15 Minutes is a drama about a woman who has always put others before herself. Francisca believes that “Dreams don’t have expiration dates”. During her long awaited celebrity life, she must decide what is more important to her, having more than her “15 Minutes of fame” or another 15 Minutes period.
15 Minutes Cast & Crew:
Mercedes Steele, Actor/Writer/Director/Producer
Mercedes Steele is an actor who evolved into a writer, director, filmmaker, producer. Upon arriving in Los Angeles from New York, Mercedes enrolled in various classes at T.V.I Actors Studio & then Scene Study and the Professional Development Program (PDP) at the astounding Richard Lawson Studio; (WACO) a place Where Art Can Occur. She also studied Hosting at Carolyne Barry with Suzanne Sena and Voiceover at Kalmenson and Kalmenson with Scott Holtz. Mercedes is extremely grateful to each of the studios for everything that they’ve taught her. She is especially grateful to Richard Lawson, her mentor, who taught her & confirmed that “Dreams Don’t Have Expiration Dates”. During her aggressive pursuit of being a professional & constantly working actor, Mercedes decided to not wait, but create! Mercedes is highly motivated when it comes to acting & storytelling….Thus her initiating MSTEELEWORKS PRODUCTIONS, LLC. 15 Minutes is her first of many short films to come.
Ervin Paris Busby, Actor/Voiceover Artist
Ervin Paris Busby began his acting career in Chicago, in the theater, performing in such plays as “A SOLDIERS PLAY”, and “GUY’S AND DOLLS”. After 4 years of doing theater, he began training at local drama schools such as “JOHN ROBERT POWERS DRAMA SCHOOL”, JANE BRODY AUDITION CENTER”, and”T.V.I. ACTORS STUDIO”. After moving to Los Angeles, he continued training and pursued Voice Acting, and trained at “KALMENSON AND KALMENSON”, and “THE VOICE CASTER” he booked voice over work on television shows such as the animated series “THE LITTLE PEOPLE” and also providing the voice for the children’s book character “THE TICKLE MONSTER”. When Paris is not acting, he can always be found practicing his other passions, playing jazz guitar, and practicing Yan Style Tai Chi Chuan.
Shang Abrams, Actor/Comedian
Shang Abrams is an extraordinary artist who believes that art is healing. As a stand up comic, Shang has used his gifts to cause healing with others through laughter and storytelling; revealing one’s own humanity. He crafts life experiences with his training at Richard Lawson Studios to create authentic characters that people can relate to. “My intention is never to be stagnate but to always grow as an artist and human being. That is why I train and will never stop.
“David “Preach” Balfour, Musician/Actor
David “Preach” Balfour, is a native of Memphis, Tennessee. He’s been a professional musician since he was 14-years-old, playing for a small local church during his junior high school years. Now living in Los Angeles, David migrated from Boston, Massachusetts to pursue his musical aspirations of singer/songwriter and producer after graduating from the Berklee College of Music. However, before the great migration, David worked for a year at the Renaissance Charter School, teaching music, including reading music, rhythmic dictation, music history and appreciation and songwriting. During his tenure at Berklee, where he graduated in 2000, David played for the gospel choir, sang in cafeteria shows, a weekly tradition of musical performances at the college, and was a key performer in the annual Commencement Show in 2000.The college traditionally honors musicians, singers and songwriters, who have contributed to the musical landscape of popular culture. The students traditionally pay tribute by performing and singing songs of the honorees during the Commencement Show. In 2000, John “Cougar” Mellencamp, Herb Alpert and Patti Austin were the honorees. David sang a duet of the Patti Austin and James Ingram song, “Baby, Come to Me; sang a country music song and was featured as the “Dude,” in a song featured from the album of the same name by Quincy Jones.After arriving in L. A., and working hard, the “star” of David is rising. He continues to pursue his music, writing and performing in various venues.
Antonija Stefek, Actor
Antonija Stefek studied acting at Lee Strasberg’s in New York and worked on short films and web series..she is an energetic and adventurous person, she loves to live and lives to love, & to laugh and sweat, by dancing all night. She lives in the now and is excited about the future. She kind and caring, always doing her best to be the best version of herself.
Georginna Feyst, Actor
Georginna Feyst is a Los Angeles based actor. She also has performance training in Improv and Sketch Comedy, performing with the Wholesome Hecklers, in the IO West 4th Annual Scripted Comedy Festival and other venues across Los Angeles. Well trained at the acclaimed, “Second City”, with their Improv classes and Conservatory, she’s performed with the troupe, Improvateurs, at The Comedy Store and The LA Comedy Connection. Her comedy training is from the reputable Scott Sedita’s Studio and, the hilarious, Nick Anderson.
A bit of a smarty-pants, Georginna has three degrees: in math, music and acting/theatre arts. She also graduated from the two year Meisner program at Ruskin School of Acting, the sister school of the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York. In addition to training, she has a breadth of knowledge and practical experience in statistics/math, computer programming and analysis, real estate, massage therapy, yoga instruction, Spiritual teaching, Native American ceremonial work and Shamanic healing. Georginna has made a commitment to making a positive difference in the world through art and acting and through her big heart.
She is inspired by and likes to inspire others through mediums that create better understanding, expanded viewpoints, and compassion. In her spare time, she writes lyrics with her partner, cooks, travels, binges on TV that is art, especially sci-fi and comedies, and studies interior design, collecting mid-century modern chairs and accessory décor items.
Marland Burke is a graduate of Hampton University and known for “Magic Mike, Bloudhound, BET’s “I Need A Rebel” , as well as many commercials such as Levi’s, IHOP, and Lexus just to name a few. Marland is the youngest son of five kids of Michael and Juana Burke. Before becoming an actor Marland was a Strength and Conditioning Coach for the Tampa Bay Rays. Now Marland lives in California and studies at Nancy Banks Studio.
Lane Hillman, Actor
Gregory Lane Hillman was born in Atlanta, Georgia but grew up in the small town of Akron, Ohio. With both of Lane’s parents being All-American basketball players, the bets were on that he’d follow in their footsteps. Indeed a die-hard fan of the game of basketball, Lane instead carved out his own footsteps and developed an early passion for Theater – performing in local plays such as “Lord of the Flies” and “Titanic” in the Akron, Ohio area.
In 2004, while participating in a Thespian competition in Orlando, Florida, Lane met and signed on with his agent Matt Fletcher and remains with him today on the TalentWorks roster. As an actor as well as a provocative writer, Lane is managed by Dream Entertainment Management.
Ryan Vania, Actor/Pilot
Ryan Vania started with commercials and short films in the early 2000’s. He also happens to be a licensed pilot and drone operator. After moving to L.A., he returned to acting in 2017 as a full time career.
David Swift, Actor
David Swift was born and raised in Boston Massachusetts in a family of twelve children. Took his first job at age ten bagging groceries. As a child David loved to watch old movies. He also loved to put on plays in his backyard for family members and friends. Throughout life he enjoyed writing poetry and short stories. He would participate in all plays and performances school would produce.
After high school was accepted to American Academy Of Dramatic Arts. Had the time of his life in NYC going to Broadway Shows and hanging out with Actors. After this point put the pursuit of being an actor on back burner to pursue a family. For many years worked in retail and real estate industry. While always wanting to get back involved into Acting. Just recently in past few years started back in classes first in Washington DC and now in Hollywood. Enjoying himself making up for lost time.
James Maple, Actor/Comedian
James Maple is a Washington D.C. born actor, host and comedian. He graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in History and minor in Poltical Science. James specializes in comedy with studies at iO West, UCB and DC Improv. He is working and living in Los Angeles, CA as a host and anchor of several tv shows/networks. He has been a recurring actor with BuzzFeed, All Def Digital and How to Get Away with Murder.
James’s true passion is now Hosting. James specializes in interviews, commentary, broadcast journalism and news segments. He has also studied and completed the Suzanne Sena Hosting Program (Carolyne Barry Acting Academy).
Sarina Compagnino, Actor
Sarina Compagnino was born in Melbourne, Australia, to an American mother and an Australian father. She started acting at the age of 5, and by the age of 10 was performing with the Victorian Youth Theatre Company. Since then she has studied at various schools in Australia and Los Angeles, including Howard Fine Acting Studios, TVI Actors Studio, and studied improv at UCB.
Sarina is now in the process of writing her own short films and other new media. She hopes to have a stable career in acting, across different genres and different medias, and not have to work in the restaurant industry again. Dogs love her, and she loves dogs.
***Deanne Overvold, Set Mom
Deanne Overvold is not only the matriarch of the Overvold family, but also of the 15 Minutes family. Momma Dee is a one woman super support system. She tirelessly encourages and motivates everyone around her. She goes out of her way and to the ends of the earth to see to it that she brings happiness and sunshine to all. Her presence on set and anywhere else is invaluable.
Lara Thomas Ducey, 1st A.D.
Lara Thomas Ducey, after graduating with degrees in Theatre/Film and English from the University of Kansas, moved to Los Angeles to pursue her acting career. With a passion for both comedy and drama, she has appeared in several commercials and programs on notable networks (TBS, HBO, TruTv, MTV, Fusion, AMC). One recent project received numerous awards and was accepted into 52 international film festivals – including the prestigious AFI Film Fest. A favorite reoccurring opportunity is performing in sketches on late night’s CONAN.
As a founding member of Buran Theatre Company – she continues to act on various stages across the US. When she isn’t in front of the camera – Lara has done her fair share of production work. Versed as both a Script Supervisor and 1st AD – Lara has assisted in several short films. Lara also writes (contributed to HarperCollins published book, Revolution for Dummies: Laughing Through the Arab Spring ) and makes documentaries with Morgan Cooper Productions.
Erich Kemp, Cinematographer/Editor
“Erich Kemp is a director living in Los Angeles, originally from Winchester, Virginia. Since moving to LA in 2008, he has produced, written and directed several short films and one feature film. The feature film, “Palmdale,” premiered in Los Angeles at the United Film Festival in September 2014 and went on to play at many other US & international fests, and was picked up for distribution in China by Shao Studios, and in the US by ITN Distribution. In the three years since “Palmdale’s” release, he’s written four feature films, shot a short film, and is dying to get back into the director’s chair on his next feature.”
Jesus Figueroa, Sound Engineer
Jesus Figueroa, a sound enthusiast graduated from Citrus College as sound engineer, has dedicated his last years working on set for films and other projects. Actively working in Hollywood with all aspects of sound from music studios to live sound, DJ, film and also post- production sound. His energy and dedication has helped him network and grow as a sound mixer in the film industry. Always ready to start a new project and do whatever it takes to make it sound the best.
Colton Parker, Asst. Sound Engineer
Colton Parker was born in raised in Virginia. He is an aspiring sound producer/engineer and actor who is currently enrolled in school for audio production. He has education under his belt and has had some experience working production sound on set. Colton has always had a passion for the arts and wants to be a part of the ever-growing industry of entertainment.
Gary Ahmed, Gaffer
Gary Ahmed started his career as an intern for Captured Time Productions while still attending Western Connecticut State University. After graduating with a BA in Media Arts, He continued at Captured Time working closely with Emmy award winning director, Harvey Hubbell V on various documentary features. Around 2012 Gary began shooting video content for indie and underground musicians in the North East. Gary’s music videos for bands like The Kominas and Pristina have appeared on MTV, The Fader, and Metal Injection.
In more recent years He has focused on shooting commercial, narrative and documentary content. Currently residing in Los Angeles, Gary is currently in Post-production on his feature film directorial debut, Whiskey on Beer, which documents the career of legendary Miami punk band LOAD. Gary also continue to work with Non-profits like the Young Actors Project and Change Barn (formerly Captured Time productions).
Nayeli “Marzz” Sanchez, Makeup Artist/Special Effects
Nayeli (Marzz) Sanchez is a Makeup Artist, Special Effects makeup artists & Body Painter based in Los Angeles, California. With over 3 years of experience in the Entertainment Industry; she is currently working in short films, music videos and commercials.
Marzz is constantly working with talented people in the business, whether displaying her talents in a short film, body painting, or photo-shoots; she expresses her vision and creativity through the Art of Makeup. She is inspired by nature, art, music and her surroundings.
William Overvold, Host/Set Photographer
William Overvold recalls the first time he stepped up to a mike and spoke, before an auditorium filled with college presidents, he knew he had found my calling. At that moment when he surveyed the crowd, he was filled with exhilaration and an astonishing feeling of ease; this was home. He had been chosen to be the Student Guest Speaker for the evening. He gave an opening speech, which he had written, before hundreds of guests. He was followed by the actor, political commentator and comedian D.L. Hugley. Before he began his presentation he had William stand and asked if he could be William’s manager. The applause and acclamation William received that night set him on my career course. The path to this day hadn’t been an easy one but William knew he had found his métier.
William uses his voice. And is an outspoken advocate for the underdog, those who were bullied or made to feel different and not accepted. He has volunteered in classrooms and the community. In college, he became well-known throughout campus, and received the Most Inspirational Student of the Year award. Today, William is a college graduate with a Communication Studies degree from California State University Northridge. While attending college, he was involved with public speaking, business, leadership, acting, community service and reporting for a college newspaper. He is a people person. He enjoys meeting and connecting with people. He is in awe of the entertainment industry and wants to get his foot in the door and cultivate his skills in to a long, lasting career as an entertainment host.
With his innate talents, communication skills and passion for life William is a perfect candidate for hosting opportunities. William is considered an expert when it comes to many things about L.A. including food, fashion and entertainment. He is committed and comes alive in front of an audience. He has interned with two public relations firms and volunteered with several different community groups. He is currently taking hosting classes from Marki Costello of CMEG; learning more about himself and the business. His respect for the power of imagination has fueled his aspirations. He certainly has the drive, determination and desire to succeed. Given his enthusiasm, education and experience, he will be an asset to the industry.
MERCEDES STEELE IS AN ACTOR WHO IS THE CREATOR OF MSTEELEWORKS PRODUCTIONS. IT WAS UNDER THE GUIDANCE OF HER MENTOR, RICHARD LAWSON THAT SHE GAINED THE MOTIVATION TO WRITE & FILM HER OWN WORKS. 15 MINUTES IS HER DEBUT AS A WRITER, DIRECTOR & PRODUCER. HER MANTRA IS “MAKE IT HAPPEN”, BECAUSE “DREAMS DON’T HAVE EXPIRATION DATES. (a Richard Lawson quote).