Filmmaker Bios

Alan Berg, Director

From the newsroom to the red carpet, Alan Berg has brought rich storytelling to the screen for more than two decades. During his 15-year career as a television news reporter, Alan Berg won more than 20 awards. The Associated Press twice named Berg as the best television reporter in Texas, and he’s won two regional Emmy awards as well as a regional Edward R. Murrow award. His work earned national recognition within the profession—he was an invited panelist on political coverage at the RTNDA national conference, and he participated as a think tank member and panelist in the PBS Democracy Project’s Best Practices 2000. His work is noted in the journalism textbook News in a New Century [Lanson/Fought, Pine Forge Press, 1999].

In December 2000, Berg left television news to concentrate on documentary filmmaking. His first hour-long documentary, on heroin addiction, premiered in November 2001 at the Deep Ellum Film Festival in Dallas where it won “Best Documentary.” It also won the special jury award at the Houston International Film Festival and was a finalist in the USA Film Festival’s Short Film and Video Competition. It was fed nationally to all PBS affiliates in August 2002. Berg’s most recent documentary A Place to Dance won the Audience Award at the Austin Film Festival in October 2004, was one of just 11 documentaries selected from more than 3,500 submissions to premiere at the Los Angeles Film Festival in June 2006, and was acquired by PBS and distributed nationally in April 2007.

Alan also directed two half-hour weather science documentaries for The Weather Channel, including the network’s Earth Day Special Report on Global Warming. This won the prestigious 2008 New York Festivals Award for Cable Programming. Alan is on the faculty at the University of Texas School of Journalism.

Alan is the Co-Founder and President of Arts+Labor, a highly successful film, video, animation and documentary company based in Austin, TX.

Dawn Cooper Johnson, Producer

For more than fifteen years, Dawn has been producing, directing, and shooting independent films and network series. She produced the documentary Nuclear Family for PBS, and is the three-time Emmy Award Winning Director of the PBS documentary series Downtown for KLRU TV in Austin. She is the winner of the Livable City Vision Award and the Envision Central Texas Community Stewardship Award. Most recently she produced the A&E docudrama series Heavy, which aired this spring and has received widespread critical acclaim.

Erik Horn, Co-Producer

With more than 10 years experience in film and video, Erik’s diverse career includes directing award-winning music videos, creating cutting edge branded content, co- producing a television series for IFC, and managing multiple creative teams.

His work includes a short cartoon series with Billy Bob Thornton for Dell, producing the video content for Dell’s Summer Rocks Tour, and creating branded content for The Plug Awards featuring comedian Michael Showalter. His music videos have showcased on MTV, Fuse, RollingStone.com, SXSW, and at The Edinburgh International Film Festival.

Erik serves as Creative Director of Arts+Labor.  In addition, he is developing two feature film scripts, one based on the work of cult author Jim Knipfel (Slackjaw, These Children Who Come at You With Knives, and Other Fairy Tales). Recently, he returned to Austin after a yearlong stint in New York City co- producing (along with Super!Alright!) and overseeing postproduction for the rock-and-roll cooking show Dinner With the Band for IFC. Previously he was the co-founder and Creative Director of Super!Alright!.

Jason Wehling, Co-Producer

Jason Wehling produced August Evening, which was awarded top prizes at the Los Angeles Film Festival, the Woodstock Film Festival, and the Ashland Film Festival and also received the John Cassavetes Award—presented to the creative team of a film budgeted at less than $500,000 by Film Independent, a non-profit organization dedicated to independent film and independent filmmakers—at the 2008 Independent Spirit Awards. Jason is currently producing Kyle Henry’s second feature narrative, FOURPLAY, and he has also worked as a producer on other projects, including Alan Berg’s PBS documentary, A Place to Dance (2006), Paul Gordon’s festival-favorite comedy, The Happy Poet (2010), and two climate specials for the Weather Channel. In 2009, Jason directed an Addy Award-winning commercial spot for MacSpeech and a short film called The Grownups that was selected from more than 3,000 worldwide entries to play as part of the 48 Hour Film Project’s showcase at Cannes 2010.  From 2002-2005 he served as a programmer at PBS national headquarters, where he helped set the National Program Schedule and program the INDEPENDENT LENS series. Jason studied filmmaking at Rice University in Houston, Texas.