From the Big Screen to Broadway

From the Big Screen to Broadway

From the silver screen to the TV to the bright lights of Broadway, arts and sciences alumni are entertaining audiences in theaters, in movie houses and in their own comfy living rooms.

Here we showcase a few of our illustrious alumni – including R.L. Stine and his monsters in the new Goosebumps movie and Steve Martino’s skill in bringing the Peanuts gang to life in a new feature film. Plus there is English alumnus Sage Boggs one of the brains behind The Tonight Show ; Emmy Award winning L.J. Houdyshell’s lavish sets on HBO’s Silicon Valley, and musical theatre pro Randy Skinner, whose Dames at Sea on Broadway is winning rave reviews.

Film Reel Icon

Undergrads soon will be able to major in Moving-Image Production, a study of live-action and animation filmmaking, where they will develop the creative talent to produce films using high-level production techniques. A minor in Film Studies will be part of the new curriculum.

R.L. Stine's Monsters Take Over the Big Screen

For decades, the Goosebumps books have been spreading frightful fun to young people (think 7-12 year olds) with creepy monsters like a werewolf, evil lawn gnomes and a living dummy. Now, those – and many more monsters – are popping up on the big screen in the new Goosebumps movie, which topped the box office its first weekend in theaters with more than $23 million in sales.

It’s absolutely unbelievable – we’re so excited to see it do so well,” said R.L. Stine, author of the Goosebumps books and an alumnus of Ohio State (BA, English, ‘65). “You really never know if people will come (to see the show) or not. But the timing was right – kids who loved the books in the 1990s are now in their 30s. They came out of nostalgia and brought their own kids!”

Stine is a Bexley, Ohio, native who edited Ohio State’s humor magazine The Sundial while he was a student. He recently established the R.L. Stine Scholarship at Ohio State for undergraduate English majors with a demonstrated interest in creative writing.

He started the Goosebumps series in 1992, and has written more than 125 books that have been translated in dozens of languages and have sold more than 350 million copies. He still writes four Goosebumps books a year; his newest is Night of the Puppet People

That’s a lot of books,” he said. “I have to go take a nap now.”

all images, ©2015 CTMG. All Rights Reserved.

Goosebumps Trailer

Goosebumps Trailer

Official Goosebumps Trailer, courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment

Have you ever watched The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon? Ohio State English alumnus Sage Boggs certainly has. Boggs has worked at The Tonight Show, broadcast from Rockefeller Center in New York City, for the past two years. 

My desire to write fiction mutated into a desire to write for TV and film, so I took on minors in professional writing and media production and analysis later in college. I didn’t end up finishing the minors, but they helped me get internships that changed the trajectory of my career."

Good Grief, Charlie Brown

The Peanuts Movie

Charlie Brown will make his latest play for the attention of the Little Red-Haired Girl when 20th Century Fox and Blue Sky Studios release The Peanuts Movie in theatres Nov. 6. And when he does, it will be with the help of Ohio State alum Steve Martino.

The Peanuts Movie Still, Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox & Peanuts Worldwide LLC.

photo courtesy of 20th Century Fox & Peanuts Worldwide LLC.

Director Steve Martino

Martino, who earned a bachelor’s degree in visual communication design and a master’s in art education at Ohio State and studied at the Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design (ACCAD), said he is tremendously honored to have been chosen to take Peanuts to the big screen.

"I am a big fan; I grew up with Peanuts,” he said. “It was a tremendous honor and a tremendous responsibility in terms of animating and creating the storyline in a way that stayed as true as was absolutely possible to Charles Schulz.”

He said his experience as a student at Ohio State – and especially his studies at ACCAD – launched him into the work he’s doing today. “Had I been anywhere else, I probably couldn’t have made this entire career path,” he said. “It’s fantastic to have, on one campus, a setting that includes exposure to so many people pursuing so many different studies. A lot of what I do now (involves) being able to talk to computer scientists and engineers as well as to artists and actors. The experience of being at Ohio State … percolates into who you are and what you do.”
That interdisciplinary background is a key to Martino’s career success, added Maria Palazzi, director of ACCAD. “His graduate degree asked him to study a wide range of areas including art history and design, and to be aware of what artists contribute to the world. I always hear him talk about how seriously he takes that responsibility.”
And to be sure, Martino took that responsibility very seriously in the case of The Peanuts Movie.

"We spent a lot of time studying Schulz,” he said. “You dig and dig and you really study that artistry. We paid a lot of attention to the art, how he drew his lines and created these wonderful expressions. There was a real value in understanding the man behind the work. I would love to have met him, but through studying him as much as possible, I feel I have gotten to know him. That influenced the way we made the movie, and I would say it influenced it in a very positive way.”

How To Draw Snoopy

Steve Martino is showing everyone how to #DrawSnoopy, courtesy of Fox Family Entertainment

Public Panel Discussion

Steve Martino will be on campus for a panel discussion about the movie at noon on Thursday, Nov. 19. He will be joined for the event – From Strip to Screen: A Panel Discussion on staying true to the legacy of Charles Schulz in The Peanuts Movie – by Fox Animation executive Ralph Millero and by Craig Schulz, son of Peanuts creator Charles Schulz.

The panel discussion is free and open to all (with a reservation); it will take place in 141 Sullivant Hall, 1813 N. High St., and is co-sponsored by the Barnett Center for Integrated Arts and Enterprise and the Arts Initiative.

Reserve Your Spot Now!

And the Emmy Goes to ...

Seven capitol venture companies? Check.
An entire energy drink warehouse and ad campaign? Check.
Robotics Lab, Potato Cannon, Condor Nest, Burning House, Giants Stadium? Yes.


L.J. Houdyshell (MFA, Theatre, 1990) recently won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Production Design For A Narrative Program (Half-Hour Or Less) for her work on the HBO show Silicon Valley. As art director, Houdyshell collaborated with all creative departments on the show (i.e. construction, paint, set decoration, camera, special effects) to create sets on time and on budget. She recently accepted the job as production designer for the CBS drama Code Black.

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