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Samantha Hanks

Casting Director

Samantha Hanks is Executive Vice President of Casting and Talent Relations for Magical Elves. In her role, Hanks is responsible for casting the talent and contestants for the company’s entire slate of projects including Nicole Byer and Jacques Torres in the Emmy Award-nominated Netflix hit “Nailed It,” Bravo’s “Top Chef” and “Top Chef Amateurs,” Netflix’s “Best Leftovers Ever!” and “Sugar Rush,” National Geographic’s “Brain Games” with Keegan-Michael Key, and Oxygen’s true crime series “Cold Justice.” 

Additionally, Samantha Hanks oversees casting for sister company A. Smith & Co. Productions, a genre-spanning unscripted powerhouse studio that produces shows from sports and culinary competitions to quiz game shows and docuseries. Current and past series include “Ellen’s Next Great Designer,” “Hell’s Kitchen,” “American Ninja Warrior Junior,” and “Floor is Lava,” among others.

Prior to joining the Elves, Hanks partnered with culinary expert Gail Simmons to produce “Star Plates” for Food Network which was co-produced by Drew Barrymore and Flower Films. Hanks has also worked for celebrated film producers Jane Rosenthal at Tribeca Productions and Lynda Obst at Paramount Pictures. She gained studio experience at MGM, where she helped develop their slate of pictures, including the “Barbershop” franchise, before working as a creative executive for director/producer Jon Favreau on “Iron Man”, “Zathura,” and the Emmy-nominated IFC show “Dinner for Five”.