Greengrass on both The Bourne Supremacy and United 93; for his work on the latter, Pearson received an Oscar® nomination. Some of Pearson’s other film credits include Dracula Untold, Maleficent, Red Dawn, Safe House, Iron Man 2, Quantum of Solace, Rent, The Rundown, Men in Black II, The Score, Scary Movie 2, Drowning Mona, Bowfinger and Muppets from Space.

KYM BARRETT (Costume Designer) is an Australian costume designer who works in film, theatre, and opera. After receiving a BA from UNE, Barrett studied at the National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA). She worked for the Sydney Theater Company and Belvoir Street for eight years post-graduation before receiving an invitation from fellow alumni Baz Luhrmann to work as a costumes assistant on his debut feature, Strictly Ballroom (1992). Four years later, Luhrmann invited Barrett to design her first film costumes in 1996 for the romance Romeo + Juliet. Two years later, she worked on David O. Russell's war movie Three Kings. She created the revolutionary outfits for The Matrix (1999) that same year, and continued to work with the Wachowskis on the Matrix sequels and many of their other films, including Final Flight of the Osiris, Speed Racer, Cloud Atlas, and Jupiter Ascending. Barrett also developed the costumes for several horror thrillers, such as the Hughes Brothers movie From Hell, Gothika, and Jordan Peele's picture Us. Her other works include Zero Effect (Bill Pullman, Ben Stiller), the animated picture Titan A.E. (Matt Damon, Drew Barrymore), the fantasy movie Eragon, Seth Rogan's comedy The Green Hornet, The Amazing Spider-Man, The Nice Guys, The Shallows, DC's Aquaman, Charlie’s Angels, Marvel’s Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, and, most recently, George Miller’s 3000 Years of Longing.

Barrett’s theater work includes costumes for the Cirque du Soleil projects “Totem” and “Toruk – the First Flight”; the Metropolitan Opera productions of “The Tempest” and “The Magic Flute,” and the pre-production of “The Three-Body Problem” in Shanghai and New York.