I am lucky enough to have grown up living in a house with four generations of relatives. Think of it like Full House meets My Cousin Vinny meets Radio Days. The many positive experiences I've shared with my family have helped shape me into the man I've become.
For Christmas in 1999 my grandmother bought my grandfather a box set of sixty "old-time radio" shows selected by Walter Cronkite. The first show we listened to together was an adaptation of Isaac Asimov's "Nightfall," originally broadcast on 12.7.1955 for NBC's X-Minus-One. It hooked me instantly and I took an active interest in old-time radio and any kind of old film I could get my hands on.
The rest, as they say, is history.
As part of the The WallBreakers, I produce a twice-per-month podcast called Breaking Walls. I launched in 2014 with a scalable and linear concept: sit-down conversations with luminaries, centered around helpful topics, all laddering up to a monthly theme.
Breaking Walls has since expanded to include on-the-scene reporting at places like The American Museum of Natural History, The Maggie Flanigan Acting Studio, and Industry City, as well as mini-documentaries about people, programs, and moments during the Golden Age of Radio like audio from Pearl Harbor Day, the history of Suspense: Radio's Outstanding Theater of Thrills, and how Jack Benny, Jell-O, and a tax code changed the broadcast network landscape forever.
This recent 60-second ad spot is for The WallBreakers Unity t-shirt line. We shot the b-roll on the Staten Island Ferry on a rainy May afternoon. Afterwards, I composed the ad spot in Adobe Premiere Pro, and overlaid the audio track and sound effects. The t-shirts are available for purchase in the shop tab - http://jamesthewallbreaker.com/shop/.
I've also directed and edited videos for clients, like these which feature a day in the life of beauty blogger Sunnie Brook Jones, for Mary Kay. The goal was to compliment Ms. Jones' SOCAL lifestyle with a light-hearted, vintage quality that used bright colors and jump cuts.
These videos won the 2012 IAC Best General Online Video award.
This video for Oscar de la Renta's Espirit d'Oscar celebrated the launch of their new fragrance and gave a behind-the-scenes look of how the fragrance was created.
In addition to audio production, hamming it up in front of a camera, and video editing, I've also directed a short or two, like this macabre title sequence for a spec film called "The Husband."
On February 1, 2015 Lina Gonzalez and I relaunched The WallBreakers, adding more in-house creative content to the original content. As part of the relaunch I asked for video submissions from community members. The only thing I asked them to say was "Welcome to the New WallBreakers." With less than a week leading up to the relaunch I still had no idea how I was going to use all of this footage. With no consistent lighting, camera angle, camera orientation, or volume level I decided to roll with the punches and have some fun with it. Hey, who doesn't love some can-can music amIright (Air high fives)? In all seriousness, thank you to the awesome people who submitted! You put yourself out there for the community. We appreciate that very much.
Sometimes I get an opportunity to record a video interview in conjunction with a particular podcast episode, like these conversations with Staten Island MC Brodie Jaymz, and Sleep No More alumni Chelsea Bonosky.
Each month, content on The WallBreakers centers around a topic which ladders up to the themes we see happening around us throughout the year. For example, February's theme has been "Vulnerability," which comes from the Valentine's Day. In order to love something, including ourselves, we must be wiling to be vulnerable with it. So, in February all of our content has centered around ways to feel more comfortable being vulnerable.
Since I'm a ham and all, I've got to make a content introduction video. Why? Because we must freeze for our art, that's why! On top of this, I've also done promos for upcoming podcast episodes.