This past week’s production of the latest episode of Justice For Hire in New York was our largest scale and most dynamic yet, all because of one principle: “Be a blessing.” It was Demetrius Angelo at WarnerMedia’s Urban Action Showcase that first shared this term and the practical application of it with me and the JFH community this past December. Demetrius had given us a slew of WarnerMedia BluRays to give out as gifts to our cast after we won the Best Web Series & Best VFX awards, and one hero posted a thank you on his social media saying that the BluRay was the only gift he had received for Christmas due to hard times. I shared that post with Demetrius, and he asked to be introduced to the young hero, so that he could “be a blessing to him.” I was so moved by this moment, encapsulated by this term “be a blessing,” that it kept playing over and over in my head. It became the mantra for our first JFH production of the year.
What all of the above means in a practical sense is that our production operated with intentional graciousness and openness that allowed us to mix professional actors and athletes with people from our community that had never acted before. We even had people passing by our filming area asking to be in the film, and they were surprised when we “yes” and gave them roles in our scenes. It’s this type of inclusiveness that my team and I at ReelwUrld mean when we say “make movies with the world.” This was also our first shoot ever to use our app in tandem with production, and we saw a daily increase in signups from 2X-4X! If you haven’t joined yet, you’re welcome to here (and feel free to be a passive audience member by choosing the “Client” role). Take a look at some photos from set with the wonderful people that made this production great here.
I’d especially like to highlight a post from our cast member David who made his own superhero outfit for his character Creator, with his first ever shoot with us this past week. His words are a touching example of the impact we aim to make worldwide, “to be able to create MY OWN SUPERHERO for a TV SHOW, shoot it, work with an amazing team and producers who saw my talent for what it’s worth made me realize YOU NEVER KNOW who’s watching.” Read the full post here.
Speaking of worldwide impact, a lot of what I and the world’s leading Transmedia producer Jeff Gomez (and ReelwUrld advisor) have been saying for years about fan participation and the future of all media and entertainment has been beautifully articulated in this Andreessen Horowitz article from game producer Jade Raymond (thanks Alfie Rustom for sharing with me). I recommend reading it as if the writer is speaking about any media business, or any business for that matter, not just gaming. What we are truly working on are the cultural mechanics of tomorrow: https://future.a16z.com/fans-drive-hit-ips.
While the majority of the shoot is over, I still have a few scenes left to film with foundational cast members, including with my buddy Brian Frumberg, CEO of VentureOut, who plays an outlandish version of himself in venture capitalist mode.
I’ll be in New York until July 8, so if you’d like to get together for some face time, reach out and let’s sync.
Thanks for the continued love & support.