Cinema Italiano 2010

Master of Ceremonies

Rick Blangiardi

General Manager, HAWAII NOW
(KGMB, CBS Affiliate / KHNL, NBC Affiliate)

Mr. Blangiardi is a recognized leading television broadcaster who has improved the ratings, revenue and operating profit of every broadcasting entity with which he has been affiliated. He has been an executive in the television industry for over 32 years, succeeding in senior executive positions in many of the nation's most competitive markets including: Seattle (VP & GM, KING5 Television); New York City (VP, New Business Development, CBS Television Network); San Francisco (VP & GM, KPIX 5 Television); St. Louis (Group President, River City Broadcasting), and Los Angeles (CEO, Premier Horse Network). Prior to returning to Hawaii, Blangiardi was President of Telemundo Holdings Inc., based in Los Angeles, and was responsible for the operations of Telemundo's 11 owned and operated stations throughout major markets in the United States and Puerto Rico.

In the Honolulu market, Blangiardi was the Sr. Vice President & GM of both KHON2 (FOX Affiliate) and KGMB9 (CBS Affiliate) from 2002 through the sale of KHON2 in 2006. Since that time, he has been the President and General Manager of KGMB9 and on October 26, 2009, Blangiardi became the General Manager of KGMB9 and KHNL (NBC Affiliate).

Blangiardi has an M.Ed in Educational Administration from the University of Hawaii. He recently served as the Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce of Hawaii and is the President of Na Koa. He actively participates as a Director for local organizations such as Central Pacific Bank, The Hawaii Food Bank, American Red Cross – Hawaii Chapter, Aloha Council Boy Scouts, Public Schools of Hawaii Foundation, Na Koa and the Executive Committee of 'Ahahui Koa Anuenue at the University of Hawaii, to name a few. At Chaminade University, Blangiardi is also a member of the Board of Regents and on the Hogan Entrepreneur Advisory Board.


Jim Burke
Jim Burke is the producer of the upcoming Fox Searchlight films "The Descendants" directed by Alexander Payne and "Cedar Rapids" directed by Miguel Arteta.
He recently served as executive producer on Tamara Jenkins' Academy Award nominated film, "The Savages".

Burke, along with Alexander Payne, and Jim Taylor formed a production company in 2004 they named Ad Hominem.

Prior to Ad Hominem, Mr. Burke was a founding member of an independent film and television company called Rysher. At Rysher Burke spearheaded the company's foray in to feature films and oversaw the development, production and release of the company's motion pictures. Rysher's diverse slate included Sundance audience award winner "Big Night", as well as "Primal Fear", "Kiss the Girls", "Private Parts" and "The Saint". Burke also co-produced "2 Days in the Valley" directed by John Herzfeld, "Kingpin" directed by the Farrelly Brothers and "Election" directed by Alexander Payne.

Prior to Rysher, Burke was Vice-President of Warner Bros. Television Domestic Distribution.

Jim Burke hails from Minnesota and graduated from the University of Minnesota.

Bonni Lee
Bonni Lee is a film and television producer from Honolulu. After moving to Los Angeles, Lee became a script reader then began her career as a film executive at MGM/UA, working on "The Utterly Monstrous, Mind-Roasting Summer of O.C. and Stiggs", directed by Robert Altman. Lee became an executive at Warner Bros.and brought director Tim Burton to the studio to direct his first feature film, "Pee Wees Big Adventure". She went on to work with Burton on the Warner Bros. films "Beetlejuice" and "Batman". Lee was also an executive on "The Accidental Touris", "Lethal Weapon", "In Country" and "Doc Hollywood". When Lee left Warner Bros. it was to become President of Robert Redford's two film companies, Wildwood Enterprises and North Fork Films, during which time Redford produced and directed "A River Runs Through It". Lee then became President of David Geffen's production company, Geffen Pictures, where she oversaw "Interview With the Vampire", "M. Butterfly", "Michael Collins" and "Joe' Apartment". When David Geffen launched film studio Dreamworks with partners Steven Spielberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg, Lee began a production deal there under her company, Mighty Hula Pictures. She continues to develop feature projects (including the Wally Lamb novel, She' Come Undone) as well as network and cable television projects. Lee lives in Los Angeles.

Edgy Lee
Edgy is fifth-generation Hawai'i born, a filmmaker and producer. Her great-great grandfather was the Kingdom of Hawaii's first Vice Consul to China so it is no surprise that much of her film work is story telling rooted deeply in native history. Edgy's documentary films have premiered at the Smithsonian Institution and at National Geographic with worldwide broadcasts in multiple languages. Her filmography includes THE HAWAIIANS- REFLECTING SPIRIT (2006) presented at the opening of the National Museum of the American Indian, Washington DC.; PAPAKOLEA, A STORY OF HAWAIIAN LAND (1998, Corporation for Public Broadcasting Silver Award, Independent Program; National Educational Media Network Silver Apple; CINE Golden Eagle); WAIKIKI- IN THE WAKE OF DREAMS (2001, New York Film & Video Festival Best Cinematography, Best Editing); PANIOLO O HAWAI'I- COWBOYS OF THE FAR WEST (2000, Chicago Film/Video INTERCOM Best Documentary History, Writing; Best of Show - Kahili Award, HVCB) among other awards.

Prior to returning to Hawaii after many years in Los Angeles, Edgy wrote with/or produced music artists such as Wayne Shorter, Joe Higgs, and The Wailers. She also produced a CD of symposiums with His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and music by Tibetan artists living in exile. Then, in 2004 and 2005, she co-produced two films on methamphetamine in unprecedented prime time simulcasts on all major television stations in Hawai'i. The Honolulu Star Bulletin commended her as "One of the Ten Most Influential" citizens in the State of Hawai'i. She has since founded (2008) an Internet television network; a nexus for arts, culture, science & environment, and sports programming, provided free to the public. She is happy to have finally returned and now resides in Honolulu, "the only place where restaurants offer three starches with every meal".

Neal Israel
Mr. Israel has worked as a writer, director, producer and occasional actor for films, television and Broadway. A sampling of over 30 film credits: created The Police Academy films, wrote and directed Bachelor Party starring Tom Hanks, wrote Real Genius starring Val Kilmer, co-wrote Look Who's Talking Too, Executive Produced Finding Neverland starring Johnny Depp(which received seven Oscar nominations). He has directed numerous movies of the week and television shows from The Wonder Years to Clueless to Joan of Arcadia. He has just directed a new science fiction series for NBC Digital staring Rosario Dawson, Gemini Division as well as witting a new comedy pilot for Fox staring Eliot Gould. He has received an Emmy, a Writers Guild of America Award and won best picture honor from the National Board of Review.

Bobbi Thompson
Bobbi Thompson has been in the artist representation business since 1982. At the William Morris agency from 1984-98. she chaired the Motion Picture Literary Department, and "discovered" the talents or launched the U.S. careers of some of the highest grossing or most respected film directors including James Cameron, Tim Burton, Gus van Sant, Ang Lee , John Woo, and Trey Parker. Known for her "eye" for talent and literary material, she championed and finding financing for movies considered groundbreaking at the time (TERMINATOR, AFTER HOURS, HEATHERS, BEETLE JUICE, MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO, LIVING IN OBLIVION, THE PLAYER), but which became templates for films of their type.

Ms. Thompson joined Innovative Artists Agency in 2002, again developing a roster of talent including Jonathan Caouette (TARNATION) and John Cameron Mitchell (HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH). In 2004 she launched Thompson Management, devoted to artist representation and film sales.

In 2006 Ms. Thompson received an Executive Producer credit on John Cameron Mitchell's SHORTBUS and is currently producing the biopic THE CALDERON STORY with longtime clients DAVID HENRY HWANG and filmmaker JONATHAN CAOUETTE. She is also producing UNDERGROUND, the debut feature of choreogapher WADE ROBSON.