Fresh off her role as production designer for the political thriller The Manchurian Candidate, Kristi Zea has made the leap to the world of academia. She recently joined the full-time faculty at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts in a dual appointment between the Department of Design for Stage and Film and the Kanbar Institute of Film and Television, Graduate Division.

Zea's presence will pave the way for expanded opportunities for film students. In Production Design Collaboration I and II, directors, designers, and cinematographers will focus on the development process of a design idea underlining the essential aspects of the collaboration process. Under Zea's tutelage, students will work on projects realized on paper but then will move quickly to produce a 10-minute film shot with high levels of production values including locations, props, and costumes.

In addition to Manchurian, Zea's credits include Red Dragon, Changing Lanes and Sleepers. She also production designed a number of major films in the ‘80s and ‘90s that include Silence of the Lambs (1991) and Philadelphia (1993); Martin Scorsese's Goodfellas (1990) and New York Stories (1989); and James L. Brooks' Broadcast News (1987).