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Max Leonida

Film Artist-in-Residence

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.

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.”

View his work here: or


O: 641-673-1092

  • Studies of Modern Literature & Philosophy, Catholic University of Milan, 1988-1994
  • Official Degree as a Director and Steadicam Operator, Professioni Moda in Milan, 1992-1993
  • Studies of Acting, Directing, and Performing Arts, Accademia de' Filodrammatici in Milan, 1991-1992
  • 2021 Spello International Film Festival | Best Documentary (Nominee) | Video Art Films: Terrigena and Criseide | Director
  • 2016 LA Short Awards | Best Short Film (Winner) | A Very Lovely Dress | Director
  • 2014 Columbia Gorge International Film Festival | Best Creative Short (Nominee) | Movie: Memento Mori | Director
  • 2013 3D International Film Festival LA | Best Stereographer (Winner) | Feature Film: Run | Producer
  • 2010 Salerno International Film Festival | Best Film & Best Sport Film (Nominee) | Feature Film: Backward | Director
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