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Founder / Executive Producer

Jason Sanford

From the moment he was born, Jason was destined to be a part of the film and TV world – his mother gave birth to him while watching Bonanza in a trailer. The Santa Barbara native grew up playing competitive tennis, but it didn’t take long for his dreams to beckon, and Jason headed to UCLA to study theatre. Soon after, his love of the theatrical took him to The American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, where he pursued further study in acting and writing. While there, he met mentor Anna Deavere Smith, who continues to inspire him to expand his knowledge of his craft, and to always think outside of the box. He would later go on to help found Crafty Apes, with credits as a VFX producer on films including Ant-Man and the Wasp, John Wick 2, and La La Land.



Founder / Senior VFX Supervisor

Tim LeDoux

Growing up in Kodiak, Alaska, Tim was always intrigued by the intersection of art and science, an interest he pursued by studying chemistry and theatre at Westmont College. After graduation, he took a theatrical hiatus in Los Angeles, but instead found his calling in visual effects – a calling he followed as a founding member of Crafty Apes. Tim is extremely proud of his role in the company’s growth and success, as well as his work as VFX supervisor on films such as La La Land, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, and A Star Is Born. Always learning and always searching for new challenges, he enjoys the many trials and rewards visual effects presents, as well as its unique blend of artful beauty and technical skill.




Craig German


Alana Newell


Sean Looper

Head of Studio - LA

Molly Pabian

Michigan born and raised, Molly always had a passion for movies. Growing up her bedroom was filled with movie posters and an extensive VHS collection. Some of her favorite movies included: Jurassic Park, Death Becomes Her, and Willow, all of which were very VFX heavy. One day, Brooks Institute of Photography persuaded her to move to Ventura, California to pursue her love for movies. While at Brooks, she learned all aspects of film making, but her passion remained in Visual Effects. During the last 4 months of her college career she interned at a VFX house, earning her first credit on Live Free or Die Hard before she graduated. After that she was brought on as the company’s PA and has been climbing ever since. Molly brings experience from some of the top studios around the world: Digital Domain, Rhythm and Hues, Method, and DNEG. Working on both features and episodics, she has racked up close to 100 credits; some of her most notable credits include: Avatar, Real Steel, Life of Pi, Iron Man 3, True Detective, Justice League, Lost in Space, Westworld, A Series of Unfortunate Events, Joker, and Star Trek: Picard. In Molly’s free time you can find her spending time with her dog, Bailey, cooking, DIYing, and of course watching movies.



Creative Director / Senior VFX Supervisor

Brandon Nelson

Brandon hails from the sticky, gator ridden lands of the Southeast and grew up on a steady diet of 80s movies from his father’s masking-tape-labeled VHS film library. That early understanding of the importance of the visual arts led him to eventually pursue a higher education in the field at Savannah College of Art and Design.

Today Brandon is an accomplished artist and supervisor; an alumnus of Rhythm and Hues and Method Studios. He cites the movie Hackers and the pink and teal Solo Jazz pattern as chief amongst his artistic influences. His list of credits include Fast & Furious, Life of Pi, Captain America: Civil War, Avengers: Infinity War, and too many talking animal movies and product launches to name.

Brandon loves a challenge and pursues all his interests to their logical extreme, whether that be building motorcycles, hot-tubbing, or making computer pictures. He may never become as strong as The Rock, but he’s not going to stop trying.



Creative Director

Thuy Le

I still remember; it still haunts me all these years.

The late 1980’s, I’m working for NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in their Facilities Department. It’s a fun part-time job that I balanced with my college time; and I get to see things others would envy.

One day I was recommended for a position at Disney as a Video Gamer Tester. So random, but it’s one of those “someone knows someone” situation and my name came up. I was intrigued. I do like playing video games.

The interview went great. I was given a tour; it was mainly just a room with just a couple of computer stations and shelves full of released games serving as décor. The position was a perfect fit. I was qualify and I would bring value to the team.

We went back to his office for the final, close-out interview. The conversation was more casual now. I talked about what I was going to college for, Painting, what I wanted to do, be an artist.

Then he asked me something that my young inexperience ears had not heard before, “Where do you see yourself in 10 years?”

“Ummm…uhh…in Hawaii?”



Global Head of Talent

Melissa Blakey

Melissa’s journey began in a tiny little Connecticut seaside town, where the only access to “Hollywood” was the big movie theater complex, about a 45-minute drive away. It was during one of those many movie outings that she suddenly became curious to learn what goes on behind-the-scenes. After graduating from Syracuse University with a degree in Television, Radio & Film, she began her career in the city she calls “bootcamp”—New York. There, she stumbled into the world of visual effects, eventually making her way to a well-known postproduction company in Hollywood. After two decades of VFX Producing, she transitioned into recruiting. It seemed like the logical step after her many years of interaction within production community. Melissa is thrilled be a part of growing the Crafty Apes team globally, aiding in the launch of multiple locations, and seeking out the best talent our industry has to offer. In her spare time, she’s heading to the beach with her son, traveling, and dabbling in meditative hobbies such as cooking and gardening.



Global Head of CG

David Blumenfeld

VFX Supervisor

John Brubaker

Growing up in San Diego, California, John’s favorite class in school was always video/film. Whether dressed as a detective solving mysteries, or popping out of trash cans to the beat of The Proclaimers, John’s love of all things film was solidified. Although his grand oeuvre is yet unrealized, he is filling that creative urge in the realm of visual effects.

John’s VFX journey began doing night-shift rotoscoping for Jason Sanford, where he lived on Trader Joes frozen dinners and RadioLab podcasts. His skills were further forged at Pixomondo, working late nights on the VFX Oscar winning “Hugo,” and making himself sick on Ralphs fried chicken and potato wedges. Occasionally he ate vegetables; sometimes it went poorly. John is also an alumnus of Scanline VFX and Kelvin Optical, where he worked on great teams and also started eating like an adult and competing in triathlons.

John joined the amazing team at Crafty Apes in 2017 and hasn’t looked back, supervising shows such as The Batman, Mulan, Cry Macho, and Spider-Man No Way Home.

When not being attacked by his two small children, which is most times, John’s passions include photography, Padres baseball, US soccer, and travel. If John were an animal he’d be an orange cat.




VFX Supervisor

John Cherniack

John is from a small town in New Hampshire where he grew up skateboarding and snowboarding with reckless optimism, always trying to go bigger and get more air every day. He started his career in art as a Graphic Designer at age 16 which led him to study animation and visual effects at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco.

Moving to LA, he spent years as a CG generalist with a diverse range of projects in both visual effects and motion graphics, spanning tv, film, and advertising. With his love for the process and problem solving, he has been working as a Visual Effects Supervisor for the past decade. His recent credits include Westworld, 1923, and Lucifer.

Aside from VFX, he has always had a love for the outdoors, a thirst for speed, and will race anything with wheels and an engine. A good day for him is riding his motorcycle to random places and talking to random people.


VFX Supervisor

Nico Del Giudice

VFX Supervisor

Laura Hill

Laura grew up with a swamp for a backyard in rural Louisiana (her family couldn’t even get a pizza delivered). She had an early interest in painting and design, but a career as an artist seemed impossible. After graduating college, she was accepted to law school. To make some extra cash, she took a summer job at a small production company that was making monster movies for the SciFi channel. The visual effects team tried their best to lure her in, but she spent many more years on-set before finding her way back to post.

Today, she enjoys her work as a Visual Effects Supervisor and takes pride in the process of collaborating with productions to design seamless effects.  Since joining Crafty Apes last year, her credits include Licorice PizzaInsecure and Barry.

She’s also the mother of a precocious toddler who takes up every ounce of her spare time—and she wouldn’t have it any other way. They live in Santa Monica (where it’s very easy to get a pizza delivered).


VFX Supervisor

Alex Knudsen

Originally from Minneapolis, Minnesota, Alex ironically developed his love for film when his father took him to the drive-in to see The Shining when he was 5-years old. He began his craft as a filmmaker at thirteen when his parents purchased their first Hi8 camcorder and he started to write, direct, edit and act in his own short films. Alex went on to study acting at USC and Shakespeare & Co. before getting his first job in post production in 2004. While working as a vault manager, Alex would start his own production company, Gantry Productions, in 2006, where he would go on to write, direct, edit (and sometimes act in) two features and four short films. He also developed a love for directing and editing music videos, working with such notable artists at Jurassic 5 and solo members Marc 7 and Soup. Working simultaneously behind the camera and in post, Alex’s appreciation for Visual Effects blossomed, leading him to become a VFX Producer in 2012. His passion for that world took over, and he’s never looked back, eventually becoming a VFX Supervisor in 2016. Alex is proud to have worked as a supervisor on films such as Avengers: Endgame, The Revenant, and The Flash, as well as acclaimed television shows True Detective, Veep, 1883 and What We Do in the Shadows.



VFX Supervisor

Gabriel Sanchez

A business student when he began college, Gabriel’s creative inclinations and love of movies eventually got the best of him. Starting out in film as a videotape vault librarian, he used his drawing and painting skills as a jumping-off point and taught himself VFX software just as the industry was taking shape, working his way up in visual effects and forming partnerships with directors like Wes Anderson. His long list of credits includes work as a senior compositor on Terminator 2, Seabiscuit, and Precious; post supervisor on Black Swan, Limitless, and Rocky Balboa; and VFX supervisor on The Grand Budapest Hotel and episodes of NCIS: New Orleans and Game of Thrones. Gabriel spends his time out of the office with his wife and their two pit bull rescues.



VFX Producer

Andrew Kalicki

Andrew started life much like how everyone else does; knowing exactly what he (thought) he wanted to be when he grew up. It wasn’t until taking cinema class with Timothy Callahan at Drury High School that his understanding of his passion changed. Andrew quickly followed his favorite director to their alma mater, Ithaca College in upstate New York, enrolling in the Park School of Communications, before packing up after graduation and making his way to Los Angeles.

Starting as a ghostwriter for Perez Hilton, Andrew eventually found his way into the film industry as a runner at Trailer Park before making his way up to editing. From there, he jumped careers into the world of VFX with Luma Pictures as their technical coordinator. After a lengthy stint there he found himself at Crafty’s doorstep as senior coordinator and eventually producer. Some of his credits include all three Tom Holland Spider-Man films, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, WB’s upcoming The Batman, JoJo Rabbit, and Black Panther.

In his spare time, Andrew keeps himself busy by walking his dog, playing tennis/ultimate frisbee, and brewing/enjoying craft beer.



VFX Producer

Adam Pere

Originally from southern Florida, Adam realized his love for making movies when he first got his hands on his parents’ vintage camcorder. His dream of working in entertainment took him from Indiana University to Los Angeles, and eventually to a small VFX company that was looking for a PA. As Crafty Apes grew from that small company to one of the pre-eminent VFX shops in the industry, so too did Adam’s résumé, which now includes credits on countless box office successes from La La Land to Hidden Figures, as well as several films from the Marvel franchise. As an avid film buff, it’s no surprise that he spends much of his free time going to the movies with friends, while mixing in a little snowboarding and gaming when the mood strikes him.



Outdoor Adventure