Space Ryder (United States)
DIRECTOR: Jeff Kenji Yamashita
PRODUCER: Addy Ghani
DOP: Chris Darnell
About the Film:
Space Ryder is a sci-fi action-adventure short film that follows Ryder, an intergalactic bounty hunter in pursuit of his white whale: a monstrous alien creature that has eluded his capture for years. As Ryder sets out on a mission to finally capture the elusive beast, he travels to a remote planet, where he traverses through otherworldly landscapes, faces incredible dangers, and ultimately comes to question his own identity as a hunter.
Jeff Kenji Sloniker is a writer, director, and producer from the Bay Area. Before moving back to the Bay during the pandemic, Jeff spent over two decades in Los Angeles, where he had to hide his allegiance to the San Francisco Giants and love for sourdough bread bowls.
In L.A. Jeff cut his teeth as an improv and sketch comedian, performing at iO, Second City, and the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater. Jeff became a founding member of L.A.’s longest running sketch show, The Midnight Show, where he specialized in absurdist and physical comedy. He’s still very proud of the giant cardboard props he used to make (and somehow transport across L.A. during rush hour traffic) — before destroying them as part of his bit. Jeff’s time with the Midnight Show led him to go on a nationwide comedy tour with Drew Carey, who bought Jeff his first iPad.
As a comedic actor, Jeff has appeared on shows like KEY AND PEELE, PARKS AND RECREATION, and SILICON VALLEY; and starred in national commercials for brands like CALL OF DUTY and ADULT SWIM. He was also a host on SyFy Channel and Fox Sports. As a writer-producer, Jeff was the head writer of Comedy Central Digital, and co-produced a secret comedy club nestled within the offices of the DreamWorks campus — which led him to teach character development and writing workshops to internal teams at DreamWorks.
As a creator, Jeff has sold eight original series to networks like Fox Animation, TruTV, TBS, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon. His favorite was an animated series called KENJI THE GHOST WARRIOR, which was based on his childhood summers in the Japanese countryside.