Our Florida video company, Litewave Media, in addition to producing content for businesses and other filmmakers, has continued with our own creative pursuits with our new short film, Memory Keeper. Filming began on the sci-fi short at a unique Clearwater warehouse location in May.
Eric films with the ARRI Amira as actress Payton Booker gets into character, and Anthony Verderosa slates the scene.
The dusty location provided an element of realism to the dystopian feel of the film, and our St. Petersburg video production crew even wore face masks to ensure maximum protection from the elements.
Behind-the-scenes filming Litewave Media’s new short Memory Keeper.
The short film was a great opportunity for our St Petersburg FL Production Company to showcase the ARRI Amira’s capabilities. The film was shot in 4k in ProRes 4444 format which will give our editors extra latitude when color grading during post production.
Chris Jackson and Payton Booker act out an intense scene in Memory Keeper.
The film was created by co-directors and cinematographers Christian Cashmir and Eric Coughlin who had been wanting to create a science fiction short in the area for a number of years. The duo is now looking at plans to turn the science fiction idea into a full length feature film.
The Memory Keeper crew: co-directors (Eric Coughlin & Christian Cashmir), gaffer (Scott Sullivan), and actress (Payton Booker).
While the project was a great experience to work with the Tampa ARRI Amira camera, our video production crew were also able to experiment with some new lighting setups.
Our Kino Flo 4Bank lights were separated into 8 single bulbs to create this lighting setup in Memory Keeper.
The Litewave Media team brought out our new lighting gear including our ARRI SkyPanel S60 and Kino Flo Celeb 201. Our gaffer, Scott Sullivan, also created a unique lighting setup with our Kino Flo 4Banks — separating each tube to create a futuristic dystopian tech hideout.
Boom operator (Nat Fennell), actor (Chris Jackson), co-DP (Eric Coughlin), and actress (Payton Booker) film a scene.
Cinematographers Eric Coughlin and Christian Cashmir brought out their Canon CN-E cinema prime lenses and cinema zoom lenses to capture all the detail of the film. The ARRI Amira was outfitted with a Canon EF mount which enabled the team to utilize all their Canon cinema lenses. Our Tampa grip truck rental was also onsite for all the grip and lighting team’s needs, including C-stands, sandbags, flags, silks, and more.
The Memory Keeper crew shoots a scene in their Clearwater, Florida warehouse location.
Memory Keeper, written by Cashmir and Coughlin, is set in a post-apocalyptic future world, where the government is stealing people’s memories to sedate the population. A young girl (played by Payton Booker) sets out on a treacherous journey across the wasteland to find a memory keeper, or hacker (played by Chris Jackson), who can restore a lost memory that she suspects has been stolen from her. She hopes this will give her life back, but what she discovers leads to much more than she could have imagined.
The Tampa camera crew rehearses a scene lit with only a flashlight in Memory Keeper.
Actor Chris Jackson sneaks out of the shadows filming Memory Keeper.
Actor Chris Plourde enjoys a beautiful sunset while co-DP Eric Coughlin films.
Our Florida post production team began the editing process on the film using Adobe Premiere CC. We plan to screen it soon, so keep an eye out if you’d like to watch!
The editing process begins in our St. Petersburg video editing studio.
The Litewave Media team has had some great opportunities to work with musicians over the years– from filming with Grammy-Award-Winning jazz musician Chick Corea in our studio, to classic rock legends Foreigner, and the country chart-topping Band Perry, we’ve worked with a great variety of talent. We recently finished a pre-concert publicity video with No Limits, a dance video with hip-hop artist Isis Sonatra, and even our very own 60’s zombie-themed Tampa music video production.
But one band our Florida production company has partnered with on numerous occasions is Tampa Bay’s own Come Back Alice… and this week we got to do a photoshoot with them!
Tony Tyler and Dani Jaye of Come Back Alice in our Florida production studio.
Come Back Alice formed in 2011 and have been performing live ever since. They love to be on stage and bring their funky rock style to every city they tour in. They’ve also been called “Tampa Bay’s Hottest Rock N Roll Band” by Advisor Magazine.
Tony Tyler, lead singer of Come Back Alice, rocks out in our Florida photography studio.
With the popularity of the band growing, they plan to expand into new markets this year. They enlisted Litewave Media for our photography and creative services. We photographed the rock band for their upcoming publicity and music releases and captured their unique, eclectic style right here in our Tampa photography studio.
Our Tampa photography crew captured this enigmatic photo of Dani Jaye of Come Back Alice.
Photographer and photo shoot director Christian Cashmir and our Tampa video production crew captured the photos using a variety of different lighting set-ups. Our team photographed the band with gear from our Tampa photography equipment rental package, including our Canon 5D MkIII, Canon L-Series Lenses (24mm L f/1.4 II, 50mm L f/1.2), and Profoto D2 photo strobes.
Our photography team used practical lighting in this shot for a more evocative effect.
After the shoot, our team processed and re-touched the photos back in our Florida post production suite to match the band’s stylistic vision.
Our Florida production company captured this photo of the alluring Dani Jaye.
This photo had a little inspiration from Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours‘ album cover.
To see more of Come Back Alice, check out the video for their song “Coraline” that we produced, or this live music video we filmed with them in 2014.
A behind the scenes picture of our photo shoot with Come Back Alice in our studio. Photo courtesy of: Jimmy Rector
Our Tampa video production crew finishes a night shoot at one of St. Petersburg’s many gorgeous beaches!
“BTS” (short for behind-the-scenes) utilizes documentary style cinematography to follow a ragtag group of filmmakers as they produce a “big” budget film, along with all the crazy actors, executives, and characters that follow suit. The series takes a satirical look behind the filmmaking curtains to capture the absurd daily life of those working at a film studio as they attempt to produce a sci-fi space opera, combining the adventure of “Star Wars” with the music of “Les Miserables”.
It’s a duel at sunset! Filming BTS on St. Pete’s Gandy beach… Or is it an other worldly planet?
Litewave Media founder Christian Cashmir initially came up with the idea for the series years ago after experiencing a crazy day on set where everything that happened behind-the-scenes seemed more interesting than the project they were actually filming. In summer of 2016, that idea began to come to fruition when he and co-creator Jason Henne finished mapping out the entire series and sat down with our team of writers to being working on season 1. We approached the St Petersburg/Clearwater Film Commission (FilmSPC) about partnering, and they offered the project a generous grant… From there, it was off to the races!
The cast of BTS filming outstide Litewave Studios
Once our writers had penned their last drafts, it was time to begin pre-production. Series creator and director Christian Cashmir brought in co-producers Briston George and Alissa Schneider, directors of photography Eric Coughlin, Daryn Murphy, and Scott Sullivan, key grip and gaffer Sasha Sebesta, and assistant director Lynne Hansen to helm the series. For the cast, we brought on actors Chris Cavalier from the Oscar-nominated film Hidden Figures, Lucius Baston (Stranger Things, Bad Leiutenant), Owen Harn (The Walking Dead, True Detective), Vivian Alvarez (12 Years a Slave), Chris Jackson (The Inbetweeners), and Alison Burns Jackson, who was a lead in the national tour of the hit musical Rent, as well as a plethora of extremely talented local actors to accompany them!
Everyone’s excited for the new arrival. Who could it be??
Production was a hurricane of fun as we filmed the entire series in just under 2 weeks! To film the series, we brought our St Petersburg grip truck to some of the city’s most gorgeous beaches and exotic locales. Much of the series we filmed in-house, on both our St. Petersburg white cyc studio and Tampa green screen studio (needless to say, our Tampa video production crew was thankful for the easy load-outs!). Key grip Sasha Sebesta also outfitted the overhead lighting in the entire office-area of the studio with Kino Flo daylight balanced bulbs to make lighting for the office scenes quick, soft, and easy (our studio actually decided to keep these in place for any other types of future shoots – or maybe season 2…)
Director Christian Cashmir giving dance lessons to the BTS cast while filming on the beach. Just look at that footwork, baby!
From our equipment package, we filmed the entire first season on our Canon C300 Mk II and C300 Mk I cameras, some Canon L zoom lenses and Canon CN-E cinema prime lenses. We even brought out camera operator Eric Coughlin’s Steadicam to get some more cinematic footage for the “movie-within-a-movie” scenes.
Director of photography Eric Coughlin using the Canon C300 MkII camera on our Tampa white cyc studio.
With principal photography finished, we’ve now taken all of the footage we have to our Tampa post-production company, where our editors will cut together each of the 8 episodes. Looking forward, we’ll bring in the talented actors to our St. Petersburg recording studio, in which we’ll produce all of the songs for the series’ musical numbers. We’ve got a ton of work left and our team hasn’t stopped yet!
It’s ninja beach! Cast and crew sandy, yet happy after a fun day of filming fight scenes on the beach!
Watch the video below for a behind-the-scenes look at “Behind The Scenes”:
Stay tuned for more updates as “BTS” progresses. Remember to like our Facebook page for behind the scenes photos and videos as we continue working on the series! In the meantime, check out some of the other work we’ve done, like music videos and commercials!
Over the course of the last few years our Tampa production company has enjoyed participating in the 48 Hour Film Project, a world-wide competition that challenges filmmakers to write, shoot, and edit their own short films in only 48 hours. It’s become a bit of a tradition for the Litewave Media crew and we’ve met some amazing people along the way. This year, our team once again dove head first into the challenge and produced a short film called “Magazine Issues.”
DP Eric Coughlin gets set up for one of the first shots of the day filming our short “Magazine Issues”
The 48 Hour competition supplies only minimal guidelines for filmmakers, providing a genre, character, prop, and a line of dialogue that must be used in every film. Each team receives their guidelines on Friday night and must turn in their fully finished film Sunday night, only 48 hours later. Our team pulled the genre of “romance,” and writers Jason Henne and Michael Garland went to work forming a cinematic story that also captured the essence of romance. With our writers working through the night on the the script, our Florida video production crew began preparing to film at dawn’s first light.
Next, we loaded up our Tampa grip truck and drove to our first location in Clearwater, Florida to begin filming. Using gear from our St Petersburg video equipment rental package like our Canon C300 MkII and Canon cinema lenses, we hit the ground running (literally) and began production! Filming took place at various locations all over Tampa Bay, including our very own Tampa green screen studio for multiple special effects-driven scenes and a wrestling ring almost an hour from the studio.
Award-winning actress Alissa Schneider plays the melodious sounds of the key-tar in our Tampa green screen studio.
With the clock ticking down, we rushed all of our footage back to our Florida post-production suite for editing. Once our special effects team hustled to compose the visuals needed for the green screen portion of the film, director and editor Christian Cashmir brought the film together with his skill and expertise, cuttin’ up footage and taking names! With the editing finished on literally zero sleep (not even a wink!), finally it was time for submitting the finished film.
Director Christian Cashmir, steadicam operator Eric Coughlin, and lead actor Chris Cavalier review footage before sending it off to our Florida post-production suite for editing.
After waiting for what seemed like the longest 2 weeks ever, it was time for the 48 Hour Film Project ‘Best Of’ screening! With so many great films to compete against, the awards ceremony was a nail biter, but all of our hard work paid off! Our team was nominated in 9 categories and were honored to win the following awards:
Best use of the line “You’re Next!” – Team Prairie Dogs featuring Uncle Henry’s Bowling Club (Us!!)
Audience Favorite – “Magazine Issues” Team Prairie Dogs featuring Uncle Henry’s Bowling Club (Us again!!)
Best Screenplay – Jason Henne and Michael Garland (Our devilishly handsome writers)
Best Supporting Actress – Alissa Schneider (Our drop dead gorgeous actress)
Best Song – “Salesperson of the Year” Music and Lyrics by Chuck Fonshell Jr, Christian Cashmir, and Chris Cavalier (Our extraordinarily talented musicians)
And, drumroll please… BEST FILM!!! – “Magazine Issues” Directed by Christian Cashmir (Our fearless director)
We won Best Film out of 34 competitors! Ignite the fireworks! Wookie yell! Rejoice!
Now that our film “Magazine Issues” has won Best Film – Tampa, we move on to the next round where we’ll compete against the winners from over 100 cities worldwide at Film-a-Palooza in Seattle, Washington next March!
As with every year, we had an amazing time working on the 48 Hour Film Project, and we look forward to competing again next year. Check out our finished film “Magazine Issues” below (Made in just 48 hours)!
The Litewave Media team celebrates after the 48 Hour Awards Screening
Recently our Florida video production company had the chance to work with Grand Villa, a resort style senior living community with multiple locations throughout Florida, to film a TV commercial campaign at one of their communities. We went to their St Petersburg, Florida location to learn more about the services they provide to their residents, take a tour of the facilities, and brainstorm ideas for the commercial.
Director Christian Cashmir and grip Sasha Sebesta film with our Dana Dolly and Sony a7S II.
Tampa video production services
Once we had a chance to sit down and speak with the marketing team and get a feel for the community, our production team was excited to draft a script for the project and provide our Tampa video production services. With multiple communities throughout Florida, Grand Villa is one of the more popular retirement communities among seniors, hosting a friendly staff, resort-like amenities, and high quality assisted living services.
Makeup artist, Nikki, puts final touch-ups on makeup before filming the 60’s flashback dinner scene
The video production process
Working together with Grand Villa marketing team’s Ben Rizzo and Clint Dockery, Litewave Media founder Christian Cashmir and writer Mike Garland planned out a fun, emotional story to film. Over the course of a week, the team transformed the idea into a fully developed commercial production- complete with storyboards, costumes, cast, and crew. The concept of the shoot was to journey through the life of a woman at milestones in her life, shown through various decades encompassing the 1950’s, 1960’s, and present day. Our Tampa video production crew was ready to begin filming!
Steadicam operator Eric Coughlin, director Christian Cashmir, and Grand Villa’s marketing guru Ben Rizzo review footage in between takes.
Stocked, locked, and ready to rock, we drove our St Petersburg grip truck to Grand Villa to begin our first day of filming. Their St. Petersburg location was a great choice for production as it boasts tennis courts, a pool, coffee shop, multiple hair salons, and a grand dining room complete with its own cafe. With multiple areas perfect for cinematic storytelling, our crew began filming with our Tampa video equipment rental package. Using our Canon C300 mkII and Sony A7sII video cameras with Canon cinema lenses, director Christian Cashmir helmed the production, bringing his technical skill and directing expertise to the project. Alongside Steadicam operator Eric Coughlin, our Tampa video production crew flew in our Arri and KinoFlo 4 Bank lighting kits, and also filmed scenes on our Dana Dolly.
Our Florida video production crew films a scene on Steadicam for the Grand Villa commercial
We recorded a little time lapse of one filming location (shot by grip Sasha Sebesta):
On day two of the shoot, our Tampa video production crew planned to travel in time to the 1950’s. But, since our time machine was out of batteries, we decided on the next best thing: Johnny Rockets, a 50’s-style diner. Our crew loaded up our grip truck and set forth. With a vintage theme, leather seats, and decor reminiscent of the 1950s, Johnny Rockets was the perfect place to film a scene for the Grand Villa TV ad campaign. The quiet restaurant was transformed and set ablaze with colorful costumes, laughing actors, crew members, and of course a classic dish of ice cream. (The crew may have had refills)
Actors Lexi, Linda, and Chris during the second day of filming at Johnny Rockets, a 50’s-style diner.
Post Production Time
After a lively, creative shoot it was time to head back to our Tampa Bay video studio to begin the editing and post production process. We hired a top notch voice-over actress, who we captured in our sound booth and Tampa recording studio. Our post team even created a visual effect sequence to augment the great work our production crew started.
The cast and crew at Grand Villa St. Petersburg celebrate completing the first day of filming.
Our Florida video production crew had a great time working with the Grand Villa team on such a fun project. The TV commercial will air regionally in Florida. You can also watch the finished commercial below!