Guest Post from Lizz Marshall: CreatorUp’s Accelerator Program


CreatorUp’s Summer Accelerator Program is taking budding and seasoned filmmakers alike and adding branded content to their creative arsenal. What is branded content? Branded content presents a product or information in an entertaining way that is optimized for sharing. In this case, the product can be an actual product, such as a container, or as broad as Los Angeles itself.

The Accelerator program provides instruction on beginning and advanced elements of pre-production, production, and postproduction, supplemented by weekly workshops with industry professionals. Students can choose to create either a commercial or independent project. The program kicked off July 7 and is taking place over the course of four weeks. Students meet for a workshop at CreatorUp Studios once a week.

The commercial track involves creating a commercial one to three minutes in length for the Container Store. The project is a competition hosted by Zooppa where participants can win $30,000. CreatorUp and Zooppa have partnered so that the best project from the commercial track is guaranteed to win $500 and will be eligible for the grand prize.

The indie track is part of the “On Location: The Los Angeles Video Project” competition that NewFilmmakersLA is hosting. The challenge is to showcase Los Angeles in a unique and engaging way. A multitude of prizes are available including a grand prize package valued at $40,000.


CreatorUp offers guidance for these two paths, keeping everyone on track with assignments and in-class challenges. The students’ first assignment was to write their scripts for their project and find a partner to give them feedback before presenting a final version. The students took a field trip to AwesomenessTV as well during their first week. Students are currently working on finalizing their scripts and beginning production.

To date, CreatorUp has hosted different industry professionals as guest speakers each week. The first week was Larry Laboe, Executive Director of NewFilmmakers LA, as well as winners of the “On Location: The Los Angeles Video Project” competition from past years. Mr. Laboe gave students insight into what a winning submission looks like, and answered students’ questions.

Members of the Zooppa team also answered questions during the first week via videoconference. The topic that was most exciting to the students was Zooppa’s partnership with CreatorUp.

In-class challenges are designed to put each student’s filmmaking abilities to the test while teaching creative skills. This week’s in-class challenge required students to create a six-second Vine trailer for each of their projects. The challenge winner was a recent high school grad, Riley Beres. Riley proved that age has nothing to do with creativity with her visually appealing Vine video that embodied her concept perfectly in a mere six seconds. “Love LA,” Ms. Beres’ short film, follows “a couple on their first date as they discover all the unique things that LA has to offer, for free.”


Riley shares her enthusiasm about her project: “So far, I feel excited about the direction of my project, I’m enjoying the mentorship and teams, and my eyes are being opened to business aspects I hadn’t been exposed to before. It’s already exceeding my expectations.”

Riley is a returning student to CreatorUp and is enjoying the experience thus far. “It’s been so great to work with other filmmakers, all who have different assets and different ideas to contribute. Not to mention, the insight from the CreatorUp team is priceless. It’s like having a big supportive family!” Riley hopes to inspire others with her films and connect with other filmmakers through YouTube. Check out Riley’s winning Vine video here: https://vine.co/v/erZYW6ih170

This week, students will be filming their pieces after final feedback on their scripts from peers and mentors during the workshop.

Learn more about the Accelerator Program here: https://creatorup.com/creatorup-announces-summer-accelerator-programs-for-creators/

Guest Post by Lizz Marshall

Colette Marien

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