SallyAnn Salsano is Founder and President of 495 Productions and the creative force behind each of the company’s shows.
As one of the most successful women producers in the entertainment industry, Salsano brings her personal passion and energy to every show she works on. In a short time since its inception, Salsano has turned her 495 Productions into one of the leading production companies and a bona fide hit factory, with shows airing across the major networks and various cable channels.
Salsano started her illustrious career in New York City as an intern for “The Howard Stern Show” and “The Sally Jesse Raphael Show,” eventually spending five years on “Sally” as she worked her way up to the role of producer.
After relocating to Los Angeles, Salsano produced the popular game shows “Who Knows the Band,” “To Tell the Truth” and “The Blame Game.” Prior to launching 495 in 2006, she was a show runner on ABC’s “The Bachelor,” “The Bachelorette,” “Trista & Ryan’s Wedding,” and “Extreme Makeover: Wedding Edition,” as well as on FOX’s “Surprise Weddings.”
In December of 2009, MTV premiered 495’s groundbreaking series “Jersey Shore.” A Long Island native, Salsano drew upon her own experience of growing up in an Italian-American household for the series. The show was an immediate hit and after its sixth season, the show reigned as the highest-rated show in the history of the network. “Shore” became a worldwide pop-culture phenomenon with multiple spinoffs featuring iconic characters Paul “Pauly D” DelVecchio, Jenni “JWOWW” Farley, Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi, and Vinny Guadagnino.
This summer Salsano returned to her daytime roots by serving as an Executive Producer for the new hit daytime talk show “The Real,” which premiered on FOX on July 15th.
495 projects currently in production or on the air include: “Snooki & JWOWW” (MTV), “Friendzone” (MTV), “The Ex and the Why” (MTV), “Tattoo Nightmares” (SPIKE), “Tattoos After Dark” (Oxygen), “Fangasm” (Syfy) and “Down South” (CMT).
Additional 495 credits include: “The Show With Vinny” (MTV), Disaster Date” (MTV), “The Pauly D Project” (MTV), “Repo Games” (SPIKE), “Wedding Wars” (VH1), “Taboo USA” (National Geographic Channel), TV Guide’s #1 award-winning “Nail Files,” “Love Handles: Couples in Crisis” (Lifetime), “More To Love,” (FOX), several seasons of HGTV‘s #1 rated show “Design Star,” Oxygen’s #1 rated show “Dance Your Ass Off,” “The Big Party Plan-Off” (Style Network), “A Shot At Love” (MTV), “Wedding Island” (TLC) ,“A Shot at Love: 2” (MTV), “Tool Academy” (VH1), Season 6 of NBC’s “Nashville Star,” “Tanisha Gets Married” (Oxygen), and many others.
Salsano has spoken on her successful career and the art of producing at various events and panels including: The NY Television Festival, Natpe, B&C’s 3rd annual Women Of Hollywood, the Produced By Conference, the True/False Film Festival, Realscreen East, Realscreen West, and more.
The Hollywood Reporter has honored Salsano for her exemplary work and has featured her on their “Reality TV: THR’s 50 Most Powerful” list for two years in a row and on their “THR’s Women in Entertainment 2011: Power 100” list. She has also been featured in Forbes, Variety, the New York Times, Entertainment Weekly and on ABC’s “20/20,” just to name a few.
Although Salsano currently resides in Los Angeles, she can most often be found on location at one of 495’s multiple shoots around the world where she continues to live up to her reputation as the most hands-on executive producer in the television industry.
Joel is Head of Current Productions and an Executive Producer at 495 Productions. In 2006 he joined 495 as the company’s first showrunner. His creative vision and tireless work producing series, developing creative, and managing an ever-expanding staff has been instrumental in 495’s rapid and continued success.
After graduating from the University of Michigan, Joel spent the next 10 years touring the country as a stand-up comedian. He moved to Los Angeles and began writing freelance jokes for the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, which lead to his first staff-writing job on the syndicated version of NBC’s The Weakest Link. From there he wrote on the series, Girls Behaving Badly, and later an episode of the Nickelodeon animated series, The Fairly Odd Parents. In 2001, as the reality genre began to take off, he and SallyAnn met and bonded on a show he sold and she developed. After working as a producer on Last Comic Standing 2, he gave up standup to focus on producing reality tv, where Salsano put him to work on The Real Gilligan’s Island. Prior to joining 495 he was a producer on Princes of Malibu (FOX), Game Show Marathon (CBS), and America’s Got Talent (NBC).
As Head of Current Production for 495, Joel helps develop, launch and oversee all new 495 series. He’s showrun a diverse slate at 495 including Design Star, A Shot At Love, Nashville Star, Tool Academy, Dance Your Ass Off, Friend Zone and his comedy background helped fuel an 80-episode run of MTV’s Disaster Date.
He’s grateful that every day he gets to work with the best producers in the business, who’ve all become one big, fun-loving, dysfunctional family to him.
He is the co-creator of That Guy Game, the wildly popular bachelorette party game of which he also owns a patent. He resides in Los Angeles with his wife, Chris, and their three children; Calen, Leah and Brady. On football Saturdays he can be found cheering on the Maize & Blue.
Jim Bianco joined 495 Productions at its inception and currently as the Head of Production, he has helped company Founder and President Sally Ann Salsano build one of the most successful television production companies.
After graduating from the University of Connecticut, Bianco migrated to Los Angeles and began his television career at Nickelodeon, where he tackled scripted series and live shows. As the reality genre started to explode, Bianco shortly thereafter crossed paths with Salsano on “Surprise Wedding I & II.” Continuing back on their separate paths, Bianco went onto the premiere season of “The Bachelor” before adding “Temptation Island II,” “Marry My Dad,” “Mr. Personality,” “Rob and Amber’s Wedding” and David E. Kelly’s “The Firm” to his list of credits. In addition to network shows, Bianco also handled numerous cable series.
Bianco re-teamed with Salsano when she launched 495 Productions in 2006 and the company quickly emerged as a power-player with “Design Star” (HGTV) and “A Shot At Love With Tila Tequila” (MTV). Since then, Bianco has managed production for the company’s roster of innovative programming including the groundbreaking series “Jersey Shore” (MTV), which led to the hit spinoffs: “The Show With Vinny” (MTV), “The Pauly D Project” (MTV), “Snooki & JWOWW” (MTV). Additional 495 programming that has hit the ratings roof includes: “Nashville Star” (NBC), Tattoo Nightmares” (SPIKE), “Repo Games” (SPIKE), “Tool Academy” (VH1) and countless others.
Currently Bianco is supervising the ever growing roster of upcoming 495 shows, which include: “Tattoos After Dark” (Oxygen), “Fangasm” (Syfy), “Wedding Island” (TLC) and “Down South” (CMT).
Bianco currently resides in Los Angeles.
With over a decade of experience in production finance, Greg Ashamalla joined 495 Productions shortly after launch as Head of Finance and Operations with a wealth of experience in overseeing all aspects of production finance for music videos, commercials, feature films and television projects.
After graduating from the University of California at Santa Barbara with a B.A. degree in business and economics, this Santa Barbara native co-founded and served as financial officer for Linklite and govplace.com before moving to Los Angeles. Once in Hollywood, Ashamalla joined Squeak Pictures as Associate Director of Finance, where he oversaw all aspects of production finance for commercials and music videos, including P. Diddy’s “Bad Boy for Life” and Faith Evans’ “Again.”
Ashamalla continued his work in commercials and music videos at A Few Miles North Production, Inc. where he worked with music mega-stars All American Rejects, Nick Canon, R. Kelly, The Bangles, Snoop Dogg and many others.
In 2003, Ashamalla moved to Dalaklis McKeown Entertainment as Director of Finance & Operations where he oversaw all aspects of production, strategic and corporate financial planning. During his tenure, Ashamalla’s credits included series on E! Entertainment, Lifetime Television, Fine Living, SoapNet, Style Network, USA Network, MTV and specials on CBS, Fine Living, Travel Channel and VH1.
Since joining 495 Productions, Ashamalla has spearheaded production finances for the company, top to bottom, and its dynamic roster of series across network and cable broadcasters.
He resides in Los Angeles with his wife Lauren, daughter Lola Jane and they are currently expecting their second addition to the family.
With an eye for gripping content and true-to-life storylines that resonate with viewers nationwide, 495 Head of Post Production Ryan Abbott comes from an impressive background of non-scripted series work. A native Angeleno, Abbott has spent his career immersed in reality television since the birth of the genre, having recognized its potential from the start.
Prior to joining 495, Abbott already had an impressive and varied career that included game shows to documentaries. His credits include “My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiancé,” the subsequent “My Big Fat Obnoxious Boss,” “Trading Spouses,” and “Don’t Forget the Lyrics,” among others. Abbot’s slate of work also includes “The Next Joe Millionaire,” “Extreme Makeover” and “Paradise Hotel.”
Since joining the 495 crew, Abbott has overseen post-production efforts for such projects as the number-one smash MTV series “Jersey Shore,” Spike TV’s “Repo Games,” TV Guide Network’s “Nail Files,” MTV’s “FriendZone” and VH1’s “Mama Drama.” Abbott also dedicated countless hours to 495 hits, MTV’s “A Shot at Love with Tila Tequila,” VH1’a “Tool Academy,” NBC’s “Nashville Star,” Oxygen’s “Dance Your Ass Off,” the production company’s flagship series “HGTV Design Star,” and others.
After moving to Los Angeles from Maryland in 2001 to pursue medical school at UCLA and continue her work with autistic adults, the entertainment industry was the last place Amy Griggs thought her career would take her. Alas, after finding a job as a PA she fell in love with the television business. It was in 2002, while working on the show “Mr. Personality,” where Griggs met Jim Bianco prior to the launch of 495 Productions. Griggs continued her career while working on shows including: “American Fighter,” “Law Firm,” “Tease,” “Pro’s Vs. Joes” and many more. It was in 2006 on “Pro’s Vs. Joes” where Griggs hooked up with Bianco once again and then helped with the first pilot 495 ever produced.
Griggs came to 495 full time in 2007 as Executive in Charge of Production and the train has been moving nonstop ever since, she has worked on almost every 495 show since its inception.
With an aptitude for any activity outdoors Griggs still tries to find to time to volunteer for causes supporting the developmentally disabled community and the field of autism.
Josh is Director of Development at 495 Productions. After Graduating from Washington State University in 2001, Josh spent 2 years running a news room as the evening news producer and assignment editor for an ABC affiliate in Washington. The newsroom’s high-pressure environment and focus on story-telling was the perfect preparation for Josh’s eventual transition into reality television.
In 2006 Josh joined 495 as a Production Manager but quickly took on an expanding role in the company producing on a many 495 series including: “Design Star,” “Tool Academy,” “Nashville Star,” and others. In 2008 Josh joined the development staff at 495 and was named Director of Development in 2009.
In his time at 495, Josh has been at the forefront of a number of 495 series including “Disaster Date”, “Friendzone”, “Repo Games”, “Wedding Wars” “Love Handles”, “More to Love” “The Real”, “The Show with Vinny”, “Snooki & Jwoww”, “Fangasm”, “Down South” and more.
Josh resides in Santa Clarita, CA with his wife Mitrelle and daughter Lyla. When he’s not thinking up, writing about or seeking out 495′s next hit series he can be found spending as much time with them as possible.