Friday, December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays from Aero!

A very merry and happy holidays to all!  Please enjoy our virtual holiday card, resplendent with festive music and special ornaments! Click to view in English and here to view in German!
 
So why is a version of the card in German, you may be asking?  That is because our  Munich office is opening in early 2012... Stay tuned!!

You may also be wondering where you can get your own ornament of a helicopter with a Klaus Cam attached to the bottom or of our festive logo?  Believe me, I wish they were real, but alas they are CGI and were created in house by Sam O'Hare and the team at Aero Studios.

Oh!  One last thing! Remember our blog about Cineskates?  Well, we shot our holiday video (the tree) on the set of Cineskates we were given.  Thanks guys!  We loved using them and will use them again!
 
Happy holidas,have a great break, and here's to a very happy 2012.  Thanks to all our readers for a great year. Lots to be thankful for, thanks for reading the blog. And remember, cookies don’t count towards calories so eat a bunch.  No seriously, it's fine.



Friday, December 2, 2011

Happy Holidays from RAM and Jeep!



Goodness, this is a very busy holiday season! Especially thanks to the latest RAM and Jeep spots shot by Klaus Obermeyer in snowy Aspen, which makes me want to grab a mug of marshmellowy hot chocolate and cuddle up a Labrador under a sparkly tree every time I watch them! 

Watch the RAM and Jeep spots and then I'll tell you how we did them. It's okay, I'll wait....

Welcome back! To answer the first question about the RAM spot that is on your mind: "Did they really build that house and is the last shot actually the house, completely finished?"  Answer: "Yes and yes!"



Both of these spots would not exist if we didn't have the Aero Jet. We were awarded both spots on a Friday and had a week to complete the shoot.  So Saturday morning, Klaus (Director), Lance O'Connor (EP), Michael Hartog (VFX Supervisor) and Greg Blair (Production Designer) all hopped on the Aero Jet in Santa Monica, CA, and were in Colorado Springs a few hours later hard at work prepping the shoot in Aspen.



We bought the house that is built in the RAM spot in Colorado Springs (as a kit) and then hauled the wood to Aspen. At that point we had 3 days to cast the spot, permit and source it and then the last 2 days to shoot and build the house. No small task, this! Plus we had to plant a tree for the opening shot, which is still living on the mountain, by the way. It's nice little reminder that Aero and RAM were there.


(Sadly, the house had to be taken down... but for 2 days, we could say we owned a house in Aspen, Colorado!)

Now, moving onto the Jeep spot!

To answer the next question on your mind: "Will that Jeep Christmas tree fit in my house?" 
Answer: "No, no it won't. But if you have your own mountain, go for it!"


Again, thanks to the Aero Jet, we were able to make Aspen our studio. Permits, locations all fell together and we got a beautiful commercial.


Aero’s in-house post division completed the editorial with editor Alex Hagon. We’re doing more and more soup to nuts these days which is fantastic not just for the creative, but for maximizing production budgets. Austin Smithard is in production now on a spot he’s directing and editing with Sam O’Hare as the VFX supervisor. The Aero Studios VFX team in NY is doing all the compositing and photo-real set extensions for this tour de force. Think Elizabeth: The Golden Age meets 300. I can’t tell you more about that now or I’ll be shot (or at least given a dirty look and a harsh email…) So you’ll have to stay tuned!

***

CREDITS:

Client: Chrysler
Agency: Doner

Chuck Meehan, EVP Exec Creative Director
Sam Sefton, SVP, Creative Director
Jaime Perry, Associate Creative Director
Bruna Carmargo, Copywriter
Sarah Bills, Art Director
Brian Dooley, Head of Production
Diana Eagleson, Producer

Editorial: Aero Post
Editor, Alex Hagon
Asst. Editor, Tony Gentile


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

"Sea to Shining Sea" is Complete!

Last summer we posted a blog about Austin Smithard's documentary, Sea To Shining Sea.  To summarize, Austin  hopped on a bike and followed 18 disabled veterans as they cycled 4000 miles over 63 days across the US.  4000 miles.  That number still boggles my mind.  He shot this doc on his Canon 5D, strapped to his back the entire ride.





We're happy to report that the film is now complete!  Please take a minute and watch the trailer HERE.   It really is a heartwarming and inspirational film. Many of the riders on this journey were at death's door, barely surviving rocket attacks, helicopter crashes and IED explosions.  Some even had last rites performed, so the fact that they were able to recover from their injuries and cycle 4000 miles... it's simply astounding.

It should be noted that this experience had an effect on Austin and many of us at Aero.  Austin is still actively cycling (even he hadn't been on a bike in over 20 years before shooting this documentary!) and he has even inspired other Aero directors to get bikes and start training for the Fireflies Ride from San Francisco to LA next year. 










Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Austin Smithard Films the Bruins

This weekend held a bevy of football.  Every day equaled two constants:  Turkey and football.  And now we're back at work and it's Tuesday.  There's never a game on Tuesday!  So to help fill the gap until the next game, please take a look at Aero director, Austin Smithard's, latest venture onto the field!


Austin Smithard, was given access to UCLA's football field, team and coach, Rick Neuheisel, to make an inspirational short. Whether or not you are a football fan (or even if you're a USC fan), this is short worth watching.  Coach Neuheisel has many quotable lines, my favorite being: "Tough times don't last, tough people do."  Well said.


Austin's work was recently featured on UCLA's athletics website which you can read HERE.

Okay, I'm off to eat my 37th turkey sandwich and anticipate this weekend's games only a few short days away!  (A day without football counts as a tough time, right?)



Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Fog & Smog for Hyundai

This is indeed a post about Hyundai, but first, we must visit Whole Foods.  (Stick with me, it makes sense.) 

If you're on the Facebook, you are no stranger to Fog & Smog, a hip hop group that recorded the song, "Whole Foods Parking Lot."  If you have ever been to a Whole Foods you will relate to this song.  A lot.

And now we arrive at the Hyundai portion of the post!

One of Hyundai's holiday spots this year features Fog & Smog, back in the driver's seat, cruising around a parking lot in their Hyundai, spitting lyrics to a dope beat. (I'm sorry. I used to watch "Yo MTV Raps" and thought I got hip.)

Please enjoy a little early holiday cheer brought to you by Fog & Smog for Hyundai, directed by Jason Farrand.

CREDITS:

Client: Hyundai Motor America
Agency: Innocean
Editorial Company: Hybrid
Editor: Christopher Willoughby
Executive Producer: Gail Butler







Monday, October 31, 2011

SEE School

We are taking a break from our typical blog postings to share this story with you.  One of our directors, Indrani, was born and raised in India.  She co-founded a charitable school which she has has co-directed with her father for the last 17 years. This school is currently under siege. 

Indrani is fighting land mafia in India who have attacked the school. Her foundation (www.seeschool.org) provides free education to 300 impoverished children and women, including vocational training, a lending library, exercise facilities, clinic, and microfinancing for women's collectives in the villages, and has helped thousands to uplift themselves from the cycle of poverty. 




But instead of supporting her work, local politicians sent strongmen with threats, and when the school refused to pay bribes, they attacked. Police refused to even file complaints, and when magistrates ordered the police to restore the peace, they refused. Land mafia broke down the 10ft high walls, dug trenches, illegally occupied the schoolyard, and threatened the charity's administrators and students. 


Indrani launched a petition, and sent hundreds of emails from outraged supporters to the press, politicians and Trinamool Congress MLA "mediator." He boldly told the press that police received no complaints, nobody forcibly took over, but the land now belongs to his colleague a Trinamool Congress councillor, fearlessly implicating themselves. It was only after the story was featured in the Times of India that the thugs disappeared from the destroyed children's park.  But the Trinamool Congress councillor still threatens Indrani's family and home, and kids remain afraid, knowing thugs could return anytime. Indrani plans to soon rebuild the walls and gates.
 
So how can you help?

Please share this with your media contacts and sign the petition, to let politicians know they must root out corruption and protect the rights of the poor and those who help them: 

*****

About the school: The Ramakrishna Vedanta Society Vidyapith /Shakti Empowerment Education foundation  (www.SEEschool.org) provides free education and services to uplift 300 impoverished children and women, including literacy and vocational classes, tutoring, a lending  library, a clinic, and micro-financing for women’s collectives in the villages. Though we are small we have helped thousands and we have plans to expand to a women's college, to help many more.  Supporters of our foundation include Deepak Chopra’s foundation which has donated numerous books to our library; supermodel and TV host Iman wife of David BowieDr. Phil correspondent Kelly Cutrone, Nanubhai Education Foundation and Keep A Child AliveThe Lucie Foundation, and The Angel Orensanz Foundation Center for the ArtsThe school has been featured in articles including the Times of India, Hindustan Times, South Asia Magazine, Asiance Magazinethe Princeton Alumni Weekly and Princeton University: Major Choice, and The Washington DC-based Darshan TV “The Indian American Perspective" aired an hour-long interview on the school, while Bravo/NBC, Fox Life, Sony Entertainment TV, and AXN TV networks have devoted one hour segments to the school on “Double Exposure,” in over 50 countries.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

In Gayle We Trust!



Aero director, Jason Farrand, is no stranger to directing branded comedy, having done two webseries (webserieses? webseri?) in the past for Hewlett-Packard. His latest feat in branded entertainment comes in the form of a 10-episode webseries for NBC, In Gayle We Trust, in part with Mindshare Entertainment and American Family Insurance.



The webseries follows American Family Insurance agent, Gayle, in her town of Maple Grove. This season Gayle becomes a producer and star of a musical spectacular called Polices! Policies! The series is comprised of a great cast, including the lovely Elisa Donovan reprising her role as Gayle and Fred Willard as a guest star in the first episode!

If you liked Waiting for Guffman you will LOVE this season of In Gayle We Trust. The antics and comedy are tight. And in short webisode lengths, perfect to watch while taking a break at work. (Unless you work here, we never take breaks! We work in our sleep!)

Click HERE to watch – ENJOY! 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Karma!


We here at Aero Film prefer to use the term “gear head” rather than “geek.” It just has a better ring to it, no? Here is a fellow gear head that we applaud, Cineskates Camera Sliders by Justin Jensen!






First of all, holy schmoly he raised a lot of dough on Kickstarter! Good job!  And it's with good reason… This MIT alum designed an amazing rig with skateboard technology. It falls under that heading of, “We could have done that!” But, yeah, we didn’t, so, kudos to Justin Jensen who actually did.

To summarize, CineSkates™ are a set of three wheels that quickly attach to a tripod and enable fluid, rolling video in an ultra-portable package.”  For instance, ever need to follow a toddler walking and you don’t have a Steadicam lying around? CineSkates would be pretty handy for that!

Huzzah to you, Justin Jensen, for being the DIY "gear head" of the day! Why do I say this? Well, he’s sending us a set of CineSkates as he’s a fan of Aero director Sam O’Hare’s work! Yes, yes, this is shameless promotion, but we're honored that he liked our work and wanted to pay him back with a blog mention. (Plus it helps that we're really excited about this clever innovation and can't wait to try them out!!) I’m not sure what would happen if we mix these with the Klaus Cam…. A black hole may be created. We probably shouldn’t risk it.

Happy Friday everyone, and look out for our video using Cineskates!


Friday, September 23, 2011

Go See "Killer Elite" This Weekend!

Gary McKendry's film, Killer Elite, is now in a theater near you! Below is the red-band trailer, which means, put your headphones!  (Or not, your choice.)  Enjoy!



video

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Daphne Guinness Exhibit at FIT

Fashion Week has settled upon New York City and the town is a-buzz with designers, limos and 28 inch heels. (Well not literally 28 inches, but they may as well be. Silly me always thought falling on your ass and breaking an ankle wasn’t fashionable… Two words: cobble stones. But I digress…. )

After the 6-hour lines 'till midnight and the unprecedented success of the Alexander McQueen exhibition at the Met, fashion week is abuzz with excitement about the Daphne Guinness Exhibition at The Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT), launching this Friday September 16 through January 7, 2010.

The exhibition features the work of Aero director Indrani including previews of her new film starring Daphne, titled, The Legend of Lady White Snake: A Tribute to the Spirit of Alexander McQueen, written and directed by Indrani.

Based on China's most beloved ancient legend, the film is a meditation on obsessive love and metamorphosis. Shooting the film for 7 days in New York, they stopped traffic in Central Park as Daphne glided across a lake in a costume designed by GK Reid, stylist and production designer extraordinaire. GK also styled her in Gareth Pugh, Philip Tracy, and pieces designed by the Late Alexander McQueen just for Daphne, that have never before been seen. The film and images also feature a 20ft long python, and an owl… which thankfully, didn’t eat one another.

The Exhibit also features photographs by Markus Klinko and Indrani shot on the set of the film. One of these became the Barney's ad for Daphne's extraordinary performance art show in the windows of Barney's New York as she prepared for the Met Ball:


The images will also be featured in the book by the Museum at FIT, accompanying the exhibit that will be for sale.

In short, you should make time to go see this exhibit. It's a fabulous complement to the McQueen exhibit that the MET had this year and a great fantasy to walk through. But wear comfortable shoes. Stylish shoes, but comfortable. (Kitten heels, FTW!)


Friday, September 9, 2011

New Aero Film Website!

We are very excited to unveil our revamped website


Our new front page!

The folks at Simian have been amazing at accommodating our every request and design note, and we’re launched as of today. (Imagine 12 directors making design notes. It ain’t easy….)

Not only do we have the directors reels (I know, so progressive of us), but more photos and background info on everyone, and links to their still photography as well. The Klaus Cam video has been updated to feature the new footage he’s captured. (Yes, the Klaus Cam is a dude. He can’t be an “it.” Seems disrespectful when he does so much....)

Take a look around! We like to think it’s the best thing to hit the internet since kitten videos. (Why do people love kitten videos??!)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Shooting with the 5D


On a daily basis, we are asked, “Can you shoot on a 5D?” Well, sure! But like any camera, it’s only as good as the hands that it’s in, or the eye that it’s in front of. However it should be noted that speaking about a camera around photographers is much like discussing your favorite politician at a dinner party. (To be safe, I always go with Lincoln… Both for accomplishments and best use of facial hair and hats.)

So, without getting into a great debate, our directors Ken Arlidge, Austin Smithard and Indrani use the 5D quite a lot in their work. 

Ken Arlidge
 

Austin Smithard

Indrani

They have “run and gun styles” that are greatly aided by the 5D, and with their photography backgrounds, it was easy to make the transition. (Plus the they already had an arsenal of Canon prime lenses which always helps.)

To really let you get a feel of the work they have done with the 5D, here’s a reel with several examples of our favorite 5D work.

And if you want to know more (and why wouldn't you?), here’s an excerpt from an article Ken Arlidge wrote for Shoot magazine.

A remarkable tool has stepped into our film making arena. This is a paradigm shift that I believe is the onset of a change as dramatic as that of the transition from ‘silent movies to sound’ and from ‘black and white to color film’.

It is the melding of Consumer, Prosumer, and Professional technology and the miniaturization of the camera.

The Canon 5D Mark II digital SLR shoots HD 1920 x 1080 video. The camera weighs 5lbs. The difference in the physical rigging and moving of a 5 lb camera versus the typical 25-50 lb film and digital cameras needs little imagination. One high shot in the Coke spot was shot at the end of a 17 foot painter’s pole from Home Depot.

This technology allows us to travel light and minimize crew and unit sizes.

One 16GB card can hold 40 minutes of HD video. These cards are approximately 1 inch square!

The Canon 5D Mark II does use H264 compression on the HD files and the aliasing from this compression is problematic only with extreme over and underexposure.

The camera records mono through it’s built-in microphone but has a stereo input. I have built a sound kit that enables me to record boom and lavalier microphones directly into the camera wirelessly, cable free and in stereo.

Canon’s highest quality fast fixed and zoom lenses are available and the results are superb. Mounts are being designed to use existing film lenses but that is in part driven by the convenience, familiarity, and cost of using existing lenses, focus platforms, and accessories.

The latitude is no different in Telecine than with most other digital camera. It is imperative that, like the Red, Viper, and Phantom cameras you understand you have a smaller range than that of film. The beauty with these cameras is the grain free imagery you get in extremely low light situations.

It is critical to control the look for it to appear “filmic” and that requires a deep understanding of film and how to apply that experience to digital SLR shooting.
As a consumer camera you will of course see plenty of footage popping up shot on the Canon 5D that looks like “video”. It is when it is manipulated and controlled to look as film that we step into a Brave New and Exciting World.

Well, I couldn't have said it better. (No really, I couldn't.) But this is why I write blogs and point and clap at people to make thing happen. (The true sign of a great producer.) Really, it's better this way.

REEL CREDITS:

Tick, Ken Arlidge
Keep a Child Alive, Indrani
Lightbulb, Austin Smithard
Find Your Audience, Austin Smithard
Color of Nature, Austin Smithard
Pool, Austin Smithard
Bottles, Ken Arlidge
Battle of Waterloo, Austin Smithard



Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Aero Art Collection Expands

Hello! I'm happy to report that things are shaping up nicely here at Aero Studios in NYC. Not only are we busy with work, but we are also busy “nesting,” if you will. (And thankfully the couch for our clients' suite finally showed up after 2 months of being on back order. There was a lot of fist shaking in the office.) 

As you know, we here at Aero have a lot of artistic friends and we love to show them off!  (You can see the blog about the artwork that hangs in our Santa Monica office by Declan McMullan HERE.)  Our new NYC digs are in an old furrier building so our office space is quite loft-like, which means a lot of large, empty white walls (as well as amazing views of the city!). Thankfully, our friend and talented art director/artist, Mike Gambino saw our space and said, “Oh, I know what will go there.” And here it is... 




This picture really doesn't do this koi pond justice. It's simply... amazing. First of all, the size is 8 feet by 5 feet. The motion of the koi are perfectly captured by Gambino in this oil on linen canvas. I swear you can hear the water rushing and fins splashing. It's a beautiful and peaceful addition to our office!

Gambino has been an artist since he was a kid. He had his first art show when he was 10-years-old. 10-years-old! Do you know what I was doing when I was 10? I was playing Little House on the Prairie with my sister and making the dog pretend to be a cow. No one wanted to see that. (Sorry, Mom!)

And like every artist, he has a day job, which thankfully he enjoys. He's an agency creative and short film maker. You can see his videos on his Vimeo page.

He's also won many awards including a Gold Cannes Lions and an Emmy nomination. You can read more about his career as an artist here.

So when you stop by our studio, make sure to take an extra minute to visit our koi pond. But don't throw in any pennies to make a wish, it doesn't work so hot.  (Trust me.)


Friday, July 15, 2011

Watch Out Snooki, Here's the Hipster Shore

Aero director, Jason Farrand, a well known humanitarian, reached out to the world with sketch group Family Sandwich to create this PSA titled: 4th of July Message From the Hipster Shore.






Fixed gear bikes have always been a danger. Best we know about the wide reaching effects now. The line that I'm still giggling at: “That was VINTAGE. She can never get that back.” Tee hee! Anyhoooo, this video was on the front page of Funny or Die the entire holiday weekend, which is a formidable achievement since most featured videos are made by the Funny or Die staff. Congrats to Jason and Family Sandwich!

In other good (and funny) news, Jason will be directing the entire 3rd season of American Family Insurance's comedy webseries, In Gayle We Trust, in conjunction with NBC Digital Studios. The show stars Elisa Donovan from “Clueless” as Gayle and Gary Anthony Williams from “Weeds” and “Boston Legal” fame. The show is about a hard working insurance agent, Gayle, taking care of the people in her small town, and like any good comedy, the people she encounters are not your average insurance customers. Their requests are extreme to say the least and Gayle has to figure out a way to keep everyone happy while handling the choas going on around her. We'll post the episodes when they are up!

Also, you can find Jason's show, Head Casestarring Alexandra Wentworth on Monday nights at 9:30pm on Starz as well as Netflix streaming. If you haven't seen this series, and you enjoy improvised shows such as Curb Your Enthusiasm, pull up a chair and enjoy!  (See the trailer HERE.)



Guest stars on the show are well known actors, playing themselves and getting therapy from Dr. Elizabeth Goode, played by Wentworth. A sampling of stars that have appeared on the show are comedians such as Jerry Seinfeld, Janeane Garofalo, Jerry Stiller and Larry Miller; as well as pop culture stars such as Macy Gray, Tori Spelling and lead actors from big name shows like Desperate Housewives and Heroes. What really makes Head Case interesting for the guest stars is that the dialogue of the show is completely improvised. So the guests stars show up to set and have no idea what's going to happen. It's like “extreme acting” when they have to “play themselves.” (Not with themselves… very very different.)



Stay tuned for most posts from us! We've been quite busy and will share soon!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Austin Smithard's "Battle of Waterloo"

When I think of England, I immediately think of fine dining. HAHAHAHAHAHA!! Oh, I’m such a kidder! But well, maybe I need to eat some crow (with Bovril?) on this one…

Austin Smithard, Aero director, is of English upbringing (and his teeth are nice, actually, thanks for asking). He recently met Chef Brendan Collins through mutual friends and after chatting for 10 minutes, they realized they both grew up in Nottingham and their grandfathers worked in the coal mines together. So the next logical step was that Austin should shoot a commercial and short documentary about Brendan’s new Gastropub, Waterloo & City in Culver City, CA.

Chef Brendan Collins

Waterloo & City's kitchen in action

2 nights and one Canon 5D, Austin shot a short documentary and the commercial. Now keep in mind that Austin has been in the trenches with Marines and has shot a documentary driving across the country on a bike… but he said nothing prepared him for how fast paced a kitchen is. (Or their hats...)


"Waterloo & City" is named after the London tube stop where Brendan started his culinary career, this new restaurant is his labor of love. He wanted to create a neighborhood hangout where you can enjoy a menu that’s sophisticated but that also compliments knocking back a pint or two. There’s a bit more fois gras and truffles than your Nottingham Granny would have used, but your nostalgia for British comfort food will be satisfied, plus your American friends will have a whole new appreciation for the fare.

Austin’s documentary and the commercial cut can be seen HERE. If you’re in Los Angeles/Culver City, stop by Waterloo & City on West Washington Blvd, below Centinela.  



Friday, June 3, 2011

Indrani Launches new Live-Action Reel

You’ve seen a lot of Indrani’s work in galleries, album covers and magazines (click here for a sample!), and now we’re happy to share Indrani's live-action director's reel

I don’t look that good on normal day, let along with a Steadicam strapped to me… Alas, with Indrani. everything is done in style. Complete with “don’t mess with me” boots.

Note the "Don't Mess With Me Boots."

As you may know, Indrani has an impressive background as a still photographer along side her co-talent, Markus Klinko and creative director/designer GK Reid. She ventured into live-action by shooting video along side her photo shoots and it was there that her reel was born and has been growing ever since. To date, she has already completed spots for The London Times, Keep A Child Alive, Ralph Lauren, Neiman Marcus, Nothing But Nets and Carol's Daughter (which launches at the end of the month).

Indrani is also a very well accomplished digital artist and does all the retouching on all MKI photo projects and will continue to do so in motion footage as well. This works perfectly alongside our NYC expansion of Aero Studios, which is a CGI/Animation and VFX boutique.

Please take a look at Indrani's reel HERE! We are so proud of Indrani and the distinctive style she brings to live-action directing. You can also read more about Indrani, her numerous credits and background HERE

I'd like to thank everyone who made Indrani's reel possible. She’s had amazing support from her stills team and Markus and GK.

Neiman Markus
Editor: Dayn Willians, Cut & Run  NY
Color, Conform, Beauty Cleanup: Scarlett NY



Keep a Child Alive
Editor: Eric Carlson, Hooligan
Color: Tom Poole, CO3 NY
Conform, Beauty Cleanup: Method Studios NYC and Indrani, Aero Studios


Ralph Lauren Polo
Editor: Sonejuhi Sinha, Final Cut NY
Audio: Mat Guido, Blast NY
Color, Conform: Sam O’Hare, Aero Studios
Beauty Cleanup: Indrani, Aero Studios



London Sunday Times

Editor: Eric Argiro, Union Editorial NY
Color, Conform, Beauty Cleanup: Eight VFX LA



Nothing But Nets

Editor: Georgia Dodson, Cut & Run NY
Music: Finger Music, NY
Audio: Gerard Collins, Blast NY
Color, Conform, Beauty Cleanup: Indrani, Aero Studios

Have a great weekend!  

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Presenting Aero Studios!

Well we're movin’ on up!
 (Movin’ on up!) 
To the… Chelsea. 
(Which is actually down!) 
To a de-luxe office space on the 7th floor… 

Okay… So my musical stylings aren’t my strong suit. I can’t even sing through typing. Yeesh.  But alas… Aero Film is EXPANDING! We’re launching Aero Studios, our boutique CGI/Animation Studio in Chelsea, NYC. Sam O’Hare, live-action director and VFX artist will over see the creative and I will assume the EP position.

Our first project came in the doors before the ink was dry on the new lease. Through the creative minds at Ogilvy NY, a film concept was created for the groundbreaking of the new Whitney Museum in New York. The premiere American art museum is leaving its home on the upper east side and their new building, designed by architect Renzo Piano, will be finished in 2015. It’s a bit dull to be at a ground breaking and just see models, drawings and a mound of dirt. So Ogilvy called upon Sam and Aero Studios to create a "photo real CGI film" of what the new museum will look like, complete with their comprehensive collection of art. Sam and his team had 6 weeks to create the entire museum in 3D from the architect’s plans, build the artwork, shoot background plates, and make it look stunning in the meantime.

You can watch the film HERE.

CGI rendering of the future Whitney next to the High Line.

Future Whitney as it fits into the skyline in Chelsea.

A shot of what the Future Whitney will look like at night.

The Groundbreaking event was Tuesday morning at the site on Washington and Gansevort street. Sam and I were there to hear the applause after the film and explain to some of the confused patrons, “No, no, the museum's not done yet. This is CGI.” Their response: "CG-HUH?"  Us: "It’s a film! It’s not real!"  Them:  “How’s that now?!”


Ceiling art for the groundbreaking ceremony!

Mayor Bloomberg makes his speech.

Sam's film is presented to the crowd.

Architect, Renzo Piano, holds the future Whitney in his hands!

Performance art!  And yes, that's dirt!

Performance art continues... dancers broke glass windows
to symbolize the Whitney's move as the dirt poured in center stage.


Please make sure you take a moment and check out The Whitney’s site and see first hand all the amazing developments that this new museum will hold.

We want to thanks the team at Ogilvy for being fantastic partners – Executive Producer, Peter Basset; Creative Directors, Jason Marks and Diego Zambrano. We want to thank The Standard Hotel for providing the shoot location for the time-lapse shots. The Standard is a great supporter for production, the arts, and promoting the culture of the Meatpacking District. Our LA directors stay there when shooting in NY (they have a beer garden… we have an Obermeyer… It fits.) And they also provided location support for Sam’s film, The Sandpit. I can’t say enough about how easy and professional they are to work with.

And of course, the team at the Whitney was an amazing client to have. Their respect for the work and the creative process made the whole experience very rewarding from start to finish.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Aero Film on the Small Screen

Set your DVRs folks! I'm very happy to announce that Aero directors, James Mangold  and Nelson McCormick  have both directed winning pilots that got picked in the primetime lineup for this coming fall.

Nelson on set. Directing and such.

Nelson directed the original pilot for Body of Proof starring Dana Delaney on ABC. He continued on to shoot 3 more episodes in its short initial run. After great ratings, this mid-season replacement was picked up for a full season. Nelson also directed several episodes of CBS's legal drama starring Julianna Margulies, The Good Wife.  Both shows have done exceedingly well and were both picked up for next season.  In the past, he has directed episodes of Criminal Minds, Southland, The Closer as well as many, many other shows and movies.

Dana Delaney lookin' pretty good.

James is helming a new show that is being held as a mid-season replacement for CBS.  CBS wanted to stagger its new dramas over the course of the year, so it’ll hit the air in December. (Or earlier if they realize CSI: Topeka isn’t working out… I kid. There’s no CSI: Topeka, but I bet you thought it possible for a few seconds.)

James, looking terribly directorial. 


The 2-2 is a rookie cop drama starring Leelee Sobieski and Adam Goldberg. (PS - “2-2” refers to a precinct in NYC.  I had to look it up.)  One of the executive producers on this project is Robert DeNiro. (Who James directed in Copland, so they go way back.)

We’re happy to announce that no one from Aero Film is connected to Two and a Half Men. (How does that stay on the air!!?!? Come on! Even Capt. Crazypants knew it was bad.)

So, till the season kicks in, the guys are free for commercial work. They welcome the “calm” pacing of commercial work compared to that of TV shows. Granted, if they only shot :30sec a day, those 45min dramas would take a mighty long time….

Friday, April 15, 2011

"The Sandpit" is Nominated for 2 Webbys!

Well touché. I had a good Monday, and I told Tuesday “to bring it” and it was broughten. Brought. Brung? Bringed? Whatever! It was achieved.

On Tuesday we got the great news that Sam O'Hare's short film, The Sandpit has been nominated for a Webby both in the Viral and Music categories. 

We're just over the moon with this nomination! The internet is becoming the new movie theatre of our generation (which is great as my floor at home is much less sticky). But with over 10,000 entries from all 50 states and 60 countries, we’re honored to have been nominated to the internet’s most prestigious award. (And so glad that Honey Badger didn’t steal our thunder.)

Sam shot, edited, and did all of the post visual effects on this labor of love. The music was written and composed by Human Music and their magical work was a big part of what helped propel this film to viral status. There have been over 2.7 million views between Vimeo and You Tube, and it’s the 4th most liked video of all time on Vimeo.

The Sandpit from Sam O'Hare on Vimeo.

There are 2 awards given in each category—one to the Jury’s choice and one to the People’s Voice. This is where we need our Aero friends to get your clicking fingers ready and VOTE. And spread the word! It’s super easy and you can log in through Facebook or Twitter.
So this begs the question: What do you have for me, Mr. Next Week? Maybe I’ll quit while I’m ahead…


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