Ryan Byrd

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Ryan Byrd Episode Summary

This week we’re hanging out with lead producer of The 254 Collective, Ryan Byrd. Listen in as well talk about her experience at film school, her journey to becoming lead producer at one of the most sought after production companies in Nashville, and what it’s like producing live performances for Late Night television.

Ryan Byrd Episode Notes

This week we’re hanging out with lead producer of The 254 Collective, Ryan Byrd. Listen in as well talk about her experience at film school, her journey to becoming lead producer at one of the most sought after production companies in Nashville, and what it’s like producing live performances for Late Night television.

Ryan Byrd Lightning Round Answers:

  • Favorite Movie – August: Osage County
  • Last Movie You Watched – A Rainy Day in New York
  • Favorite Director – Shawn Levy
  • Most Underrated / Slept On Cinematographer – Dylan Rucker & Noah Hansen
  • Coffee or Tea – Coffee of course!
  • Pineapple on Pizza – No thank you
  • Favorite Camera – Whatever camera my DP wants to use as long as it’s in the budget
  • Three Films to Watch Before You Die – Honey Boy / Crazy Stupid Love / Silver Linings Playbook

Ryan Byrd Links

Why She Smiles Documentary


The 254 Collective on Instagram


Looking for more episodes? Check here

Get In Touch

Follow In Focus Podcast and our hosts on Instagram: @infocuspod, @austinallen, and @bill.cornelius.

Media and other inquiries, please email hello@infocuspodcast.com

Listen on Apple Podcasts

Ryan Byrd Transcript

Corey Allen  0:06

Hi, I’m Corey. I’m Bill and together we host the infocus podcast. Today’s episode is sponsored by gnome recording studios in Nashville, Tennessee. We’ll tell you all about gnome studios at the end of the show. Today, we’re joined by lead producer of the highly sought after production company, the 254. Collective, Ryan Byrd. Ryan, welcome to the show.

Ryan Byrd  0:27

Thank you for having me. So exciting. So excited, so pumped up, y’all don’t get annoyed with my Southern accent. I’m here for it. Great.

Bill Cornelius  0:37

My whole family talks that way. Awesome. I don’t have an accent. But I guess people up here do.

Corey Allen  0:42

You have lived in Nashville my entire life. And I have been lucky enough. I feel like to not have an accent. You’re very neutral. I am. And maybe I tried. Maybe I focused on that so much as a child like I don’t want to sound like I’m from Nashville, Tennessee, and

Ryan Byrd  1:00

podcasts and radio. Thank you. Thank you in the right profession. You You came into it. As you should I try your accent plus radio voice.

Bill Cornelius  1:14

So before we get into your work with the 254 collective, I just want to talk briefly about your experience and your education. And I understand you went to Belmont, which I know before the show started we talked about I went to the Watkins Film School, which is the news in Nashville was that Belmont bought Watkins fairly recently. So I have a little bit of a connection that way my wife went to Belmont. So tell us a little bit about that. What you majored in what you minor in and how did you get to Phil? Yeah,

Ryan Byrd  1:45

so I’m just growing up in general, I love to theater love performance. And my mom always used to be upset that instead of playing outside, I just wanted to be in front of the TV watching Disney Channel. And watching, you know, the behind how High School Musical was made and watching the director’s speak and all that. So growing up, yeah, very involved in theater. Did it really have any experience in film other than what I like to watch, I knew I liked TV and movies. But when I was looking for colleges, Belmont was one of the colleges that I could do both I could get involved with the film program could also be involved with the theater program. So I ended up going to Belmont in 2014 and majoring in film and minor in theater.

Bill Cornelius  2:35

Nice. And so you you were saying the when you joined the film program, it was still kind of in its infancy, right? Yes,

Ryan Byrd  2:42

it was it was very new. There was not a lot of us, I think, like maybe there was 25 of us in my class. And the people above us was the same kind of numbers, if not less, we were literally meeting above the old cafeteria now has a new cafeteria, but the old cafeteria, we were meeting above like at nighttime, random hours to get these film classes in. People definitely I don’t think took it seriously. But that’s changed now. So that’s good.

Corey Allen  3:12

Yeah. Awesome. Wow.

Bill Cornelius  3:14

And then how did you once you graduated? How did you then transition into working? As a producer? Yeah, getting up with two, four collective?

Ryan Byrd  3:23

Yeah, so kind of in film school, especially, I feel like newer film schools or newer programs. I don’t know if anybody really knows what’s going on. You have these professors that have been in the industry and who are awesome people and awesome people to get advice from but as far as coursework at the time, I don’t think that there was a big plan. They wanted us to be on as much as many sets as possible. So we did a lot of student films.

And I went into film school thinking I wanted to write I wanted, you know, to write the next teen drama like One Tree Hill or, or something like that. But when I got there, I quickly realized that things that I enjoyed and my skill set was in producing it was in planning, it was in gathering the students with crazy ideas and saying, okay, but how are we actually gonna make that work.

I just quickly realized that not a lot of people wanting to do that within my class, which was interesting, because it gave me kind of gave me a role early on that I didn’t even know I was stepping into until I look back and I’m like, oh, I’ve been producing stuff for a really long time. so from there, when I did summer internships out in LA through Belmont through the program, I interned with The Producers Guild of America, and also a reality production company called kinetic content. And that’s kind of things just went from there. I really learned that I liked doing this. I wanted to learn from other people.

Sirs, creative producers, line producers, all types of production managers, and just said, okay, like, I really enjoy this. I think there’s an asset here that definitely the students at Belmont didn’t have at the time. And then also looking around in Nashville, just not a lot, you know, you hear of a lot of creatives and DPS and directors, but I don’t even personally know a lot of producers in town. So it was cool. Something that I said, maybe I can take this and make something out of it here in Nashville, because I knew I wanted to be here and plant here.

Corey Allen  5:34

Yeah, that’s great. And you know, when I think back to just my really limited knowledge of film school, because that’s not I did not go to film school, I dropped out of college. In fact, I did go to college to be a photographer, but I am a college dropout. But I just I imagined film school is really geared towards more of the creative side, I think about like, pairing cinematographers and directors or is there a lot that you take away from film school as a wanting to be a producer? Or is that something you pick up? Like, to your point and internships and everything after the fact? Yeah,

Ryan Byrd  6:07

that’s a good question. I think, I think it’s both we had one class my sophomore year of college, which was before I took my internships out in LA that were, that was super helpful. It was called, I think the title was production and set management. And we had a professor from Chapman University teaching that out in California, her name was Barbara Doyle. And as she just really showed a lot of interest in me in the classwork and in what we were doing, and kind of made me believe that I could produce stuff, because in to your question, that class basically would be her in the front of the room, throwing out ideas and saying, okay, where do we go from here?

So if you have someone give you this script with this many locations, and this many actors go, like, how do you make it happen? So we would get on the whiteboard and be like, Okay, well, how much money do we have, and how many cars is is in the scene, you know, and we would just go from there. Um, and that was really helpful, because at the time again, like I said, I didn’t have any prior film knowledge to that.

So all of the student films for me, were helpful, because I was learning with every project I was learning with every script. Um, do I think that it might be more helpful to shadow producers or be on sets with professional producers rather than film sit in a film school? Yeah, I think that could be great. But for me, I didn’t have any knowledge. So anything was helpful.

Bill Cornelius  7:42

Yeah, that’s good. And, and that goes back to what I’ve said about film school is just like, being on set is the best learning experience you can have, you can sit in a classroom all day. But when you’re actually out there, people are doing the crew positions they’re supposed to be doing, that’s when you’re gonna absorb the real practical knowledge. And even as a producer, you need to be able to see, I call myself a producer by necessity. So I’ve done it when I’ve needed to. But it gives you an idea of the full range of what needs to be planned and the scope.

Ryan Byrd  8:18

That’s what was cool about film school is like you were saying, you think of the creatives, the lighting the camera. I was learning all of that too, which makes me a better producer, because I know what lights need to be in the scene before asking too. And I know how to prepare a budget more efficiently because I know actually what things cost, I wouldn’t have known that. Maybe if I didn’t have the background in all of those same courses that DPS were taking or directors taking.

Bill Cornelius  8:43

And budget is huge. We’ve talked about that, too. It’s just like, so so many that work in film are a little off base. When it comes to the budget, I would say they either overestimate or underestimate what something’s gonna be. But if you’re there and you’re you’re absorbing all of that knowledge, you’re seeing what things cost, you’re saying everything that goes into this

Ryan Byrd  9:05

problem solving problems right now, which is any job probably in the world a good skill to have, but definitely in the creative world because things happen. Weather happens, people drop out and actor doesn’t show up. I mean, the only way you get experience handling that is when it happens. Yeah, they become good stories. So

Corey Allen  9:23

I feel like I’ve only worked on one project with you guys. Yes. And and that was a wild project. Yeah, I think your like background problem solving and like just being able to react and continue to update any VA plans, like kudos to you from a production standpoint to pull all that together.

Ryan Byrd  9:42

Yeah, that was wild. That was basically anything that could go wrong on a shoot to the point where it could have been canceled happened. And we didn’t cancel it. So we made it happen.

Bill Cornelius  9:55

So that’s that’s a graduate honor. You’ve you’ve now done that. So yeah. Things can be easier.

Corey Allen  10:03

including you. But so then through that, so film school internships in LA, what eventually led to the 254 collective in doing the work there?

Ryan Byrd  10:17

Yeah. So again, doing time out in LA, which wasn’t long, by the way, I mean, I’ve definitely visited a couple times and have some friends out there working. But my longest stint was that those two months of internships, but within those two months, I kind of knew that I just didn’t want to be there. I love Nashville and love the community here and love, just love the people. And so I knew I didn’t want to leave Nashville. So after graduating, I just threw myself into freelance work here in town. I’m working with a lot of different creatives mainly on music videos. Seems to be the majority of what goes on here. Yeah. So a lot of music videos. And then I worked on a documentary project.

That was phenomenal. And then after that, I met Preston Leatherman, who is the co founder of the two by four collective by happenstance as well. One of our good buddies set us up and we met and met at Fido because Preston was going out of town one weekend and had a shoot that following Monday, and there and it had just got greenlit, so there was a lot to be done. And he was going to be in New York. And so he was reaching out to all of his friends and was like, does anybody know? of so I don’t even know if he used the term producer. He was just like, do you know of anybody who can get this done for me while I’m out of town?

Yeah. And our buddy drew Bombo, who I knew in film school, which Another pro to film school is just connections that you make with people. he sent my name over and Preston and I met probably like a Thursday afternoon. And he left and flew out to New York the next day and we shot on Monday when he got back and we just made it happen got that shoot done. ever since then, we’ve been working together and I was doing freelance work freelance producing for mainly his projects, a couple other people here and there, but he kept me really busy and then finally asked me to be on salary last year, so

Corey Allen  12:20

awesome. What a year to join to. Yeah, right.

Ryan Byrd  12:23

What a year. Yeah, it really is crazy. You know that. That’s a weird thing to talk about press and I’ve talked about that a lot. Because last year was such a hard year for so many people. That for video, I mean, it skyrocketed all these live streams that people wanted to do these talk shows that still had to be filmed. I mean, we did so well as a company which is you know, that feels funky to even even talk about cuz it was such a hard year for so many people.

Corey Allen  12:51

Yeah, but I mean you guys have done a ton of that. Yeah. Both through that last year and then still even recently which is great. Yeah,

Bill Cornelius  13:00

yeah, I’ve been in the same boat doing a lot of directing by zoom and you know things like that. I I don’t prefer it I would rather be on set of course with my hands on a camera but the fact that I was still working at all in video yeah. through such a tough year is it’s insane.

Ryan Byrd  13:19

That’s something I’m grateful for and how cool that techno you can even do that. I mean, yeah, you can direct from not being there makes no sense. A few

Corey Allen  13:26

years ago, not absolutely not. No one would have you even considered that. No. Do you direct NDP or Yes. Okay. Very cool. She’s adding you to your to the Rolodex of the Rolodex. This ongoing joke, young for that Rolodex jokes. But you get it.

Ryan Byrd  13:43

I get it.

Corey Allen  13:44

Yeah, yeah. All right. Well, yes. At the 254 collective, can I refer to you as the 254?

Ryan Byrd  13:51

You can a lot of people do. It’s a long name. It is a collective, does that work is their preference. We usually just say the 254.

Corey Allen  13:59

So add the 254 you guys have worked with a ton of really great clients creatively on the commercial side, and done a ton of like, really amazing projects. Like just to be honest, like, fantastic work. If you had to name one of them. That was your favorite without making anybody jealous. Like, it’s kind of like being asked to name your favorite child.

Ryan Byrd  14:22

Yes, sure,

Corey Allen  14:24

could you?

Ryan Byrd  14:26

That’s tough. It’s tough because we do so many different projects. And some of my favorite projects, you know, are the projects that weren’t the highest budgets weren’t the highest clients. I love working with Dylan Rucker as a director dp. He is very talented. He’s young, but he wants to do things correctly and very professionally. So the pre production is usually really fun with Dylan. We just wrapped a shoot with artists Ray Fulcher. And we actually To the main actor. Oh gosh, I don’t remember his name. Jerry Williams, maybe I’ll have to fact check that. Okay. But he actually is in like a Music Hall of Fame here in Nashville, we didn’t even know. But he was one of the main actors in the shoot, which is really cool. Wow. Nice.

But yeah, I mean, it’s it’s a music video. I mean, you know, it’s a basic music video. It wasn’t super high, high budget, but it was one that felt super well done, like everyone felt taken care of. We had a good solid crew, the creative was fun to go through. And I think that’s thing to being a producer, especially with the 254 and so many different projects, I’m overseeing a lot while also, I’m just working on 1000 things, I don’t always get to focus on one project. And sometimes that eats away at me creatively, because I feel like I’m just doing logistics all day long or numbers all day long. But with Dylan, as director, dp, he, he really loves to throw out ideas and include me in those Creative Conversations, which I really appreciate. Yeah,

Corey Allen  16:01

that’s great. And Dylan, such a great guy. Great guy. I think I met him through Daniel. Yes. steadycam. Yep. And then he sent him my way for a rental. And I think that’s how I met you guys was Yes,

Ryan Byrd  16:15

absolutely. That’s so great. Again, small world. And that’s what so I know, it’s true of any industry, I’m sure in LA and New York as well. But especially in Nashville, there’s just a cool loyalty here. Like when you work with somebody you’re gonna keep working with them just is what it is

Bill Cornelius  16:30

why I’ve always said, because I’ve been a part of this community here for years now. And it’s, it’s, there’s a family vibe to it. You know, everybody’s wanting to help everybody else. You know, and you’re always two degrees to the next person that you’ve heard of, or they know your work or whatever it might be. So it’s a really nice kind of family. It is kind of vibe, which that’s, you know, that’s one of my reasons for staying here is just that. Just all the talent, the cool community we’ve got here. Yeah, that’s growing. Yeah. Quite a bit, actually. Very much. So everybody moving here. And I don’t know, though.

Corey Allen  17:08

They could slow down on the moving here part.

Bill Cornelius  17:11

Here. The traffic thing the traffic is Oh, you you want it to slow down?

Corey Allen  17:15

Yeah, um, yeah, just a little. Just a little bit house prices. It’s good for my house. But it’s terrible for traffic. It is. It’ll be okay, though.

Bill Cornelius  17:27

We’ll get through it. As a city. Well, surviving. Yeah.

Corey Allen  17:31

You know, I would love to talk about some of the late night productions. Yeah. The 254 has been a part of probably more specifically on the production side. Sure. Because in my mind, like, they look really cool. Live on the late night show. Yeah, whether it’s Kimmel or the tonight show. But there’s got to be a ton that goes into that before that actually airs in would love like a little peek behind the curtain. Yeah,

Ryan Byrd  17:55

absolutely. It’s funny, actually. Because, yes, it seems like that would be more than all these other projects. It’s actually the least amount I ever have to do these late night things that we do. Are these talk shows, which is wild. Yeah. But I think that’s because there’s so many people at these talk shows that have it’s just protocol. I mean, they send us an email of exactly what needs to be delivered. Yeah, what time what format, you know, and we just make it happen. And so really peek behind the curtain is just that these for john party, for example, we’ve done a lot for him a lot of Jimmy Kimmel Kelly Clarkson just did Ellen.

They reach out and you know, they want him on the show. We usually start with Okay, so what’s the aesthetic of those shows? You know, what is? What does it kind of need to look like for Jimmy Kimmel? Because that’s going to look a little bit different than Elon and then from there it’s really john parties band and people his all of his tour, tour guys. Getting scheduling taken care of making sure the band’s good and making sure John’s good.

And then we book a location and we go shoot it. I mean, it’s it’s truly much more simple because there isn’t 1000 logistics going into it as if it were a commercial or music video. It’s just, we show up. Lighting crew shows up usually First they get everything lit then video crew, we get everything dialed in. JOHN in the band show up, we get soundcheck and they do it three to four times and john likes to get out of there. And there it is, we get it edited pretty quickly. The turnaround times, you know for editors and stuff. That’s probably more hectic for them than it is me But yeah,

Corey Allen  19:40

this may be a pretty big peek behind the curtain for some but those live remote performances. Those aren’t actually live is what I’m hearing you say?

Ryan Byrd  19:49

They are not live. I’m sorry to break it to all of you listeners. Most things are not Yeah, they’re not live. So that’s helped. For us, though, again, you know, I mean, we have time to make it look really good. Get it to our editors and then get it off to these networks. Yeah.

Bill Cornelius  20:09

So was the beginning to end on something like that pretty tight? Because I can imagine that you’re probably notified fairly quickly correct this?

Ryan Byrd  20:17

Yeah, it’s usually it’s, I think we’ve, we’ve definitely had some sooner, like, there’s been like a two day turnaround once. But usually it’s about a week. So we’ll film something about three ish days for post. But again, we’re filming it. And with the multi cam view, so for the editor, it really isn’t a ton of work other than lining everything up. But because we’re kind of we’re shooting it as if we’re editing it on a lot of those types of projects,

Bill Cornelius  20:46

which that, you know, that would simplify it logistically to exactly. So but yeah, it’s usually about a week. Cool. Sometimes sooner.

Corey Allen  20:53

Yeah. That’s interesting that that, at least from a producer standpoint, that is seems way less involved in some of the other work that you do. Because again, in my mind, like, you’re going on The Tonight Show, yeah. Yeah.

Ryan Byrd  21:10

No, it’s it’s easy breezy for me. I mean, as long as I’m hiring the crew and getting that schedule locked in those days, I just show up and don’t have to worry, I’m not worried about actors or locations, or, I mean, is what it is, yeah, those are easy days.

Corey Allen  21:24

What’s on the flip side of that, so like, if those if those jobs if those gigs are, I don’t want to say a walk in the park. But in comparison to some of the other work that I do as a producer, what is more challenging? project wise, what’s more challenging?

Ryan Byrd  21:43

I mean, anything, the most challenging, and it’s it’s things I continue to laugh about with some of the creatives here in town, is the expectation with the money that people have, and the stories that they want to tell.

Corey Allen  21:58

Yeah, it is

Bill Cornelius  22:01

the disconnect, rather,

Ryan Byrd  22:04

the disconnect. So that’s what’s challenging. It’s challenging when you have a really excited director and a really cool song coming to you about a music video, and then only X amount of dollars. And you have to look at them and say, I’m so sorry, but you need to choose one of the 19 scenes that you’ve written, because there’s no way this will work. So that’s challenging, because, as a producer, one thing, I mean, what I’m passionate about is making these projects come to life.

So I don’t want to be the person that’s sitting across from somebody telling them what we can and cannot do. But obviously, as a producer, that’s a big part of my job. Yeah, so that’s definitely challenging, because I want to give them the vision that they want, while also, you know, keeping us on budget and schedule and all that stuff.

Corey Allen  22:49

Yeah, I would say you’re good at that. Because several times I’ve gotten either text from you or from Dylan, here’s what we need. But here’s the budget.

Ryan Byrd  22:58

Exactly. We’d like to be very clear. I don’t like any surprises, you know, we’ve gotten and again, all all that type of stuff is learning, right? I mean, because back in the day, maybe I didn’t ask somebody and then I got an invoice. Then I said, Oh, that’s not gonna work, you know. So everything’s trial and error, and you learn as you go and get better and better.

Bill Cornelius  23:17

And you know, you hope the client is learning too. And you’re, you know what, we can’t do 14 locations, you only have a budget for this. So,

Ryan Byrd  23:25

unfortunately, I don’t I don’t think clients learn as quickly as the production teams, but maybe one day we’ll get there. I can

Corey Allen  23:33

just I can imagine, like that budget conversation, everybody that I ever talked to you. They’re like, hey, like, you know, tell me your secrets helped me out like I want to get into the business. Like, listen, your first question should always be always be budget. What is your budget? Yeah, yep. And then people get really uncomfortable trying to have that conversation. Yeah. And that’s where you start to get like really awkward conversations.

Bill Cornelius  23:56

Well, and as we talk about often on this show is just like that, that’s the the gateway to the conversation is the budget. It is, well, you

Ryan Byrd  24:06

got it. You don’t know what you’re gonna do. If that’s not clear from the beginning, you can’t go anywhere. If you’re not clear on that. Right. And a lot of times, but it’s to be done. Yeah, it’s it’s not fun. It’s kind of fun. I actually really love making budgets, which is super nerdy and weird, but I like it.

Corey Allen  24:24

That’s why you’re a great producer.

Bill Cornelius  24:26

Yeah, that’s why you do what you do. Because I hate it. I hate to make a budget Excel document. But But yeah, that’s the budget conversation. You know, I and I’ve mentioned this multiple times is like I’ve been ghosted by so many would be clients after the budget, ask and, you know, you just find out who you don’t need to be working with. Yep. If they, if they don’t have if they don’t value your time and your money and correct that sort of thing. Then Keep moving.

Ryan Byrd  25:01

Yeah, well, and that’s a funny thing too, because we’ve had the same experience, of course, people reaching out wanting to work on stuff. And then we have to have these budget conversations, and then they get uncomfortable. But the thing that’s funny to me is these budgets. It’s not like we’re trying to hide anything with these numbers, you know, I can, I can send you a breakdown of everything. And I feel like sometimes when we pitch out these numbers, maybe clients think, oh, gosh, all that money is going to Ryan or to Preston or to the company.

Like what? And let me tell you, it is not like that is that money is broken down. And I just think it’s funny, because I think a lot of people may have that perception of like, when you’re hiring a production company, or hiring producers that they’re pocketing all the all of this money, or they’re taking this percentage, man. Oh, man, no, we are trying to give you the best project you can have with day rates for everybody, you know, so we definitely have to get creative sometimes to make stuff work.

Corey Allen  25:58

Yeah, it’s like, like when you look at that, the Carl Michael, shoe recently like that, that recent post on Instagram, and like all the thank yous of the OS, so many people, so many people to make that happen. Like that’s, you can’t do that for $1,000. Absolutely not. Well, some people think you can. Yeah, they do. And I just don’t, I don’t get that.

Bill Cornelius  26:21

It never ends. I’ve been doing this for a while now. And it never ends. Yep, we’re the people that will still come to you and be like, Hey, can I do blah, blah, blah, for $700? And you’re like, you’re like that doesn’t even pay for catering? Yeah. Yeah, absolutely not. No. And then and then they look at you like, wow, you’re really expensive. No, I’m not.

Corey Allen  26:48

Exactly. Your expectation exceeds reality.

Bill Cornelius  26:52

Yes, exactly

Ryan Byrd  26:53

what course there was a time that as a company, we were, you know, accepting lower tier budget projects, and doing way more than the average person should do and be mentally sane, to make those things happen. And then you just get to a point where he can’t do it anymore. You got to ask for what you deserve to make the project the best that can be.

Bill Cornelius  27:12

Well, do you think some of that was to build a real or to build a resume? While we were saying

Ryan Byrd  27:19

yes, to those projects? Yeah. Yeah, I think it was all of those things. I think it was, hey, we really love the artists and they have no money. But we believe in then. Hey, this is cool. We haven’t done a concept like this. Let’s make it work. So who wants to do it for free? Or who can? Yeah, we’ll do it for a nice dinner. You know, so yeah, I think it was a little bit of all of that.

Bill Cornelius  27:39

Because a lot of times when people start, of course, they don’t have anything on their resume, they have a demo reel. So that’s kind of the period where you do take the low balls a lot of times and you do take the filter. Yeah, just to get a demo reel together. And then you can start being like, Okay, this is what I’m worth.

Ryan Byrd  27:56

I mean, and then just full transparency. And Preston would laugh at me telling you guys this, too. I mean, when we started working together, that project was probably $4,000. And I mean, wow, just the difference. And that was only two years ago, which is really cool to think about how much the company has grown and what we’re doing now and the projects we’re working on, but yeah, we definitely aren’t too good for. for that. We’ve we’ve seen it all. We’ve done it all. So

Bill Cornelius  28:27

that’s awesome.

Corey Allen  28:28

That’s great. I don’t want I don’t want to all this conversation to be about budget, though, though. I feel like that is a big part of what a producer does.

Bill Cornelius  28:36

Yes. You know, we

Corey Allen  28:38

have, we have our regular film school Friday episodes where we talk about like some really specific things production related or pre production related. I would love maybe just a little highlight around. Whether you think about the most recent music video that the team worked on or a commercial project other than budgeting from a producer standpoint, what else goes into some of that work as you lead up to

Ryan Byrd  29:02

Yeah, absolutely. Um, so again, I want completely talked about budget, but depending on the budget, sometimes we can afford line producers we can afford assistant directors you know, we can afford all of these positions to pay these people to do their jobs. On the projects that we cannot afford to do that I am doing those jobs. So you know when we can’t pay for location, scout or locations manager on finding all the locations for shoots or commercials, when we can’t hire a casting director, which we have not even attempted to do yet.

I’m doing all of the casting. When we can afford a stylist I am gathering wardrobe and going to malls and pulling things from these actors closets to make it work on hunting for picture cars on Facebook marketplace to find the right price and the right color that the director wants. I am helping schedule when we don’t have Assistant Directors, and planning the shoots and chatting about call times and making call sheets and production schedules and day sheets. So really, it’s a lot of

Corey Allen  30:13

press, press them might get offended at this, but I feel like you do all the work. And he just shows up and says, action.

Ryan Byrd  30:22

Yeah, no, no precedent does so much that people don’t see as well, you know, something that I do love about precedent. He’s so good at being the founder of a company or being this executive producer, because he and I think it’s why he’s good at what he does. He just wants to give the client the best experience on set, before set after set, just the whole process. And so he is really great at seeing projects from beginning to end and making sure everybody’s happy and comfortable and upfront about everything. So yeah, he does, he does a lot of phone calls, a lot of emailing a lot of Yeah, just helping get this company off the ground and get as many projects as we can get going.

Corey Allen  31:08

But then you’re doing all that real work. Nice job. Thank you so much for saying, finally, appreciate it.

Bill Cornelius  31:15

So what sort of advice would you give somebody who is wanting to get into the business, maybe specifically producing? Yeah, what would you What would you say?

Ryan Byrd  31:26

That’s a really good question. I mean, someone who wants this role, I would say truly reach, just reach out to people who are doing who are doing it. Reach out to me reach out to other people you know, who you see on Instagram, or you see in website BIOS, and just see if you can shadow them or see if you can come help them out. I mean, I’ve been thinking about that a lot recently, just purely out of necessity for needing help. You know, whether that’s and we’ve talked about it, whether we’re going to start some internships or just get some assistance and with the company, but there’s no better learning than doing it.

And so I think the best advice for someone that wants to do it is reach out and see how you can help. I mean, with producing, like I said, you just have to be, you just have to think of everything, you have to kind of know what makes a project, work and tick, and you got to be a people person. And you have to have some leadership qualities, but every project is different. So I think just getting experience is the is the best move. Whether that’s, you know, working for $50 an hour or working for $50 a day, I don’t know, you know, how bad do you want it. So

Corey Allen  32:38

it sounds like you’re, it’s if anybody’s looking at pa for the day for free. Come on, come on down.

Bill Cornelius  32:45

It goes back to what we were saying about film, schools, being on set is the best experience, you can have to gain knowledge it is, especially as a producer, cuz you’re, you’re seeing the whole thing. Exactly.

Ryan Byrd  32:57

And like I think, too, you know, with a lot of the music video work that we do, and we do other stuff. And we’re getting into a lot of different things like commercials and branding, which I’m really excited about. But with the music videos in my work, a lot of it is that pre production, I think, as a producer, like you have to be so good at pre production, or the project just won’t be the best it can be. So for these people that you know, want advice, learn what goes into pre production, what that looks like, and yeah, get on projects and just hash things out.

Corey Allen  33:29

Absolutely. Yeah. Let me know when you guys start those internships. I will I’m trying to get my daughter like super hyped on Oh, heck yeah, she’s only 12

Ryan Byrd  33:38

Oh my gosh. She is a minor

Corey Allen  33:44

but like I just every opportunity I get to try to like plug her into the process, like at one point and she’s a little younger. She wanted a YouTube channel. So we we shot some, like unboxing videos and some stuff for her, which was great. I was dp for a music video just a few months ago and had the opportunity had my wife bring her out and like she held the monitor for a couple of shots.

Ryan Byrd  34:10

So she’s really interested in it though.

Corey Allen  34:12

I think it comes and goes like with most 12 year olds things come and go. But I’m trying to like yeah, continue to foster that.

Bill Cornelius  34:20

She’s got some anamorphic check her out. Yeah, she can be a director by 18.

Corey Allen  34:29

Maybe Fingers crossed.

Bill Cornelius  34:33

So what what’s, what exciting projects are coming up. What’s next? I know you mentioned branding there for a second like well,

Ryan Byrd  34:39

we have a lot, a lot of different things coming up. So we worked on our first commercial at the end of last year and it was for a company called Fitch and they’re a packaging company for apartment buildings. So that kind of got our feet wet in the commercial world. I don’t know if you guys are aware of Alex Ferrari, a director here in town. Yep. Yeah. So Alex, he’s bringing us on some projects. We actually have some meetings with him tomorrow about some cool commercial work coming up.

There’s an you know, commercial work so funny because it’s so vast like there’s so many different types of companies and different needs that companies need, whether that’s commercials just for websites or commercials for television or for socials, there’s so many different assets that people are looking for. But yeah, we’re getting to work on a lot of that stuff. We have a really cool kind of blend of a music video and partnership brand. We have something coming up with the Cadillac three band in partnership with BMW motorcycles. And it’s Germany, which is pretty dope,

Corey Allen  35:39

the Cadillac three and the BMW thing, the same thing, or

Ryan Byrd  35:43

is the same motion with the high school that I actually don’t know, I’m sure I can. I mean, it’s by time this comes out, it will probably already have been shot and produced. So

Corey Allen  35:53

I went to I went to high school with those guys actually, really. Jaron and I play drums together in jazz band, and like, so cool. Tiffany. Yeah. And I think Dylan like, didn’t he travel with him?

Ryan Byrd  36:05

Yes, I think honestly, I could be wrong, but I’m pretty sure that’s how Dylan kind of got a start. He was just doing all of their tour. Yeah. videos and footage and content. Yeah.

Corey Allen  36:13

I remember talking about that on my guests. Such a small world.

Ryan Byrd  36:16

Yeah. And that and now they’re trusting them with a pretty large music video. So that’s exciting. Yeah,

Corey Allen  36:22

that’s awesome. With with BMW and BMW,

Ryan Byrd  36:25

motorcycles, I think that okay, it’s very strong. It’s not be I don’t think it’s like BMW like the I think they’re separate companies.

Corey Allen  36:33

I mean, I know BMW makes motorcycles.

Ryan Byrd  36:36

Okay, so maybe it is, I don’t know. Listen, that’s not my area of expertise. It will be great.

Corey Allen  36:41

Yeah, that’s awesome. I can’t wait to see that. Yeah, so a couple cool things like that coming up. Okay, awesome. That’s all I’ve got. That’s all you get. Is it? Is it time for the lightning round?

Bill Cornelius  36:51

The lightning round pewpewpew Wait, he’s down. He’s prepared now. I I was the first episode and I had did not have the luxury of being prepared. So I felt like I was the only one that was like,

Corey Allen  37:05

whether you’ve heard an episode or like through our pre production work, like I don’t want people to feel uncomfortable when we hit them with these things. But they’re they’re pretty loose, but it’s pretty loose. But again, like we we need a lightning round intro like every time it’s like all right lightning round. It then it’s like sound that you

Bill Cornelius  37:25

remember. And then I go lightning round. Perfect. Like a remix.

Corey Allen  37:30

Remix remix another one. Someday somebody will make something cool. Yeah, for the lightning fire. Somebody’s just gonna keep asking. If you’re I wish I could make you something but it’s not what I do. That’s okay. All right. Well, let’s get into these. All right, Ryan bird, all time favorite movie. all time favorite

Ryan Byrd  37:51

movie is August Osage County, which was originally a play by Tracy Letts. And john wall’s directed it stars Meryl Streep, Julia Roberts solid cast.

Corey Allen  38:02

I haven’t, I can honestly say I’ve never heard of it. Really.

Ryan Byrd  38:06

Maybe like 2015 ish that could be off, but it’s definitely been within the past 10 years. It’s so good. It’s just full of family drama and dynamics. And it’s, I read behind the scenes about it. There’s one family dinner table scene after a funeral of one of the characters in the film. And they shot that one scene for three days. Oh, that’s how how intense like the dialogue and the family dynamics at that dining room table are super cool.

Bill Cornelius  38:34

I wonder if it got more intense as they got to day three? From the just the frustration even Yeah,

Corey Allen  38:42

I can’t imagine like it sit down to edit that you’re like, all right, day one. That’s just not yet enough.

Ryan Byrd  38:50

I wonder if they improv. They don’t I mean, I don’t know. But

Corey Allen  38:52

day three. This is some good acting. Yeah. I love it. Nice. All right, the last movie that you watched.

Ryan Byrd  39:00

Just this past week, I was at the beach on vacation and watch a rainy day in New York, which is a woody allen film that came out last year that I didn’t even know came out. But I saw it on Amazon and said what gotta watch it. Alright,

Corey Allen  39:11

what’s good? Your favorite director?

Ryan Byrd  39:14

This is a hard question. Because I feel like I love TV so much. And then the TV world a different. It’s a different director for every episode like every other that’s really hard. So anyone that’s ever directed a Handmaid’s Tale episodes, so good. Um, but as a whole, this is kind of silly, but I love Shawn Levy. It’s just like the director of cheaper by the dozen does. I mean just so many wholesome family funny movies date night? What happens in Vegas? I just think that’s so fun.

Corey Allen  39:43

Yeah, that’s awesome. I feel like I should go off script here for a second as a producer. Sure. Is that even a thing? Like, could I say like, Who’s your favorite producer?

Ryan Byrd  39:53

You know, I don’t have one. And I don’t and I don’t even know if it’s I don’t have one more so then I don’t even know If I pay attention, which is a weird thing to say, Yeah, I don’t know. I

Bill Cornelius  40:04

mean, that’s the like the DP thing I know, we say it about like, I was D paying for years before I took notice of any of them, right? You know, you you just kind of take their word for granted almost. This is beautiful. Boy, you

Ryan Byrd  40:19

don’t go any further. Yeah, that’s what that’s what’s hard to kind of with movies, you know, a lot of things. There’s eight producers, and then it shows you a unit production manager. You’re like, I don’t know, who was really pulling the weight. Yeah. It’s hard, right? It’s hard to movies unless you’re directly connected to know, who actually was like boots on the ground making things happen as a producer,

Corey Allen  40:40

right? Everybody sees that executive producer. And they’re like, Oh, they do great work.

Bill Cornelius  40:46

They don’t even show up.

Ryan Byrd  40:47

So just pay for it and look at a monitor.Change this?

Corey Allen  40:53

Do we have to do it that way?

Bill Cornelius  40:55

Yeah, I’m writing the check here.

Ryan Byrd  40:58

Exactly, exactly. Well,

Corey Allen  41:00

that’s a good segue into the next one most underrated or slept on cinematographer.

Ryan Byrd  41:07

So this is I was looking at these questions and I said, I got to pitch my people here. This is now’s the time. Yes. So I already mentioned Dylan. Dylan Rucker is just so talented, and he’s hungry for it, which like, that’s what you want. You want someone who’s constantly learning and watching things and getting better and better with every shoe. And that’s definitely Dylan. I also want to pitch my really good friend, Noah Hanson.

He was the DP of the documentary that I worked on called why she smiles and he’s just so humble. I don’t even know if he like would even classify himself as a dp. Because he’s like, Oh, I’m too young for that. I’m still learning. I’m like, No, your dp, your director. You’re so talented. You need to be doing so much more than you’re doing. He’s doing a lot. But um, he has a his own little company with his wife who happens to be my best friend called an airline films. So cool. Check him out via Instagram.

Corey Allen  42:03

They’re excellent plug for both of them. And

Bill Cornelius  42:06

such a goes will be in the show notes. Yeah, yeah.

Corey Allen  42:10

All right. These are a little lighter. Coffee or tea.

Ryan Byrd  42:13

Coffee, of course. Thank you. Take I don’t know like who drinks. That’s disgusting. Who drinks tea?

Bill Cornelius  42:20

I have recently gotten into tea. Why? I I’m asking myself the same question.

Ryan Byrd  42:26

I mean, but like, I know people say, you know, there’s my husband hates coffee, which is truly so depressing for our relationship. Because there are so many cute things we could do and go to coffee shops and nerd out about like strong coffee versus like coffee and medium roast. You know, we didn’t get lucky with that. But tea tea. Are there even I don’t even

Corey Allen  42:49

I don’t want to shit on tea drinkers. Well, there are a lot of options.

Bill Cornelius  42:56

I don’t I don’t not like coffee. I’m fine with coffee.

Ryan Byrd  42:59

Sure. I stopped I got a little aggressive. Okay, good to know you at least like

Bill Cornelius  43:02

Yes, my stomach does not like coffee, which is too bad. Hey, I think so in order to because I’m not a morning person. I had to seek out energy outside alternatives that weren’t like Red Bull that was gonna kill your so T was kind of the the choice and man I like it. I did not like it for a number of I just kind of gritted my teeth and dealt with it. But you’re in the wake of yours. I’ve kind of gotten into it now.

Corey Allen  43:33

I’m a coffee nerd. I have a coffee bar in my house.

Bill Cornelius  43:37

I just coffee’s Great.

Corey Allen  43:39

Thank you.

Bill Cornelius  43:39

I like your coffee. I

Corey Allen  43:40

put a lot of effort into it.

Bill Cornelius  43:42

I would my stomach just to drink your coffee. It was It’s really good. That’s a compliment.

Corey Allen  43:47

Thank you. There’s I just found this recently at Publix. It’s branded as the strongest coffee in the world. Okay, so make a note of this. It’s at deathwish coffee. Sounds strong. It is pretty strong. It’s great for like Monday mornings when I had spent I spend almost all day every day Monday in meetings like back to back to back. What’s the

Bill Cornelius  44:11

coffee or caffeine count?

Corey Allen  44:14

A lot. I don’t know. Too much. I can nerd out on me like my my ratio is 17 to one coffee to water mix for that. Because it’s it’s pretty strong. Yeah. So my wife, she’s nice. She’s like, Hey, I’m gonna make coffee. Do you want some? She’s Sure. She doesn’t care. Oh, gosh, I need it. I need it so bad.

Bill Cornelius  44:39

Yeah, my wife. My wife drinks coffee out of a soup bowl. It’s so I mean, it’s for fun. She just needs it. That’s impressive. Absolutely.

Ryan Byrd  44:54

Let’s talk about don’t want to be a producer. You need to like coffee. I don’t know if you don’t like coffee. Guess I don’t know. You’re gonna have to give him recommendations on tea. look elsewhere. caffeinated tea.

Bill Cornelius  45:04

I have looked for everything, every solution. Alright,

Corey Allen  45:07

this one gets a little controversial for some pineapple on your pizza.

Ryan Byrd  45:11

No, thank you. I’ll eat it, but like it’s fine if it’s there. I’m not a picky eater, but no, if I’m getting pizza, I’m not. I’m not seeking out pineapple on it.

Corey Allen  45:20

But if someone showed up with pineapple on a pizza, I did it. You did it? Absolutely. Would you question their decision making abilities?

Bill Cornelius  45:30

A little. Cory aggressively dislikes pineapple on pizza. Pineapple at all?

Corey Allen  45:36

I do. I love pineapple. Just not on pizza. Yeah. I feel like I feel like I’m about to get Jedi mind trick though. Do you like pineapple? Yes. Do you like pizza? Yes. Well, you probably like them together.

Ryan Byrd  45:46

This is actually really funny. Last night, we ordered pizza. And one of them had pineapple.

Corey Allen  45:53

Was it like a legit Hawaiian like pineapple and ham? It

Ryan Byrd  45:56

wasn’t it was like a spicy situation. It had like jalapenos on it. And we tried a new pizza place. I don’t know. It was good. Well, that is funny. Um, so we just moved out to Spring Hill, Tennessee when we got married. Like you said those those housing prices had to get out of Nashville. And it’s called Viking pizza. Okay, those are very good. There’s a plug for Vikings pizza. Give us a discount. We will either.

Bill Cornelius  46:21

Go get their pineapple pizza now, Cory? No.

Corey Allen  46:25

Not yet. Maybe they won’t give me a discount. We’re kind of distant on it. Sounds like it was delicious, but it’s just definitely not for me. All right. If you if you could name one, or you can only use one or have one on set. Do you have a favorite camera?

Ryan Byrd  46:42

My favorite camera is whatever camera IDP wants to use. As long as it’s in budget.

Bill Cornelius  46:50

Good answer.

Corey Allen  46:52

Excellent. I let them deal with that. If you want to budget a red Gemini,

Ryan Byrd  47:00

we’ve been working Dylan actually what you love. You love the red. That’s mine. Yeah. Oh, that’s yours that you rent out. Okay. I love it. Good to know. Yeah.

Corey Allen  47:11

I every time I pick up something new Dylan’s like the first one I text. I’m like, hey, just so you know.

Bill Cornelius  47:16

I got this in stock now. Yeah,

Corey Allen  47:19

I’ll make it good. I love it. I love it. Alright, three films everyone should see before they die. Oh, yes. Let me pull this up. I wrote these down. Because this is again, this is like the hardest question ever. There’s no pressure on this one. That’s okay. three films. People are just gonna judge you.

Ryan Byrd  47:36

I don’t you know what, I don’t even care about their judgment, because I feel so solid about these three that I’m about to give. Oh, yeah. Honey boy.

Bill Cornelius  47:44

chalobah. That’s on my watch list, though.

Ryan Byrd  47:46

I think he is so good. Yeah, I know. You fight some demons of his own. And we all do. But that movie is so beautiful and so psychologically powerful. I mean, it’s just so good. I think everyone should watch it. It’s also beautifully done. Like that’s a movie. That all aspects of the production the entire team is just so dead on point and the acting is wonderful.

Corey Allen  48:14

Yeah. It’s such a good movie.

Ryan Byrd  48:15

Yeah. So that’s my first one. My second one is crazy. Stupid love. I love that movie. It’s so good.

Bill Cornelius  48:21

I watched that on my honeymoon. Just last month, really? for the first time. My wife was like, you need to watch this. Did you watch this?

Ryan Byrd  48:30

It was fine. Interesting. See, I think it’s so cute. I mean, it’s so good. I love I just love movies that are like, like I said earlier about August Osage County, I love a good family dynamic movie, and just the drama that you can make from I just think it’s so so fun. And that movie I think does a really good job at being a really great romantic comedy, which I don’t think good romantic comedies are made anymore. And also still being heartfelt. So I really like that one. That’s good. Then my third one is Silver Linings Playbook.

Bill Cornelius  49:02

Oh, yeah.

Corey Allen  49:04


Ryan Byrd  49:06

I love I love crazy stupid love isn’t as much as the other two and then August Osage County, but give me like a heavy monologue acting. will sit and watch stuff like that all day. That’s not everybody’s favorite. But golly, the acting and that is so good. The story is so good. It was David O Russell, right? Yes.

Bill Cornelius  49:30

Like it does look a lot like that sort of monologue. Yeah. Yeah,

Corey Allen  49:36

yep. So good. Nice job, Bill. What? I know in the director Yeah.

Bill Cornelius  49:43

I mean, it’s what I do. Eileen,

Corey Allen  49:46

I only know the actor in that one. Which one? I think if I’m wrong, I’m gonna edit. That Bradley Cooper. Bradley Cooper, Jennifer, Laura, Laura. So good. Yes, everyone. impressed that you knew the director.

Bill Cornelius  50:01

I’m a director though.

Corey Allen  50:02

I know that makes sense.

Ryan Byrd  50:04

I need to I need to go look at all the producers for those three movies on the movie. I throw

Bill Cornelius  50:09

people off because I’m not a film buff. I’m just like a regular movie goer. Yeah, that

Corey Allen  50:14

does directing three great movies. Yes. One of them. I still need to watch. So check that out. Ryan. It’s been so great hanging out with you today. Yes. Thanks for having me. It’s so fun. My first podcast ever. You nailed it. Nailed it. Thanks, Tom.

Ryan Byrd  50:29

All the listening to other podcasts. I guess. Good research.

Corey Allen  50:33

makes you an expert. Here it is. Nice. Well, we’ll leave a link to all of your things and all of the 254 things in the show notes for today. Great so everybody can figure out how to ask you for that free work. Sounds crazy to me. Come on, bring them out. For our listeners, we know you got a lot of podcast options and we appreciate you choosing us. Check us out on Instagram at infocus pod or online at infocus podcast.com.

To learn more about today’s sponsor gnome studios, you can check them out at gnome studios.co or on Instagram at gnome studios. gnome studios is located in a centuries old warehouse just outside of downtown Nashville and is an amazing full service recording studio. Check them out for your next project. And if you liked what you heard today, go ahead and subscribe. And if you’re on Apple podcast, please leave us a rating. It would help us out a ton. And until next time, feature crew

Bill Cornelius  51:24

shouldn’t be within the budget. Feed your crew make a space for it.

Corey Allen  51:28

budget for the food.

Ryan Byrd  51:30