The Tribunal – Production Staff
Michael C. Mergler
Executive Producer, Screenwriter, Composer
Kicked out of accordion school for rowdiness when he was ten, Mike Mergler has been up to something ever since. When he was twenty he dropped out of graduate school in Political Science and hitchhiked to California with his guitar in tow, bent on following his passion and making it as a songwriter in LA. On his first trip there he received an “old school” thrashing from the powers that be that forced him to re-evaluate his songwriting ability, or lack thereof.
He returned to his adopted home town of Cincinnati with his tail between his legs, where he studied the craft of songwriting and found work as a roadie, a soundman, a solo performer and eventually a concert promoter, working with some of the biggest rock stars of the 70’s. Later he returned to Hollywood and began to have his songs published. But success still eluded him, and he decided LA was no place to meet a wife and raise a family, so he returned to Ohio and went back to concert promoting. After switching concert companies he ended up on tour for two seasons with legendary comedian Red Skelton that included a part in his shows. It was during those tours that he found the love of his life and decided to chronicle those crazy times in a two-CD set of music entitled Long Night’s Journey Into Day, the first ever Faith Witness story in song. Later, he fictionalized his story in a novel, The Plastic Rosary on the Mirror. In the latter he introduces us to the protagonist of The Tribunal, Tony Mirakul, the never-quite-successful rock star wannabe who is blessed in spite of himself in Mergler’s first movie, The Tribunal, and even more so in its sequel, Return To The Tribunal.
Mergler is a partner in a successful home remodeling business, which affords him the time and resources to exercise his creativity by writing and producing. For his first three films, Mergler was executive producer, screenwriter, composer, music producer, musician, and singer, and his favorite job of all – check writer.
Mergler resides in his original home town of Dayton, Ohio and is still in love with his wife of more than thirty-five years, who prefers to remain nameless while this whole movie thing blows over. Mr. and Mrs. Mergler are daily communicants who will be forever thankful for the blessings of God upon their family. Mike especially thanks the Holy Spirit for the chance to make these movies with His guidance and help.
Marc Leif’s work has been seen on the silver screen, most American networks, many of the premiere cable television outlets, and home video in both fiction and documentary formats. Mr. Leif’s background in journalism and history has greatly influenced the broad spectrum of topics and film styles he has worked on during his forty year film career. He has served as writer, editor, producer, and director throughout his tenure including The Tribunal, The Do Over, Return To The Tribunal, Fatale, Witless Protection, And Vanishing Point. His short film, A Steady Rain, was nominated for a Golden Hugo Award for Best Short Film at the Chicago International Film Festival. Marc is President of Production for Rockin’ the Wall Studios in Los Angeles, where he lives with his wife and family.
For more than thirty years, Trey Stone has made a name in music, theater, and film. As a pianist, musical director, composer, songwriter, and singer, Trey has performed worldwide. For fifteen years Trey served as Musical Director at Chicago’s famed Second City comedy theater, home to many of the great entertainers of the past fifty years. Currently, Trey performs and records with his rock-and-roll band, Trey Stone and the Ringers, and tours as Musical Director with Jim Belushi and the Board of Comedy.
Director of Photography
Roger has been working as a free-lancer in the Cincinnati, Ohio film production community for the last thirty years, concentrating on camera work for the past twenty. Clients include Saint Michael Productions feature films The Tribunal and The Do Over, and commercials for Proctor & Gamble, Apple, MasterCard, McDonald’s, Nike, Gatorade, Makers Mark and many others. Political clients include Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Rudy Giuliani. Roger has worked on projects featuring celebrities and icons such as Robert Plant, Willie Nelson, Katy Perry, Fleetwood Mac, Matthew Broderick, and Florence Henderson.
Mark’s work has earned international acclaim for tackling difficult scenes and locations with artistry and sensitivity. He has worked as a Production Designer or Director of Photography on full length feature films, most recently The Tribunal and The Do Over, documentaries, commercial spots and industrial and corporate video. Mark has consistently taken on diverse and never-been-done-before jobs ranging from designing executive sets for corporate clients to refurbishing and maintaining displays with animated life-sized characters, ten-thousand square foot Halloween exhibits with lighting and effects, designing or installing high-end immersive environment installations for P&G, and working with top level ad agencies. An accomplished musician, Mark performs in two professional musical acts, “Keshvar Project” and “Strange Creature.”