Neil Schell is an accomplished actor, acting coach, director and producer in film and television. He has been working in the film industry for over 25 years.
In the early lean years as an actor, Neil was offered an apprenticeship in the editing department at Golden Era Productions in Los Angeles. Wanting to learn everything he could about film making, Neil snapped up the opportunity. He studied and worked for over 6 years cranking out more than a dozen half hour films and a half a dozen hour-long films. Although these films were industrial in nature, they were all story driven and of a quality second to none. Despite his love of editing, he couldn’t keep his acting impulses on hold forever.
To keep his acting career alive in the early days, he starting teaching a class for actors on maintaining continuity, hitting marks, frame sizes and how they affect the actor, etc., to help actors cross over from the stage to screen. His initial classes filled up quickly and the demand for more of his teaching lead Neil into coaching acting technique as well which he still does to this day right across the Canada from Toronto to Vancouver and every major city in-between.
As an actor, Neil has appeared in several TV series (Cold Squad, Da Vinci’s Inquest, Outer Limits, Eureka, Fringe, Caprica.), feature films (Dr. Dolittle 3, Funny Little Thing Called Murder, Watchmen, The A-Team) and dozens of commercials.
Neil’s most recent expansion in the industry has been directing. He has directed 120 episodes and several short films for television in both Kenya and Canada. Directing has come naturally to Neil having a strong background in editing, acting and coaching actors.
Working with extremely low budgets and compressed time schedules, Neil has had to complete the direction of over 3000 pages of script, 6000 camera setups, and work with over 250 actors. Directing under these circumstances challenges one’s ability as a filmmaker and raises the necessity level which makes a better filmmaker. One has to draw from every fibre of their existence to make a high-quality product.
Neil’s strengths in directing are in working with actors (this he comes by naturally having been an actor himself and having trained actors for over 20 years) and having an acute sense of what works in film which he gained as a film editor.
More recently Neil is directing and producing a new animation series entitled MACHISMO about an African Superhero who battles crime and evil in all its forms from robbers to genies to aliens.