About Me

My photo
I'm a SAHM who began writing, and not just thinking about it, in 2010. I thought graphic design was my future, but was surprised to learn that screenwriting was in my blood. I'm excited to say my first feature length is now being considered for optioning. Life's crazy sometimes, huh? :-)

Saturday, October 6, 2012

My Interview With Exlus Bennett Of Outlaw East Entertainment

It's not often, in such a busy world, that we can find the time to reach out and help others. So it's my privilege to interview, such a person, who has given generously of his time, in helping others. My  blog, today, is a question/answer session with Exlus Bennett, who agreed to talk about how he started, Outlaw East Entertainment, www.OutlawEastEntertainment.com  which formed out of an evolutionary process. One that will benefit all who seek out www.OutlawEastEntertainment.com.
  • What made you decide to start Outlaw East Entertainment?
I started Outlaw East Entertainment, with Edwin Jones, out of an evolutionary process.  Allow me to back track.  In the late 90’s, I owned and operated an art studio.  Our product was graphic arts for various publications.  We did newspapers, magazines, and foremost comic books.  We called ourselves an art studio rather than publishers was because we cared more about the art; the freedom of expression in artistic form by any and all individuals.  My staff and I believed in that so strongly, that when the local kids would hang out to see what we were working on, we started listening to their ideas, their input and their opinions.  We eventually started to hear the kids own characters and stories.  So we encouraged them to write it out.  I guess, at that time, every teacher in the local school was wondering what was going on with these kids. But, the kids came back with good stories and characters.  Sure it was rough and needed some polishing, but they were engaged in something positive!  So I made the decision to put my money where my mouth was and develop, draw out and publish their stories.  I was involved helping the kids with story development, character, content (to a point) and every title featured the creator’s name on the cover;  A confirmation of ownership and development.  Fast forward to 2007, when I was approached to obtain rights from one of my personally created characters for filming.  I was skeptical so I offered a “low end” character.  Then I was asked to write the screenplay for the character and at that point Edwin approached me and wondered why we couldn’t do it ourselves.  After some deliberation, some support from my loved ones I told Edwin, let’s do it.  But we wanted to approach it differently…within the norm, but let’s get real stories behind us again, like when we were in the art studio.  The name Outlaw didn’t signify that we wanted to be ‘badasses’, we use ‘Outlaw’ to state we operate outside of the normal conventional ways.
  • Was it a lifelong dream? To start your company? To help others?
When we started O.E.E. we decided on a few perimeters for the company; 1) Everyone gets an opportunity. 2) A good story is a good story. 3) No one pays to participate 4) We keep the studio East of the Rocky Mountains.  The craziness that is Hollywood, can stay in Hollywood.  And finally 5) We don’t get in the way of anyone actually finding their own version of success, whether it means working with us or leaving us for greater things.  Those are the 5 principles we use.
  • What do you think are the benefits of reaching out to help others?
I believe the benefit of reaching out to others goes far beyond finding an original story or an inventive way to do something.  It creates a community.  Thanks to the internet, the community is global.  A united community solves problems be it; low employment or high anxieties.  While we are not dumb enough to think we don’t need money, we are not terribly jaded by it either.  If our studio could generate one to two $20 million dollar film per year (low balling it) , we could employ 400 persons at $50k a year salary.  That changes things dramatically.  Once we go beyond that, well the sky’s the limit.
  • What do you see happening for Outlaw East Entertainment in the next 5 years? Ten years?
I see Outlaw East Entertainment growing and evolving like it should and not being held back by typical constraints.  We’ve all heard nightmarish stories about what may or may not go on in Hollywood. Why do we have to follow suit?  Some extraordinary things have happened from independent artists.  We believe we can allow more into the industry, after all there are over nine (9,000) thousand television stations around and even now there are more content on the internet with the new format of televised show online.  That creates a need for new and abundant material.  I think O.E.E. will still be pertinent long after I’m gone.
  • And finally, what words of advice would you give anyone wanting to go into the entertainment field?
My advise for anyone trying to get in the entertainment field is follow what you are comfortable with.  If you want to go the conventional route to your destiny, do it with conviction.  However if the conventional road is not for you, get tough, roll up your sleeve and blaze a whole new trail.  Whether you succeed of fail, the accolades you get from the effort while be just as satisfying.

                 *End Of Questions*

I really enjoyed interviewing Exlus Bennett and learning the story of www.OutlawEastEntertainment.com . And I realized something--as I read the answers Exlus gave me--that I have become rather jaded in my opinions--where the internet is concerned.

Somewhere, along the line, I have closed my eyes, not seeing clearly, those who have offered kindness, that became instrumental in helping others make their dreams come true. So I plan, thanks to Exlus helping me see things more clearly, to periodically post--of those on the net--whose kindness helped others see their dreams to fruition.

No comments:

Post a Comment