Get To know LionStar Films
Destination South Meetings + Events‘ Creative and Marketing Director, Lorri McQueary recently had a chance to spend time chatting with Ryan Seger, Executive Producer of one of our favorite film and video partners, LionStar Films. Since 1999, LionStar has been producing creative film and videos for clients around the world. We find their team to be inspiring and always insightful about what they bring to the industry. Enjoy learning more about LionStar Films in our one-on-one with Ryan!
Hey Ryan! Thanks for talking with Destination South today. Can you tell our readers a little bit about your start in the film and video industry and how LionStar Films came to be?
A: My parents really fostered my love of film from a really young age. As a kid growing up in South Africa there weren’t many movie theaters accessible to us back then so my parents would rent a 16mm film projector and host movie nights for friends and family. I think that was one of the biggest factors influencing my love of the moving picture and how it brought people together.
Between business college and art school where I studied film and video, I spent time working with a fashion photographer as his assistant. During this time a friend introduced me to the world of live event video and that is where my career started.
Q: I’m sure you get this all the time but, where did the name LionStar originate?
A: Sure, the icon and the spirit of the “lion” stem from my roots growing up in South Africa. I wanted to make sure I didn’t lose the connection to my home and the influences that shaped me and the lion has always been “King of the Jungle”! The reference to “star” comes from the North Star and its nautical connotations. My wife and I share a passion for sailing that goes way back. She actually helped me create the name and the logo.
Q: What are some Atlanta companies that you work with and what kinds of projects do you collaborate with them on?
A: We have had an incredible opportunity to work with a lot of Atlanta’s larger corporations over the last 16 years. A few of the companies that we regularly work with include: Arby’s, Georgia Aquarium, Chick-fil-A, Aaron’s, Georgia Power, MedAssets and AT&T as well as quite a few creative and content agencies across the city. We assist them in all types of video content in a variety of different ways. We also really enjoy collaborating with the Atlanta Hawks on projects. We had the opportunity to create some of the projection mapping you may have seen on the court during home games over the last two seasons. We also assist Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta with different content and have spent a lot of time on UPS and Home Depot projects over the years. Our services for live events include on-site shooting, editing, video mapping and of course original content creation to help bring the meeting messages to life and make them interesting!
Q: Tell us a little bit about what you did to win a 2016 Allie Award for the Atlanta Hospitality Hall of Fame event at the Georgia Aquarium?
A: This year’s ‘Hospitality Hall of Fame’ was our second as video partner for the show. It was exciting to have the unprecedented opportunity to go into the Dolphin Theater for the inductions and do something with video in that space that had never before been attempted. The Aquarium has all the state-of-the-art equipment needed in-house to project our content. Our task was to take the video content we created and customize it to fit perfectly on the “whale tail” in the theater.
Through careful content planning, shot framing and editing by our post production team as well as the trust placed in us by the event planning team, we were able to “go for it” and make something truly unique. The Aquarium now uses the “whale tail” as a permanent space to show video during their new dolphin show.
Q: What is the most creatively challenging or exciting project you’ve ever undertaken?
A: Every project definitely has its own unique set of challenges but with the incredible team of talented individuals we have over here at LionStar each of these challenges are looked at more as something to figure out rather than a road block. Hands-down though, shooting around the world is the most rewarding. The logistics can be daunting sometimes, so pulling these shoots off is always satisfying. We are proud to say we have shot on every continent on the planet except Antarctica. So far…
Q: What are some ways video is evolving within the world of special events, meetings, awards programs, etc?
A: Projection mapping and motion graphics has allowed so much new creative opportunity and freedom. Your set becomes an immersive canvas almost like a living environment evolving in front of you. This format allows for richer and longer lasting audience engagement.
Q: What are some video trends or technology that your team is excited about using now or in the future?
A: Virtual reality (VR) has really taken off this year, we are currently creating a VR experience for Arby’s and we expect to see a lot more of this in the near future. One of the biggest things I am really excited about is “Interactive Video”, it is about to change the entire game, especially in the corporate and entertainment world. As clients’ budgets increase it really opens the doors to all kinds of really creative and engaging projects. We are all really excited about where the video industry is headed.
Q: What is your key to success?
A: What keeps us successful is our talented team and incredible client relationships. Every person on our team is an amazing story teller and they are all graphically and technically advanced. They constantly blow my mind with what they are able to accomplish. We focus on producing outstanding work and gaining the trust and return business of our clients. At LionStar, we are all accountable to each other. Everybody is interested in the success of every person on each project. As a team, we are always encouraging each other and passionate about pushing the envelope and growing together.