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Students start media production company
With the hopes of creating original films under their own company name, senior film, video and interactive media majors Shane Collins and Johan Corilla launched their media production company New Sponge in February 2013.
The production company eventually expanded to provide marketing strategies for local businesses such as photography, video, web design and print design.
“We added all the elements businesses need for marketing and offered it as a service,” Corilla said. “It’s also nice to have a film company under our short film’s so that way it looks more professional.”
New Sponge allows businesses to depend on only one company for all their marketing services, Collins said.
“Having one company doing the marketing, photography and web design brings the cost down and allows us to have creative control over the project as well as our clients,” Collins said.
Even though Collins is responsible for running two organizations on campus and working 15 hours a week as a marketing director for a restaurant company, he says working for New Sponge is extremely fulfilling.
“I always feel like I am not doing enough if I am not running around,” Collins said. “New Sponge has always given me something to do. I always have to have a project in the works or else I will become restless.”
Along with providing marketing strategies for local businesses, the company runs two web shows.
The companies web show “The Domesticated Chef” stars junior film, video and interactive major Michael Fiske cooking in his kitchen teaching restaurant quality cooking techniques and using them in their own kitchen.
The show first aired in August 2013 and has seven episodes available online. The web show has aired on the local FOX network after Collins sent various press releases to local news stations.
“It was incredibly nerve-wracking to be on television, but in the end it turned out well,” Fiske said.
The web show was also recently nominated for a New England Emmy award and is one of four nominations, Collins said.
“You can’t see the nominations like you would on the primetime Emmy’s, so all we can do is wait and see,” Fiske said.
Corilla said he is proud of this nomination and that it will be one of many future nominations.
“It’s something that builds your name and helps you get jobs in the future,” Corilla said.
Along with “The Domesticated Chef,” New Sponge also has a show called “The Review” which is on critiquing filming equipment.
Collins said he plans to move to Santa Monica, Calif., after graduation and take New Sponge with him to expand their business while Corilla works from the east coast.
“No matter what happens after graduation, the plan is to keep New Sponge intact,” Collins said.
Eventually, Collins said he hopes the future of New Sponge will move away from web design and focus more on producing original films.
“While I am good at making websites and I don’t mind doing it, I would rather be making movies,” Collins said.
You are able to start your own business at anytime, even as a student, and compete with other professional companies, which is something working for New Sponge has taught Corilla, he said.
“Just because we are students doesn’t necessarily mean we have to commit ourselves to student projects only,” Corilla said. “If you show you are professional and you set those standards you can compete with other companies that are out there who are essentially just like us.”