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Tommy Avallone (born October 29, 1982 in Haddon Heights, New Jersey) is an American film director and producer. Avallone is well known for his work on documentaries. He produced his first critically acclaimed documentary in 2014, I Am Santa Claus. He then subsequently directed and produced Ghostheads (2016), The Bill Murray Stories: Life Lessons Learned from a Mythical Man stories (2018), and I Love You, You Hate Me (2022).

Career[]

Barney[]

I Love You, You Hate Me[]

After viewing a nostalgic social media post featuring a 1993 news story about a Barney-bashing event at the University of Nebraska, Avallone wondered if he could tell a story about love and hate through the story of Barney the Dinosaur.[1]

In 2020 producer friend Ray Esposito and Avallone collaborated on an idea that would become, I Love You, You Hate Me. They were able to secure Scout Productions to back the project and Peacock to distribute it.

Working on I Love You, You Hate Me was Avallone's first time working with a major studio, which in this case was Peacock along with having a team due to it being him and two other people in the past with his other projects.[2]

Personal Life[]

Barney[]

When Barney & Friends debuted in 1992, Avallone didn't understand the show. For one of his birthdays as a teenager, he asked his aunt to make a Barney costume so he and his friends could beat the character up on camera. Now having children of his own, he has come to understand the show and the making behind it.[3] Working on the documentary made him a better father, and a little less cynical[2] of the character and franchise.

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