Tis the season for family, fun, and filmmakers. What do you get when you put all three together? Transcendental Media Group, aka Edward and Angelica Saldaña. A rad brother-sister team with over 8 years of film experience, they discovered film after pursuing two very different career paths. While we shiver in our coats, we’ll let these two tell us all about their adventures.
What got you into filmmaking?
We’re a brother and sister team. Edward was previously a banker and was robbed. He realized he didn’t want to continue being a banker and immediately entered film school to follow his passion.
While he was in film school, I (Angelica), was still living in Rome getting my Bachelors in Sacred Theology from the Pontifical University of Saint Thomas Aquinas. I was invited to continue my education for my doctorate in Sacred Theology. But I was really interested in film so I declined and went to work with my brother.
That’s quite a story. Happy to hear you’ve found something you like to do! How long ago did you guys make the switch?
We’ve been filmmakers since 2009, so just over 8 years now.
What would you say is your favorite thing about filmmaking?
E: I like being on set and editing the film into a final product.
A: I really enjoy the whole magic of filmmaking,—from coming up with an original idea to translating it to film and sharing it with an audience.
Do you have a favorite type of project you enjoy working on?
A: Writing film scripts, indie films, and trying genres we’ve never done before.
E: I like coming up with concepts, working on comedies, and green screen projects.
If you could work with any artist (director, visual artist, photographer, etc.) of all time, who would it be?
A: Choosing one is so tough, but I’d have to say it’s a tie between Andrei Tarkovsky and Ingmar Bergman.
E: Paul Feig, definitely.
Good choices. We’re big Bridesmaids fans (and kinda liked the new Ghostbusters, flaws aside). It seems like you guys have found your calling, that’s for sure. Is there anything about film you don’t like?
E: Of course! Not every day is fun and games. Personally, I don’t like setting up and tearing down sets.
A: Staring at the blank white canvas is always the hardest part for me.
All things considered, that’s not too bad a list! I know you both were in different careers before this, but if you couldn’t be a filmmaker, what would you be?
A: I’d be a professor of Sacred Theology.
E: I’d probably be in graphic design or doing something techy.
What’s your dream Z-Project?
A: Directing Cate Blanchett and Kristen Wiig.
E: Doing a Super Bowl Commercial.
Not sure we can snag Cate or Kristen Wiig, but we’ll talk to Paul Feig and see what we can do. As for the Super Bowl Commercial, we’ll keep that in mind when we’re talking to clients about our next projects.
Let’s wind the clock back a bit. Walk us through your first project with us—how’d you find Zooppa? What was the process like?
E: We first found Zooppa online, just googling around for things to work on. We were 2 years into our switch and really just wanted to get our feet wet in the world of brand films. Our first Zooppa project was for Orbitz back in 2011. It was our first time doing anything like it, but we decided to go with something funny.
A: We’ve improved a lot since then.
And it shows! You guys have done great work for us so far and we’re lucky to have a team like you in our community. One last thing we’ve just got to know—it’s not film related at all.
A: Ask away!
What’s your favorite candy?
E: Swedish Fish, hands down.
A: Neuhaus Chocolate, so if you’re looking for any end-of-year gifts…