Zane Buzby is a Director/Producer/Humanitarian. A classically trained actor, Zane made her mark as a comedy performer in the cult classics, Cheech & Chong’s Up In Smoke and This Is Spinal Tap, before going on to direct over 200 episodes of network television including such hit comedies as The Golden Girls, Blossom, Newhart, Married…with Children, and HBO’s comedy/concert Women of the Night. She has produced and directed for all the major TV/Film studios, and worked with such diverse talents as Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Joy Behar and Jerry Lewis.
Zane’s rendezvous with destiny came while searching for her roots in Lithuania and Belarus. She found elderly Holocaust Survivors in desperate need of food, medicine, heat and shelter. This trip was life changing and left her with, “one foot in comedy, one foot in the Holocaust.” Zane founded The Survivor Mitzvah Project [SMP], a non-profit charity to bring them emergency aid. Spearheading numerous Aid Expeditions in 8 countries, Zane has raised millions of dollars for those in critical need. She created SMP’s Holocaust Educational Archive, a unique repository of a vanished world, including hundreds of hours of survivor testimony and never before seen footage of Partisan bunkers, killing fields, and war-torn “ghost villages” that now stand empty in ruins. Zane is working on a feature documentary, Family of Strangers, chronicling her experiences and giving voice to survivors who have been silenced for decades.
Zane produced/directed/wrote The Last Survivors – Echoes from the Holocaust – SMP’s story presented in moving and powerful performances by Ed Asner, Valerie Harper, Frances Fisher and Elliott Gould.
Zane has been named a CNN HERO for her humanitarian work. She has received the Anti-Defamation League’s Deborah Award, the Mensch International Foundation Award, PBS/KCET’s LOCAL HERO Award, and named a KTLA HERO AT HOME.