The Big-Screen Thrill Maker

Scott Silver ’06
Major: Screen Studies
Co-owner of Silvatar Media, Los Angeles

Scott Silver makes movies for a living, but often his most essential tool is not a camera or an editing machine, but his cell phone.

As co-owner of the production company Silvatar Media, Silver must stay almost obsessively networked. Phone calls — thousands of them — are what get the deals done so that the films can be launched. In Hollywood, if you don’t have a phone to your ear, you aren’t even trying.

But he most relishes the creative component of his job. The Texas native, who during his time at Clark made short films starring theater students, honed his editing skills at the prestigious American Film Institute and by doing freelance post-production work. His company’s first major film, “Removal,” a Hitchcockian psychological thriller starring Billy Burke of “Twilight” and Elliott Gould, has just been released on DVD. He’s now in discussions with heavy-hitting producer Mark Canton (“300”) to create a thriller set in an unexplored Egyptian tomb. The film, “Site 146,” is being prepared for a theatrical release.

Silver is making headway in a notoriously tough business where “it takes a good three to four years to get your feet planted.”
His wife, Laurel (Polumbaum) Silver ’06, M.A. ’07 helps keep him grounded.

“It’s tough to have two people in the industry when you’re starting career and life together,” he says. “It’s unstable, the hours are terrible. Fortunately, Laurel is a teacher and very level- headed.

“Some days everything works,” Silver continues, “and then you can go three to four weeks with bad news. The truth is, you can be as good as you want, but you still need that lucky break.”

Given the number of entertainment vehicles available to the average person, Silver believes the film industry is on the cusp of a golden age. People are always hungry for good cinema, he says, whether a movie is being projected on a 40-foot screen or transmitted through an iPhone.

And yes, somehow it was inevitable that phones would be involved.