Stephan Bugaj is a transmedia writer/director with over twenty years of experience in the animation, video games, virtual reality, multimedia and film industries. He recently worked at Telltale Games as Creative Development Director in charge of all writing and directing for The Walking Dead season two, The Wolf Among Us, Game of Thrones, and Tales From The Borderlands games. In addition to his creative director duties he co-created the season arcs for Game of Thrones and Tales from the Borderlands, co-directed the first episode Game of Thrones, and co-wrote the first episode of Tales from the Borderlands.
Prior to that he co-developed and co-wrote two feature animation projects in-development at Pixar Animation Studios. His total of twelve years of experience at Pixar Animation Studios included stints in various production tech roles, which has given him extensive expertise in the overall animated feature production pipeline, from concept development through postproduction. He was instrumental in redefining Pixar’s studio-wide production workflow from modeling through filmout when the studio’s original animation system was replaced.
Stephan currently has feature, VR and game narrative projects in development with Marza Animation Planet, Storyscopic films/Waking-up Media, U2K, DJ2, The Rogue Initiative, Bound and Episode/Pocket Gems, and has served as a story consultant on films currently in-development at Prana. He is a creative board member of Limitless Entertainment and Blackout VR. The “Amar” graphic novel he wrote is available on Comixology.
His feature film specs “Let The Games Begin”, a family comedy, “Welcome To Akron”, a dramedy, and “Desert Maelstrom”, a military horror story have all placed in numerous contests — most notably “Welcome To Akron” in the Nichol Fellowship competition, and “Let The Games Begin” at Austin Film Festival.
Two short films Stephan wrote and directed, starring an actual android constructed by Hanson Robotics, will debut at Cannes 2016 hors concours in the Hong Kong Pavilion. He is also responsible for character and narrative development for all Hanson Robotics projects.
Stephan has also been a multimedia creator-researcher at Bell Labs, a pioneering internet writer-developer at Studio Archetype, a voice actor and developer at SSI, and a first generation VR developer at Gravity Games and Cyberlab 7. He is the cohost of the Creative Writing Career podcast and his widely circulated free eBook “Pixar’s 22 Rules Of Story Analyzed” has been translated into Mandarin, Spanish and French.