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William Penn University Welcomes Max Leonida, Film Artist-In-Residence


(OSKALOOSA, Iowa)— William Penn University is pleased to announce the appointment of Max Leonida as Film Artist-In-Residence in our Communication Research Institute. Max, an esteemed director from Milan, Italy, will teach film-making and production skills to Communication Division students. In addition, WPU is proud to partner with Max and his wife Paola to create a professional and artistic film and video production company – Astarox Productions. Max and Paola will use their extensive national and international connections to bring a variety of projects to campus, including film-making and editing, corporate videos, and commercials. WPU Communication students will gain valuable professional experience by assisting with these projects through internships and employment opportunities.

Along with his directorial work, Max founded the prestigious performing art school, “Accademia dello Spettacolo” in 1996 with wife Paola.  He says, “Teaching has always been something that I’ve happily done throughout my entire career, because there’s nothing more powerful than sharing your knowledge, your culture and your experience with younger generations.”

Max has a wealth of professional experience in film-making and video production in Italy and Hollywood. He began his work while studying Literature and Philosophy at the Catholic University of Milan. Max’s Italian production company completed projects for numerous high profile European and American companies, including L’Oréal, SKY, Sony, ROCHE, and Mercedes Benz. In 2011, Max moved to California to work on award winning films, such as: “Beauty in the Broken”, “Memento Mori” and “A Very Lovely Dress.”

William Penn University welcomes Max and Paola to Oskaloosa. For more information on Max and our Communications Research Institute, visit

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