The Shift

About The Filmmakers


Born in Oakland, California, Michael Goorjian started his acting career by going to an audition for a local community theater company; at the time thinking it was a cool way of getting out of class. After landing the lead role in a not-so-cool play called Computer Crazy, Michael then learned the play was going to be performed at schools around town, including his own, and that the rest of the cast would be comprised of senior citizens. Despite what, at fourteen, seemed like a humiliating experience, Michael stuck with acting and eventually ended up at UCLA’s theater department.

Michael’s first big Hollywood acting job, was as a dancer in the Disney musical, Newsies, (starring Christian Bale and Robert Duval.) From there he continued to work as an actor, and eventually won an Emmy Award for playing a young autistic boy in the television movie David’s Mother (with Kirstie Alley).

Michael is probably best known as “Justin” (Neve Campbell’s boyfriend) on the hit series Party of Five. Some of his other acting credits include starring roles in the films: SLC Punk!, The Invisibles (opposite Portia DeRossi), the Oscar-nominated Leaving Las Vegas, Hard Rain (with Morgan Freeman and Christian Slater), Chaplin (with Robert Downey Jr.), Forever Young (with Mel Gibson), Broken (with Heather Graham), and Conversations with God.

Michael started dipping into directing in his mid-twenties. With help of friends in his hometown of Oakland, he made a few independent short films, a music video or two, and a mock-documentary called Oakland Underground. Eventually this led Michael to devote about four years of his life to making his first major independent film, Illusion, which stars Kirk Douglas.

Other recent directing works include a short film called Players’ Club (which swept the 2006 Elevate Film Festival in Los Angeles, including Best Director), Mark Twain’s The War Prayer (starring Jeremy Sisto), and the documentary You Can Heal Your Life (starring metaphysical lecturer and teacher, Louise L. Hay).

Currently Michael lives in San Francisco, CA with his beautiful girlfriend Jolie and their two rabbits.

Directed by

  • Michael A. Goorjian

Produced by

  • Reid Tracy
  • Marco Sanchez
  • Noah Veneklasen
  • Executive Producer
  • Producer
  • Producer

Written by

  • Kristen Lazarian
  • Screenplay

Original Music by

  • Chris Ferreira

Cinematography by

  • Robert Humphreys
  • Director of Photography

Film Editing by

  • Rick LeCompte
Michael Goorjian