Family & Companions
Known for having a keen eye for new talent as a notable Hollywood casting director, Risa Bramon Garcia made her feature directing debut with the 1999 comedy "200 Cigarettes." Previously, Bramon Garcia (along with casting partner Billy Hopkins) landed Madonna her breakthrough film role in 1985's "Desperately Seeking Susan." The duo were also responsible for getting Macaulay Culkin a substantial part in "Uncle Buck" (1989) and cast Sandra Bullock in her star-making turn in "Speed" (1994). Bramon Garcia worked extensively with Oliver Stone in casting several of his films, a professional relationship that resulted in her serving as associate producer as well as casting director for "Heaven & Earth" (1993) and the following year's "Natural Born Killers." On television, Bramon Garcia was responsible for the casting of the Connors in the popular ABC sitcom "Roseanne" (1988-1997), as well as several other series and specials. Additionally, she was the co-producer of the short-lived NBC comedy "Grand," and directed "A Deadly Secret: The Robert Bierer Story," an 1993 entry in the HBO series of specials "Lifestories: Families in Crisis" that featured Wil Wheaton.
Having worked in casting for over ten years, Bramon Garcia had established a solid rapport with actors which served her well while seeking performers for her directing debut. Favorites like Ben Affleck, Christina Ricci, Paul Rudd, Martha Plimpton and Courtney Love signed up for the film, no doubt attracted to its star-friendly revolving door filming schedule. Among the others featured were up-and-comers Casey Affleck, Gaby Hoffman, Kate Hudson and Guillermo Diaz. Set in New York's East Village on New Year's Eve 1981, "200 Cigarettes" proved an unsteady debut, failing to win much critical praise, although the young star-studded cast helped to bring in moviegoers. Described by Bramon Garcia as a "romantic disaster movie," the film featured several different storylines, with all characters heading to the same party. In spite of "200 Cigarettes" lackluster boxoffice performance, actors and directors continued to be impressed with Bramon Garcia's vision and excellent working demeanor, making a future directorial effort a viable prediction. Meanwhile, she has continued to work in casting, completing "SLC Punk!" (1999), an independent comedy starring Matthew Lillard.
Director (Feature Film)
Cast (Feature Film)
Producer (Feature Film)
Casting (Feature Film)
Began working as a casting director with Billy Hopkins
On first casting assignment, selected Madonna for her breakthrough screen role in "Desperately Seeking Susan"
Was responsible for casting the principal roles for the successful ABC sitcom "Roseanne"
Cast Macaulay Culkin in John Hughes' "Uncle Buck", marking his feature debut
Co-produced the NBC comedy series "Grand"
Directed an episode of the HBO special series "Lifestories: Families in Crisis" entitled "A Deadly Secret: The Robert Bierer Story", featuring Wil Wheaton
Served as associate producer and casting director for Oliver Stone's "Heaven & Earth"
Cast Sandra Bullock in her breakthrough role in the actioner "Speed"
Reteamed with Stone as associate producer and casting director for "Natural Born Killers"
Feature directorial debut, "200 Cigarettes"