By Doug Gritzmacher
Denver Video Production
I’m one of those people who sits through the credits at the end of movies, often to the annoyance of friends and dates. Sometimes I know people in the credits (hey, look, there’s Brian Buckley in the DC unit!). Other times I really like the music and want to enjoy it while on a state-of-the-art sound system as long as I can. But in every case I like watching the credits because, as a filmmaker myself, I have tremendous respect for the process, what it takes to pull it off successfully, and for the talent each of those names on the screen contributed to the film.
Filmmaking requires highly technical, specialized knowledge and experience in several disciplines. It also involves a lot of, and often heavy, equipment. This is why filmmaking is referred to as a collaborative medium, unlike other artforms, such as photography, painting, or sculpture. The craft of filmmaking succeeds only on the contributions of multiple people.
I don’t work on Hollywood movies, but I have worked on my share of independent films, documentaries, and broadcast shows and they operate in much the same fashion. All of those productions have had budgets for multi-person crews. But since I started my own video production company in 2013, I have expanded my reach to smaller organizations that are in the business of doing good for people in need. They usually don’t have a large marketing budget, especially for an elaborate film shoot.
I’m someone who has always embraced all facets of the filmmaking process, whether picture, sound, lighting, editing or directing. So when I sit through the credits of movies, many of those jobs listed are ones I know how to do. This has allowed me to take on these smaller projects by working as a single-person crew. Ideal? No, and at the end of the day I am wiped out. But it’s worth it for the opportunity to do something that not only helps keep the lights on in my office, but also gives back to the community.
One such project came across my desk last month. It’s a 30-second broadcast PSA for a mental health counseling center in Denver that serves the public regardless of their ability to pay. The spot was being donated by a local law firm, which meant the budget is modest. Early in my adulthood I struggled with depression and found help through a free resource while I was in grad school. The experience changed my life and may have even saved it. So I understand first hand the impact professional mental health help can have on someone’s life. I was happy they contacted us to produce it. And they were likewise happy with the final product we produced. They had this to say:
Z-Channel Films is a top-flight production company and they were nothing less than a pleasure to work with. Their work on our client’s television commercial was superb and the highest quality for the budget. Very reasonable and extremely professional. You won’t go wrong with this team. Highly recommended.