My directorial debut for Narrative – is a kids show
In fairness, I’ve shot digital assets for some of the biggest brands in the world. Commercials, live broadcast, branded content primarily, and it has been one of the greatest joys of my life. When I started Bolt Entertainment, I always knew that I wanted to create my own TV shows, I always wanted to film our own movies. But I never imagined in 1000 years my directorial debut would be a television series created for kids. In fairness. It was actually unbelievably fun. The majority of it was shot on green screen and there were puppets involved. I don’t wanna give too much away, but just think Harry Potter meets Dr. Seuss with a lot of Sesame Street involved.
The equipment we used
Because this project was self funded, our budget was limited. But with that limited budget, we stretched it, pumped it full of steroids, and I think we’re going to have a hell of a TV show. Quick note, for anyone knowledgeable about green screen work, you might notice a green Christmas tree on the right. Needless to say, it was removed and a white Christmas tree was brought in. Now getting back to the story…
One of my favorite camera systems of all time are Sony’s. There’s something about the way that image just looks – clean and crisp. I love the color science, I would put it on par close to an ARRI, but if we really want to dive into the weeds for a moment, they are specifically geared towards the bulk of content we shoot, business videos. Once we become a narrative focused production company, who knows, we may stick with Sony because I love the Venice as well, but there’s something about Arris that just give a little more softness to an image which I love. I’m not sure if you can get that same soft image that I’m aiming for with Cooke Lens on a Sony, that’s something that I’d like to explore a bit more moving forward.
The Sony FX6 is really my go to camera. It’s the best value camera system on the market in my opinion. The image is clean, and you can shift it towards artistic with the right lighting and with good glass. The highlight roll off is not quite as good as the higher end cinema cameras, but it’s indiscernible to the untrained eye. The lenses that we paired with all of our cameras are Sony G Masters. I love how fast they are, how clean they are, and it just makes sense because they are native and compatible with Sony’s auto focus capabilities for when we start to introduce movement.
Two Sony Fx3s
If you are looking for a great entry level cinema camera, this is the way to go. It’s almost funny how you cannot consider this an entry-level cinema camera anymore. The fact that “The Creator” with John David Washington was just filmed on a number of these camera systems, it’s still unbelievable to me. I always loved the image coming out of this camera, but the fact that a $100 million Hollywood feature film was shot on this specific camera still blows me away.
The star of the show
About three months ago, a message came in through our companies Contact Us page. A young man, 21 years in age, said that he wrote books for children. His books were selling well, and he wanted to continue to build out his business through TV. The more I dug into his story, I immediately knew that I wanted to give this guy a chance. He comes from humble beginnings, but through his talent and ability, created a successful series of books. Like me, he’s from Atlanta, and is a minority trying to find his way in the world. Not to sound like a broken record, but it’s true, there are not as many opportunities for people of color, more specific, black men, especially in the world of entertainment. We often have to find our own way, or hope that someone opens a door for you to get a real opportunity. Our parents, relatives, friends of the family, are simply not in the entertainment business. And if they are, they certainly are not in a position of power to green light a project – which makes it more difficult. So when I saw an opportunity to help someone that deserved a shot. It was a no-brainer. Additionally, when the creator told me the premise of the show and the why behind the entire series. It increased my interest tenfold. All I can say is, I cannot wait for the world to see it. I am super proud of this guy, and what we created together.
Pitching to Networks
In the coming months. Bolt Entertainment will be taking this TV show to networks and distribution platforms. I’ve personally pitched to a number of them in the past, Netflix, E!, Bravo, NBC, ESPN. . but this feels different. This time we have a project that is 100% complete, and instead of pitching development, we are pitching acquisitions, which is a different division inside of these distribution machines. Pitching is always interesting, you never know who all if going to be in the room or on the call the day of unless you pitch all the time and have strong relationships within one of these platforms. But then again, how do you get to that point in the industry? How do you get to a point to where you’re consistently having those conversations with development or acquisitions when you are someone like us. We don’t live in LA, we don’t come from a Hollywood family, and we’re trying to get in that front door. Hardwork comes to mind. Consistency. Showing up and delivering on every opportunity that you get whenever you do get one. We are shooting for Amazon next week. I believe we’re shooting something else for Cadillac at the top of the year 2024. Even though you might not be in that world full-time. Make the best of every opportunity, because with every opportunity, a new door just might open if you do the job well enough. Thanks for reading. Till next time.