Zadi Diaz is a two-time Webby Award and two-time Streamy Award winning producer, director, and writer, with a focus on non-fiction and narrative storytelling for the web. She is the co-founder of Smashface Productions, a new media production company, and is best known as the co-creator of Epic Fu, one of the most respected web series about Internet culture which began in 2006, with over 85 million views worldwide.
She currently works as Head of Content Development for Disney Interactive Entertainment, creating original live-action and animated series for the web, collectively with over 160 million views worldwide.
Her online video career began in 2004 as an editor for a fictional web series called “Welcome to the Scene” about the Internet pirating scene, which was distributed and downloaded hundreds of thousands of times via BitTorrent. In 2005, she began producing short narrative videos for the web as a videoblogger. One mashup video garnered her a full-page in the New York Times for its social commentary on Hurricane Katrina by using copyrighted music and television news footage. That same year she became the west-coast correspondent for Rocketboom, a daily news show on the web.
Her work in building online communities and deep understanding of social platforms and media has been recognized by the British Council and other organizations and has allowed her to travel to many parts of the world, including Ireland, Germany, France, and South Africa to explore how new media and entertainment can unite various cultures.
As a producer, she has worked on various narrative non-fiction and documentary projects as well as branded entertainment series with high-profile brands. She has produced over 100 interviews for PBS and interviewed over 200 personalities, including Arianna Huffington, Sir Patrick Stewart, Patti Smith, Norman Lear, Mike Massimino (the first astronaut to tweet from space), and Grover. She has also produced videos for brands like Pepsi, Puma, Intel, HP, Netflix, GoDaddy, XBox, Paramount, and LionsGate and has produced and directed national TV commercials for J!NX, a clothing line for geeks.
Prior to the web, Zadi worked for many years as a director/writer/producer in NYC theater by night, while working in publishing as an Art Director and Photo Editor by day. She was the Director of Audience Development at the Spanish Repertory Theater, spearheading the International theater’s move into the online world.
In addition to the New York Times, Zadi’s work has been highlighted in Forbes, CBS Evening News, MTV, The Associated Press, Ad Age, The Guardian, and many other national publications. She has also spoken on panels about new media and web series production at SXSW, NAB, Digital Hollywood, Cannes Lions, Producer’s Guild of America, NAPTE, ComicCon and others.
She is a Film Independent Project:Involve Fellow, a member of the Transatlantic Network 2020 (TN2020), a member of the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS), and previously sat on the board of the International Academy of Web Television (IAWTV).
Zadi was born in Harlem and grew up in the Washington Heights section of NYC, as well as the South Bronx. She is of Dominican descent.