Looking Back and Beyond the First Year of Beyond the Marquee…

Happy First Birthday Beyond the Marquee

Hi everyone, Steve Czarnecki, from Beyond the Marquee here. As the clock ticks just past midnight here on the morning of Oct 12th, it’s hard to believe that 12 months ago, a long-time dream of uniting friends with a common interest in their love for Film, TV, and Entertainment gave birth to a little website and series called; Beyond The Marquee. As the inaugural year comes to an end, I wanted to to give a quick nod and reflect back on the past 365 days of posts, personalities, and prospects for the future.

With so many Entertainment web-sites and blogs, the ambition and desire to start my own, let alone keep it maintained and full of content each day, has been anything but easy. From 6 months before the launch to 6 minutes ago, my co-founder Jon Donahue and myself have tried to figure out what will make our site stand out, what will set us apart from the guys who have been doing it for years, how do we blaze a trail for ourselves and get it right?  Looking back now over this past year, it’s evident that we’ve built ourselves a solid foundation and are continuing to grow at an impressive rate.

Beyond the Marquee’s team is made up of an eclectic group of individuals, all who have a diverse background and years of experience in showbiz.  From Producers, Writers, Publicists, Actors, Musicians, Theme Park Show Designers, Film Editors and Voice Over Artists, they have all converged on BTM to write, post and report.  Simply put, this is an outlet for my friends and myself to expand our love for the Entertainment industry in a whole other way.  It’s gone beyond the circle of friends who frequently chat about Indiana Jones, TRON, Doctor Who and Star Wars at a party or over lunch, to now writing about it, reporting on it, and interviewing the people involved with those projects.  It’s become a way to feed our inner-geek and watch it grow in ways we’ve never imagined, inspiring and motivating many of us along the way, giving us a reason to write – which so many of us love to do.

In addition to posting select stories that are specifically aimed towards our target audience, Beyond the Marquee prides itself on the original content that makes us stand alone.  While a large portion of our posts are Film, TV and Home Video reviews, we have some great original features that I’ve been very proud to nurture and watch grow over the past year.  DOWNTOWN CINEMA reviews some of those great campy, B-movie horror flicks by an extremely talented staff writer of ours named “Malone”.  Our MARQUEE MAMA segment covers reviews of family oriented movies by a working Hollywood mom.   LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION? is one of my favorites and it’s a segment that spotlights a famous movie location and shows you what that location looks like then and now.  Those articles are written by my friend and co-producer, Kevin Stern.  You may not have seen him on camera yet, but he’s the one behind-the-scenes most of the time planning, producing and writing to make sure our shoots bring back great content, our exclusive articles are fully edited, and the family-friendly tone of the site is preserved.  And then there’s also TRAILER TUESDAY, which is just a fun mash-up of upcoming film trailers that doesn’t require people to visit several sites to see all the new trailers for the week.

Most recently, my 4 1/2 year old daughter has turned a love for a show I’ve been watching with her for years into something fun and unexpected.  LINDALEE’S DOCTOR WHO REVIEW segments have garnered some amazing attention and she’s been getting hits on her YouTube channel in the range of 20-40,000, not to mention having been re-posted and reported on by dozens of popular entertainment, news, and social media sites.  That simple segment has already led to opportunities at other venues we’ll be reporting on in the near future.

This past week we hit the mark of 30 episodes of our popular Beyond the Marquee original web-series.  That’s pretty incredible given that all the crew work for free, on weekends or days off, and we earn no money doing it. Beyond the Marquee, the site, was originally created because I wanted my idea of Beyond the Marquee: The Web-Series to live someplace other than just as a bi-weekly post on Facebook or a YouTube channel.  I wanted it to have it’s own home and be a destination with video content that could be accessed by anyone around the world.  Ever since the start, I felt that the site should have some other content (news, reviews and interviews) that people could check out until the next installment came along for the web-series.  Producing and Directing those videos has been a labor of love, and I stress the labor portion of it.  Because of very short windows in my life to actually get out and shoot, host and edit these segments, I have to keep it simple.  No flashy effects, no high-end graphics, pretty much whatever I can squeeze out of iMovie11 is what makes up our episodes.  Though we may not have the most high end of gear or any production budget, my crew and I have committed 200% to telling the best story and delivering the most entertaining and informative content we can.

In addition to numerous exclusive interviews and insider scoops during our inaugural year, we’ve had some fantastic opportunities offered to us.  We were invited to interview the cast of the new TRON: Uprising animated show, we were given VIP access to the Warner Bros. Studio Museum for a rarely seen tour of their Prop/Costume archives, and I had Hollywood make-up designer Brian Pennikas transform me into Dr. Zaius from Planet of the Apes. Our 2-part behind-the-scenes showcase of Back to the Future 2 prop-replica MATTEL Hoverboards went viral, bringing lots of traffic to the site and receiving tens of thousands of hits in a matter of weeks.  It didn’t hurt that Bob Gale, writer and producer of the Back to the Future trilogy, joined us for that experience.  When Mattel called me and asked if they could showcase the videos in their booth at this summer’s 2012 Comic-Con, we were thrilled!  Over 130,000 attendees to the sold-out event caught our videos and signage next to Matty Collector’s Hoverboard over the course of 4 days.  We even had our 1st International episode when our reporter Jon Donahue taped an episode at the famous movie set of Popeye’s Village on the European island of Malta.  Our ever-growing world-wide presence continues this Fall as some of the BTM crew made up of USC film students will be on an exchange program in the UK and will be shooting some segments for us there that we will post closer to winter.

As we say farewell to year one, year two already is in full gear with more exciting interviews with people from all areas of the industry in front of and behind-the-scenes already lined up.  We are building relationships with other studios and industry insiders who are opening up their doors to us and we’re excited to see what will come of that as well.  We are pretty confident that Beyond the Marquee will go beyond just being a popular web destination.

Looking back, I couldn’t be prouder of my team and all that we’ve worked so hard to establish in this past year.  None of it would have been possible without the support of some of the most talented people in Hollywood in my inner-circle.  I’m looking forward to utilizing those contacts and relationships to broaden our reach and deliver more quality entertainment, as we all continue to go … Beyond the Marquee.

Thanks for coming along on this incredible ride with us, buckle up, because here we go again!

-Steve Czarnecki

Founder / Creative Director / Chief Marquee’ologist


LIKE us on Facebook: www.Facebook.com/BeyondTheMarquee

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Subscribe to our YouTube Channel; YouTube.com/BeyondTheMarqueeShow



BTM Host Jon Donahue, Back to the Future’s Co-Producer/Writer/Director Bob Gale and BTM Founder Steve Czarnecki

Make-Up designer Brian Pennikas transforms BTM Host Steve Czarnecki in to Dr. Zaius from Planet of the Apes

A snapshot of Opening Day as Beyond the Marquee launches on 10-12-2011

BTM reporter Allison Tate-Cortese interviews actor Max Adler from the FOX TV show GLEE

Academy Award Winner Cuba Gooding Jr chats it up with BTM on the Red Carpet

Aileen Quinn (star of the 1982 movie “Annie”) chats with Beyond the Marquee host Erin Cottrell

Host Jon Donahue hosts a behind-the-scenes international episode of the BTM web-series from the famous movie set of Popeye’s Village on the European island of MALTA

BTM Host & Founder Steve Czarnecki intros a segment about a collector of rare Flintstones TV memorabillia

Jon Donahue and Stormtroopers at the Anaheim Discovery Science Center

Beyond the Marquee on the Red Carpet at a Hollywood movie premiere

Beyond the Marquee’s Exclusive Hoverboard episodes are showcased at the 2012 Comic-Con within the MATTEL Toy’s booth

Some of Beyond the Marquee’s Original Features

Courtney Sampson interviews poster artist Dylan Cole at his Home Studio

The Founding Fathers of Beyond the Marquee; Steve Czarnecki and Jon Donahue

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One Response to “Looking Back and Beyond the First Year of Beyond the Marquee…”

  1. Jennifer Smith says:

    This is great. Keep up the excellent work!

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