You know the saying: If you don’t want strife, the three things you shouldn’t discuss in polite company are Religion, Politics, and Money (There’s one more most Americans would add: Sex).
But where does that silence leave us? It doesn’t further understanding. It doesn’t advance the intellectual landscape. It doesn’t challenge the status quo. It doesn’t agitate for radical empathy. It doesn’t change the way people see, feel, or experience the world or each other.
Great art needs to do all of these things. It exists to do them. To speak about religion, politics, money, sex, or any sensitive subject, it requires one put more important things ahead of being polite. Of being liked. Of being celebrated.
It requires that one be Impolite, if necessary. Truth, authenticity, respect, growth, integrity, love, and compassion are more important than courtesy.
We’re motivated by a fundamental need in our society to stop being polite when polite means being quiet. We’re going to talk about hard things because that’s what our society needs. We’re going to be adults, and talk like adults, and face issues like adults, because that’s what our world deserves. We’re not going to be rude – and we’d love to come over for dinner! – But fair warning: we make for Impolite Company.
Born in Buffalo and raised in NoVA, Jason Stefaniak studied Electronic Media and Film at Towson University, where he produced the short documentary Velocipede, which was awarded the Emmy Award for Outstanding Student Production. Jason went on to pursue his Master of Fine Arts in Film/TV Production at New York University, where he was awarded an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Scholarship and a Graduate Craft Award for Producing. At Tisch, Jason met Ryan Carmichael and over six years of collaborations they laid the groundwork for the 2015 launch of their collaborative production company, Impolite Company.
Jason's work has been recognized by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and has been featured on 20/20, MSNBC, The Huffington Post, The Progressive, MoveOn.org and has screened at the United Nations. His films have been viewed at festivals across the United States and nearly 1,000,000 times online. He is currently developing his first feature as a writer/director.
Ryan Carmichael is a writer and filmmaker from Southfield, MI. He studied film at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor where he graduated with honors and won a Directors Guild of America Student Filmmaker award for his thesis film “Everything’s New in Lost Time.” After testing the waters of advertising for a year, Ryan decided to continue to pursue his dream by accepting admission to NYU’s graduate film program. There he met his creative collaborator, Jason Stefaniak, and formed Impolite Company.
Inspired by the music of Thelonious Monk and The Roots, the writing of Dostoevsky and Kurt Vonnegut; and the films of Spike Lee and Jean-Luc Godard, Ryan aims to channel and synthesize these paradigm-shifting influences and filter them through a lens that examines and questions the existential circumstances and ironies of modern humanity. He is persistently driven by the exploration of new ideas.