About us | EUE Screen Gems Ltd

There’s been a tremendous amount of careful thought put into how the film and television production industry gets back to work in this unprecedented time. Across the industry, companies, unions, professional organizations and others are analyzing the best safety measures to put into place as the industry gets back to work.

For the past several months, that’s exactly what we’ve been doing, too.

Our commitment is to keep the safety of our employees, clients, and everyone on the EUE/Screen Gems lots our No. 1 priority. We’re following CDC workplace guidelines, revising our operational guidelines, training employees and making improvements to our physical facilities. You’ll find our employees wearing masks, practicing social distancing, and in every way putting safety first.

We look forward to working with all our clients, those who’ve just joined us and those who’ve been loyal for years. We’re ready to get back to work.

EUE/Screen Gems makes COVID-19 safety a top priority

About us

Executive Team Bios

Learn about EUE/Screen Gems. See the Cooney family’s commitment to constant innovation unfold.

In the 1960s, George Cooney brought beloved film directors into a unique partnership for commercial development. In 1996, we bought our Wilmington, NC studios. In 2010, we built the Atlanta complex, the first studio campus to locate in that city. Miami’s studios launched in partnership with Viacom in 2015. In 2016, EUE/Sokolow shines as part of the team bringing “Genius” to NatGeo.

Learn about EUE/Screen Gems’ executive team bios and the talents they bring to clients as you scroll further down the page.

Chris Cooney
Chief Executive Officer
Chris Cooney
Chief Executive Officer

Chris Cooney is the Chief Executive Officer of EUE/Screen Gems, Ltd. He is also the co-owner of EUE/Screen Gems Studios. Cooney is known for his collaborative style, his eye for art and his experience with facility management, international content distribution, integrated media solutions, branded content and online content development. Cooney is based in New York City.

Today, Cooney focuses on two core businesses: studio facilities and content development. The production studios are based in Atlanta and Wilmington, NC with a new studio scheduled to open in Miami in fall, 2015. EUE/Sokolow is based in Los Angeles and New York City and focuses on television development and production in the scripted and unscripted arenas.

In 2010 as COO of the combined facilities, Cooney led the team into Atlanta where the facilities have enjoyed a robust television success with clients such as “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay” – Parts 1 and 2 (Lionsgate), “Satisfaction” (NBC Universal for USA Network) and “Devious Maids” (ABC for Lifetime).

Prior to his role as COO, Cooney held roles as Head of Production for EUE/Screen Gems, Ltd.; Vice President-In-Charge for Facilities in Wilmington, NC and New York City; and Vice President of Physical Production.

Cooney became the chief executive officer of First Look Studios in 2000. At First Look, a boutique motion picture production and sales company, Cooney worked on projects such “Before Night Falls” starring Javier Bardem and “Eveyln,” starring Pierce Brosnan.

In 1996, Cooney led EUE/Screen Gems in the acquisition of DeLaurentis Carolco Studios in Wilmington, NC. Under his leadership, the studio became the heartbeat of the East Coast film industry. The North Carolina incentive and the newly constructed Stage 10, a 37,500 sq ft, column-free sound stage, lured blockbuster film productions. The studios landed “Journey 2: Mysterious Island” in 2011 and Marvel’s “Iron Man 3” in 2012. Television has long been a part of Wilmington’s success story with “One Tree Hill” and “Dawson’s Creek” enjoying long runs on the lot. Most recently, the Wilmington studios have hosted “Under the Dome” (CBS), “Sleepy Hollow” (Fox Television), and “Eastbound and Down” (HBO).

Mr. Cooney received his B.A. from Boston University in 1983.

George Cooney
Chairman Emeritus
George Cooney
Chairman Emeritus

George Cooney is the Chairman Emeritus of EUE/Screen Gems Ltd.

Mr. Cooney is an innovator with a career that includes milestones such as leading talented creative teams that directed and produced Clio award winning Coke, Volkswagen, Alka Seltzer campaigns and facility operation for day-time dramas. He is well-respected for his foresight and ability to anticipate new trends in order to adapt to the fluid and evolving entertainment industry. After more than 50 years as an industry leader, his focus is now TV and Film facility development and ownership.

Mr. Cooney acquired EUE/Screen Gems and its assets, a division of Columbia Pictures, in 1983. Prior to acquiring the company, he served as Executive Vice President and General Manager of Columbia’s Screen Gems division. He joined Columbia Pictures in 1965 and served in a number of administrative positions before being named the Executive Vice President of the Screen Gems division in 1972.

Sensing a new horizon in technology, Mr. Cooney ushered Columbia Pictures into what was then the newly emerging world of video tape. In addition, while serving as an executive at Columbia Pictures, he was named Chairman of Bell & Howell/Columbia Pictures Video Services, a pioneer in the home video industry.

An early innovator in the industry, Mr. Cooney continually has the vision to morph EUE/Screen Gems to meet the requirements of an ever-changing business model. When the commercial television segment declined following advertising agency consolidation and acquisition by corporations, Mr. Cooney developed the daytime programming “soap opera” business with Procter and Gamble as a major client. It was a partnership that lasted more than 25 years.

And when that segment of the industry began to disappear in the 90s, Mr. Cooney seized the opportunity to become a production facility owner supplying infrastructure and crew for a client base that included Warner Brothers, Paramount, Sony, Disney and more that needed to expand beyond studio facilities in California, which at the time was running out of production space. His vision to expand outside of Los Angeles led to the purchase of the Dino De Laurentiis studio lot in Wilmington, NC. What followed was the building of multiple large, state-of-the-art sound stages, including a massive water tank, in Wilmington, NC, one of the largest in the country.

That success was followed by another bold vision to expand the footprint of EUE/Screen Gems to Atlanta, GA. Mr. Cooney acquired a sprawling studio complex of 50 acres complete with beautiful Spanish mission style buildings and expanded the lot by building four new large sound stages to attract bigger projects. EUE/Screen Gems was among the first major sound stage facilities to set up shop in Atlanta.

Mr. Cooney is active in the community. For 35 years, He’s served as Vice-Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the New York Medical College, Chairman at St. Theresa’s and a Trustee and Treasurer of the Dr. I Fund Foundation. He also served on the boards of Save Amateur Spots of the City of New York; the Cancer Research Center in Valhalla, NY; and St. Patrick’s Cathedral. He is a member of the Finance Council of the Archdiocese of New York. Mr. Cooney is also a member of the executive committee of the board of Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center for 25 years and has served as its Chairman for 15 years.

Over the years, Mr. Cooney has held numerous seats on governmental and private industrial planning organizations and committees. In 1968, he served as a member of the Film Advisory Committee to Vice President Hubert Humphrey and was on the Film Advisory and Promotion Committees of New York City for Mayors John V. Lindsay, Abraham Beame, and Edward Koch. As member of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, he served for several years on the Executive Film Committee. He was also Chairman of the Motion Picture Labor Negotiations Committee from 1969 to 1978 and a Trustee of Harriman College and Will Rodgers Foundation.

Mr. Cooney was appointed by Governor Hugh Carey to the New York State Television & Motion Picture Board, and he was also appointed by New York State Sen. Ralph Marino to the Advisory Committee for the Development of Sports & Entertainment Facilities.

A graduate of Fordham University, Mr. Cooney is a recipient of an Honorary Degree from the New York Medical College and the Helen Hayes Humanitarian Award from St. Clare’s Hospital. And served on the board of trustees.

Mr. Cooney received the William Cullen Bryant Award from New York Medical College for his visionary leadership qualities. Mr. Cooney continues to oversee multiple businesses and projects under the EUE/Screen Gems umbrella and enjoys mentoring his eight grown grandchildren.

Bill Vassar
Executive Vice President - Wilmington, NC
Bill Vassar
Executive Vice President - Wilmington, NC

Bill Vassar is the Executive Vice President of EUE/Screen Gems in Wilmington, North Carolina. He enthusiastically manages the largest studio complex east of California.

“I handpick each employee to create a special team,” says Vassar. “I take great pride in how well we work together to service the needs of each production.”

Bill’s personal involvement and attention to detail have earned the respect of clients such as Disney, Warner Bros., Paramount, Sony, ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, A&E, HBO, Turner and many more. He played an integral role in recruiting the Marvel Entertainment lensing of “Iron Man 3” to Wilmington. This mega-hit is the largest single production in the history of North Carolina.

A media veteran, Bill’s first job was as a disc jockey when he was sixteen. After working in radio programming, news, sales, general management and station ownership, he transitioned to television and film production. In 1984, Bill joined the production management department of NBC Entertainment in New York City.

Active in the community, Bill is on the board of the Wilmington Regional Film Commission; he is a past member of the North Carolina Governor’s Film Council and the Cucalorus Film Festival Board. He served two terms on the Board of Governors for the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

Bill and his wife Emily live in Wilmington, NC with their two sons.

Kris Bagwell
Executive Vice President - Atlanta
Kris Bagwell
Executive Vice President - Atlanta

Kris Bagwell is Executive Vice President of EUE/Screen Gems Studios and manages the company’s film and television studios in Atlanta. He launched the studios in 2010 and has successfully managed production infrastructure for Lionsgate, Sony, BET Networks, USA Network, Lifetime, 20th Century Fox, Paramount and more. A frequent media interview, he has been featured on Fox News Channel and CNN.

In early 2015, Kris led the formation of the Georgia Studio and Infrastructure Alliance, an organization providing legislative advocacy and educational guidance to the film and television industry statewide; he is the group’s first chairman. In summer 2015, Governor Nathan Deal appointed Bagwell to the Georgia Film, Music and Digital Entertainment Office Advisory Board. Bagwell also serves on the Advisory Board for the Georgia Film Institute at Southern Crescent Technical College.

Bagwell established himself early in the industry with an 18-year stint at Viacom’s MTV Networks, Inc. where he served as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Nickelodeon MediaWorks, Nickelodeon’s Magazine and Online Groups. He also worked as Vice President of Business Development, and Vice President of Affiliate Sales and Marketing.

After Viacom, Bagwell pursued an entrepreneurial media path, founding Pancreations, Inc., a medical documentary production company. He co-founded Rocking Horse Media, Inc., an Atlanta-based family and parenting media company and co-founding VerticalPortals, LLC, an online media company based in New York.

Kris Bagwell holds a B.A. in Philosophy from Cornell University and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa society. He also served on the board of directors of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JRDF) Georgia Chapter and JDRF International’s Marketing Committee. Kris was born in Atlanta and has two sons.

Jeff Cooney
Senior V.P. / Creative Director
Jeff Cooney
Senior V.P. / Creative Director

Jeff Cooney literally grew up in television. He began his career in front of the camera in commercials as the face of Fanta Orange Soda. He also starred as the iconic Cream of Wheat boy for many years running. The experience stayed with him long after the commercials were done, and affected his decision to take a more creative role behind the camera later in life.

After college, Jeff began shooting videos for legendary fashion designers Ralph Lauren, Perry Ellis, and Donna Karan giving him a foundation many aspiring directors could only dream about. For the next 20 years Jeff directed hundreds of commercials all over the globe for such clients as Coca-Cola, Avon, UPS, Visa, General Motors, Procter & Gamble, Nestle, and Mitsubishi. He credits his athletic background when it comes to his growth as a director.

A Division I wide receiver in college, his unique point of view of athletics both as a player and an artist makes Jeff one of today’s premier directors of sports celebrities. He has worked with the likes of Shaquille O’Neil, Mia Hamm, John McEnroe, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Peyton Manning.

Along the way, Jeff Executive Produced independent feature films Skins (2002) and Falling Water (2008). His documentary film “Play it Smart” was a winner at the Chicago Film Festival in 2004.

With his brother Chris Cooney in association with OddLot Entertainment, Jeff is currently developing a Biopic on the life of Albert Einstein based on Walter Isaacson’s book; Einstein; His Life and Universe. He’s also directing a documentary feature film entitled “The Game Before the War” about Army’s historic win in 1964 over Roger Staubach and Navy and thus the end of an age of innocence.

On the Television side, Jeff is set to Executive Produce 2 pilots “Growing Up Broadway”; a one-hour doc/reality show for the Oprah Winfrey Network and “Retreat”; a half-hour comedy from the writing team of Nancy Hower and John Lehr (10 Items or Less) for NBC.

Jeff graduated from Holy Cross College with a BA in English. He continues to be actively involved with the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and sits on the Boards of Destination College and the National Football Foundation and College Football Hall of Fame.

Sharon Cooney Shuttleworth
Co-owner / Senior V.P. / Director of Corporate Communications
Sharon Cooney Shuttleworth
Co-owner / Senior V.P. / Director of Corporate Communications

Sharon Cooney Shuttleworth grew up in a media family, so it’s only natural that her talents
landed her in the communications profession. As a child actress and model, she appeared in 70
television commercials. She built on her childhood experience and earned a position as
Promotional Director of the Men’s Division of the Ford Modeling Agency from 1985 to 1990.
While there, she used her laser sharp eye and marketing savvy to screen talent for brands such
as J.Crew, Nautica and Ralph Lauren. Once the agency finalized their selections, she marketed
the talent, raised their profiles nationally and kept the agency top of mind with national clients.

Sharon was named Marketing and Public Relations Director for the exclusive Lake Isle Caterers
in Westchester County, NY, in 1990. While tempting brides and high-end clients with
sophisticated menus, finger foods and reception locations, she grew the business 75 percent
during her tenure.

In 2000, Sharon was named Senior Vice President/Director of Corporate Communications for
EUE/Screen Gems. She has led creative marketing efforts behind the launch of Stage 10 in
Wilmington, NC, the opening of the Atlanta studio complex and subsequent milestones and
bookings for both studios.

Sharon’s leadership has resulted in EUE/Screen Gems’ frequent inclusion in industry blogs
such as “Deadline Hollywood Daily,” the LA Times “Company Town Blog” and “The Wrap” as
well as traditional news outlets such as “The Hollywood Reporter” and “Variety.”

Sharon graduated from Holy Cross College in Worcester, MA, with a B.A. in English in 1981 and
completed a Master’s degree at New York’s Columbia University in 1984. She lives in Nashville
with her husband and has two children.

Christian Lovschal
General Manager - Miami
Christian Lovschal
General Manager - Miami

Christian Lovschal is the General Manager for EUE/Screen Gems Studios Miami and handles day-to-day operations for the production complex. Christian has provided insight and execution for EUE/Screen Gems projects since 1999 when he first worked as a production assistant for commercial and production divisions in New York City.

Later, he worked exclusively with EUE/Screen Gems Studios, overseeing the company’s flagship client at the time, “The Guiding Light” and then managing studios servicing other Proctor and Gamble productions. From 2006 to 2012, Christian developed EUE/Screen Gems’ Buenos Aires/Argentinian division as an executive producer. He opened the studios in Buenos Aires and oversaw productions and commercials shooting there.

Clients included Reckitt Benckiser and brands such as Mucinex and Delsym. In 2012, Christian returned to Miami and began researching the Miami television market and media trends with his eye on a new studio complex for the company. He will open the new Miami studios in Fall, 2015.Christian is a graduate of Luther College and a native of Denmark.

Chris Crowder
Vice President of Operations
Chris Crowder
Vice President of Operations

As Director of Physical Operations for our company, Chris Crowder brings 18 years of freelance crew experience in the Art-Construction Dept. at the Wilmington, NC studios to the role. In 2009, Crowder was tapped to lead construction efforts for our first 37,500 sq. ft. sound stage in Wilmington, NC, and he joined EUE/Screen Gems full time. After successfully completing that project, he was indispensable when the decision was made to transform existing buildings into sound stages and offices at the new Atlanta complex (formerly the Lakewood Fairgrounds) in addition to building Stage 7/8 and Stage 10 in Atlanta.

In 2015, he was a key member of the project management team that transformed the 90,000 sq. ft. facility from a mothballed Miami warehouse into a world class state of the art TV production facility in downtown Miami. The ambitious project was a collaborative effort of EUE/ Screen Gems and the City of Miami’s Omni Community Redevelopment Agency.

Crowder served in the US Navy and studied Industrial Engineering at Wilson College. Chris spends his off time as a local Boy Scout leader and serving on local and international missions projects. He enjoys running, hiking, camping and exploring new territory. Crowder makes his home in Wilmington, NC with his wife and four children.

Cynthia Rose Cooney
Director of Design
Cynthia Rose Cooney
Director of Design

Cynthia Rose Cooney comes to EUE/Screen Gems with a solid design background. She is a student and practitioner of interior design, creative design and branding for corporate workplaces. She’s helped major companies and their affiliates craft unique looks using design trends and innovative approaches. Mrs. Cooney has been an integral part of branding for EUE/Screen Gems’ design divisions.

In addition, Mrs. Cooney was intimately involved in the architecture, layout and the “Old Hollywood” refurbishment concept of the Spanish Revival architecture at the Atlanta studios. Her fingerprints are also on the coastal/beach look of the Wilmington, North Carolina studio complex. Cynthia was the design brainchild behind the New York corporate headquarters for 40 years, evolving with the design landscape through the 70s, 80s and 90s. Most recently, she influenced the interiors at the corporate headquarters at 603 Greenwich Street in Greenwich Village, New York City.

Earlier in her career, Cooney’s keen eye scoped out furniture and art pieces throughout Europe for EUE/Screen Gems Center 44; the location was recognized for it’s unique style and taste in Midtown Manhattan. Cynthia often channeled her European finds into beautiful collections for the various work spaces and also for clients’ homes.

Mrs. Cooney served as the chairman of the Bronxville Cable Committee; she was the first woman to serve in this capacity and maintained the role for five years. She was also a board member of the prestigious Joeffry Ballet Company and has served on behalf of several charities, including the Terence Cardinal Cooke Health Care Center and the Dr. I Foundation. An avid opera buff, she’s also a music and art lover and collector.

Timeline

2019

“Halloween Kills” (Blumhouse Productions) from the cult-classic “Halloween” series shoots at the Wilmington studios along with “Georgetown Project” (Miramax) and “Swamp Thing” (DC Universe/Warner Bros. Television). “Stranger Things: Season 3” (Netflix), “Raising Dion” (Netflix), “Insatiable: Season 2” (CBS/Netflix), “Christmas on the Square” (Netflix), “Respect” (MGM) and “Hillbilly Elegy” (Netflix) shoot at the Atlanta studios.

2018

Superheroes and creepy creatures arrive at the studios. Atlanta hosts the blockbuster “Black Panther” (Marvel Studios) and the Netflix series “Stranger Things: Season 3,” “The Haunting of Hill House,” and “Insatiable” (CBS/Netflix). “Mr. Mercedes” (Sonar Entertainment), “Reprisal” (A&E/Hulu), “Words on Bathroom Walls” (LD Entertainment), and fan-favorite “Swamp Thing” (DC Universe/Warner Bros. Television) film at the Wilmington studios.

2017

Netflix brings two new series to the Atlanta studios, “The Haunting of Hill House” and “Insatiable” (CBS/Netflix). Wilmington studios is home to “Six” (A&E/History Channel), “Good Behavior” (TNT), and “Mr. Mercedes” (Sonar Entertainment).

2016

The hit series “Stranger Things” (Netflix) films Season 2 in Atlanta, “Six” (A&E/History Channel) and “Good Behavior” (TNT) shoot in Wilmington. The Atlanta Studios form a strategic partnership with MBS Equipment Co. to expand lighting and grip inventory and announce a new 20,000 sq ft, dedicated lighting and grip facility. 

2015

EUE/Screen Gems Studios opens a new Miami studio in partnership with Viacom International Studios. The new complex was built by the Miami Omni Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) as a public-private partnership with us. Georgia Studio & Infrastructure Alliance is formed, led by our Kris Bagwell, to speak as one voice on legislative and educational issues. At the Atlanta studios, “Stranger Things” (Netflix), “Alvin & the Chipmunks: The Road Chip” (Fox), “Satisfaction” (NBC Universal for USA Network), “Barbershop: The Next Cut” (MGM), and “The Founder” (FilmNation Entertainment) shoot on the lot.

2014

Wilmington NC hosts “Under the Dome” (CBS), “Sleepy Hollow” (Fox) and “Secrets and Lies” (ABC), and the Nicholas Sparks film, “The Choice” (Lionsgate). The TBS pilot “Detour” shoots here, also. Our Atlanta studios host the “Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1” (Lionsgate) franchise, “Satisfaction” (NBC Universal for USA Network), and “Red Band Society” (ABC for Fox Network).

2013

Three of the top ten blockbusters of 2013 were shot at the Wilmington studios: “Iron Man 3” (Marvel Studios), “The Conjuring” (New Line Cinema), and “The Millers” (New Line Cinema) “Under the Dome” (CBS) takes top ratings for Season 1 and renews; HBO’s “East Bound and Down” returns to the lot for its final season. TV dominates Atlanta: “Devious Maids” (ABC for Lifetime) shoots their inaugural season at the new Stage 10. The lot hosts “Necessary Roughness” (USA Network) and multiple BET Networks shows.

2012

In Atlanta, the company expands again to meet growing Georgia industry demand and builds Stage 10, a 30,000 sq ft sound stage. BET Networks, USA Network and ABC/Disney locate television shows on the lot. In Wilmington, Marvel Studios shoots “Iron Man 3,” the largest production to ever shoot in North Carolina.

2011

BET locates corporate scripted offices to our Atlanta complex, and the Cooneys open the 37,500 sq ft STAGE 7/8 in Atlanta. While USA Network series “Necessary Roughness” is on hiatus, “Watch” and “Flight” feature films shoot on Stage 7/8. In Wilmington, “Journey 2: Mysterious Island” shoots at Stage 10 and uses the special effects water tanks. “One Tree Hill” finishes shooting its ninth and final season and says an emotional goodbye.

2010

EUE/Screen Gems renovates the Lakewood Fairgrounds in Atlanta and opens a multi-stage campus. Chris Cooney launches EUE/Sokolow to develop television and cable content. Sam Sokolow leads the new division in Los Angeles that will develop and produce scripted and unscripted original content.

2009

EUE/Screen Gems Studios in Wilmington, NC builds Stage 10, the biggest sound stage and special effects water tank east of Los Angeles.

1996 – 2009

Hundreds of television shows and feature films locate and shoot in Wilmington, NC including “Dawson’s Creek,” “The Secret Life of Bees,” “Nights in Rodanthe,” and more.

1996

EUE/Screen Gems purchases the former Carolco Studios in Wilmington, NC. Legendary film producer Dino DeLaurentiis built the facility in 1984. The lot is renamed EUE/Screen Gems Studios. Frank Capra, Jr., son of the Oscar-winning director Frank Capra, is installed as President, EUE/Screen Gems in Wilmington, NC.

1988

EUE/Screen Gems facilitates the soap opera “The Guiding Light” in New York City. It’s the beginning of a successful 18-year contract.

1983

George Cooney purchases the assets of EUE/Screen Gems from the Coca-Cola Company (then owners of Columbia Pictures). In their New York studios, EUE/Screen Gems continues to provide production for film, commercial and television companies, producing commercials for McDonalds, Coca-Cola, Nike, Verizon and Proctor and Gamble brands.

1974

EUE/Screen Gems hosts the half-hour soap opera “Edge of Night” in their New York City studios. George Cooney creates the first “satellite” division of EUE/Screen Gems and brings ZIEFF Films into the fold. “King of Madison Avenue” Howard Zieff provides talent as the director for the new group. The satellite structure allows Zieff to freely work both on his Hollywood projects and his legendary TV spots, and the satellite structure becomes an important innovation for the industry.

1970s

EUE/Screen Gems hosts the half-hour soap opera “Edge of Night” in their New York City studios. George Cooney creates the first “satellite” division of EUE/Screen Gems and brings ZIEFF Films into the fold. “King of Madison Avenue” Howard Zieff provides talent as the director for the new group. The satellite structure allows Zieff to freely work both on his Hollywood projects and his legendary TV spots, and the satellite structure becomes an important innovation for the industry.

1960s

Columbia Pictures purchases Elliot Unger Elliot (EUE), a commercial production company widely recognized as one of the country’s most accomplished photography and film entities. When Elliot Unger Elliot (EUE) becomes part of the Columbia family, it’s positioned under the Screen Gems Television umbrella and branded EUE/Screen Gems. The EUE/Screen Gems division consistently experiences growth under the management of longtime Columbia Pictures executive, George Cooney. In 2012, the television series “Mad Men” refers to shooting at EUE/Screen Gems.

1948

Directors (and brothers) Mike and Steve Elliot start a commercial production company with William Unger to form the production house, EUE.