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Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA

Origin Story is a documentary by comedian and podcast host Kulap Vilaysack of Earwolf's "Who Charted?" It's an international road trip from Los Angeles to Minnesota to Laos, where Kulap's story began. It's a deeply personal but universal story about family secrets, alienation and personal responsibility.


Our Crew

Director Kulap


Kulap Vilaysack was born in Washington DC and grew up in Eagan, Minnesota. Lao American, she is an LA-based actor, writer and comedian. She co-hosted a weekly popular podcast, "Who Charted?" with Howard Kremer for over 7 years and is a frequent guest on other podcasts. Kulap's TV acting credits include The Office, Parks and Recreation, Happy Endings, Bob's Burgers, The Sarah Silverman Program and Reno 911! She has had recurring roles in Childrens Hospital and Comedy Bang! Bang! Her film credits include I Love You Man and Welcome to Me starring Kristen Wiig. She also created, showran, and directed the show Bajillion Dollar Propertie$ that ran for four seasons. Origin Story is Kulap's directorial debut.

Producer June

June Raphael, Producer

June Diane Raphael broke into comedy with the two-woman sketch comedy show Rode Hard and Put Away Wet alongside Casey Wilson. Raphael’s feature acting credits include Unfinished BusinessGoing the Distance, Year One, Zodiac, Forgetting Sarah Marshall and Anchorman 2.  Prior to writing and starring with Casey in the 2013 feature Ass Backwards, June co-wrote the comedy Bride Wars, starring Kate Hudson and Anne Hathaway. She co-hosts the podcast "How Did This Get Made" with Paul Scheer and Jason Mantzoukas. June starred in the series Burning Love, Season 2, produced by Ben Stiller. June's TV acting credits include Flight of the Conchords, Party Down, Happy Endings, The Kroll Show, Inside Amy Schumer,  Whitney and Parks and Recreation. She is recurring on FOX’s New Girl as “Dr. Sadie” and is a regular on Adult Swim’s NTSF: SD: SUV:: Currently, she can be seen in Netflix's Grace and Frankie.



Producer Erica

Erica Kraus, Producer

Erica Kraus was until recently the Executive Director, Production and Development, for Shine America, developing and producing long and short form online series (scripted and unscripted), branded content, and digital feature films, including Appetite for Life with Andrew Zimmern on, and Ghost Ghirls for Yahoo Screen. Prior to Shine, Kraus helped develop and produce projects including Disney Channelʼs series Happy U Year, Warner Brothers Television web series Joni & Susanna, and video game Just Dance Kids 2. She began her career producing and editing commercials and films, including assisting on the Emmy-nominated documentary The Life and Times of Frida Kahlo. She served as the Executive Producer at Ogilvy Discovery / Ogilvy & Mather. Erica is also the founder of 4th Wall Films, whose projects include the documentary festival (2006), and short film Revolution (2012), which was released on DVD / VOD by Guest House Films, and digitally by Frameline Voices. She is currently producing the feature documentary Pill Nation, and narrative feature film Lush.

DP Jonathan

Jonathan Nicholas, Director of Photography

Born and raised in Lubbock, Texas, Jonathan moved to Los Angeles in 2006 immediately after graduating from Texas Christian University with a B.S. in Communications, and the high honor of "Production Person of the Year" by the TCU Radio/TV/Film College. Working from the ground up, he started as a PA and volunteered as an Assistant Cameraman on low budget projects and student films. His first full-time job was working the floor of a lighting and grip rental house, and his off time was always devoted to shooting small projects with friends. Jonathan soon began to work full-time as an AC and Gaffer, switching between unscripted, documentary and narrative. Today, Jonathan has the distinction of shooting with such networks as Discovery Channel, History Channel, NatGeo and Science Channel, while focusing on narrative storytelling through independent productions, and multiple high-end shorts with

Editor Oona

Oona Flaherty, Editor

Oona has worked in the editing world for close to 20 years in an array of genres, including animation, documentary and narrative feature. Her most recent works include William H. Macy's directorial feature debut, Rudderless, which closed the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, and the Kristen Wiig feature Welcome to Me. Additional credits include, Comedy Central's Dr. Katz, Professional Therapist, Lucy Walker's documentary The Crash Reel, and Through Their Eyes - a documentary short film she shot in Rwanda. Oona has worked with The Clinton Foundation, UNICEF and The Department of Education. She credits her mentorship under editors Susan E. Morse and Mike Selemon for inspiring her to follow her passion of storytelling through intimate and compelling editing. She has her Master's Degree in Human Rights from NYU and a film degree from Boston University. Hailing from NYC, Oona now lives in Los Angeles with her husband and son.

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Ian Kornbluth is an editor, producer and director in Los Angeles. He has worked on television and films in L.A. since graduating from Wesleyan University in 1999, where he won the Frank Capra Prize for outstanding senior film. His credits range from small independents to major studios and networks, spanning many genres and formats. Highlights include a 10 year run as producer and director for The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on CBS where Ian honed his comedic and technical skills. Most recently he's worked as lead editor on Why? with Hannibal BuressBajillion Dollar Propertie$, and Bill Nye Saves the World. Ian lives in the Los Feliz area with his architect wife and cartoon-obsessed son.

Composer Michael

Michael Cassady, Composer

Michael Cassady is an actor and musician from Iowa who performs in Los Angeles at the UCB, Largo at the Coronet, Steve Allen Theatre, and Geffen Playhouse, among others. Michael's TV acting credits include Kirby Buckets, Drunk History, Happy Endings, The Office, Comedy Bang Bang; film credits include Freak Dance, Killers, Eagle Eye, Transformers 4. Michael has written original music for the 2014 film The Dramatics, the UCB film musical Freak Dance, TV's Don't Trust the B---- in Apt 23 (ABC), and Players (Spike), in addition to many videos and stage shows.  




Steve is a prolific film, television and video game composer who lives and works in LA. A UC Berkeley grad, he began his career interning for Hans Zimmer; his scores can now be heard in a range of productions from the Transformers series to Ender's GameThe Texas Chainsaw MassacreNightmare on Elm StreetGangster Squad and Desperate Housewives. Michael Bay's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2 will mark their seventh collaboration. As a "Who Charted?" fan, Jablonsky is happy to lend his musical talents to Origin Story.


Kevin Dalton, Graphic Artist

Kevin is an LA-based visual artist from Michigan who's versed in a variety of media and styles. His interest in world cultures and diverse populations informs his work from children's books to indie comics, creative production, brand development, video game environments, title graphics and more. He lives in East Hollywood and runs a creative design service.


Nor Sanavongsay, Graphic Artist

Nor is an award-winning Lao American writer/illustrator in the San Francisco Bay area and the founder of Sahtu Press. He has been a member of the SatJaDham Lao Literary Project, the National Lao American Writers Summit, the Lao Artists Festival of Elgin, among many others. He is the author of children's books inspired by Lao folktales, such as Xieng Mieng: A Sticky Mess. Some of his handiwork can be seen from companies like Encyclopaedia Britannica, Sears, Zoosk, and Barnes & Noble among others. 


William Hyler, Graphic Artist

Will Hyler is a motion graphics and visual effects artist based in Phoenix, Arizona. A Loyola Marymount University graduate, Will cut his teeth working on big budget visual effects films like Speed Racer and Jumper at Lola VFX. As a freelance artist he has since gone on to work with brands like Dell, UPS, and eBay and organizations like Conservation International and the DCCC. His film and television credits include work on Paul Feig’s Other Space, Demetri Martin’s Dean, and Kulap Vilaysack’s Origin Story.

Associate Producer Lauren

Lauren Tyree, Associate Producer

Lauren is a writer from Philadelphia who grew up in the South, Midwest and along the East Coast. She shipped out to LA for a year-long non-profit volunteer program in 2009 and decided to stay in town indefinitely upon its completion. Lauren studied Sociology at Vassar College and went on to earn an MA in Communication with a focus on critical studies of Cinema/TV. 


Additional Camera:

                  Andrew Martin

                  Andrew Martin

                     Ana Amortegui

                    Ana Amortegui

Click through our Behind the Scenes gallery