Medford, Oregon, United States
|Residence||New York City|
|Occupation||Film director, producer, cinematographer, screenwriter, actor|
Michael Stever is an American film director, cinematographer, producer, writer, and actor.
Michael Lee Stever was born in Medford, Oregon, the son of Robert Roy Stever who was in retail management with JCPenney, and a decorated World War II veteran, and Elizabeth Anne Stever, (née Gubler) a nursing assistant. Stever is the youngest of four siblings.
Stever's early education includes Rancho Cordova High School and Sacramento High School's Regional Occupational Program, where he produced his first film at age seventeen. He also participated in competitive swimming. An influential teacher at that time was Dennis Yoder, who also had a career as a broadcast engineer for KXTV News10. Following his high school graduation, Stever attended Cosumnes River College studying filmmaking, media production and journalism with esteemed Sacramento instructor Doree Steinmann.
Stever was drawn to the stage and pursued a career as a working actor/singer/dancer. His theater credits during this time include The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas with Juliet Prowse, the 30th anniversary tour of Mame with Morgan Brittany, the role of Joe Hardy in NETworks national tour of Damn Yankees, Diesel in a Berlin, Germany production of West Side Story directed by longtime WSS vet Alan Johnson, Brisbane Australia's 1988 World Expo, and singing and dancing in Reno Nevada at the historic MGM Grand Hotel, in Donn Arden's Hello Hollywood, Hello. HHH boasted a cast of over 150 performers and production crew, and played for eleven years on what is still one of the world's largest indoor stages. Stever also appeared at the Paper Mill Playhouse in New Jersey in several productions, including Oliver! with George S. Irving and South Pacific with Ron Raines.
Stever made his television debut in a 1991 episode of the science fiction series, Super Force, where he plays an alien abductee opposite the notorious Traci Lords as a shape-shifting, reptilian she-devil. In 1998 he garnered solid notices as Mortimer Brewster opposite Betty Garrett and Carole Cook in a University of Central Oklahoma production of Arsenic And Old Lace. He returned to UCO shortly thereafter performing with Shirley Jones. In 2000 he rounded out his nearly twenty year performing tenure singing in the historic Radio City Christmas Spectacular.
In 2001 Stever stepped away from performing, and devoted himself exclusively to writing and full-time filmmaking. He also began what would be a three-year stint behind the camera as Unit Production Manager on the critically acclaimed documentary, Broadway: The Golden Age, by the Legends Who Were There. His first play, Erzsebet, a historical account of the sixteenth century Hungarian Countess, the infamous Erzsebet Bathory, received a reading in New York City in 2004.
Stever screened his first independently produced documentary, Saturday Nightmares; The Ultimate Horror Expo! in New York City in October 2010. Saturday Nightmares: The Movie centers on the March 2010 George A. Romero family reunion at the historic (and now landmarked) Jersey City Loews movie palace. His homage to Romero features a veritable "bloodbath" of genre luminaries who appeared in key Romero films, such as actress Adrienne Barbeau (Creepshow), actor John Amplas (Martin), and make up effects master Tom Savini (Friday The 13th), as well as filmmaker Roy Frumkus.
In 2011, Stever produced his first comedy/drama, Checking In, an independent feature based on the New York Fringe Festival play of the same name by Brian Hampton. He followed this with a 2012 music video Don't Come A Knockin for singer/songwriter Dwight Thomas Vaughn. Two following projects, the documentary short film, Resurrecting Carrie, featuring Academy Award nominee Piper Laurie and Jan Broberg's Guide To Thespians, Sociopaths & Scream Queens, featuring Elijah Wood, were chosen as official selections at the third and fifth annual Macabre Faire Film Festivals, first and second annual Scares That Care film festivals, as well as the first annual ParaFest Festival in Bethlehem, PA. and the inaugural FEARnyc film festival, in New York, NY.
Stever reunited with Shirley Jones and Marty Ingels in 2011, in addition to Betsy Palmer and longtime theatrical compatriot J. Mark McVey for his self-produced documentary short, Jon Finch: The Ultimate Impresario, The film pays homage to the inimitable Bartlesville Oklahoma native who has worn countless hats in the theatre, and ultimately served as 'Presenter For The Arts' at both Talequah University, and The University Of Central Oklahoma.
In 2014 Stever met and collaborated with beloved A Nightmare on Elm Street star, Heather Langenkamp. Together they produced Heather's Freddy Cut Nightmare which chronicled her first-ever charity haircut auction on behalf of 'Scares That Care.' Later that year Stever worked with actor/playwright Stu Richelle, and director/dramaturge Linda S. Nelson filming and creating numerous multi-media installments for the Off-Off Broadway production of Vietnam…Through My Lens. VTML chronicles Richelle's reflective journey through the Vietnam War as a combat photographer, and debuted at The Dorothy Strelsin Theater in New York City during November, 2014.
Stever has produced numerous mini-documentaries, including a collaboration with Stephen Schwartz chronicling his first ever opera, Séance on a Wet Afternoon. He films and writes for Broadwayworld.com and TheaterPizzazz.com, and between 2011 and 2014 directed and filmed over 200 comedic and dramatic scenes for actor demo reels in New York and Los Angeles. Stever also served as the official camera man for The Drama Desk Awards in New York City where he had the honor of directing Vanessa Redgrave for a Driving Miss Daisy promo spot. He has also worked extensively as a filmmaker and videographer for the art gallery AFA NYC, The Laurie Beechman Theater, the historic New York City Players Club, Don't Tell Mama, National Arts Club, The Metropolitan Room, Feinstein's/54 Below, The Iridium, The Cutting Room, The New York Friars Club, the historic Birdland Jazz Club and for Able Rigging Contractors and Interstate Mechanical Services Inc.
In 2017, Stever featured as co-cinematographer in director Jeff Kaufman and producer Marcia Ross's award winning Terrence McNally documentary, Every Act Of Life. Also worked with Columbus State University Dance Department head Karyn Tomczak and Lester Schecter PR to produce a tribute/documentary honoring Duke Ellington's Grand Daughter, Mercedes Ellington. Stever's documentary screened at New York Friars Club on December 20, 2017.
May 2018, Stever collaborates with Richard Hillman PR, executive producer Harvey Butler and director/playwright Rajendra Ramoon Maharaj to film the critically lauded play, Little Rock a historical drama about the Little Rock Nine. Little Rock was attended by a veritable who's who of industry notables, including a surprise visit from former U.S. President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.
In addition to 'Scares That Care,' Stever has donated his skills to numerous U.S. based charitable organizations including AIDS Walk New York, and the 2006 Tourette Syndrome Celebrity Fundraiser. On February 23, 2009 he documented the historic 'Defying Inequality Broadway Concert,' interviewing the likes of Lynda Carter, Billy Porter, Gavin Creel, Tamara Tunie, Jonathan Groff, Stephen Schwartz and many others as Stever stood in support of marriage equality after the Supreme Court of California upheld a ban on same-sex marriage approved by voters in November 2008 by ballot Proposition 8.
|2018||Broadway: Beyond The Golden Age (Documentary feature)||assistant camera|
|2017||Every Act of Life (Documentary feature)||cinematography|
|2017||All In with Cam Newton (TV Series)||additional cinematography|
|2017||A Very Sordid Wedding (Independent Feature)||additional photography – documentary segments|
|2016||Abducted In Plain Sight aka Forever 'B' (Documentary feature)||filmed and produced initial fund raising video|
|2015||Disorganized Zone (TV Series)||additional cinematography|
|2014||Fay Wray: A Life (Documentary feature)||additional cinematography, research assistant|
|2014||Heather's Freddy-Cut Nightmare! (Featurette)||producer, director, cinematographer, lead editor|
|2013||Jan Broberg's Guide to Thespians, Sociopaths & Scream Queens (Documentary short)||creator, executive producer, director of photography and camera operator, editor|
|2013||Checking In (Independent feature)||director of photography and cinematography|
|2012||Dwight Thomas Vaughn: Don't Come a Knockin (Music video)||director of photography and camera operator, editor|
|2012||Watch What Happens: Live (TV Series)||camera operator – 1 episode|
|2012||Resurrecting Carrie (Documentary short)||executive creative director, writer, director of photography and camera operator, editor|
|2012||Archaeology of a Woman (New York City screening featurette)||additional photography – documentary segments|
|2012||It's a Hard Act to Follow (Documentary/panel discussion)||producer, director of photography|
|2011||Artists and Alchemists (Documentary feature)||grip|
|2011||Girls Who Smoke (Dramatic short)||additional photography|
|2011||Jon Finch: The Ultimate Impresario (Documentary short)||executive producer, executive creative director, creator, director of photography and camera operator, editor|
|2011||2011 LPTW 30th Anniversary Kick Off! (Video short/featurette)||executive producer, executive creative director, director of photography and camera operator, editor|
|2011||Schwartz: Séance Is a 'Wicked' Mistress (Documentary short)||producer, writer, director of photography and camera operator|
|2010||Saturday Nightmares: The Ultimate Horror Expo of All Time! (Documentary short)||executive producer, creator, director of photography and camera operator, editor|
|2008||How to Get and Keep an Agent (Instructional Video)||associate producer, segment director, camera operator – part one, lead editor|
|2006||The Barry Z Show (TV Series)||camera operator|
|2006||The 2006 Tourette Syndrome Celebrity Fundraiser||camera operator|
|2004||Still Life Independent short||second assistant director|
|2004||Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen (Feature film)||production crew|
|2003||Broadway: The Golden Age, by the Legends Who Were There (Documentary feature)||unit production manager, camera operator|
|2003||Third Watch (TV Series)||production crew|
|2003||The Brini Maxwell Show (TV Series)||camera operator, production crew|
|2002||Analyze That||SWAT Team Gunman||Directed by Harold Ramis|
|2001||Deadline||Bomb Squad Expert||Robert Berlinger||TV Series Season 1 Episode 12|
|1991||Super Force||Mike||Sidney Hayers||TV Series Season 1 Episode 18|
- Grimm, Eric J. (February 21, 2014). "All My Friends Are Demons: A Profile of Filmmaker Michael Stever". Theater Pizzazz. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Cinema Retro: DVD REVIEW: "SATURDAY NIGHTMARES: THE ULTIMATE HORROR EXPO OF ALL TIME!"". cinemaretro.com. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- Cerbo, Toni-Ann. "The Famed Interior of Loew's Theatre will make an appearance on the silver screen this weekend". NJ.com. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Winners, Highlight Video Revealed for FEARnyc Festival". Fangoria. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Piper Laurie, David Naughton and Kim Coates to Appear at SCARES THAT CARE". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Shaking up the American Film Festival – One 'Scare' At A Time: Scares That Care, Piper Laurie and Documentaries". Horror Society. September 20, 2015. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Entertainment Weekly: Stever documentary to screen at inaugural FEARnyc horror film festival". EW.com. Retrieved September 14, 2016.
- "BWW.com: Shirley Jones et al. Pay Tribute to Impresario Jon Finch". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved July 15, 2018.
- "Horror Society: Elm Street's Langenkamp, Filmmaker Stever & Stylist King Chronicle First Ever 'Freddy-Cut Auction' For 'Scares That Care'". horrorsociety.com. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
- "Horror Talk: A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET'S HEATHER LANGENKAMP GETS HERSELF A 'FREDDY CUT' FOR SCARES THAT CARE!". Horror Talk. Retrieved March 18, 2018.
- "NBCNewYork.com: NBC News Honors Veterans & Off Broadway play, 'Vietnam... Through My Lens.'". NBCNewYork.com. Retrieved November 10, 2014.
- "fisherhouse.org: Vietnam...Through my Lens Premieres". FisherHouse.org. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
- "BWW.com: Schwartz SEANCE Is A 'Wicked' Mistress". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved March 19, 2018.
- "Drama Desk and Filmmaker Release Panel Discussion on DVD & Video on Demand". Theater Pizzazz. October 13, 2013. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Michael Stever directs Vanessa Redgrave for The Drama Desk". PR Log. March 1, 2011. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Looking at the Art of Escapism in Daniel Merriam's Watercolors". Hi-Fructose Magazine. June 10, 2015. Retrieved January 17, 2018.
- "Mercedes Ellington". Theaterlife.com. Retrieved February 15, 2018.
- "News: Mercedes Ellington Receives Lifetime Achieve in Dance Award". Theater Pizzazz. December 10, 2017. Retrieved February 15, 2018.
- "News: President and Hillary Clinton Attend LITTLE ROCK". BWW. September 5, 2018.
- "News: HAIL TO THE MIGHTY LITTLE ROCK NINE". Theater Pizzazz. September 7, 2018.
- "Wicked & Wonder Woman Defy Inequality!". PR-Log. February 28, 2009. Retrieved August 27, 2018.
- "WICKED Movement Defies Inequality in NYC!". PR-Log. January 21, 2009. Retrieved August 27, 2018.