Unveil Studios, the award-winning film production studio behind the locally-produced film She Has A Name, took home two awards at the Crown Awards last month.
Studio owners Andrew Kooman, Matthew Kooman and Daniel Kooman were onhand to receive the honours in Nashville at the International Christian Visual Media Film and Media Conference.
They landed the award for Best Music Video for Heal Me and also took home the ‘New Filmmakers Award’.
Heal Me is also the lead single from recording artist Elizabeth Smith’s new album Hope released this past June.
“International Christian Visual Media celebrates international productions in the faith and family realm,” explained Matthew. “We had some recognition last year with our film She Has A Name, and so we submitted a few other projects for review this year.”
As to the music video, Matt described it as an engaging and unique creative process.
“It’s a lot different from making a film where you start from the writing and then you build everything out. With a music video, you start from the finished (recording) and you’re putting it together afterwards. I really enjoyed that.
“Often when I’m editing, I’ll do it to music. I’ll put a score under it, and cut to it according to the feeling that I’m trying to convey. So for me, it’s really natural to edit a project to the finished ‘sound’.”
The confines of creating a visual experience to a mere three-minute song does have its advantages as well.
“You can’t go any longer than that, so you put what you think is your best foot forward in your rough edit and then you’ve got all this extra stuff you can use to improve it. But you know that you can’t make it any shorter or longer. It’s a totally different boundary than editing a documentary or a feature.”
As mentioned, the brothers, who wrote and directed She Has A Name, were also recognized for excellence and promise in filmmaking with the New Filmmakers Award. The award includes a $1,000 cash prize sponsored by the Kendrick Brothers whose most recent box office success War Room earned more than $70 million at the box office.
Last year, She Has A Name received a Silver Crown Award for Best Drama. She Has A Name focuses on an investigation into a shocking human trafficking incident in southeast Asia and explores the layers of corruption that enable the global commercial sex trade to thrive, at the expense of young girls’ and women’s futures.
The project – co-directed by Matthew and Daniel from the screenplay by Andrew – was released in December 2016.
It was produced in Red Deer, filmed in Thailand and featured an international cast and crew.
Meanwhile, Unveil Studios is currently in production on Dream, a documentary production that follows the stories of people pursuing their dreams and has shot segments for the production in Tanzania and Mexico City with filming slated for Canada and the United States.
Meanwhile, the brothers continue to find such fulfillment in what they do, and on a personal level, Matt can’t really imagine a better path himself. Even though it isn’t always an easy road to travel.
“I think my faith inspires me, and I feel like I’m meant to be doing this,” he explained. “For me, these awards, and meeting other people who are pursuing a similar path is really encouraging. And with film, you can reach so many people with your message.”
Unveil Studios’ films include She Has A Name, E for Everyone: The Mouse and the Elephant; The Ladder of My Life; The Story and A Filmmaker’s Search for Revival.
For more, check out www.unveilstudios.com.