If there’s one thing that this crazy entertainment business teaches you is that there are no rules. It’s not the corporate world where there is a proverbial “ladder” that you can climb. In that world, you enter with training, you pay your dues, you climb up that ladder and before you know it, you’re in management, sometimes, even partnership or ownership.
No, the entertainment business is something quite different. There is no ladder, there’s no guaranteed road to travel, there’s no inevitable reward for paying your dues. For an actor, a job rarely means that you’ll get another one. As a matter of fact, unless you are in the lucky top two percent, a great resume still has you in a room or a pile with others twice your junior and with little to no experience at all. For a writer, unless you have a major commercial success under your belt, you could be writing in your room all alone for years. For a producer, lose money on a project and good luck finding the funding for your next one.
The only consistent things you can hold onto are positivity, a belief in yourself and a perseverance that won’t let you quit. Every other day may be a failure. The phone may not ring, the answer may be no and the project may not be yours. Your constantly compared to everyone else. Give me an actor who looks like him, sounds like her…. give me a writer who writes in the style of, in the genre of… give me a singer who sounds like, sings like… Wait, did their last project make money?
For a business that is built around ideas, often times, people are looking for the copycat, the piggyback on the success of, the thing that looks, feels, makes money like someone else. The sure thing. That’s the nature of the beast in the entertainment business. As we always say and hear, “that’s why they call it a “business.”
So, what do you, an artist who is looking to share your talents with the world, do? How can you make those talents earn you a living? You have to stay creative. In order to do that, you can’t be afraid to keep learning, to keep growing, to keep expanding… learning from every success AND every failure. What can you improve and what can you enhance?
You also need to appreciate yourself. Your inner and outer voice. What makes you unique? What makes you different? What makes you special? Do you really want to be like everyone else? A homogenized and dumbed down, 5th grade reading level, version of who you are as an actor, dancer, singer, writer, musician? No!
In this business, all you have is you! You and your voice. You and your individuality! You and your uniqueness! You can’t forget why you decided to get into this profession in the first place. We are all of us, storytellers. Whether we act it, write it, sing it, dance it, produce it, direct it… we all, at one point or another, had something to say. The end will come when you have nothing else to say to the world or really don’t care if anyone is listening anymore.
As long as you still want to say something, then you still want to be a creative and that means that you’re still an artist. But, you can’t sit around waiting for someone else to let you be who you are. A garage band is still a band whether someone is listening or not. A painter is still a painter whether anyone ever sees or buys his/her work. A writer can and should write volumes even if no one is reading them. Like this blog, for instance! ahem…
If, at times, you can’t make a living at what you love on a full time basis, keep at it and let it be your solace when you finish that temporary day job. Keep honing your skills, keep growing as an artist… so that when that time does come, you can not only walk through that door but you can kick it in. Kick it in, turn around and rip it off the hinges.
Creativity can’t be stopped. If you feed it, it will constantly stay in motion. The only things that can stop creativity are fear (i.e. self doubt, worry, concern, judgment) and comparing yourself to others. Creativity has nothing to do with fame and fortune, with accolades, with status… it has to do with desire, passion and curiosity. Those elements have existed at every level of social class, gender, race and geographical location. Man, woman, child, rich, poor… we are all creative.
This world was built by and on creativity. We need it. It is all around us… technology, sports, science, agriculture. The world never stops creating and inventing things. We are all creative beings at our core but for those of us that have dedicated our lives to it and fostered it into adulthood, we can not let others put that fire out. We certainly can not let others dictate what kind of artist or creative being we can and should be. Be the artist you want to be. #Followyourpassion. #IAmBrandini
Most people know the basics about Walt Disney. They know he created Mickey Mouse; produced the first animated feature film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs; and created Disneyland.
However, did you also know how truly humble Disney’s beginnings were? Or how many times he had to fail before he found the kind of success that led to him becoming the American icon we all know and love?
The truth is, there’s a lot about the legendary storyteller and producer that most people aren’t aware of. Some facts may surprise you, others may just strengthen your appreciation of his genius.
With the opening of KVibe Productions’ feature film, Walt Before Mickey, less than a month away, we thought it was a great time to look back at the American icon and his incredible influence over so many other artists and entrepreneurs.
Disney may have primarily been a pioneer in the animation and film production industries, but his influence extends far beyond those fields. He was a dreamer, first and foremost, and he has inspired countless people from all walks of life.
Coming from humble beginnings, Disney created an empire through, at times, sheer will and passion. His spirit was infectious and he brought out the best of those around him.
It has truly been an incredible opportunity for us to be a part of telling the story of such an American icon as Walt Disney. We’ve all grown up with the legend of The Walt Disney Company whether it be through the movies, television, theme parks, stuffed toys and the countless spin off companies today including sports and news.
Some of us who are a little older even grew up watching and seemingly knowing “Uncle Walt” as he appeared on television and sometimes film giving us little life lessons, tours of disney land, interviews etc.
However, most of us had never seen the beginnings of his life. Where did he come from? What was he like? How did he become the legend that we know today?
Walt’s family was from Ireland originally but immigrated to America living in parts of Canada and Chicago. His father was a part of the gold rush before he finally settled on that little farm in Marceline, Missouri. Of course, that only lasted for about four years and then the family picked up and left for Kansas City, where the Walt we know and love got his start. He was fascinated by animation. Of course, life also got in the way at times and his family needed money. So, Walt and Roy took up a paper route at very young ages and began to work early in the morning before school delivering papers and then again after school to right before supper. Often this left Walt dozing off in class due to the sheer exhaustion from having to keep those long hours.
Despite his lack of participation in class due to his busy “extra curricular” schedule, Walt still seemed to foster his love for drawing and kept his sights on his dream. In his teens, Walt’s family moved back to the big city of Chicago where his father had acquired shares in a company there.
While in high school, Walt became the cartoonist for the school newspaper and began taking night classes at the Chicago Academy of Fine Art. He started to learn the latest techniques. Soon, however, the War came calling and Walt wanted to join, so he dropped out of school at sixteen to join the War. He was, of course, rejected for being underage but he and a friend ended up joining the ambulance corp and were shipped to France for a year.
When he returned, Walt moved back to Kansas City where he began his artistic career. He originally thought he’d become an actor but no one would hire him. He tried driving an ambulance but no one would hire him there either. Thanks to his brother, Roy, Walt was able to get a job at the Pesmen-Ruben studio and the rest, as they say, is history.
After a short stint at Penmen, Walt met Ub Iwerks and they formed a bond that would last right until the day that Walt passed away. This is really where the magic started and where Walt Before Mickey – the film, will take you; inside all of the failures and triumphs, the aches and pains, the love and hardships and eventual history that was to be made; the partnerships, the players and rising against the odds to realize a dream that was a young lifetime in the making.
Walt Before Mickey has had a similar journey.
From just a crazy idea, to gathering the right people, to adding an incredible amount of determination and know how, a lot of love and hard work, this movie made its own journey. A journey that will culminate in the opening on August 14th at AMC Theaters Downtown Disney itself. How fitting. We’ll also be at SilverSpot Cinemas in Coconut Creek and Bow Tie Cinemas up in the NY/NJ area.
I wonder if Walt, all those years back then, knew just how big his dream would become and that we would be telling stories about him all these years later. So many people affected. Such a worldly presence. A man and a company that means so much to so many. Mickey Mouse, Oswald The Rabbit, The Alice Comedy Series, Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs… and on and on. Perhaps he knew what he was doing? Perhaps he knew what he was creating?
The exec producers (Armando and Arthur), cast, crew and production team definitely knew how special this opportunity was for all of us. We knew how important it would be to tell the best story possible and just like Walt, do it under financial constraints. Like Walt, we persevered and made it through to the finish line. It’s a feat that we are all extremely proud of.
Now, here’s hoping that all of you will go see it and feel the same way that we do about the film.
“A dream is a wish your heart makes.”
Visit us at www.Kvibe.com/Walt-Before-Mickey, check out the official movie site here to pre-order your DVD copy of the film, and follow Khoa and I as we take you on our continued journey into independent filmmaking.
Don’t forget, next up for us is Brandini – The Film, a story about a young man who sacrifices his family, his friends, his livelihood and love in order to follow his heart. www.Kvibe.com/Brandinifilm
It’s no secret that YouTube is still the king of online video. While the other social media giants have adjusted and tweaked their platforms to better handle video, YouTube’s always been focused solely on the medium, so it’s still ahead of the game.
However, what remains a secret to many business owners and marketers is how, exactly, to best use YouTube to their advantage.
Video production is never easy no matter where the content is intended to be displayed, but with YouTube, you need to consider the preferences of that specific community, as well as the inherent expectations of the platform itself.
While every business or individual using video production to promote themselves or their brand understands the value in a video going viral, few understand what that means or what it really takes for that to happen.
There’s no surefire way to hardwire a video so that it’s guaranteed to go viral, but there are some things you need to do so that it has a shot, at least.
However, this post isn’t about what you need to do to make your video go viral, but what you need to stop doing and believing, because there are still a lot of myths out there about viral videos.