Illuminate Studios Opens Stages to Hollywood HEART to Help At-Risk Teens Learn from Industry Pros
07/25/2013

Illuminate Studios, a multi-camera HD production facility, has made its stages available to at-risk teens from the Los Angeles area during the “Shooting Stars” workshop, a two-day event sponsored by non-profit organization Hollywood HEART and Rohde & Schwarz DVS.

Online PR News – 25-July-2013 – Los Angeles, July 25, 2013 – Hollywood HEART is a non-profit that provides opportunities for young adults affected by HIV/AIDS and other at-risk youth.

Illuminate Studios provided studio space, including a news set, a green screen, a fully functional kitchen set, and staff to serve as instructors.

More than 18 teens received training from veterans in cinematography, screenwriting, acting editing and sound. The event generated short films which were showcased in a red carpet event on June 6th. The screening was attended by the young filmmakers, their family and friends, as well as an invited group of industry notables.

For Kara Mondino, Executive Director of Hollywood HEART, “The program would not have been of the caliber it was without Illuminate studios. The children were in a real-life studio, with multiple stages, a huge green screen and a real kitchen set. It was incredible for the kids. It went so well that one of the volunteers, who is a casting director, offered to try to connect two of kids with a cooking show idea with a director. It was not just the space. Jim Hardy,illuminate’s CEO, jumped in with us. He took it upon himself to be there at every step of the way, offering suggestions, and the illuminate personnel was there to move props and lights around.”

Rohde and Schwarz, with Jill Wiles, Inside Sales Manager and the rest of the DVS team, not only sponsored and managed the event, but also secured a number of industry related donations for the youth, which were awarded to them at the red carpet screening in June. These donations included digital film-related software suites, a GoPro camera, theme park tickets, and scholarships to summer film camps. Rohde & Schwarz is a developer of software and hardware systems used worldwide in film and television production. The Shooting Stars workshop was born from the company’s Strive Community initiative, which encourages employees to give back to the local community. 27Notch, a camera rental and production services company, provided camera systems.

Joe Russell, a well-known actor and producer, served as Acting coordinator for Hollywood HEART. Joe, who has volunteered for Hollywood HEART for 8 years, met with the kids one week before the workshop, led an acting class for and interviewed the kids and asked them what type of film they would like to make. He then wrote eight short scripts and, during the Shooting Stars workshop, directed 4 short films each day, 3 to 4 minutes each, based on the kids’ ideas. “We were going non-stop. The kids loved being in a real Hollywood studio, with real motion picture equipment. Most of them had never been in front of a camera before. My goal was to teach them that they do not need a license to be creative. I taught them that with a little confidence, they can make their own video projects using any sort of camera they have in their lives. With a cell phone and free editing software they can make anything they think would be fun to make. The look on these kids’s faces when they saw some of the footage was priceless. One boy who I wrote into a western short beamed with pride after seeing one of his takes and said: 'Oh man... I am in a real movie! I can't wait to tell my mom!'." Joe Russell later edited these short films, which were shown the June 6th premiere at the red carpet event held at the Technicolor stage.

Volunteers were a huge part of the weekend. To name a few: F/x makeup maven Jill Galsterer and wardrobe expert Kristina Apgar worked to make the kids visions come true. America Young and Dove Benari taught a dynamite stunt workshop which included an epic light-saber battle. Doc Crotzer (editor on Glee) came in to edit the Glee short guest directed by Glee's own Will Pellegrini. Martha Lowe, Kevin Lee Armstrong helped with editing. Stephen Birdsong from DVS was in charge of everything green screen and along with Sankar Thiagasamudram (also from DVS) was the main technical advisor for the entire weekend. Vanessa Mizzone, Lee Sherman and Groundling Mike Truesdale also shared some of their time and taught acting and improv classes. UCLA Professor Richard Manning and writer David Aslan taught creative writing workshops.

Illuminate Hollywood consists of two facilities in the same neighborhood:

- Illuminate Post Production/Digital finishing on Cahuenga Boulevard in Hollywood
• Digital intermediate
• SD to HD 2K and 4K conforming from original film without EDL
• Digital files deliverables
• Editorial services
• Audio services
• Color correction
• Film restoration
• 3D conversion
• Visual effects & graphics

- Illuminate Studios, less than ½ mile away
• 4 stages with pre-lit sets, fully equipped for HD multi-camera production
• In-house cameras, production equipment, lighting.
• Fully crewed production
• HD/SD fiber connectivity
• Social media/videochat connectivity
• Kitchen sets, news sets and talk show sets
• Virtual sets, motion tracking
• Cove screen
• Green rooms, conference rooms, production offices, dressing rooms
• 16' high lighting grid, 48 channel lighting board, clearcom/RTS intercom
• Secure exterior staging area
• On-site parking with free overflow lot

To find out more about how illuminate can help make your TV projects a success, contact: Jim Hardy, CEO, illuminate (323) 969 8822, or Steve Weiner, Chairman,
(818) 976 7600
Email: jimh@illuminatehollywood.com
Visit their web site: www.illuminatehollywood.com

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