Sunday, December 27, 2015

Deborah Gilels, owner of the successful PR firm LA Media Consultants, joined me Monday at 9:30am pst!

Did you miss Deborah Gilels on today's show? 

Listen to our conversation here!

Deborah Gilels has run a successful media consulting company for the past 10 years, assisting writers, filmmakers, and actors launch their careers in the entertainment industry, as well as promote independent feature films and documentaries, by way of public relations, marketing, distribution and project development.

Gilels’ company, LA Media Consultants has successfully run PR campaigns for independent films and shorts, as well as project and strategic development for production companies, writers and directors. In 2013, she launched the prolific documentary Keiko the Untold Story of the Star of Free Willy at the 20th Anniversary celebration of Free Willy at Hollywood’s Egyptian Theater. Partners included the Los Angeles Unified School District and New Regency Productions. Other launched projects include the television debut of Cevin Soling's award winning documentary The War on Kids currently airing on Pivot, the Lion’s Gate release of Chazz Palminteri- Andie MacDowell family drama Mighty Fine that opened at the Museum of Tolerance, and the US premiere of the documentary Fallout presented by Kat Kramer Films that Change the World.

As a media consultant for actors, writers and producers, Gilels has helped build their representation teams, placing clients with top companies such as Ensemble Entertainment, Code Entertainment, the Arlook Group, Opus Entertainment, the Warden Group, Shoreline, Infinity, ICM, and Barry Krost Management.

Gilels experience in the entertainment industry has run the gamut from film/television production and development, to mergers and acquisitions in the international film market and public relations for film companies, writers, actors, authors and directors.

From 2000 – 2004 she was an executive for Media Design Institute, a Japanese/American media company where she was instrumental in the creation of a satellite network, as well as acquired film/television product for the Japanese territory. Gilels also created and produced an entertainment talk show for the Asia market.

Prior to that, as a producer, Gilels collaborators included actors Robert Duvall and Rachel Leigh Cook; writers and directors A. Scott Berg, Michael Hirst, and Paul Verhoeven. Companies and producers such as: Warp Films, Disney/Hollywood Pictures, ESPN, Wind Dancer Films and New Line Cinema/TV.

As a development executive she supervised television and film deals at Warner Brothers and Twentieth Century Fox, a feature film distribution deal at PFG Entertainment and developed film projects for actors Jean Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren and the late Brandon Lee.

Gilels has also taught at USC Film School Writer’s Program and been a guest lecturer at UCLA Extension School, Columbia College, and LA Film School. She was also a judge for the screenplay competition of the 2007 LA Greek Film Festival and has been an active board member for the LA Femme Film Festival for the past 8 years. At La Femme, Deborah has been in charge of the educational aspect of the festival, including all panels, seminars and special screenings, as well as corporate sponsorship.

Specialties: Deborah Gilels currently is a media consultant representing screenwriters, directors, actors, production companies and book authors. Consulting duties include project development and packaging, production, public relations, strategic alliances and marketing.

Contact: or


Laura Schroff, #1 New York Times bestselling author of "An Invisible Thread Christmas Story," joins me Monday at 9:00am!

Did you miss Laura Schroff on today's show?
Listen to our conversation here!

An Invisible Thread Christmas Story
From the #1 New York Times bestselling authors of An Invisible Thread comes the true, heartfelt, and extraordinary story of how one woman’s decision to help a boy on the street changed both of their lives forever.

In her New York Times bestselling book An Invisible Thread, author Laura Schroff tells the remarkable story of her lifelong friendship with a boy named Maurice who she met on the street while he was asking for spare change.

Now, in this sweet picture book, Laura retells the story of the first Christmas that she and Maurice spent together. She shares how Maurice gave her a stuffed white teddy bear with a red heart, the only thing he had that he could truly call his own—to show her how grateful he was for their friendship. This heartwarming tale captures the true meaning of the holidays and will be one you’ll want to share with your family year after year as a reminder that a gift from the heart is always the best present under the tree.

About the Authors

Laura Schroff is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and keynote speaker. Laura’s second book, An Invisible Thread Christmas Story children’s book will be released on September 22, 2015. Since the launch of An Invisible Thread , Laura has been an invited keynote speaker at over 100 events.

Over her thirty-year career in advertising sales, Laura has worked with several major media companies, including Time Inc. and Conde Nast. Born and raised on Long Island in New York, Laura was part of the advertising team that helped launch and make USA Today a successful national newspaper. Before helping launch three of the most successful start-ups in Time Inc. history—InStyle , Teen PEOPLE , and PEOPLE StyleWatch—she was also the New York Division Manager at PEOPLE magazine. Laura has also been the New York Ad Manager at Ms. magazine and the Associate Publisher at Brides.

Laura is dedicated to sharing her An Invisible Thread heartwarming story on the power of small acts of kindness all over the country. Laura lives in New York City with her feisty poodles Coco and Emma.

Alex Tresniowski is a writer living and working in New York City. He was a senior writer for PEOPLE magazine since 1998 to 2012, writing dozens of cover features and hundreds of stories focusing on human interest, crime and sports for a weekly readership of 44 million. He is also the co-author of several books, including 2011’s An Invisible Thread, which won a prestigious Christopher Award, 2005’s THE VENDETTA, a true crime story that was purchased by Universal Pictures and used as a basis for the 2009 Johnny Depp movie Public Enemies.

Photo credits: Ralph Baleno Studio (Laura); Lorraine Stundis (Alex).

In Laura's words...

An Invisible Thread is the inspiring true story of Maurice and me. We met on 56th street in Manhattan in 1986, when I was a 35-year-old single, successful ad sales executive, and he was an 11-year-old homeless panhandler. He asked me for spare change; I said no and kept walking. But something made me stop, and turn around, and go back to him, and that day I took him to lunch. We met the following Monday, and every Monday for the next four years, and hundreds of times after that.

Almost 30 years later, we are still great friends.

An Invisible Thread is the story of how we changed each other’s lives forever.

The impact of our meeting is resonating far beyond Maurice and me. Today, An Invisible Thread has become a required read in many schools and is being taught in high school and college classrooms around the country. Additionally, An Invisible Thread ELA Common Core Standards Curriculum Guide has been developed. An Invisible Thread is available in multiple languages and formats and film rights have been purchased by OddLot Entertainment.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Award-winning writer, producer/director, and singer/songwriter Annie J Dahlgren joined me Monday at 9:30am!

Did you miss Annie J Dahlgren on today's show?
Listen to our conversation

 Annie has completed over a dozen screenplays, winning recognition on numerous occasions as quarter- or semi-finalist in such prestigious writing competitions as the Nicholl Fellowship, the Chesterfield Writing Fellowship, the Austin Film Festival competition and the LA Expo, among others.

In 2007 Annie co-wrote and co-produced a musical comedy for the stage, Moment of Truth, that was performed at the Center Stage Theater in Santa Barbara in June and July of that year.  An earlier musical, Fortunes Made, was released as a music CD in 2005 and later as a narrated audio performance.  In addition she has released four CDs of original music as a singer/songwriter and her fifth CD is in process.

Annie is also a partner in Over 40 Productions, producing, directing and editing music videos for independently produced musicians in the Santa Barbara area.

2013 saw the production and release of her story The Bet by the “Community Film Studio Santa Barbara”, a non-profit community-based production company of which she was a founding board member.  The film took first prize at the La Femme Film Festival in Los Angeles and will soon be available in digital distribution.

Now beginning a new phase with the novel A Murder at the Potter Hotel in partnership with long-time local historian Neal Graffy, it is the first in a series of stories that will follow Leontine, Patrick and Daisy through the early years of 20th century Santa Barbara, California.


Actress Finola Hughes Turns Her Talents to Directing in Multi-Generational RomCom

LOS ANGELES - THE BET, a romantic comedy directed by actress Finola Hughes (“Stayin’ Alive,” “General Hospital”), will make its Video on Demand debut March 3, 2016 following a series of successful festival showings across the country.

The film tells the story of three generations of a family living together who all are “looking for love” and come up with a unique bet to spur them on to a new romance. High school senior Addison is still a virgin and his friends are urging him to do the deed before he leaves for college in the fall. His grandfather Collier wants to find a little excitement in his golden years and suggests that the two of them find suitable ladies for each other so they make a bet on who will score first.

Caught between the two guys is single mom Libby, a copywriter who is persuaded by her office mate to start dating again. Suffice to say, none of the romantic maneuvers goes according to plan, but everyone ends up exactly where they should be by film’s end.

THE BET stars Scott Hagood (Addison), Tim T. Whitcomb (Collier), Portia Thomas (Libby) and introduces Mary O’Connor as Jennifer, Addison’s dream girl.

Recent festival appearances include Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival, Central Florida Film Festival, Dances With Films and the LA Femme International Film Festival where it won Best Feature Award.

With a story by Annie J. Dahlgren, screenplay by Dahlgren and Christina Eliason, and directed by Hughes, the film was lovingly shot in the Santa Barbara area and makes excellent use of the gorgeous scenery and local talent. A production of Community Film Studio Santa Barbara, THE BET was produced by Christine Fry, James Kahn and Jack Presnal; executive producers include Linda Newlin, along with Hughes. Craig Kohloff serves as Director of Photography, Ron Carter is production designer, the film is edited by Cristian Cazor and featured music by composer Brian Mann.

See more information on the production at:

Tim Federle, author of Gone with the Gin, Hickory Daiquiri Dock & Tequila Mockingbird, joins me Monday at 9:00am to talk about his latest book and more!

Did you miss Tim Federle on today's show?
Listen to our conversation
Tim Federle is the author of Hickory Daiquiri Dock: Cocktails with a Nursery Rhyme Twist and Tequila Mockingbird: Cocktails with a Literary Twist, which was named the 2013 Goodreads Cookbook of the Year. Tim lives and drinks in New York City. Connect with him on Twitter and Instagram at @TimFederle.

Tim Federle - Bestselling author of TEQUILA MOCKINGBIRD.
Movie nights will never taste the same again! So go ahead: Make my drink.

On Tuesday, October 27, the cocktail recipe book GONE WITH THE GIN: COCKTAILS WITH A HOLLYWOOD TWIST — a follow-up to Tim Federle’s international bestseller TEQUILA MOCKINGBIRD: COCKTAILS WITH A LITERARY TWIST — will be available wherever books are sold.

GONE WITH THE GIN gives a terrific twist to movie nights and is the perfect gift for silver screen aficionados who prefer their martinis shaken, not stirred.

Tim Federle’s first cocktail book, TEQUILA MOCKINGBIRD, was a runaway sensation. Declared “a gem” by Buzzfeed, TEQUILA was voted the #1 cookbook of the year on Goodreads and appeared as a clue on Jeopardy. Now, in his highly anticipated follow-up, Federle turns his trademark wit from literature to classic cinema.

Featuring fifty delicious drinks like A Sidecar Named Desire, Whiskey Business, and Close Encounters of the Slurred Kind, GONE WITH THE GIN is full of Federle’s classic winking commentary, along with whimsical illustrations, drinking games, and movie munchies (The Silence of the Lamb Burgers, anyone?).

You might not know every line from every movie, but tonight you’re going to drink like you do. 


“It’s a little known fact that the information in here will make anyone look and sound better than they actually do.” —David Baldacci

“This entertaining guide is small enough to fit in the beach bag, and you may want to peruse it to find your book club’s next read (and cocktail).” —

About the Author:

Tim is working on a Broadway Show, and a show for Nickleodeon

Here's a good article on him in The Atlantic that encapsulates the many hats he wears so very well:

And a cute piece on one of his last books, TEQUILA MOCKINGBIRD. 

Tim is also working on a Broadway Show, and a show for Nickleodeon. 

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Ira Israel joined me today on Get the FUNK Out - listen live on KUCI 88.9fm or stream us on!

Did you miss Ira Israel on today's show? Listen to our conversation here!

Ira Israel is a Licensed Psychotherapist and creator of the DVD series "A Beginner's Guide to Happiness," "A Beginner Guide to Mindfulness Meditation," and "Mindfulness for Depression." 

He has graduate degrees in Psychology, Philosophy, and Religious Studies and teaches mindfulness and yoga at the Esalen Institute and throughout the United States.


I am a Licensed Counselor (LPCC #31) and Licensed Psychotherapist (LMFT #50646) and have 27 years of experience working in various capacities with award-winning filmmakers, musicians, artists, writers and actors.

I received my undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1988 and then a Master of Arts degree in Philosophy from the University of Connecticut in 1989. After two years of working in New York City, I moved to Paris to study art, literature, film, and music.

While exploring Asia in 1994, I became interested in Buddhism, yoga, and meditation – all of which led to taking a second Master of Arts degree in Religious Studies from UCSB where I concentrated on the histories of yoga and mindfulness.

After many more years of studying with myriad teachers, I decided to complete my academic education with a Master of Arts degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University concentrating on Attachment Theory, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Transpersonal Psychology, Carl Jung and the most recent healing modalities.

For more information please visit

LIVE on KUCI - 7/17/24 9:00am - Janeane chats with Producer Jay Silverman about his latest film CAMERA, starring Beau Bridges

LISTEN ‘CAMERA’ starring Beau Bridges, centers around a young mute boy who uses an old film camera to express his point of view, with the h...