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KHOU and Zen!

KHOU and Zen!

This year, KHOU and Zenfilm collaborated creating pieces visually telling Houston’s diverse narrative. KHOU Creative Director, Dale Lockett, and Zen’s Producer Rebecca Wells, and Director W. Ross Wells were at the helm of the creative team that composed two spots; “Conversation Starter”, a 60 second promotional spot for KHOU 11 Weather Image, and “We Stand”, a 30 second promotional spot for KHOU-11 News. Both of these spots won Emmys at the 2016 Lone Star Emmy Awards.

“We Stand”, the first spot of our poetry campaign, incorporated the artistic talents of Houston artists: Anat Ronen, muralist, and poet, Rain the Poet. The 30 second promotion won Rebecca Wells, Zenfilm’s amazing producer, her first Emmy. Aired during Super Bowl 50, it is the first of the Super Bowl Poetry Campaigns spot to be awarded. In our second iteration of our poetry campaign created with the promotions team at KHOU, “Roll Up Your Sleeves,” Houston poet Brother Said narrates visuals of the cities present while alluding to the grit of our past.

This campaign was an amazing opportunity for Zen to collaborate with artists of diverse mediums within our own city and express our pride.

A Real Good Day

A Real Good Day

2016 seems like it began two weeks ago… we look up and April is just around the corner. A lot has happened since the first of January and we have high hopes for the rest of the year.

January found us shooting dramatic lifestyle imagery for KHOU‘s Super Bowl XLIX promotions. With creative direction from KHOU’s Dale Lockett, Zen resident director W. Ross Wells teamed up with cinematographer Ben Hallock to create the look of for a new series of KHOU TV image commercials. The “We Stand” spots feature the words and voices of local poets as the narrative backing to moving visual portraits of native Houstonians. We are really excited about the way it turned out. We are currently in preproduction for the next part of the series.  View credits and see the spot here.

Also in January we shot a cool new national tourism spot for Visit Houston. The music video-style ad features The Suffers, a rising star American soul band that hails from H-Town. Houston’s historic market square area provided the setting and the band’s new album provided the tune entitled “Good Day”. The release of the commercial was timed so that it could run during The Suffer’s appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live in March of this year. We collaborated with Holly-Clapham Rosenow and her team at Visit Houston to bring this project to the small screen.  This is our first project filmed with the Red Weapon camera system, now a part of Zenfilm’s production and rental packages. “Good Day” was directed by W. Ross Wells, Produced by Rebecca Wells and lensed by Dan Mohr. View credits and see the spot here.

Both commercials feature wall art from two talented Houston muralists. The KHOU spot features the work (and a cameo) of Anat Ronen. The Visit Houston ad ends with a performance by The Suffers in front of Gonzo 247‘s “Houston is Inspired” mural at Market Square.

Urban Cowboys

Urban Cowboys

Country music legends Mickey Gilley and Johnny Bush last recorded at Houston’s SugarHill Studios 58 years ago. When they reunited in SugarHill’s historic “Studio A”  to cut some new duets, they were joined by some of H-Town’s most prominent musicians;. Kenny Cordray on guitar, Anthony Sapp on bass, Brian Thomas on pedal steel,  Tyson Sheth on drums and the beautiful and talented Champion Sisters on background vocals. The sessions were produced and recorded by SugarHill’s chief engineer Andy Bradley who celebrating his 30th year at the studio. History in the making. Even KHOU’s Great Day Houston came by to film the event for later broadcast.
Zenfilm’s Brittany Holland was in Avid 1 today putting together the music video for “White Lightning” which will be released along with the single next month. Hold on to your hats.