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WAKE UP CALL PRODUCTION BIOS

Production Bios

Dwayne Johnson
Executive Producer

Dwayne Johnson has solidified himself as a global box-office success with film revenues grossing in excess of $2 billion worldwide.

Johnson shows no sign of slowing down as he's set to star in a slew of tent-pole movies through 2015, including taking on the title role in Hercules for Paramount, directed by Brett Ratner; the seventh installment of the enormously successful Fast and Furious franchise, reprising his role as Agent Hobbs alongside Vin Diesel; and the event film San Andreas, for Warner Brothers, in which he plays a rescue-chopper pilot who makes a dangerous journey across California to find his daughter in the aftermath of a devastating earthquake. This year, Johnson will also be transitioning to the small screen for the HBO series Ballers, directed by Peter Berg, about a group of football players dealing with their friends, families and handlers.

Among Johnson's most recent film credits are: the dramatic thriller Snitch, about a father who goes undercover for the DEA in order to free his imprisoned son; the comic book action-adventure G.I. Joe: Retaliation, the second installment of the franchise, opposite Bruce Willis and Channing Tatum; the dramatic independent film Empire State, with Liam Hemsworth and Emma Roberts; Pain & Gain, alongside Mark Wahlberg; and major roles in the most recent franchise films Fast 5 and Fast and Furious 6, which grossed a combined for $1.4 billion globally.

 

Dwayne's previous films include Race to Witch Mountain; The Tooth Fairy; Planet 51; Get Smart; The Game Plan; Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, which grossed over $325 million in 2011; Be Cool, MGM's sequel to Get Shorty, alongside John Travolta, Uma Thurman and Vince Vaughn; the 2004 remake Walking Tall; and Universal's The Rundown, a critically acclaimed action/comedy directed by Peter Berg and co-starring Sean William Scott, Rosario Dawson and Christopher Walken.

Next in the pipeline are Barry Sonnenfeld's Lore, based on the Ashley Wood graphic novel; Journey 3: From the Earth to the Moon; and The Fall Guy, the big screen adaptation of the 1980's television series, among other projects.

Johnson has garnered much critical acclaim and recognition for his range and diverse roles, including 2009 where Entertainment Weekly named him to the top of Hollywood's next A-list stars, alongside, Robert Downey Jr., Ellen Page, James McAvoy and Amy Adams.

Dwayne's love of acting and desire to branch out led him to appear on Saturday Night Live in March 2000, surprising many with his strength in the comedy and garnering the show's highest rating that year. Johnson was subsequently cast by Stephen Sommers in The Mummy Returns, which grossed more than $400 million worldwide. His character was so well received by Universal executives during dailies that they immediately planned a film based on his character, The Scorpion King, which broke box office records in 2002 becoming the greatest April opening of all time.

Born in San Francisco and raised in Hawaii, Dwayne Johnson excelled as a high school All-American and subsequently as a star defensive lineman for the University of Miami Hurricanes, helping lead his team to a National Championship. Upon graduating from the University of Miami, Johnson followed in the footsteps of his WWE Hall of Fame father, Rocky Johnson, and grandfather, High Chief Peter Maivia, by joining the competitive sports entertainment world of the WWE. Within a seven year period (1996-2003), his intense passion led to an extraordinarily successful career breaking box office attendance records across the US and setting pay-per-view buy rate records during that period as well. Dwayne Johnson's character creation of "The Rock" became one of the most charismatic and dynamic characters the industry has ever seen. In March 2012, Johnson made a record-breaking return to the WWE where he crushed John Cena at Wrestle Mania XXVIII in Miami.

Not content to simply be in front of the camera, Johnson penned an autobiography, The Rock Says, which reached #1 on The New York Times Bestseller List shortly after its publication in January 2000. Johnson also created The Rock Foundation in 2006, with a mission to educate, empower and motivate children worldwide through health and physical fitness. A dedicated philanthropist, Johnson is the current National spokesperson for the Entertainment Industry Foundation's Diabetes Aware Campaign. He is also a committed Celebrity Cabinet Member for The American Red Cross and serves as a National Celebrity Wish Ambassador for The Make-A-Wish Foundation. In 2008, United States Congress and the United States Joint Leadership Commission recognized Johnson with the prestigious Horizon Award, the U.S. Congressional Award given to an individual in the private sector who has demonstrated outstanding leadership and provided opportunities for youth nationwide.

 

Craig Armstrong
Executive Producer

Craig Armstrong began his entertainment career in comedy in 1988, producing and directing hundreds of short comedy films for various television shows and films, including The Jenny McCarthy Show for MTV and Mr. Show with Bob and David for HBO. He moved from comedy to network reality programming with the breakthrough series Rescue 911 and Sightings, which he produced for Paramount Pictures.

In 2000, Armstrong met Mark Burnett on USA's Combat Missions. After that successful series, Burnett asked Armstrong to be the co-executive producer of the blockbuster series Survivor. Four seasons and three Emmy® nominations later. he made the move up to executive producer of the Emmy-nominated reality series Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. He then signed a two-year overall deal with ABC. While at that network, he created, developed and executive-produced three seasons of the American version of the hit family series Supernanny and the pilot Extreme Makeover: Wedding Edition.

 

After his successful run with ABC, Armstrong went on to develop and executive-produce the summer sensation Age of Love for NBC Universal. He also joined forces with British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver for the ABC series Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution, winning the primetime Emmy® for Outstanding Reality TV Series. The second season of the series also earned a primetime Emmy® nomination.

As CEO and Co-Founder of 5x5 Media, Armstrong continues to have success in the reality space, developing shows such as The Hero (TNT) with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, Fashion Star (NBC), Bet on Your Baby (ABC) and King of the Nerds (TBS). There are also promising new projects on the horizon including another show with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson for TNT titled Wake Up Call as well as NBC's Weight for Love.

5x5 Media is currently in a distribution deal with Warner Bros. in which Warner Bros. International Television Distribution will handle worldwide distribution of all 5x5 programming and Warner Bros. International Television Production will handle format rights sales.

 

Dany Garcia
Executive Producer

Dany Garcia, founder and president of The Garcia Companies, has been making her mark across television, film and sports entertainment for the past 17 years, and she's just getting started.

As manager to box-office heavyweight Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and co-founder of his 7 Bucks Entertainment company, the duo are preparing to debut Johnson's first starring role on television, the Peter Berg-directed Ballers for HBO, which Garcia executive-produces alongside Johnson, Berg, Mark Wahlberg and Evan Reilly. This follows hot on the heels of explosive TNT action reality shows The Hero (2013) and Wake Up Call, premiering December 2014.

In addition to features starring Johnson, like the action drama, Snitch, Garcia has also executive produced acclaimed projects such as Theater of War, starring Meryl Streep and Kevin Kline; Lovely, Still, starring Martin Landau and Ellen Burstyn; Racing Dreams, with Academy Award® nominee Marshall Curry; and Which Way Home, a 2010 Oscar® Nominee for Best Feature Documentary.

Garcia is also an avid body builder and has participated in numerous competitions. She recently earned her IFBB Women's Physique Pro Card at the 2014 North American Championships. Garcia curates her own workouts and meal plans to promote a healthy lifestyle and toned muscles.

Having started her career in the world of finance, Garcia honed a sharp eye for great ideas while a Vice President at Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith, before founding her own private wealth management firm, JDM Partners LLC. Garcia continues to be an active angel investor, using her wealth of experience to identify and invest in groundbreaking entrepreneurs and business start-ups.

Committed to investing in more than just business – Garcia has been a lifelong philanthropist and social advocate. She founded The Beacon Experience; a foundation that identifies promising, but at-risk children in inner city schools and empowers them throughout their education with tutoring and full scholarships for college. She has also served on the national boards of "I Have a Dream" Foundation, The Dress for Success Foundation, the Florida International University Foundation Board of Directors and the advisory boards of the Make-A-Wish and Nova Southeastern University's Mailman Segal Institute for Early Childhood Studies. 

Garcia's passion and determination for good in her community has led to her being recognized by The American Cancer Society, The Wayu Tayaa Foundation, Dress for Success, The Project to Cure Paralysis, The Vizcayans and Levinson's Jewelers. She has also won awards from the Women's Congress of Miami, Hispanic Magazine, and by the Cuban Federation of UM Students.

Garcia was born and raised in New Jersey and moved to Florida where she earned a Bachelor's Degree in International Marketing and Finance from the University of Miami School of Business. She continues to support her alma mater by serving on the University Of Miami Board Of Trustees and as President of the University of Miami Alumni Association. Garcia resides with her husband, Dave Rienzi, and daughter, Simone Alexandra, in Florida.

 

Chris Grant
Executive Producer

Chris Grant is CEO of Electus, the first integrated multimedia entertainment studio to unite producers, creators, advertisers and distributors under one roof and produce all forms of content for distribution across a variety of platforms around the world.  Grant joined Electus in November 2011 and is responsible for overseeing the company’s growth across global and domestic TV, digital and branded entertainment. Electus is currently in production on several new series that Chris is executive producing including Marco Polo for Netflix, Wake Up Call starring Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson for TNT, a series with Dog the Bounty Hunter for CMT, Running Wild with Bear Grylls and Food Fighters on NBC, House of DVF on E!, Southern Justice for National Geographic Channel, as well as various other series and pilots across broadcast and cable networks.

 

Grant previously served as President of Shine International, the global sales and distribution arm responsible for distributing programming from the Shine Group companies, including Reveille, Kudos, Dragonfly, Princess Productions, Brown Eyed Boy, Shine TV, Shine France, Shine Germany and Shine Australia as well as Metronome, the Nordic region’s leading production group. Since launching the company in February 2008, Grant propelled Shine International to become one of the world’s top television distributors, ranking number six in Broadcast’s Annual Distributor’s Survey. Grant was a leader in exploiting worldwide intellectual property rights through scripted and alternative television formats, while managing the creative, casting and storyline processes of formats sold for international production. He transformed formats including MasterChef, The Biggest Loser, The Moment of Truth and Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader? into truly global television brands.

Prior to founding Shine International, Grant served as a Managing Director of independent studio Reveille, overseeing the company’s International Distribution and Creative Affairs division, where he was responsible for distributing all of Universal Television Group’s formats overseas. Reveille is known for popular, award-winning series including The Biggest Loser, The Office and Ugly Betty. Grant joined Reveille when it was formed in 2002 after working at the William Morris Agency. 

Grant currently serves as Co-Chair of the NATPE Board of Directors. For the past six years, he has served as a mentor for Fulfilment Fund, which provides low-income students with the support necessary to graduate from high school and attend college. Grant graduated from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and lives in Los Angeles, California.

 

Corie Henson
Executive Producer

In the summer of 2013, Corie Henson was named Executive Vice President of unscripted television at multi-platform studio Electus.  There she oversees both development and current on unscripted programming across all cable and broadcast networks including ABC, NBC, Showtime, TNT, TBS, TLC, Tru TV, Lifetime, SyFy, VH1, Travel, Esquire, GSN, Nat Geo and A&E.  She is responsible for creating character driven formats for talent like Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson, Bear Grylls, David Copperfield, plus docu-series, makeover formats, game, stunt and talk shows and branded content for corporations like Wal-Mart and P&G.

Before joining Electus, Ms. Henson spent five years as Vice President of Alternative Series and Specials for ABC Entertainment.  In this role, Ms. Henson focused on developing new series, as well as overseeing current production and spearheading creative efforts for upcoming projects.  At ABC, she oversaw hits such as Dancing with the Stars and Shark Tank, along with critical successes like the Extreme Makeover franchise.

Prior to ABC, Ms. Henson produced a wide variety of shows, including Big Brother (CBS), Grease: You’re the One That I Want (NBC), Extreme Makeover (ABC), On Air with Ryan Seacrest (FOX) and The Secret Life of a Soccer Mom (TLC).  In addition, Ms. Henson was the Executive Producer of the Critics Choice Awards and oversaw much of the live red carpet coverage for the Academy Awards®, Grammys, Golden Globe®s and SAG Awards while at E! Entertainment Television.  Before working at E!, Ms. Henson was a writer and producer of live news in Los Angeles and Phoenix.

 

Rick Ringbakk
Executive Producer

Rick Ringbakk is an Emmy®-winning show creator, executive producer and director. He has spent the last 20 years producing series, specials and events that span the globe. His passion for adventure and real human stories has led him to film in more than 60 countries on six continents.

Ringbakk's focus is unscripted television and includes mainstream reality, the Olympics, wildlife documentaries, and live performance series. In 2003 and 2004, he won primetime Emmys® for his work producing the acclaimed series The Amazing Race. He has been nominated twice for the Producer's Guild of America's prestigious Producer of the Year award.

Over the course of his career, Ringbakk has produced more than 500 hours of television for CBS, NBC, ABC, FOX, TNT, TBS, CW, MTV, Discovery Channel and others.

Ringbakk is the CEO and Co-Founder of 5x5 Media where he continues to develop top tier reality programming including The Hero (TNT) with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson; Fashion Star (NBC); Bet on Your Baby (ABC); and King of the Nerds (TBS). There are also promising new projects on the horizon, including another show with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson for TNT titled Wake Up Call and NBC's Weight for Love.

5x5 Media is currently in a distribution deal with Warner Bros. in which Warner Bros. International Television Distribution will handle worldwide distribution of all 5x5 programming and Warner Bros. International Television Production will handle format rights sales.

 

Ben Silverman
Executive Producer

Ben Silverman, the Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award-winning show creator and media executive, is Founder and Chairman of Electus, a next generation studio. The company was launched in July 2009, in partnership with IAC, a leading Internet and media company chaired by Barry Diller.

Since Electus’ inception, Silverman has executive produced major network and cable hits, including NBC’s transformative TV commerce show Fashion Star, the VH-1 hit Mob Wives franchise, King Of The Nerds for TBS and Bet On Your Baby for ABC. Additionally, Electus is currently in production on several new series that Ben is executive producing including Marco Polo for Netflix, Wake Up Call starring Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson for TNT, a series with Dog the Bounty Hunter for CMT, Get Out Alive: with Bear Grylls on NBC, the re-invention of Candid Camera for TV Land, the Jane The Virgin telenovela at The CW, and the feature film Hands Of Stone, the biopic of Robert Duran starring Robert De Niro, Usher and Edgar Ramirez, as well as various other series and pilots across broadcast and cable networks. Silverman recently received the 2014 Award of Excellence in Digital Innovation at the Banff World Media Festival, as well as the 2014 TJ Martell Foundation’s Entertainment Achievement Award.

Prior to launching Electus, Silverman served as Co-Chairman of NBC Entertainment and Universal Media Studios from June 2007 to 2009.

As Founder and former CEO of Reveille, Silverman is executive producer of the Emmy® Award-winning NBC comedy The Office and the Golden Globe®-winning comedy Ugly Betty, co-creator and executive producer of the hit NBC reality show The Biggest Loser as well as co-creator and executive producer of the critically acclaimed The Tudors for Showtime.

Silverman serves on numerous charitable boards, including Best Buddies and Cedar Sinai Hospital. As an agent at William Morris Agency, he ran the international division, where he pioneered the format business, packaging such shows as Who Wants to be a Millionaire and Big Brother.

 

Charles Wachter
Executive Producer

Charles Wachter is an Executive Producer with 12 years of experience producing a wide array of reality, variety and documentary series for both network and cable. Wachter has produced more than 150 hours of television, from medical, military and celeb-reality series to high concept formats like MTV's The Phone, NBC's American Gladiators and Fashion Star and ABC's Duets and Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution (for which he won a 2010 Primetime Emmy®, followed by another nomination in 2012).

As Chief Creative Officer and Partner at 5x5 Media, Wachter has produced diverse projects such as Bet on Your Baby (ABC), King of the Nerds (TBS),The Hero (TNT) and the new series Wake Up Call (TNT), as well as NBC's Weight for Love.

A graduate of Yale University and New York University's Graduate Film program, Wachter has the unique ability not only to create compelling television from start to finish, but also to understand the business opportunities presented by the rapidly shifting