Congratulations to @SamQBailey, @YoureSoTalented cast and crew…

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…on being an Official Selection for the 2016 New Orleans Film Festival!

Thursday Interview: Sam Bailey, Filmmaker 

Launching a new biz or project?  Let’s talk!  
Happy Creating, Cultivating and Growing!

 

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Sam Bailey, Filmmaker

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Ashleigh Lathrop (Devin) and Sam Bailey (Bea),  You’re So Talented

***The Thursday Interview is a showcase for creators, innovators, troublemakers, small business owners to share news and insight about the creative impetus and inspirations behind their latest project, launch or business.

When Hollywood content disappoints, I know how to seek out a web series that entertains and enlightens. You’re So Talented is a definite add to the yes list.  Because I was hooked from the first episode, I knew I had to feature filmmaker Sam Bailey on the blog.  Enjoy and support, people.

Name: Sam Bailey, Filmmaker

Company: Our Names Are Sam

Launch Date:  2015

Motto: Better an asshole than a chickenshit (words of advice from a mentor)

I heart Bea. Even when she frustrates me.  How did you develop the character and what do you have planned for her?
Bea came from a really low place in my life. I was going through a lot of uncertainty-both professionally and personally. Because of that, I think she personifies all of my insecurities as an artist and as a young black woman. I would write these little sketches based off real, awkward moments in my life and then build from there. She totally frustrates me too, but I think what saves her is that she always has really good intentions. In the second season, Bea is a lot more focused on her career and her friends-trying not to get distracted by boys this year. Sometimes she’s successful. But without those distractions, she’s forced to deal with herself in a very real way. You’ve gotta watch to see what happens.

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Our Names Are Sam

How did you connect with your creative partner Sam Lee?
Sam Lee and I were kinda traveling in the same social circle for awhile. When I knew I wanted to start filming You’re So Talented, I reached out to her because she has an extensive background in editing and filmmaking. She ended up making original music for the series with my cousin, Alistair Slaughter. Through that process we realized we worked really together and had the same values when it comes to storytelling so it was just a natural progression to make our partnership official. She’s an incredibly intelligent, competent and genuine artist-I’m hella lucky to work beside her.

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Gabe Franken (Jesse), Ashleigh Lathrop (Devin) and Sam Bailey (Bea) – You’re So Talented

 Watching You’re So Talented introduced me to Open TV, “a platform for indie arts and artists and believes television must be open to diverse identities and their experiences.”  Did they approach you or did you pitch the show to them?
I initially approached Aymar (creator of OpenTV) to do a write up on the series once our 1st season trailer was released. We ended up getting coffee and talking about this new platform he was working in which became Open TV. Once again, our values just really aligned so when he asked to premiere YST it was a no-brainer. He’s been really essential to us gaining a larger audience and helping us with resources we wouldn’t have without him.

What do you love, like and hate about what you do?
I love pre-production: creating a world that these characters get to play within is the best. I really like being on set and working with the same group of dope artists. I hate figuring out budgets. 🙂

When can we hope to see Our Names Are Sam short Raina’s Not Here?
We are planning to enter the festival circuit so it should start popping up around fall/winter of this year.

Shout out time.  This is an opportunity to salute your collaborators and supporters.
I work a lot with Vincent Martell and the talented folks at VAM Magazine, The Goodnight Ladies , Alistair Slaughter. Senyo Ador is our producer for Raina’s Not Here and he’s been amazing to work with-he’s a gem. Mateo Gonzales has been my cinematographer from the beginning and I’ve grown so much as a filmmaker because of our work together. In general, I think Chicago has been such a support system for me so I’m always trying to give back that love.

Beyond bingeing on seasons 1 and 2 (do it!), you can also connect with Sam via Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Our Names Are Sam on Instagram.

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Happy Creating, Cultivating and Growing!

Frank Williams, TOO BE FRANK

youtube frank williams web series

Too Be Frank production photo

***The Thursday Interview is a showcase for creators, innovators, troublemakers, small business owners to share news and insight about the creative impetus and inspirations behind their latest project, launch or business.

Thank you to Buppy Hipster for introducing me to Frank Williams Too Be Frank web series because I love to support and promote people  who are not waiting for permission to find the audience for their creativity. Too Be Frank debuts TOMORROW at 9pm  on YouTube, but first grab your beverage of choice to meet the man behind the series, Frank Williams.

Name: Frank Williams

Occupation: Program Administrator / Actor/ Producer

Motto: You must crawl before you walk.

My current project is Too Be Frank

Describe the moment you knew you had to share Too Be Frank with the world.
So, usually on Facebook I limit my family, Producers, and Directors in the industry that I’ve had the pleasure to work with. I forgot to limit one particular person I did a show for. He calls me up one day and only says “Your Facebook statuses…” and I am floored becoming extremely nervous. However, he follows with, “…IS HILARIOUS!!!” He tells me they are comedic genius and he suggested utilizing my Facebook status into a series. I thought about it but I wasn’t sure I could produce something of that nature. I’ve been working on so many other projects and web series helping other people rise, which was a joy and fulfillment for me. So, I wasn’t confident I can do what they do … on my own. Until, I was at dinner with another a producer who said, “you’re always working hard for others, that I think it’s time for your own show.” So these reassurances gave me the confidence and strength to research the art of writing and film making.  

The production process for the web series is…
…HARDER THAN PEOPLE THINK! I strive on quality when it comes to my craft. I’ve never written or produced anything of this capacity a day in my life. I am strictly an actor. Well, I used to be strictly an actor. One major true blessing is I was introduced to an incredible videographer (Lexx) who had the equipment and drive that exceeded my expectation. Then I reached out to a fellow actor friend of mine, Glenn Quentin, to direct. They both do an amazing job, which is why I put 100% trust in both of their fields. There is also the casting which is hard when you don’t have any production material to show people you want to cast. Therefore people are hesitant or decline because they don’t trust or know your vision will come to life bigger than expected. However, after releasing my trailer and word of mouth from my screening, the casting has become a little easier.

My favorite episode (so far)…
….is the Pilot. I love the first episode because it sucks you in with the different scenery of New York and the rush I get from knowing this is the start of my baby. My first produced TV Pilot and I get goose bumps every single time.

What are the challenges of creating a web series?
The major challenge is definitely funding! I produced this entire project from my pockets. God Bless my mother, who I adore to pieces for helping me out. Other than her help, no one has given me a dime for this project. However, that is okay because when I look back at what I sacrificed to make this come to life, it liberates me. BUT FUNDING AT THIS POINT WOULD HELP! I am liberated enough (hehe) … Another challenge is definitely editing. It takes hour turned into days just to edit 15 minutes. Lexx strives on perfection in the editing room. If one finger is pointed to the right in one shot then pointed upward in the opposing shot, then the scene has to go or he does everything possible to make it work … AND I LOVE THAT! It’s like a real TV show. Huge blessing!

Fast forward to October 2016, what news would  you love to be sharing about Too Be Frank.
I would love to share that Too Be Frank has been picked up by Netflix or Hulu and WE ALL STAY!!! If a TV network can pick it up … EVEN BETTER! I just really want to make this series grow. These people have turned into my family, so I want my family to come ride the success of the show with me. I want us ALL to make it to the next steps.

This is your chance to shout out to your established and soon to be supporters….don’t be shy.
I just want to shout everyone on social media who shares, likes, comments on the series. That support right there is everything because social media makes up 95% of the success in the entertainment industry right now. Also my family support is amazing because people who I am in this world is hard…so with their unconditional love and support is hands down all I need to keep moving. My mom sacrificed everything to move to New York City with me to help pursue my dream and passion … and every day I fight to get closer to it because she didn’t have to do that, so I REFUSE to fail and let her down. I am also going to shout out my non supporters who doubted me. Who laughed at me. Who thought I would fail and this project would be a flop. Well, their hate motivates me to produce something beyond my wildest dreams… SO I THANK THEM TOO (hehe). Also shout out to Shonda Rhimes, Tyler Perry, Lee Daniels, etc. because they show us little people out there that if we hustle and work hard, we can get OUR work out there to the masses. I might be producing a little ole web series, but my vision for success is out of this world. I pray to God I can keep going and do this because this is all I dreamed of since the age of 2. So…to be frank, I didn’t move to New York City to sleep or fail…SO LET’S DO THIS!!!! ❤ Thank you so much for this opportunity!

And after you enjoy tomorrow’s premiere,  you can get more Frank via Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
Watch, share and support!

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