Meet The Judges
Danny Villanueva Jr.
Danny Villanueva Jr. is a Mexican-American screenwriter/director born on April 6, 1989 in Chicago, IL. He studied Digital Filmmaking/Video Production at the Art Institute of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. In 2012, he launched a horror-themed web channel, How Bizarre, which featured short films, mini documentaries and bite-sized cartoons. In 2017, the channel evolved into an independent film production company, How Bizarre Pictures. I Dream of a Psychopomp is Villanueva's feature-length directorial debut.
BJ Rayniak is a Wisconsin based independent Writer, Producer, Director, Musician, and Artist who studied filmmaking at Columbia College Chicago. After college, while living in Los Angeles, he worked on numerous movies, TV shows, music videos, and commercials. This led to a unique opportunity working for the Hollywood Location Company as an On-Site Representative where he learned the day to day operations of managing a studio.
Years later, BJ moved back to Wisconsin with the purpose of creating films in his home state through his company, Rayni Day Productions. Since then, he and his wife, Angie, have produced the award winning feature film The Rocket, the documentary The Worth of Water: A Great Lakes Story, and most recently the suspense-thriller BLAME.
Chris Kai House
Christopher Kai is a film and television producer located in Milwaukee, WI. He brings decades of experience with him to the horror community as the director of the Milwaukee Twisted Dreams Film Festival. Currently celebrating it’s 7th year in 2022. Currently, he is the producer and director of Dr. Destruction’s Crimson Theater, the longest running horror host show in Wisconsin celebrating 21 consecutive years on over the air TV. He also co-hosts Area 1051 on WLIP 1050 am in Kenosha, WI. He is the winner of the 2017 Pace Setter award granted by the Milwaukee Independent Film Society for his tireless work in promoting and helping independent film.
Brett Houdek was born, raised, and currently resides in Racine, Wisconsin. He grew up performing in musicals at school, church, and the community theater, Racine Theatre Guild. A middle-school teacher by day, Brett continues to audition, perform, and act at every opportunity. A professionally trained actor, he studied at Second City in Chicago, IL, and with Maureen Cashin Bolog at Actor’s Craft in Kenosha, WI.
An active member of the WGTD 91.1 Players in Kenosha, Wisconsin, Brett has performed dozens of live radio dramas since 2013. In 2016, Brett was nominated for Best Actor at Ohio's Horrorhound Film Festival and Convention for his starring role in the short film Greg the Grouchy Gremlin. He co-starred the 2017 faith-based film The UnMiracle with Kevin Sorbo and Stephen Baldwin.
Brett has been cast in two full-length features this year (2022). He is currently earning his master's degree in Script and Screenwriting. He will graduate with an MFA in summer 2023.
SPECIAL GUEST JUDGE - Mark Borchardt