Kirby Productions Wouldn't Exist Without George A. Romero. by Al Liptak

Kirby Productions wouldn't exist if it wasn't for George A. Romero... Here is why...

Many moons ago, when I was a wee little boy, I snuck into my older brother's room. My cousin had brought over a scary movie to watch. That movie, "George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead." After weeks of nightmares (let's be honest, more like months or years...) a true zombie fan was born.

I was such a big fan, we would play "Zombie" instead of tag as kids; which, thinking back now, was pretty impossible to win if you were the zombie since you were only allowed to walk while everyone else could run.

Once I was a bit older, I reached out to my cousin to recommend any other movies like DotD. Soon I was engulfed in zombie horror films. Starting with Night and Day, ending with the Return series and even lesser known zombie horror to the likes of Dead Alive.

I watched every G.A.R movie I could get my hands on, and it opened my eyes to other horror legends like Argento, Fulci, Raimi, Jackson and more.

 

I got so involved in the horror I started researching Tom Savini and creating my own special effects makeup. My mom can tell you of the countless times she almost had a heart attack when I would run downstairs screaming covered in fake wounds and blood.

In high school, everyone seemed to call me around halloween asking to be "Zombified." I quickly realized I loved creating zombies and gore and looked into how I could make it a career.

My first thought was to go to school for make up effects, but after talking with my Dad I realized my real passion was to create. I wanted to be the one creating the story and the reason behind the gore not just the gore itself. 

In college we'd go around the room and talk about what we wanted to do specifically in the media industry. Most students said they wanted to make music videos, work sporting events, or even shoot hollywood films. I would stand up and say I wanted to make low budget horror films like George A. Romero. 

It wasn't long after that, when I heard G.A.R. was going to be at local horror convention "Rock and Shock." I was so nervous to finally meet him. I remember standing in line waiting for over an hour shaking. When I finally got to meet him, I couldn't talk. My friend told him, I loved him and wanted to be a filmmaker like him. He told me to "Start shooting, its easier now than ever, just start shooting." He was so nice and comforting and even chit chatted with me a bit and told me I need to go up to Maine and see Stephen Kings house.

After that, I started my final project in college, "Rotting Joy." It was a short little script I wrote in screenwriting class about a zombie's quest for a friend. In the end, the short became the ultimate homage to G.A.R.'s zombie films throughout the years.

Once I graduated, a friend from college invited me to work on a short film being shot out near Boston for a NYU student. That student was George Romero's daughter Tina. Long story short, after moving lights and cables all day long, I finally got the courage to tell Tina how big of a fan I was of her father and give her "Rotting Joy." 

Did "Rotting Joy" ever make it in front of George's eyes? I do not know. But that doesn't matter. What does matter is the fact that her father made such an impact on my life through his movies, that I now own and run my own video production company here today.

George's photo hangs proudly on the wall at my studio, his inspiration shines thru in my music and in my videos, and he will continue on forever in my heart.

RIP GEORGE A. ROMERO

Fathers Day Came Early... by Al Liptak

I have been told becoming a father is an indescribable feeling. January 8, 2016, the moment I met my little boy for the first time, my heart melted. Joy, love, pride, exhaustion, those are just a few of the emotions my body and soul have gone through in the past nine days. 

Kim and I, here at Kirby Productions, want to share those emotions with you, our faithful family, friends, fans and clients. Please welcome, Tristan James Liptak!

A beautiful write up and stills can also be seen at Kimberly Hatch Photography.

-Al

Why is everyone raving about Kirby Productions? by Al Liptak

Kirby Productions has been pleasing clients with great videos for years! Give the video above a watch and hear just a few things our clients have to say about our work.

Kirby offers award winning full service video production for corporate clients and individuals. We offer services writing, shooting HD and 4k video, video editing, visual effects, sound design and motion design. We pride ourselves on taking the time to produce the right video for every client. As John Sortino, founder of Vermont Teddy Bear and Cambridge Entrepreneur Academy says, "Great videos will increase your sales." So what are you waiting for? Send us an email for a free quote today and increase your sales with Kirby Productions!

Watch more of our videos at KirbyProductions.com and subscribe to our YouTube Channel

A filmmakers view of Fantasia Film Festival. by Al Liptak

I arrived in Montreal around 3am.

    As I crossed the border into Canada for the last leg of my 5 plus hour drive, the Canadian punks, SUM 41 came on the radio. I took this serendipitous moment as sure sign that good times were to come during my first ever Fantasia International Film Festival experience. This was the location where “Kitty Kitty Bang Bang,” 30 second short film written, directed and produced by me, Al Liptak of Kirby Productions was to debut.

    After a good night sleep I took to the French streets of Montreal to pick up my filmmakers badge. It was then that I ran into friend and founder of Moderncine and Tentsquare.com, Andrew Van Den Houten.

    "AL!" Andrew said with a smile. "Perfect timing! I'm just about to go have lunch with Anchor Bay. You wanna come?" Do I want to come have lunch with the distributors of Evil Dead, Hatchet, and hundreds of other favorite horror movies of mine? “Yes, Please.” And so a trip of a lifetime for a horror fanatic began- chit chatting away with Anchor Bay over an artisan pizza!

    I consider fear one of the strongest emotions. To possess the ability to evoke emotion and create fear or scare somebody is an unexplainable feeling. I enjoy evoking emotion in people and changing that emotion. That’s why my favorite filmmakers don’t just do horror, they do horror comedies. Movies are my escape from everyday life. To me, genre films bring that escape from reality to another level. You don’t have to stay in the boundaries of life.  You can go anywhere. The Fantasia International Film Festival unites international hardcore genre film fans, distributors, and makers, all the while premiering movies during the three week annual event.

   It has been my ultimate goal in life to make a feature length movie since the young age of nine. It is because of and thanks to the Fantasia International Film Festival that I discovered The Frontières International Co-Production Market. A united group of established producers who care enough to help newcomer filmmakers (such as myself) get their films made for the North American and European market.  A group that reassures me that my childhood dream is accessible. There are people on your side.

    It seemed, everywhere I walked I bumped into somebody important in the filmmaking industry. I even sat down for a "coffee break" with a creative executive for Dimension Films (despite the irony of no one at the table being coffee drinkers).

    Directors, producers, industry execs., film festival coordinators all hanging out together drinking beer and eating hors d'oeuvres on a rooftop in downtown Montreal. This was the VIP cocktail hour that I, being a filmmaker, got to be a part of! It was here that I had the chance to hang out and chat with Joonas Makkonen, Director of "Bunny the Killer Thing” and its star, Enni Ojutkangas. We made an instant connection.

    I couldn’t believe how many of my amazing genre filmmakers were around. Director of "Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer" and "Wild Things," John McNaughton was even there chatting and taking photos with the directors of "Tales of Halloween" including Mike Mendez and Neil Marshall. Oh, did I forget to mention... I was standing a foot away from NEIL MARSHALL?!?! Yes that Neil Marshall of “Dog Soldiers,” “The Descent,” and “Game of Thrones” fame. I told Neil how I believe "The Descent" is the scariest movie to come out in the past 15 years and he was very appreciative. He even asked me about “Kitty Kitty...” and told me he loved that the title was a homage to another scary film about child catchers (“Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”).

    Cut to the premier of, "Tales of Halloween." One of the main reasons I made the trip. The theater was sold out. Directors Axelle Carolyn, Mike Mendez, Darren Lynn Bousman, and Neil Marshall all introduced the film and the crowd when crazy. I was in heaven. The audience at Fantasia is like no other. They understand the horror genre completely. Clapping, laughing, ooing, awwwing. This collective group of people appreciate a great cameo and an obscene amount of gore like no other. These were “my people.” This was the crowd I wanted to witness my next film. I felt at home.

    The “Tales of Halloween” after party was the place to be! Time to kick back with all the amazing filmmakers, writers, directors, and even videogame producers.. Andrew Van Den Houten came up to me as I chatted with a few locals who were asking me about my short and asked, “So you ready to make a feature next year?" I laughed but inside I was completely inspired. I couldn't wait to expand my craft and reach a bit further. My dream of making a feature may not be as far away as it once seemed.

   


Skype call turns undeadly... by Al Liptak

Author Ty Drago has done it again!

Will Ritter and his gang of Undertakers are back in book four of Ty Drago's The Undertakers series. "The Last Siege of Haven" hits shelves on May 24th 2015 and is sure to be a must buy for all the young middle school horror fans out there!

Al Liptak of Kirby Productions recently teamed up with author Ty Drago to create a trailer for the new novel. Based on a passage from the book, the trailer takes place during a skype call between our favorite hero Will and his chief Tom. All seems well until Will gives Tom a scare of undeadly proportions! 

Brett Kelley: Art Mercenary provided the make up effects on Tim Wylie, (star of Tentsquare.com #ZombieBromance Winner "Giving Head") and we got great acting performances out of newcomers Jack Woodbury as Will Ritter and Zach Chechile as Tom Jefferson.

Want to read more? Check out www.jointheundertakers.com !

Are Music Videos Still Relevant? by Al Liptak

Top 3 Reasons to Make a Music Video

Music videos are all over the internet and social media sites these days... They are the fastest way to make your music hit more ears than ever. Whether its a lyric video, animated video, or a professional shot music video, any way you slice it, music videos will get more eyes and ears on to your band... Just shoot it!

Below are my top 3 reasons every musician should have a music video.

 

3. YOUTUBE IS THE NEW MTV.

29 of the top 30 most viewed videos on youtube as of 2015 are music videos.

(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_most_viewed_YouTube_videos)

 

2. They will make your music go VIRAL.

The average person is more likely to watch and share a video on social media than listen to a music link.

 

1. Weird Al

Weird Al launched a viral video campaign last year. He put out 8 music videos in 8 days leading up to the release of Mandatory Fun. The result? Tons of publicity, hundreds of thousands of views and Weird Al's first #1 album ever! EVER! It was also the first comedy album to be #1 since 1963!!! Now if that doesn't show how important music videos can be I don't know what does!

 

 

Thanks Tentsquare.com! by Al Liptak

Just got our package of prizes from TentSquare for our winning short film "Giving Head." Includes a signed copy of Final Destination, The Offspring and Headspace as well as 2 soundtracks on vinyl, a Jack Ketchum novel and a bunch of other dvd's and blurays including the first ever feature I worked on "The Woman." Thanks Jeffrey Reddick and Andrew Van Den Houten! Now gotta deliver these to the cast and crew!!! -Al Liptak

Watch the short again below!


"Giving Head" Wins! by Al Liptak

"Giving Head" wins Tentsquare.com's ZombieBromance challenge!

Congratulations to the Kirby Productions crew on another Award Winning Video!

In late september, writer Jeffrey Reddick (Final Destination, Tamara), teamed up with Tentsquare.com, a crowd sourcing site for filmmakers, to challenge its members to create a 2 min or less "Zombie Bromance." Kirby Productions was up to the challenge. Writer Joe Sherry got together with director Al Liptak and director of photography Kim Hatch and took a silly idea and made it into an exciting script and shot list...

Dan Soule of Color Bomb Studios in West Springfield, MA,  was kind enough to lend his studio as a location for the shoot. The Kirby crew sprung into action and created a must see 2 min zombie short for the ages!

On November 3rd the winner was announced in a special video message from Jeffrey himself on the Fangoria.com website. WE WON!!! Well actually we tied for first but WE WON!!!

Check out the AWARD WINNING short above!

And check out the announcement below!
http://www.fangoria.com/new/exclusive-video-zombie-bromance-winner-announced/

 

 

Owner of DementedFX blown away by Kirby Productions professionalism by Al Liptak

"Everyone that I've shown the commercial and the reel to...blown away."

Jeremie LaPointe of DementedFX was absolutely blown away by the professionalism of Kirby Productions and their crew. Watch the video above to hear all about his experience with the local video production team and don't be afraid to check out the rest of KirbyProductions.com to learn more and get a free quote for your next video project!

Grunge, Metal, Hip Hop, Puppets, Wrestlers all wrapped up in a Pop Punk shell! by Al Liptak

Funzzle "Same Old Song"

Funzzle wanted a video to just be goofy, fun, and not take anything too seriously. Thats exactly what the "Same Old Song" is...

This was an intense shoot and edit. 5 different outfits, cameos and puppets each shot with 2 cameras in front of a green screen. The shoot took 12 hours in the studio, as well as another 1 hour on location for the "man watching TV shots." 

Editing was another battle. Over 100 different shots in front of the green screen needed to be keyed, a multitude of backgrounds needed to be created and everything needed to be pieced together and synched to the music. After a good 40 hours of time, the video was then sent for color grading and added effects.

This was probably one of the most time consuming, intricate projects for us here at Kirby Productions, but the result is one hell of a good time.

Want to learn how easy it is to make a brick oven pizza? by Al Liptak

I recently had the chance to hang out in Kennebunkport Maine and learn all the exciting things there are to do in town... Of course you have the ocean and the beach so the surfing, swimming, tanning and seafood are all amazing... However theres a neat little secret wood fired cooking school that gives you a little taste of Italy right there in Maine!

Check out the video below and check out http://www.jillyannas.com/ to learn more and book your class today!

Video Credits: 
Executive Producer / Host - Mary Jo Cranmore
Director of Photography / Editor - Al Liptak (KirbyProductions.com)

The New Way To Create a Movie... TentSquare Has Arrived. by Al Liptak

This is TentSquare

An unbelievable new social media crowd sourcing site just popped up at SXSW and is taking the filmmaking world by storm. Its called TentSquare and it is a brand new, exciting way to get indy filmmakers on the map. From directors and producers to actors and stunt people, TentSquare is an interactive social community uniting filmmakers of all kinds in one place.

But its not just a social media connection site. It goes further...

Read More

Got a min? Bands, Businesses, Blood, and More! by Al Liptak

A 1.5 min demo reel captures a variety of aspects of video all produced by Al Liptak.

Al Liptak, owner of Kirby Productions, purchased his first camera as a freshman in highschool. What began as a series short horror skits and boneheaded stunts captured with friends, soon took on a professional role in Al's life.

Read More