Director/Editor/CFCR Board Member
James began his career as an editor in Chicago and quickly became one of the most sought after editors in the country collaborating with some of the most prestigious directors in the business. It wasn't long before James began directing himself.
"When I direct, I bring my editorial skills behind the camera. I know what I need to make the edit sing."
His branded content and traditional advertising work has been sought out by brands including Serta, 3M, Sony, Microsoft. Motorola and Verizon.
James' first feature film, SWEET DREAMS DRIVING SCHOOL, was a hit on the festival circuit early in his career. His documentary feature, LICENSE TO OPERATE, co-produced by Pete Carroll, debuted at SIFF, and has played in festivals across the country, winning the Best Documentary Award at the Highland Park International Film Festival.
In September of 2021, James became a member of the advisory board to the Council for Cannabis Regulation. CFCR will ensure that federal regulations are informed by and grounded in science, best business practices, sound public policy and social justice principles.
Creative Director/CFCR Board Member
An award-winning Creative Director/Writer, Sam is also an experienced director and producer. As a creative director, she's been instrumental in the creative development of campaigns for films, brands, and nonprofits. Her creative direction for United Way Chicago, entitled
"We're All Connected," earned her the prestigious Gold Hugo Award.
Samantha's career began in the entertainment industry, under the mentorship of David Geffen at his venerable record label, Geffen Records working with artists Nirvana, Guns' N Roses, and Aerosmith.
She went on to become Creative Director at Gramercy Pictures (now Focus Films.)
Samantha's creative vision brought prominence to such independent features as Dazed and Confused, Fargo, The Usual Suspects, and Four Weddings And A Funeral. She continued her run of hits at Fox Searchlight with Waking Ned Devine and Boys Don't Cry before moving to Universal Pictures as Senior Vice President of Marketing and Advertising.
Segueing to commercial advertising in 2004, she owned and operated Foundation Content, the production/editorial powerhouse she co-founded in Chicago with James Lipetzky, before the duo rebranded in Los Angeles as Wild Bill Creative in 2017.
In March 2021, Sam published her highly personal, award-winning memoir, BLIND PONY: AS TRUE A STORY AS I CAN TELL to rave reviews.
In September of 2021, Samantha became a member of the advisory board to the Council for Cannabis Regulation. CFCR will ensure that federal regulations are informed by and grounded in science, best business practices, sound public policy and social justice principles.