Yellow Brick Studio has had the great fortune of securing many outstanding individuals to work with the company on the three creative ventures – LegacyVision Films, Soul Sessions USA, 5miles – that it promotes. Listed here are those who have most prominently participated in some way.
|While the individuals listed in this section have all contributed to the development of YBS projects in some manner, not all may be actively involved at the present time.|
Jon is the founder of Yellow Brick Studio and the creator and owner of two of the ventures that the company promotes, Soul Sessions USA and 5miles. Soul Sessions USA is a burgeoning music channel dedicated to finding the hidden gems of the music industry (the next generation of singers and song writers), and 5miles enables entrepreneurs to use storytelling videos to showcase their businesses over the Internet. These businesses are indicative of Jon’s creativity, for he has been a creative force ever since his short film, That’s Not All, aired on ABC, and was introduced by Dick Clark and Ed McMahon as the best in home video on TV’s Bloopers And Practical Jokes. His first documentary, Wild Winds, aired on KGMB (CBS Hawaii) in 1986 and was distributed by Booklines. His first TV Special, Pipeline Masters, aired on ESPN in 1987 and was hosted by Chris Berman. He has a bachelors degree from Gonzaga University (Broadcasting) where his class was the first to film a special featuring Zags (and eventual pro) basketball legend, John Stockton, and air him on university cable television. His first dramatic film, Tis The Season – A Hawaiian Christmas Story (1994), which he co-wrote, aired on KITV (ABC Hawaii), and won the Children’s Jury Award at the Chicago International Children Film Festival. In 1997, he filmed his second feature length movie, the coming-of-age youth drama, A Boy, A Girl, And A Dead Cat, which eventually premiered at the Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF) in 1999. He wrote, directed, and produced the short film, Vent , in 2004, a satirical behind-the-scenes look of a community theatre that was screened at the Ohina Film Festival. In 2007, he directed the stage play, Merry Christmas, Roberta (co-written with Michael Wurth and Eric Nemoto), which won Best Play at the Hawaii theatre awards. As Director of Creative Services for Time Warner Cable from 2002 to 2011, he built a state-of-the-art green screen studio and post-production facility and produced hundreds of programming hours in sports and entertainment. He was a network cameraman for the LA Lakers, shot more basketball games than anyone could count for OC16 (Hawaii cable TV station), worked numerous NCAA basketball playoff shoots (serving as a camera operator, replay operator, producer, and director), and was also the first producer of the previously known Maui Classic basketball tournament (now the Maui Invitational Tournament, a staple on ESPN). He produced six University of Hawaii NCAA regional playoff events and numerous statewide telethons for the Red Cross including Kokua for Japan (which raised $1.6 million and was nominated for the VH1 Do Something Awards), Kokua for the Philippines, Kokua for Katrina, Kokua for the Pacific – which were live concert fundraisers for typhoon and tsunami victims which raised millions of dollars for each cause. With Time Warner Cable in Hawaii, Jon launched five interactive TV channels including The Green Channel and OIWI TV while also turning its television station, OC16, into a 24-hour network. In 2011, he joined the Island Film Group (IFG) and Hawaii Media Inc., where he wrote, directed, and produced his third feature length film, as words breathe, a drama about a woman who unplugs from corporate life to discover the artist within herself. All told, Jon counts over 1,000 productions to his director’s credits, which includes experiences in television (programs, commercials, telethons), film (both features and shorts), video (training and educational), and stage plays (including dinner shows). Adding on to his impressive resume, Jon is also the author of In The City Of Angels – A Dark Tale Of Redemption, a story he wrote when he was a broken man and single father of a toddler, pushing a baby stroller 2,000 miles a year all across downtown Los Angeles. As tough as he is creative, Jon has made it all the way back and lives happily in California with his wife, Lea, and sons, Adam and Asher, where he continues to pursue his own creative endeavors. See also jonbrekke.com and IMDB.
Ever since he was a youngster recording everything he could find with his tape recorder, Mark Bush has been into sound. Among his own band members he was the man everyone knew would record the band’s music, and to this day he has every song recorded on a CD. With Yellow Brick Studio, Mark has become that indispensable “closer” for all of its LegacyVision Films. The man who during post-production will work on the movie’s final sound editing. His closer role was discovered as he was recruited to do the post audio work for Closing Costs and Before The After, and solidified with his outstanding work on The Landline Detective, Covid Release, Obake Neko, Where Are We Going, and particularly for So Close Shig, and The Curse Of Witness Protection, in which he contributed significantly to literally saving Shig (see “The Rescuers”), and finally completing Curse (see “Final Sound & Music Editing”). In addition to his sound editing skills, Mark is one of Hawaii’s finest actors who has acted in four LegacyVision Films (Closing Costs, The Curse Of Witness Protection, Covid Release, and Find Me, along with another feature film, 20 Minutes, in which he played Larry, the doomsday prepper whose predictions of ultimate apocalypse eventually comes true. Having a passing resemblance to the man himself, he also plays Ernest Artel Blood in the sports documentary, Prof Blood – Basketball’s First Great Coach. He has also appeared in a number of Honolulu stage productions where his roles have spanned an impressive range. He was Aman, the Ghost, and the Policeman in Water By The Spoonful, Owen in The Foreigner, Chris Keller in All My Sons, Tiresias in Antigone, Scrooge in A Christmas Carol, Feste the Jester in Twelfth Night, and Barnaby in Hello Dolly! He was also the sound engineer for The Legend of Ko`olau which was filmed live at the Doris Duke Theatre. When not “closeted” in his sound studio, you can find Mark driving around the island in the only electric 1973 green Porsche 914 in Hawaii, which he himself converted from gas.
John Campos helped Jon Brekke to create Soul Sessions USA (SSUSA) and maintains a minority ownership of the venture. He has over 35 years of experience in a wide variety of technologies including information technology and hardware software development. He has been involved with more than eight startup environments involving cutting edge technology, entertainment production, and information technology management consulting. He also has more than 40 years of experience as a semi-professional musician and 25 years as a semi-professional in the field of audio mixing in the roles of engineer, arranger, songwriter, and producer. He spent four years as a regional services manager, senior project manager, and strategic technology sales representative for Siemens Medical (now Siemens Healthineers). He successfully bootstrapped and created a full suite IT services company, with a peak of 1.2 million dollars in gross receipts and 15 employees. For SSUSA, John handles an abundance of areas and tasks including audio mix engineering, business strategy, operational and technical support, business development, serving as field liaison with prospective artists, writing business and programming content, assisting with social media marketing, and providing graphics support. John supervises the production and marketing end of SSUSA, including overseeing video post-production and social media advertising, and continues to assist on all video shoots.
Michael resides in Kahalu’u, O’ahu, Hawaii with his family. Raised in the islands, Michael learned to respect all cultures, to eat all foods, and most importantly, to be humble. Boxing from the age of 13, has taught him that hard work and dedication could help him win not only the fight in the ring, but the many challenges which we face in life. “With a blood sweat and tears mindset, you can achieve greatness,” has been his mantra. A career in the Fire Department has taught him to truly appreciate each day, help all the people he can, and that friendship is truly one of the greatest treasures in life. Michael has used the same focus that has made him a success in life towards his acting aspirations. He has appeared in featured roles in the Hawaii based TV series, Magnum P.I. (Andrew) and Hawaii Five-0 (U.S. Marshall), and was the central thug in Aaron Yamasato’s Ninja EX. With YBS, Michael has been an active actor who has also assisted in securing shoot locations. He began with a brief appearance as a security guard in World Buffet, and served as various voice characters in Before The After, So Close Shig, and The Landline Detective. His first featured role was that of the hulking enforcer in Closing Costs. He then went from playing the bad guy in that movie to being one of the good detectives in The Curse Of Witness Protection. He then played the heavy again in Grab, as Chris, the muscle guy with a gun. Then in Covid Release, he broke away from the good guy and bad guy roles, and portrayed the complex Reginald Sylenski, one of five convicts being let out of prison if he can get by a woman psychologist’s reviewing wrath. In Find Me, he broke out even further, this time starring as Drum, the man having the same dreams who finds out they are happening for an otherworldly reason. Retired now from the Fire Department, it’s a very good bet that Michael will continue to accumulate credits as his acting horizons expand.
At the close of a LegacyVision Film movie shoot, the cast provided the production’s DP and editor with a tee shirt that read, “Eat, Sleep, Film.” It was an affectionate and appreciative gift to a man who has become known for his obsession for the activity that is his consuming passion. For Larry Cortez – originally from San Bruno, California, but now a resident of Los Angeles – lives and breathes filmmaking. As a cinematographer, editor, and colorist, he has become a significant member of the Yellow Brick Studio team, whether working in Hawaii or California. The former owner of the TIPS Film Company, which had provided professional video editing and filming services for events in the San Francisco Bay Area, Larry is experienced in directing, cinematography and post production coloring for events, commercial work, and independent feature films. He is a graduate of San Francisco State University where he received a bachelors degree in cinematography, as well as three additional degrees in video editing, humanity of arts and theology. Larry has had a major hand in the creation of six YBS/LegacyVision Films. He was the editor for Tiramisu On The Beach, the director of photography (DP) for World Buffet and The Curse Of Witness Protection, and the DP “and” editor for Before The After, The Landline Detective, and Closing Costs. Larry also created the trailer for Juniper Lane and was the DP and editor for scenes filmed for the movie in development that is Lisa Patterson. Other credits within Larry’s body of work can be found on his IMDb page as well as his personal Vimeo site.
Mahealani Diego was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii and is a member of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (I.A.T.S.E.) specializing in film, television, fashion, theatre and special effects. Working with many celebrity faces, her extensive makeup work has appeared in numerous projects such as the television series Doogie Kamealoha, M.D., Life with La Toya, Hawaii Five-O, and Last Resort; as well as such feature films as, Godzilla vs. Kong, The Wrong Missy, Midway, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Kong: Skull Island, Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates, Jurassic World, Godzilla, Battleship, Soul Surfer, and Pirates of the Caribbean: on Stranger Tides. For Yellow Brick Studio, she has provided invaluable support by serving in various capacities, including as makeup department head, associate producer, and producer for many of its LegacyVision Films, including, Natural Reaction, Tiramisu on the Beach, Juniper Lane, So Close Shig, World Buffet, Lisa Patterson, and Closing Costs. In addition, her fashion work, which has been seen around the world, has included the New York Fashion Week, Couture Fashion Week, Dominican Republic Fashion Week, Bucharest Fashion Week and India International Fashion Week. A consummate professional, Mahealani has worked alongside the industry’s top cosmetic leaders and always stays on the cutting edge in today’s skin and color technology. For more information about “Mahea,” check out her website, review the rest of her extensive credits on her IMDb page, and follow her on Instagram.
Steven first fell in love with film production when he was cast as a background artist for a movie being filmed in Hawaii called, appropriately enough, Aloha. From that first moment of stepping onto a movie set, Steven was hooked. He knew that he wanted to be in the film industry in any capacity he could. This original revelation has since proven to be very prophetic as his IMDb page can attest to his numerous other appearances in films. In addition, he has become an integral part of Yellow Brick Studio’s production of LegacyVision Films. It is a testament to his team oriented approach to things, that he has come to epitomize the spirit behind the company’s “do whatever it takes” attitude, as he has served in many different capacities, large and small. He is the Executive Producer or Co-Executive Producer for four YBS LegacyVision Films: Shikata Ga Nai, The Curse Of Witness Protection, Find Me, and Phaseland, and has acted in each of these in featured roles. He also acted in the YBS/LegacyVision Films documentary, Prof Blood – Basketball’s First Great Coach, where he also helped out as a member of the film crew (grip, clapper, production assistant, essentially whatever needed done at the time). His willingness to help in any area for the betterment of the team is surely a product of his military service. Steven served honorably in the United States Air Force on active duty for 20 years, and then served another 18 years in the Air Force Civil Service. His first three years were spent as a Munitions Maintenance Specialist, and the remainder of his time he worked as a Financial and Budget Analyst, where he was accountable and responsible for budgets up to $180 million in resources. During his tenure in the Air Force, Steven was stationed overseas in England, Okinawa, Japan and Korea. A very avid traveler, he boasts visiting at least 12 different countries including Croatia, Norway, Germany, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Monte Negro. He also has either lived in or has visited (so far) at least 30 of our 50 states. Steven graduated with his BS from Wayland Baptist University, holds his MBA from Central Michigan University, and is currently (2022) continuing classes towards a Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA), and hopes to have it completed within the next couple of years. He is also pursuing his Private Pilot’s License. Besides acting or producing films, Steven’s hobbies include fishing, bowling, working out at his local gym and growing flowers, fruits and vegetables in his garden at his home in Byron, Georgia. He has one daughter who resides with her family in Oxford, England.
Mark Ganialongo is into IT and filmmaking, where he owns and operates his own production house, Fatlark LLC. Mark uses these loves to help others solve their video and IT issues, create short films, and edits shows for his daily work. His past credits include acting as an HPD impound officer on the hit television series, Hawaii Five-O (episode entitled Ohuna), and playing a good friend giving sage advice Tim Savage’s poignant short film about a successful young couple who face an emotional tragedy that makes them struggle to find the answers that will keep them together, Driving Home. He served as an assistant editor for Taylour Chang’s, Dark Clouds, a short film about the little-known German internment in Hawaii during World War II, and was a camera operator, grip, and colorist for Jeff Katts’ science fiction story of demons and angels (the beginning of Katts’ Soul Saviour Universe of tales) vying for the souls of humans, The Hidden Battle. Through his association with Katts, he proceeded to direct, Foresight, a Soul Saviour experimental short film. With Yellow Brick Studio and LegacyVision Films he wrote, produced, directed, and edited, Grab, the short film about computer hackers, murder, and mystery, that will be an anthology of continuing segments. He also directed Find Me, the fantasy drama about a man who tries to figure out why he’s having the same dreams and realizes that it has otherworldly meanings. Through his production company, Mark has produced numerous promotional, informational, and educational videos. Two examples include the 2021 virtual alumni week celebration for the Hawaii-based educational institution, Hawaii Baptist Academy, and Hawaii realtor Maila Gibson-Bandmann’s Cost of Living in Hawaii. As a devoted member of New Hope Oahu, Mark also loves to serve with his friends in the drama ministry as an actor and director, and also enjoys being part of the church’s post production team as a video editor. Above all else, he loves to hang out with all his family and especially enjoys watching his nieces and nephews grow up.
Non-assuming Denny will merely tell inquisitors of his movie-making skills that he is merely a self-made filmmaker. In fact, he is an outstanding editor and an accomplished camera operator with a great creative sense for how the framing of a shot can evoke emotion and tell a story in its own right. Denny has been a successful producer, director, cinematographer, and editor for many independent films. He shot, directed, and edited the feature length movie, Obake Neko (2009), iconic Hawaii playwright Ed Sakamoto’s tribute to the old Japanese ghost stories that used to be passed around the plantation camps of Hawaii during the early years of the 20th century, which told of a murdered woman returning as a “Ghost Cat.” He produced, directed, and edited, the epic production of Parts Of The Same Circle (2012), which captured 11 separate storylines weaving together how people deal with death, and all told, involved 300 people. He has also assisted with the filming of the YBS/LegacyVision Films short film, Where Are We Going (2023, where he served as the DP), another YBS/LegacyVision Films feature, Natural Reaction (2016, second unit camera), the short film, Peace by Piece (2013), and produced the feature, Bench Warmers (2002). In 2016, Denny was a Producer Immersive Participant in Creative Lab Hawaii, established by the Hawaii State Department of Business, Economic Development (DBEDT) and the Tourism’s Creative Industries Division (CID), which selects only qualified applicants in high growth creative clusters to learn more about their craft. Active in the Hawaii theater community, Denny has won two Po’okelas for theater excellence with the very successful Honolulu community theater, Kumu Kahua Theatre, in the areas of video projection and video graphics as well as directing. He and his wife, Karen Kuioka Hironaga, directed noted Hawaii writer Darrell Lum’s wonderful coming-of-age play, “Da Beer Can Hat,” in 2019, for which the production would come to receive seven Po’okela awards at the annual Hawaii State Theater Council (HSTC) awards, including “Best Play,” while both of them also received “Best Director” awards. He has also provided technical support on plays produced by yet another successful Honolulu community theater, TAG – The Actors’ Group. He is the Director of Photography for the YBS/LegacyVision Film, Shikata Ga Nai, and served on second camera for yet another YBS movie, Find Me. He has written the feature length screenplay, “Fixing Bobo,” the working title for his intention of eventually bringing Lum’s Da Beer Can Hat to the movie screen. Whether producing, directing, editing, or working behind the camera, Denny’s vision is to create entertaining movies that will help nudge the world to be a gentler, kinder place.
One of the finest actors anywhere, Tim has been acting for the public since the first grade, when he appeared in the title role of Hansel. His film work includes appearances in Sophie’s Choice, Flamingo Kid, The Descendants, and Stayin’ Alive. With Yellow Brick Studio and LegacyVision Films, he has also appeared as John Bridges in Closing Costs, Eli Patterson in Lisa Patterson, Dave Pressier in The Curse Of Witness Protection, and as the voice of a reporter in So Close Shig. He is also the hard luck Ramon having the worst day anyone can imagine in Ramon Runyen. On television he has appeared in Pearl, Hawaii Five-0, Raven, Running Out, NY Undercover, and Law & Order. After studying with Olympia Dukakis at the NYU Tisch School of the Arts, he worked in New York City with the New York Shakespeare Festival, the Westside Repertory Theatre, and the Oasis Theatre Company. Also in NYC he founded Theatre-In-The-Schools, which, over the course of seven years, performed for over one million school children with eight original productions covering historical subjects such as Thomas Edison, Lewis and Clark, the Constitution and Stephen Foster. Outside New York, Tim has performed on stage in over 70 productions in Colorado and Hawaii. In Honolulu, he was honored with local theatre awards for his work as Uncle Ernie in Tommy, Gooper in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Bobby Gould in Speed the Plow and as the White Dude in Toxic Avenger. His most recent stage work includes playing Inspector Hubbard in Dial M for Murder with Pat Sajak in Hawaii and as Macbeth in Shakespeare’s Macbeth at the Lamplight Theatre Company in Draper, Utah. He is grateful to his multi-talented wife, Rebecca McCarthy, who provides him inspiration daily.
Patrick is one of those very few professionals in the movie industry who has extensive experience with being in front of the camera as an actor, as well as working behind the camera as a member of the crew. Regarding his work behind the camera, he is a member of the union of International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE Local 665) where he was a props assistant for five years with Hawaii Five-0, and then a props assistant for two years with NCIS: Hawaii. He also worked concerts and traveling Broadway shows as a stage electrician, carpenter and (again) props assistant. He is specifically an accomplished furniture maker of American reproductions, which is to say that he can create furniture to emulate the designs of the past, whether this be a writing desk of the 1890’s or an art-deco style armchair of the 1920’s. With respect to his work in front of the camera he is a member of the union, Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA), where he has served as a union delegate. His screen credits include appearing in an episode of the television series Magnum P.I., as Young Reginald, and the feature length movies, Just One More, where he appeared as a Bar Patron, and Man Up, portraying a Mormon Father. With Yellow Brick Studio he has appeared in five LegacyVision Films. He was the voice of a man who calls into a radio program in the comedy, Juniper Lane, a cabbie in the dark comedy drama, So Close Shig, the very near-sighted photographer, Victor Konch, in another comedy, World Buffet, the police captain, Barry Parkinson, in the crime drama, Closing Costs, and Martin Mills, a suspicious husband who comes to the rescue of the central hero at the end of another crime drama, The Curse Of Witness Protection, where he also served as the production’s executive producer. In all, Patrick’s acting has reflected a range in his various roles and he has exhibited a remarkable ability to capture the essence of the characters he has played. Through his acting performances he has developed a particular acting skill that he maintains, which is possessing an East Coast accent, likely the product of his being a world traveler with multi-cultural experiences.
Ana Jimenez McMillan
Ana is an extremely dedicated actress who has taken numerous acting classes and workshops (including improvisations) in her continual effort to always grow as an artist and stay creatively fresh. She is also one of the few actors who has put her money where her mouth is (so to speak), by serving as the Executive Producer and star of two Yellow Brick Studio/LegacyVision Films, Natural Reaction and World Buffet. In the dramatic thriller, Natural Reaction, she portrays Rita, who takes revenge on a serial killer for the rape and murder of her sister. In the riotous comedy, World Buffet, she plays Wilhemina Nilly, the low level diplomat finally getting her career break when the Secretary-General of the U.N. likes her idea to create a world food festival. In addition, she plays Darcy Nuego, a hospital board member who hires a CEO to straighten out corruption at the institution, in Closing Costs, yet another YBS/LegacyVision Film. She has also had roles in Makua Charley and Fire House. Ana is a member of SAG-AFTRA and has worked in many of the television series and movies that have been filmed in Hawaii. She also co-starred in other creative projects such as the Instagram sketch comedies, Leave the Lime Alone and Dance Divas (both filmed in Los Angeles); the 5-minute/48-hours film, Cake, for Playhouse West in Los Angeles; and has performed in open mic nights in both L.A. and Honolulu. When she wasn’t performing, Ana’s past experience has included working as the Executive Director of a non-profit organization and as a COVID 19 Contact Tracer with the Hawaii State Department of Health. Ana and her husband, Derek McMillan, live in Haleiwa, where they are both avid surfers who frequent the big wave beaches of the North Shore of Oahu, Hawaii.
Jeff Katts is a local filmmaker, writer, producer, and director. He also occasionally dabbles in acting, as his appearance in the short film, Vent (which is part of the YBS/LegacyVision Films collection of produced movies), confirms, where he played the commenting and sometimes distracted videographer. Jeff started as a freelance videographer and editor. He was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, and is a Saint Louis High School alumnus. He got his A.S. degree in Commercial Art at Honolulu Community College and first started working as a freelance videographer for a Japanese tour company. He soon became an assistant trainer at ‘Olelo Community Television, the Hawaii public access station. He then worked as an assistant editor at Pacific Focus, Inc., a TV and film production house and at 1013 Integrated, a branding and production company where he took on the role of Media and Studio Manager. Jeff was the original creator of the ‘Ohina Short Film Showcase in 1999, a short film festival for local independent filmmakers, which had a successful six-year run and continued until 2010. In 2004, he started to create a project called The Soul Saviour Project, which was the story of people saving human lives against demons. The project started with two independent movies: The Hidden Battle in 2006 and The Soul Saviour Chronicles in 2008. Both movies were shown at the Regal Dole Cannery Theatres. It also included three original plays – Dream Saviour (2007), Ultio Venia (2008), and Dancing Between Heaven & Hell (2009) – based on Jeff’s story development for which he was a co-writer which were all staged at the Hawaii community theater, TAG – The Actors’ Group. With his deep admiration for pop culture, comic books, fantasy and adventure films, science fiction, and religion, Jeff wanted to create another universe that could embody all of these elements. The creation was in the form of a character named, Jackie Claxton. The Jackie Claxton Universe is a multi-media/transmedia project that started in 2008, focusing on a fictional character that has the power to teleport to different locations and different dimensions to save others who are in need of help and to fight off evil forces that inhabit the world. The project has culminated with local independent movies, web videos, stage plays, film festivals, and multiple spin-off projects.
Earl’s personal philosophy can be found in the introduction to his Facebook page – “I love life and the people in it.” Earl was born and raised in Washington D.C. (Falls Church and Herndon high schools), where among his many talents he was part of the Lionz Of Zion, a noted dance group of D.C. breakdancing artists. A frequent visitor to Los Angeles and Tokyo, Earl currently resides in Honolulu, where he is the CEO and founder of Studio Life LLC, a video production company that offers up his skills as a film director, a director of photography (DP), an editor, a creator of visual special effects, a music video filmmaker (Ginai, Streetlight Cadence, Erin Smith, Lou Armagno, et. al.), a wedding videographer, and the creator of many an actor’s reel. He has also been a part of production teams on film shoots in the U.S., Japan, China, and Dubai. Earl learned his variety of multimedia skills by attending the Art Institute of Washington (D.C.), where he is a graduate of their video production program, and continued to hone his skills by working on numerous video and film projects for many years. Earl has played an invaluable part in the producing of five of Yellow Brick Studio/LegacyVision Films. He was the director of photography for Natural Reaction and Tiramisu On The Beach, the editor for World Buffet, and the director of photography “and” editor for Juniper Lane. Other credits within his body of work can be found at his IMDb page as well as his website. In addition, he has also been a vital camera operator for many a Soul Sessions USA video including shoots with noted Hawaii musical artists, Ginai, Streetlight Cadence, Jasmine Lee, and Taimane. In his personal life, Earl is a devoted father who always finds time to visit his “beautiful and brilliant” daughter in Japan.
On March 12th, 2004, Kauai Mayor Bryan Baptiste presented a proclamation, declaring the day to be “Starla Marie Day.” It was a fitting recognition that honored one of the island’s most talented residents, who has been modeling and performing on stage since the age of four. Since that great day, Starla Marie – actress, singer, songwriter, model, and producer – has only continued to build upon what was then an already impressive resume, by continuing to grow in the changing landscape of the music industry. She started her professional music career with numerous independent releases in Hawai’i and then worldwide. Her work extends through Asia, across the Pacific, and in Europe, where she earned a #1 spot on France’s hit net radio and broadcast station, “Soul Clap.” After releasing her R&B solo debut self-titled CD, “Starla Marie,” she toured and promoted her album across the Pacific, Korea and Japan. One of Starla’s hit songs and videos, “Handle Your Business,” is currently licensed in the very popular game, “Dance Dance Revolution 2.” The entire album is licensed on PlayStation, cell phone ringtones, and Tetris on X-Box. Over the years Starla’s musical performances have been extensive and have demonstrated her range of talents. She performed at numerous venues and parties in Hawai’i – as a solo artist, and as part of a duo, a trio, and a five-piece band – which included “Mayor Mufi Hannemann’s Birthday Party Celebration.” At the “Ho’olaulea Waikiki,” she performed with her band as the closing act. She went on a singing tour throughout Asia to promote her self-titled album, “Starla Marie,” where she conducted numerous radio interviews, appearances, while performing in over 25 shows. On the NCL Pride of America cruise ship, she performed as the lead vocalist for their New Year’s Party. She was the featured recording artist at the Pipeline Cafe where she appeared as their main act. She performed at the cast and crew party for the television series, “Lost,” as well as the “Won Mai Tai Rumble Battle of the Bands Competition.” She performed with her cousin, Glenn Medeiros, at the Hale Koa Hotel’s New Year’s Show, singing multiple duets with him along with belting out 19 solo songs. She is an exceptional actress who has appeared in three YBS/LegacyVision Films – Juniper Lane, World Buffet, and Closing Costs. In addition, her songs are on the soundtrack of Parts of the Same Circle, including Anytime and Fallen. Her music video, “Grandma, I Love You” – a heart tugging homage to her beloved grandmother which YBS assisted in producing and distributing – is available on Amazon, Vimeo, and the Roku TV channel, All Hawaii TV. A complete listing of all of Starla’s songs is available through a variety of online music retail sites, including Amazon, Apple iTunes, and napster. Whether as a singer, a songwriter, or actress, Starla Marie is a talented and passionate performer who is committed to growing as an artist, and whose best work is yet to come. Starla lives in Los Angeles and is working with the full service record label InRage Entertainment to take her singing and songwriting to the next level. The association is paying off in big dividends as among a myriad of projects, in 2022, came the release of Prime, a music video that expresses the feeling of being at the top of your game and at your best. In addition to YouTube, the video can be seen in its entirety on this website by clicking here (and scrolling down). You can follow Starla on Facebook and Instagram.
Rebecca Lea McCarthy
Rebecca is a professional performer and writer, working in stage, film and voiceover performance. She graduated with a BFA in acting from Cornish College of the Arts, in Seattle, Washington, holds master’s degrees in liberal studies, and a PhD in Comparative Studies from Florida Atlantic University. Film credits include: Dogfight with Lily Taylor and River Phoenix, and The Claremont directed by Ashley McEneny. While living in Hawaii, Rebecca had the honor to work extensively with Yellow Brick Studio, acting in several of its LegacyVising Films including: So Close Shig, World Buffet, Before The After, Lisa Patterson, Closing Costs, The Curse Of Witness Protection, and is most memorable in Covid Release, in which she plays the pull-no-punches psychologist who counsels five convicts up for parole. Her creative skills are not only in front of the camera but also behind as she is the editor of So Close Shig (a movie she helped to save, see “The Rescuers”), as well as the director of Ramon Runyen, the story of one hard luck guy having the worst day imaginable, which stars her husband, Timothy Jeffryes. Some of Rebecca’s favorite theatre credits include: Lady Macbeth in Macbeth, Ms. Hoffman in The Prodigal Son, Jeannette in The Full Monty, Mommy in The American Dream, Randi in Superior Donuts, Meg in Defiance, Stephanie in reasons to be pretty, Martha in Arsenic and Old Lace, Betty in The Anastasia Trials in the Court of Women, Edith in Blithe Spirit, and Doris in Same Time, Next Year. Audio books include Cleaning Clutter and The Adventures of Kate and Alex, Books 1-5. She is also the author of two books, the Origins of the Magdalene Laundries and Writing the Diaphragm Blues and Other Sexual Cacophonies, both of which can be found on Amazon. Rebecca believes in the power of comedy, pratfalls, communication and a well-placed whoopee cushion! For more, follow her on Twitter.
Eric is the owner of Yellow Brick Studio and the creator of two of the ventures that the company promotes, LegacyVision Films and Serenergy. LegacyVision Films develops and produces movies for passionate, driven people who have a vision of a story they feel compelled to create as their lasting legacy. Serenergy provides an online free movie platform for filmmakers where they can then sell their work. Eric dispels the myth that everyone is either left or right brain dominant. In his previous career in higher education he was the go-to person to see for analytical reasoning; whether it would be understanding federal regulations as a Financial Aid Administrator (University of Hawaii at Manoa and private consultant, 1985-1994), devising recruitment strategies as an Associate Dean of Enrollment Management (Chaminade University, 1994-2010), or as an Executive Director of a vocational school (Med-Assist School of Hawaii, 2010-2013). At the same time he amassed an impressive creative resume. He founded, and is the president of, TAG – The Actors’ Group, a community theatre that over close to 30 years has developed into Honolulu’s go-to place for compelling drama. As a stage actor he is a two-time Po`okela recipient (Hawaii’s annual theatre awards) for excellence in acting (Oleanna, 2001, Miso, 2010), and was also nominated an additional three times (Equus, 2002, K2, 2003, and The Guys, 2004). In film, he played visionary Shigeo Yoshida in Tom Coffman’s acclaimed documentary, The First Battle (Hawaii International Film Festival (HIFF), 2004, and also public television), portrayed the dying father in Tim Savage’s short film, Cutback (HIFF, 2007, and a holiday staple for the New Hope Christian Fellowship Church), was in Bob Bates’, Hotel Street, as a crooked cop (part of The Short List, HIFF, 2011), and was among the family dealing with an impending tsunami in Jay Hanamura’s segment of 6B: An Anthology Of Hawaii Films (HIFF, 2011). He also portrayed the violent Tamotsu in Ed Sakamoto’s ghost thriller, Obake Neko, 2008, directed by Denny Hironaga, and played a lawyer, Wren, in Tiramisu On The Beach, 2016, directed by Jon Brekke, whose beachside dinner for the attorney opposite him in a sexual harassment case, and former mistress, turns into a verbal battle between the male and female species. Eric has a bachelor’s degree (Political Science) from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, a master’s degree from Oregon State University (College Student Services Administration), and a screenwriting certificate from the UCLA Extension Writers’ Program (the largest program of its kind in the U.S.). As a writer, he has written 147 Feature Length Movie Scripts to date. Of these, 15 have been produced as movies (including Parts Of The Same Circle, HIFF, 2012, and the Big Island Film Festival (BIFF), 2013, in which he also acted in a lead role), 12 have been produced as stage plays (including Merry Christmas, Roberta, co-written with Michael Wurth and Jon Brekke, Best Play Po`okela award, 2008, and five that were written for, and produced with, filmmaker Jeff Katts revolving around his Soul Saviour universe and spin-offs thereof). He has also written eight TV programs about local artists (Artists Of Hawaii), co-wrote the OC-16 sitcom, The Tide Is High, wrote training videos for the State Department of Education, and wrote a children’s book (Getting Ready For Kindergarten) with his wife, Mary Ann, which has been distributed to local preschools. He has directed nine independent movies, directed nine stage plays, served as an associate producer of Tom Coffman’s One Team (the documentary of Father Kenneth Bray, Iolani School’s legendary football coach, voted Best Short Film, HIFF, 2012). He has also been in numerous television commercials, voiced over many a radio ad, and appeared in principal roles on both Lost and Hawaii Five-O (recurring role of prosecuting attorney, James Chen). He has also taught acting for over 25 years and is the instructor of The Acting Gym, an acting class administered through his agent, Ryan Brown, owner of the ADR Agency, which is taught according to the principles of the acting book he wrote entitled, Just Act. He is also the owner and developer of All Hawaii TV, a Roku TV public channel, which he intends to build up as “the” place to go to see anything that is Hawaii on television. Eric’s wife, Mary Ann, son Cory, daughter Kristen Nemoto-Jay, son-in-law Aaron “Iwi” Jay, and adorable granddaughter Winter Jay (grandpa’s “star in the making”), round out his beautiful family. See also ericnemoto.com and IMDB.
Dann Seki has been an invaluable asset to Yellow Brick Studio in producing its LegacyVision Films as an actor, crew member, and liaison with the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA). As an actor he has appeared in six LegacyVision Films. He played the doctor in Natural Reaction; was cranky Roy, the senior member of the neighborhood board, in Juniper Lane; portrayed the closet serial killer, Horace, in So Close Shig; was the only on-screen character who solves a 35-year-old murder mystery in The Landline Detective; appeared as bank manager, Nathan Nakama, in Closing Costs, played Bert, the unfortunate convict jailed for one out of character night on the town, in Covid Release, and starred as Tatsuo “Tats” Kaneshiro, the 442 veteran who is haunted by something he did during the war which he has never been able to divulge, in Shikata Ga Nai. As a member of the crew he has served in a varied number of positions ranging from assistant director, to sound mixer, to set designer, to production assistant, embracing his attitude of being willing to pitch in wherever he is needed. As YBS’ SAG-AFTRA liaison he has helped to coordinate both Ultra Low Budget and New Media productions. Aside from his work with YBS, Dann is a veteran Hawaii stage and screen actor as well as an accomplished storyteller. He has appeared in numerous plays on the stages of most of the theaters in Honolulu and has performed in Los Angeles as well. Of his numerous stage appearances he was in Aldyth Morris’ Damien, the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s The Giver, Manoa Valley Theatre’s The Wash, Diamond Head Theatre’s Golden Boy, TAG – The Actors’ Group’s Boy, and Kumu Kahua Theatre’s production of Aloha Las Vegas. His other stage credits span many genres, including musical theatre and Shakespeare—the title role in King Lear for the Hawai’i Shakespeare Festival included. His TV and film credits include many productions filmed in Hawaii including Go For Broke: Origins, Running for Grace, Parts of the Same Circle, Under the Blood Red Sun, Bait, Hawaii Five-O, Lychee Thieves, The Informant, Max’s Special Delivery, Lost, Hawaii, North Shore, Baywatch Hawaii, Magnum, P.I., Crowfoot, And the Sea Will Tell, Savage Beach, and numerous local commercials. Developing as a storyteller since 1994, he is frequently booked through the Outreach College of the University of Hawaii at Manoa, to perform at various venues on Oahu and the Neighbor Islands. He is himself a member of SAG-AFTRA and is on the Board of Directors of Kumu Kahua Theatre.
Thomas, also known to his friends as “T.C.,” began his ascent as an accomplished actor when he appeared in a play produced by TAG – The Actors’ Group, back in 2006. This was Edward Albee’s The Goat Or, Who Is Sylvia? He played Billy Gray, the teen-aged son of Stevie and Martin Gray, whose lives are torn apart when Martin confesses his true love for a goat. His electrifying performance as the gay and emotionally sensitive Billy earned Thomas a Po`okela Award (Hawaii’s version of the Tony Awards) for acting excellence which was very significant for another reason. It was his theatrical debut. Since then, Thomas has acted on many of Hawaii’s stages where he has consistently provided outstanding performances. Particularly with TAG, he has starred in many of the theater’s most memorable productions, including Romance, Blue/Orange, Defiance, Harvey, Water by the Spoonful, and The Crusade of Connor Stephens. He also acted in a series of TAG’s dark night productions revolving around Jeff Katts’ Soul Saviour and Jackie Claxton universes, including Dream Saviour, Ultio Venia, Dancing Between Heaven & Hell, The World Of Jackie Claxton, and Jackie Claxton, The Body Swapper. Thomas has also appeared in a featured role on Hawaii 5-0, played a prisoner in the short film, An Occurrence On Channel 38, and worked extensively as a pirate on Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. See his IMDb page (where he goes by his stage name of “T.C. Smith”) for a listing of all his film credits. With respect to Yellow Brick Studio’s production of LegacyVision Films, he has acted in both featured and lead roles which have demonstrated his considerable acting range. He was a waiter in the drama, Parts Of The Same Circle, a snitch in the saga about one woman’s revenge, Natural Reaction, a pizza guy who steals the scene in So Close Shig, and played the hilariously uber-paranoid Malcolm Whiteman, the host of an online conspiracy theory show, in the riotous comedy, World Buffet. He was one of the leads in the crime thriller, Closing Costs, played a techie who gets in above his head in the short film caper about computer hackers, Grab, and portrayed Connor Stamp, a man wracked with eternal guilt for having beaten his girlfriend to near death, in Covid Release, which was a feature about five prisoners being considered for parole through a Zoom meeting held during the pandemic, that was filmed entirely via remote means. An extremely creative filmmaker in his own right, he is the driving force – he serves as producer, director, cinematographer, editor and animator – behind Phaseland, a science fiction fantasy about a man who wakes up one day to find himself trapped in a world of animation. A landscaper and tree-trimmer in his day job, Thomas spends most of his time outdoors working closely with growing plants, where he has developed a reputation among clients and colleagues alike for being able to make magic out of anything green. In addition, he also possesses the uncanny ability to make his own musical instruments using everyday materials, creating unique – and often times never heard before – sounds which he parlays into music tracks (he created the musical score for Covid Release). For a glimpse into Thomas’ fascinating world of landscaping, filmmaking, and musical creations, visit his YouTube channel, T.C. Smith, and subscribe!
Christine is a filmmaker based in Waianae, Hawaii. She began making videos for YouTube in 2013 as a self-taught filmmaker. Since then, she has produced, directed, edited, and performed in a variety of film projects, as well as ran a freelance videography company. In 2015, she produced her first full-length documentary, Transformed Lives, Changed Communities, on a zero budget. Now, seven years later (2022), she is a graduate of the The Los Angeles Film School (also referred to as The L.A. Film School) where she majors in Digital Filmmaking. As her program ending “capstone” project, she wrote, produced, and directed Where Are We Going, one of YBS’ completed movies. She has learned from, and worked with, filmmakers in Hawaii, Tennessee, and California in both videography and creative film as a producer, director, actor, camera person, editor, sound mixer, sound editor, location scout, and production assistant. These experiences have come to especially benefit Yellow Brick Studio and its production of LegacyVision Films as she has become an integral member of the team. She has served as an editor (trailer and promotional overview video), clapper, and crowdfunding supervisor for Shikata Ga Nai, has assisted with the filming of Phaseland, where she also acts in the featured role of the neighbor, Amy Sanders, and has greatly helped in the production of Prof Blood – Basketball’s First Great Coach, where she has worked as a sound mixer and production assistant. But her greatest contribution thus far has been as the editor of The Curse Of Witness Protection, for which she served to resurrect the project when at one point it was close to being dead in the water. She also acts and serves as the editor for Find Me, another YBS LegacyVision Films movie about a man searching for the reasons he’s having the same dreams over and over again, only to discover they may have otherworldly results. In all that she does, Christine uses classic cinematic dramas and comedies from the 1950s-1990s as her inspiration for her filmmaking, and hopes to represent, well, both Hawaii filmmakers in general, and the people of the community of Waianae, her hometown, as she continues to learn and grow in the movie industry. For more information about Christine, see her website as well as her LinkedIn page.