Archive for Film

Hollywood Needs Entrepreneurship Too!

When stripped down to its core, entrepreneurship represents a few very simple things; the ability to identify a problem and solution, develop a new approach, and build a network.  These qualities are needed for more than just running a business, they are necessary for making it in the competitive world of Hollywood.

Thirty-two year old Director Damien Chazelle is a perfect example of how even young people can get big in a cut throat industry when you apply the principles of entrepreneurship…

1. Damien identified an area where he was passionate.

Growing up, Damien was obsessed with film making and jazz. It influenced nearly every big decision he made.

2. He narrowed down his product (his talents).

Although his passion was equally split between film and music, he was hard pressed to make his musical talent match his passion. This caused him to turn away from music as a pursuit, and instead focus on film.

3.  He started small, with a big goal in mind.

After college he moved out to LA. His long term dream was to get funding for La La Land, which he wrote while in Harvard . Before he even considered starting production on that, he worked as a writer for several years. The result of this were films such as Grand Piano and 10 Cloverfield Lane.

4. He networked.

Not only did working as a writer keep him financially solvent, but it also helped him make connections. He began to work out the puzzle of Hollywood, and how to play its game while staying on top.

5. He expanded.

After years of networking and writing, Damien created a short film called “Whiplash”. He screened it to a group of producers and received funding to make a feature film. The rest is history.

6. He retained his original voice and passion.

Whiplash went on to receive multiple awards. Damien received funding, and guided his original dream of La La Land to critical and box office success. Throughout the entire process Damien’s original passion remained unchanged. He combined his love for film and music, and an entrepreneurial mind to become one of the most successful and highly acclaimed directors working today.


Olan Rogers

Olan Rogers is best known for his personality. Because, quite simply, personality what he conveys most through all that he does. While Olan Rogers was  best known for his comedic stories he tells on his YouTube channel, his personality shines through all the many other projects he has started.


Born in Nashville, Tennessee, Olan rogers started his video blog series back in 2010 after graduating from the University of Memphis with Bachelor’s in Communication and Visual Arts. Since, starting his youtube channel, it has accumulated quite a subscriber base in the past six years. This is mostly due to his charming and hilarious story-telling videos that have gone viral multiple times. However, this is not all that his YouTube channel provides. In addition to stories and short, comedic sketches, his channel also hosts his feature length indie professional films recognized by such as Pop Rocket and New Prime.

Additionally, Rogers has launched his own clothing supply store where he sells merchandise related to his video content as well as apparel displaying art or clever sayings. Since launching his online clothing store, Rogers also opened The Soda Parlor, a store that provides a welcoming and chill atmosphere, selling apparel, artisan sodas, and floats. The Soda Parlor is located in Nashville and a second location will be opening later this Fall.



Beginning in 2017, Olan Rogers will be starting production on three more film projects under his newest project, Battle Bear Productions LLC. Under Battle Bear, Olan will provide animated tv shows as well as continuations of other film projects that he has started on his YouTube channel.

Feel free to check out his content below!

Personal Video and Solo Shot

Soloshot is a company that has recently caught the eye of media. Soloshot was started on the idea that it was difficult to create a quality personal video while surfing. This obviously has much more application than its initial intentions and is revolutionizing the personal filming industry created by the introduction of the GoPro. The difference between these two companies is that Soloshot is able to track the subject with an automated swivel. This swivel can turn from side to side as well as up and down. GoPro was and is a great product that would be strapped to some sort of base, they have innovated their own product several times coming out with new products and accessories to optimize the consumers experience with their product. Once Soloshot can optimize their product in such a way GoPro has they will be able to stand as a strong competitor. Soloshot was started by Chris Boyle a young and very successful entrepreneur, who at the age of 22 had already started a company for medical devices and next-generation materials and that had a licensing agreement with a fortune 500 company. He solved a common issue among personal film making, that was, how to capture hours of high definition video from a spectator angle without having to rely on someone to stand for hours at a time, pointing a camera.

Quality Tech Reviews

Too often in the world of new and upcoming tech, one can be easily overwhelmed by the crowded feed of user reviews. Enter a simple search such as “iPhone Review” onto the YouTube search engine and one will find a plethora of videos all aiming to answer the same few questions. What does it do? How does it work? Is the product (the newest iPhone, for example) worth the cost? Does it succeed or live up to one’s expectations? Is it better than the competitor’s options? These are simple questions that the consumer asks. Unfortunately, many reviewers fail to communicate to the average consumer the answers they seek. Too many reviews focus on specs, build quality, or the camera, but few have always been able to deliver to the consumer a holistic perspective on whether or not the piece of tech delivers.

Enter Marques Brownlee. Born in December of 1993, Marques is an American based, Youtuber specializing in technology reviews. In 2013 Vic Gundotra, the former senior Vice President, Social for Google Inc. named Marques Brownlee “the best technology reviewer on the planet right now.” Why is this?

Marques Brownlee

                               Marques Brownlee

While his videos have always been informative, he originally gained popularity for responding to his viewers such as answering questions they brought to him and by asking his viewer what they were interested in viewing. Since 2008, his channel has gained over 3.7 million subscribers making him the most subscribed to ‘tech based’ YouTube channel.




Marques stands out from the many reviewers on YouTube using his deep understanding of technology to explain new and complicated developments. However, unlike many, he does this using simple terms and straightforward videos creating high quality tech reviews answering the questions the consumer might have.


JackGap: Shed Session

photoTwin brothers Jack and Finn Harries have had a relatively distinct presence on Youtubefor several years now. With over 4 million subscribers on their channel titled JacksGap since 2011, it is no wonder that have some level of influence on the Youtube community. However, their normal content is not what I want to talk about. It’s a branch of their channel that they recently formed that has caught my attention. Shed Sessions is a strand of content where they showcase musicians playing acoustic music in their neighbor’s shed. Both loving quality music, Jack and Finn, are striving to expose start-up and small town musicians to a wider audience to benefit both the artists and listeners by giving them new content to listen to. While announcing the new project on their blog, Jack said,

“Music is something that I have always felt passionate about, in particular acoustic music. So it only felt natural to me to share it on our channel… There is something really exciting about being able to share music in such a raw and intimate setting. It is important to us to record Shed Sessions in one shot, with one angle. We want to capture the song in its rawest form.”

JacksGap has featured artists such as JP Cooper, Jeremy Loops, and We Were Evergreen. I myself have enjoyed listening to new artists and experiencing their music in such a natural setting. Jack and Finn recognized that no one with a significant Youtube following was promoting growing, talented musicians and so they took initiative. JacksGap has experienced significant success with Shed Sessions with views per video averaging around 1 million. The JacksGap channel continues to grow and explore new possibilities and it will be exciting to see which new avenues they will take over the next few years.





Over this past summer, filmmaker  and youtuber Casey Neistat and former VP of Engineering for Tumblr, Matt Hacket launched a new app called “Beme”. After working on the project for over a year, the duo was finally ready to release their new format for video sharing.

“Beme” is an app that, according to Neistat and Hackett, captures the unfiltered and genuine moments in life. “Beme” captures videos with the rear camera in four-second bursts by covering an iPhone’s proximity sensor. The screen goes black so users have no way of previewing the content. Viewing others’ content is done via a snapchat like interface where you hold down your finger to play and when the video finishes, it’s gone forever. The app lets you react to other peoples’ content with the iPhone’s front camera by sending a selfie to someone as they watch the video.

So what makes “Beme” different or better than other forms of video sharing, such as Snapchat? Being frustrated by the superficiality of social media today, Neistat feels that “Beme” allows users to consciously capture their life without altering it to make it seem like something that it’s not. With such widespread use of social media, Neistat felt that there needed to be something that could capture life in the most unaffected, candid manner. Neistat states that he loves sharing apps, such as Instagram, but it’s not the right platform to share little photos of what he sees throughout the day, rather it’s a place to share beautifully edited aspects of his life. According to Neistat, social media today is built to share with the world a version of who you are. Now, “Beme” wants you to share who you really are.


Within eight days of release, “Beme” users shared 1.1 million videos and sent 2.4 million reactions. As of now, Neistat and Hackett decided on a slower, invite-only rollout to ensure that each user had at least one friend on the app. The partners said that they hope to upgrade the app’s background soon so that they can do away with invite codes and let anyone join. In addition, while this is currently only available on Apple devices, they are working to develop it into an app for Androids as well.

Videos Seen Around the World

By the rude bridge that arched the flood

Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled

Here once the embattled farmers stood

And fired the shot heard around the world

The shot heard around the world. It is a phrase heard so often in the United States of America, but few people fully understand what it actually means. It was a single moment that changed the course of history, a decision that impacted the entire world.

When studying the first stages of the American Revolution, I cannot help but wonder if the concept of “being an entrepreneur” goes beyond making money, selling products, or providing a service. I wonder if being an entrepreneur also includes seeing the state of the world and making a conscious decision to make it better. Focusing on changing people and culture, not generating income.

If so, Lila Rose ought to be seen as one of today’s most successful entrepreneurs. I cannot express her success through numbers or diagrams but through influence. She is only twenty-seven years old and yet she has opened the eyes of thousands of people through the use of film and undercover videos–videos seen around the world.

It all began when she founded Live Action at age fifteen. Her group utilized investigative journalism to uncover the threat of abortion clinics, particularly Planned Parenthood, to the defenseless unborn. The shock that followed the release of her very first videos was disturbing. People had no idea–pro-life or not–what exactly was going on behind those doors.

Since then, she has exposed that Planned Parenthood had lied on the media, covered up human trafficking, and even supported sex-selective abortions.

And she’s just getting started.

Live Action is currently working on an especially ugly piece of business in which Planned Parenthood is selling human body parts.

I admire and applaud Lila Rose for her fearless work as an investigative journalist, an entrepreneur. She saw the world–saw a problem–and pooled together innovative ideas and decisive action to solve it. The fight still continues, and not only does she work tirelessly for the sake of the unborn, but also Rose has inspired thousands of pro-life youth–myself included–to take a stand and change the world.

Spirit, that made those heroes dare

To die, and leave their children free

Bid Time and Nature gently spare

The shaft we raise to them and thee

– Ralph Waldo Emerson, Concord Hymn