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Today I sat down with Mary Rachel Gardner. She graduated from USC in 2013 with major studies in Acting, Business and Film Production; she also spent a semester abroad studying at a theatre conservatory in London.
Mary Rachel gained hands on experience and knowledge working at production companies, such as Steve Carell’s Carousel Productions and agencies such as William Morris Endeavor. She also worked as a PA on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, where she learned about the production and operation elements of running a live television show.
Since graduating from USC, Mary Rachel founded her own film company Kalliste Zoe Productions to explore, create and share original content through visual art and storytelling. Kalliste Zoe "Όμορφη Ζωή" means "A Beautiful Life" in Greek. She has developed many of her own independent projects including music videos, parodies, comedic sketches and short films. Mary Rachel has received honorary awards at film festivals, such as Audience Favorite and Best Screenplay, and successfully licensed some of her films overseas.
Under the Kalliste Zoe umbrella, she founded the Independent Cinema Showcase (ICS): to discover and share independent filmmakers’ visions from around the world as well as provide an opportunity for them to join a cinema family that connects and supports talented creators.