Team

Michael Prupas
Michael Prupas, CEO of Muse Entertainment

Emmy Award-nominated Michael Prupas is a 35-year veteran of the Canadian and international film and television industries. A former entertainment attorney and senior partner at the law firm Heenan Blaikie, Prupas launched Muse Entertainment Enterprises in 1998 and Muse Distribution International in 2000. Muse Entertainment has become a major production house with facilities in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Los Angeles and is known around the world for its high-quality, award-winning television programs.

Michael Prupas is best known for executive producing The Kennedys and The Pillars of the Earth, both multiple Emmy Award-winning, event miniseries. He is also known as an expert in international co-productions and has executive produced the award-winning miniseries Answered by Fire, Human Trafficking, Ben Hur and The Flood.

He most recently executive produced the 6-hour event series Tut for Spike TV, Hallmark’s TV movies Gourmet Detective: A Healthy Place to Die and Real Murders: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery, the Disney family comedy Bad Hair Day, the holiday TV movie Northpole: Open for Christmas, the teen comedy Zapped, the comedy/drama series Signed, Sealed, Delivered, the docu-drama JFK: The Smoking Gun, the undercover police series Played, the World War II dramatic series Bomb Girls, 4 seasons of the supernatural series Being Human and 3 seasons of the crime series Durham County.  He has executive produced many other TV series including Family Biz, Crusoe,  3 seasons of This is Wonderland, 2 seasons of Twice in a Lifetime, Largo Winch and Tales from the Neverending Story, as well as the miniseries The Phantom, Impact  and The Last Templar. His credits also include Muse Entertainment’s first animated series for adults, Bounty Hunters, and Muse’s first for children, The Mysteries of Alfred Hedgehog.

Prupas’ feature film credits include The Deal starring William H. Macy and Meg Ryan, which premiered at the Sundance Festival, Niagara Motel  starring Craig Ferguson and Anna Friel, The Guilty, starring Bill Pullman and Joanne Whalley, Savage Messiah (winner of 3 Genie Awards), starring Polly Walker, Luc Picard and Isabelle Blais and the documentary feature Rocksteady: The Roots of Reggae.

Among Prupas’ numerous TV movie credits are: Cyberbully, Reviving Ophelia, The Wind in the Willows, An Old Fashioned Thanksgiving, Accidental Friendship, A Christmas Choir, Silent Night, Girl’s Best Friend, Too Young to Marry, Unstable, The Party Never Stops, House Next Door, Murder in the HamptonsPlain Truth, Ice Bound, The Hound of the Baskervilles, The Sign of Four, The Royal Scandal, The Case of the Whitechapel Vampire, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, The Stork Derby, The Investigation  and The Many Trials of One Jane Doe.

Prupas established the first entertainment law course at McGill University in Montreal, which he taught from 1997-2002. He coached a minor league baseball team, served on the Board of Trustees of the Banff Television Festival and sits on the finance committee of the Association des producteurs de film et de télévision du Québec.

Irene Litinsky
Irene Litinsky, President of Production, Quebec

Irene Litinsky joined Muse Entertainment in 2000 as the head of the Montreal Production Center, bringing over 20 years of production experience with her.

Throughout her career, Ms. Litinsky has collaborated with some of the industry’s top producers including Jodi Foster, Robert Greenwald, Ivan Reitman, Iain Smith, Robert Halmi Sr. and Robert Altman. She has worked with such distinguished directors as Robert Dornhelm, Vincent Ward, Darren Aronofsky, Christian Duguay, Paolo Barzman, Alan Rudolph, and Steven Spielberg.

Ms. Litinsky was the Canadian Production Supervisor of Steven Spielberg’s The Terminal and Catch Me If You Can (Dreamworks), Blades of Glory (Dreamworks), and Darren Aronofsky’s The Fountain (Warner Brothers). Her other feature film credits include The Deal (Muse/Peace Arch), Mrs. Parker and the Vicious Circle (Miramax), Map of the Human Heart (Miramax), Waking the Dead (Gramercy/Polygram) and Levity (Columbia Pictures).

Among her numerous television producer credits are: the hit TV series Being Human (Season 1, 2, 3 & 4, Syfy), the Golden Globe-nominated mini-series Human Trafficking (Lifetime), the Emmy- and Golden Globe-nominated movie The Wool Cap (TNT), The Phantom (SyFy), The Last Templar (NBC), Dead Like Me (MGM), WarGames: The Dead Code (MGM), Baby for Sale (Lifetime), Bad Apple (TNT), When Angels Come to Town (CBS), Obsessed (Lifetime), It Must Be Love (CBS), The Tournament (CBC), The Sign of Four, The Hound of the Baskervilles and The Royal Scandal (CTV/Hallmark), Revenge of the Land (CBS/CBC), The Audrey Hepburn Story (ABC), The Sleep Room (CBC/CBS), Million Dollar Babies (CBC/CBS), All Souls (Spelling Television) and Redeemer (USA Network).

Irene is married to Francois Ouimet, a commercial director. They live in Montreal and have two sons.

Joel S. Rice
Joel S. Rice, President, Muse Entertainment Enterprises USA Inc.

Muse U.S.A. President and Executive Producer Joel S. Rice is responsible for developing projects with American television and cable networks in the areas of TV series, mini-series, TV movies and family programming. 

After a career in social work, Rice moved into television production where he has worked for 20 years developing and producing programming for numerous networks. Rice has executive produced over 50 television movies, series and miniseries.

Rice’s executive producer credits include, the Hallmark Channel series Signed, Sealed, Delivered, , the animated series Bounty Hunters (CMT), Cyberbully (ABC Family), Reviving Ophelia (Lifetime), Secrets of The Mountain (NBC),  One Kill (Showtime), About Sarah (CBS/P&G), Shredderman Rules (Nickelodeon) and Zapped (Disney Channel), to name a few.

His most recent projects include the 6-hour event series Tut for Spike TV, the TV movies Northpole: Open for Christmas, Real Murders: An Aurora Teagarden Mystery and Gourmet Detective: A Healthy Place to Die for Hallmark and the Disney TV movie Bad Hair Day.

Known for meaningful television, Rice's productions have won or been nominated for numerous awards including the Humanitas, Christopher, Crystal, Media Access, Angel, Epiphany and SAG Awards.

Jesse Prupas
Jesse Prupas, SVP Development & Distribution

TV Movies & Mini-Series:

Jesse Prupas most recently produced the medicinal marijuana documentary Grass Fed (documentary Channel) and March to the Pole (History),a premium factual film set in the Artic that is the sequel to his 2012 adventure film March to the Top, which took injured veteran soldiers to the top of a Himalayan peak and aired to tremendous national attention on the CBC in 2013. Previously, Prupas also produced the event docu/drama JFK: The Smoking Gun (Discovery, Reelz, SBS) and the highly-acclaimed TV movie Cyberbully (ABC Family/Corus) that explored the issues of online bullying and won a Prism Award for its teen star Emily Osment and a Kidscreen Award for Best TV Movie. Prupas’ other TV movie credits include four TV movies he produced in 2007 for Lifetime: The Watch, Too Young To Marry, I Me Wed and Girl’s Best Friend; three TV movies he produced in 2006: Proof of Lies, House Sitter and Tipping Point; and the first two TV movies he ever produced for Lifetime in 2005: Mind Over Murder and Black Widower.

Television Series & Animation:

Prupas most recently executive produced the dramatic series Signed, Sealed, Delivered (Hallmark/M3). In 2013, he completed production on Muse Entertainment’s first primetime animated series Bounty Hunters (CMT/Comedy Network) starring Jeff Foxworthy, Larry the Cable Guy, Lisa Lampanelli, Bill Engval, Samantha Bee and Jason Jones. Prupas produced his first television series in 2008, the live-action comedy Family Biz (YTV/France 2). In 2009, he initiated Muse’s first animated projects with a mystery series for 6-9 year-olds titled The Mysteries of Alfred Hedgehog (TVO/TFO/SRC/France 5) and in 2010 he followed this animation project with an animated action/adventure series called Gawayn (Starz/SRC/Gulli). In 2011 Prupas produced the live-action comedy series Bullet in the Face (IFC/Superchannel) as part of Muse Entertainment’s joint venture with Just for Laughs.

Interactive Websites & Apps:

Prupas executive produced an app to accompany his animated series Bounty Hunters that launched in conjunction with the series in the fall 2013 on the Apple and Android platforms. In 2011 and 2012 he executive produced an interactive gaming app to accompany his animated series Gawayn, which also was deployed on ITunes and Google Play. In 2010, Prupas produced two interactive Flash-based gaming projects, The Alfred Hedgehog Mystery Club based on the animated series of the same name and Race to Rome (Shockwave)an interactive chariot-racing game based on the mini-series Ben Hur.

Feature Films & Line-Producing:

In the spring of 2013, Jesse Prupas was hired as the Montreal Line-Producer for The Wolverine directed James Mangold and produced by 20th Century Fox.His work for Fox started in the summer of 2011 when Prupas was engaged by Fox 2000 Pictures as the Montreal Line Producer for the Ang Lee directed feature Life of Pi. When Ang Lee returned to Montreal for reshoots on Life of Pi in the summer of 2012, he was once again retained by Fox to provide his line producing service to the production.

Development & Other Info:

Prupas is currently developing a new slate of dramatic and comedy series, kids & teen series, TV movies, mini-series and feature films for Canadian, US and international markets.

Jesse Prupas got his break in the industry in the late 90’s as a writer on the animated series Mona the Vampire (Cinar/YTV/France 2) and as a unit department trainee on the series Student Bodies (YTV/Fox Kids). Prupas is a graduate of Columbia College at Columbia University in New York City;Ecole Science-Po at La Sorbonne in Paris, France; The United World College of the Atlantic in Cardiff, Wales; and Lower Canada College in Montreal, Canada. In addition to his love for film & television, especially great serialized dramas, he is an avid reader, computer gamer, swimmer, skier and yoga practitioner.

 

 

Evan Tussman
Evan Tussman, VP Post-Production

Evan Tussman has been working in the field of post-production since 1997. He has worked for various film companies including as Director of Post-Production for Film Finances Canada.

Tussman has worked on theatrical feature films, television movies, mini-series and series, and has dealt with multiple co-production partners, distributors and broadcasters worldwide.

As head of post-production, his responsibilities include negotiating delivery items and terms with distributors, following up on deliveries and budgets and working with producers to fix any problems in order to meet delivery requirements and dates.

His experience has helped Muse Entertainment produce TV programming and theatrical films and honor delivery and budgetary requirements all over Canada, the United States and Europe.

Alexander "Sandy" Jesion, CPA, CA
Alexander "Sandy" Jesion, CPA, CA, Chief Financial Officer & Vice President of Finance

Sandy Jesion, CPA, CA, a seasoned veteran of both public practice and industry, joined the Muse Entertainment team in 2006. He quickly rose to the challenge of overseeing the finance and accounting departments of Muse's principal enterprises (Muse Entertainment, Muse Distribution International, Muse Ontario, Muse USA and Muse Vancouver). Jesion's responsibilities also include setting up the optimal financing structures for every new Muse production, taking into account tax credit applications and other financing options for each of these new productions.

Under Jesion's financial leadership, Muse has made a name for itself among Canadian production companies, as its productions generally receive the maximum amount of tax credits at the quickest pace possible. These results are thanks to strong relationships that Jesion has helped foster and maintain with both the Quebec and Canadian governments.

An active and dedicated member of his community, Jesion has been a chair or board member of Federation CJA West Island, Congregation Beth Tikvah, The Kidney Foundation and Israel Cancer Research Fund. He lives in Montreal's West Island with his wife and two daughters. Jesion and his family are proud residents of their community and help organize and participate in many local activities.

Jeremy Spry
Jeremy Spry, SVP, Business & Legal Affairs

After working with his father at Telescene Film Group in various capacities throughout his studies, Jeremy Spry began his career as a corporate-commercial lawyer at Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg. He then worked as legal counsel for CBC/Radio-Canada, and then moved to Just for Laughs as Director of Business and Legal Affairs. During that time he executive produced the independent feature film Lucidité Passagère. Just prior to joining Muse Entertainment in January 2012, he was account manager for the specialized film and TV group of the National Bank of Canada.

After receiving a political science degree from McGill University, Spry obtained his law degrees at Université de Montréal and Oxford University. He also completed the HEC-TVA program in film and television management and has been a guest speaker on film and television financing for l’AJAVA (Association des juristes pour l’avancement de la vie artistique), RFAVQ (Regroupement de formation audio-visuelle du Québec), the Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival and Market, and RioContent. He also serves on the board of directors of the Canadian Media Production Association (CMPA).

Betty Palik
Betty Palik, VP Communications and Factual

A graduate of McGill University, Betty Palik is Muse Entertainment’s Vice President of Communications and also executive produces a number of projects for the company’s Factual Division. She joined Muse in 1998 after a prolific career in journalism and broadcasting. She worked as a magazine editor and was also a newspaper, radio and magazine staff reporter for The Gazette, Time Magazine (Canada) and the CBC.

Betty produces press releases, press kits, sales sheets, posters, catalogues, electronic press kits and audiovisual materials such as “EPKs” and “Behind-the-Scenes” for distributors, networks, cable, festivals and film markets. She also works as a Unit Publicist. Among her many unit publicity credits are TutBomb Girls, The Kennedys, Being Human, Jack of Diamonds, Durham County, Ben Hur, The Deal, The Last Templar, Human Trafficking, This Is Wonderland, Family Biz and Niagara Motel.

In the factual field, Betty co-produced the critically acclaimed theatrical feature Rocksteady: The Roots of Reggae in 2009. Betty also directed and produced a number of behind-the-scenes documentaries for television and DVDs. They include The Making of The Kennedys, The Making of Durham County, The Making of Ben Hur, The Making of Human Trafficking, The Making of The Deal, The Making of Answered by Fire, The Making of Niagara Motel, The Making of Mind Over Murder and The Making of Tales from the Neverending Story.

Shawn Rosengarten
Shawn Rosengarten, VP Distribution

Shawn Rosengarten joins Muse Entertainment as Vice President, Distribution with 15 years’ experience in the entertainment industry. 

Throughout his career, Shawn has licensed over 100,000 hours of content across all platforms and every continent while serving as the Just For Laughs Group’s Director of International Distribution establishing Just For Laughs Gags, Just For Laughs Stand-Up, and other comedy series worldwide. During this period, Shawn also brokered the production of Just For Laughs Gags Asia in Singapore with broadcast/producer MediaCorp and as well as associate produced comedy specials for Comedy Central, Paramount Comedy (Spain), and China’s CCTV3.

Shawn has been a member of the International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences from 2004 to 2014 and was selected to participate in the Canadian Media Production Association's (CMPA) National Mentorship Program (NMP) in 2001. The program serves as Canada's launching pad for the next generation of film, television and digital media executives.

Prior to joining the entertainment industry, Shawn completed a degree in Political Science from McGill University and was active in Montreal municipal politics – standing as the youngest candidate for city council in the history of the city as well as serving as Vice President, Youth Portfolio for the official opposition party at Montreal City Hall from 1998 to 2001. Shawn began his career, developing a youth employment program for the City of Montreal as well as educational programs and exhibitions for Environment Canada’s Biosphere/Environment Museum.  

Manuela Hunger
Manuela Hunger, Director of Operations

Manuela Hunger started her career in the film and television industry in 1990 while working in financing at Allegro Films.

In 1994, she returned to Concordia University in order to obtain a B.A. in Communication Studies. Manuela then worked for Whalley-Abbey Media, producers of such lifestyle programs as Debbie Travis’ Painted House and Her Money. As Manager, Manuela’s responsibilities included overseeing three production and video distribution companies as well as Whalley-Abbey’s post-production facilities.

Seeking to acquire a better understanding of the animation industry, Manuela began working for CineGroupe in 2001 where she worked with the Director of Creative Affairs and various international co-producers in the financing and development of such projects as Galidor, Pinocchio 3000, What’s with Andy? and Pig City.

In 2002, the opportunity to set up the Montreal offices of Reel One Entertainment exposed her to the world of international television distribution.

Manuela joined Muse Distribution International in January 2005, where her responsibilities included sales, marketing and management of Muse’s exceptional library of titles worldwide. In 2009, Manuela was promoted to Director of Operations and oversees Muse Entertainment’s corporate operations.

Jonas Prupas
Jonas Prupas, VP, Non-Scripted Programming

Jonas Prupas is Vice President of Non-Scripted Programming for Muse Entertainment Ontario. He oversees the production of Muse’s television movies and documentaries filmed in Ontario as well as all the unscripted programming slate of Muse Entertainment Factual.

His most recent executive producer credits include the television movies Home Again (ABC Family), Hallmark Channel Original Movie The Night Before The Night Before Christmas and Hallmark Movie Channel’s Christmas with Tucker and A Wish Come True.

Jonas has worked at Muse Entertainment since 2008. He has a BA in Economics from McGill University and an MBA in Arts and Media Management from the Schulich School of Business, York University.

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