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January 27, 2015

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Joe Downtown: Video production studio focuses on downtown Las Vegas action


Steve Marcus

Lowell Kay, a technology consultant, installs media production equipment at the fremont east studios in downtown Las Vegas Thursday, April 4, 2013. The video and audio studios are scheduled to hold a grand opening on April 9.

A Sneak Peek At Fremont East Studios

Founder Mimi Pham poses in a media room at the fremont east studios in downtown Las Vegas Thursday, April 4, 2013. The video and audio studios are scheduled to hold a grand opening on April 9. Launch slideshow »

A video production studio dedicated to creating content based upon the happenings and people of downtown Las Vegas is set to open this week.

Called fremont east studios, it brings state-of-the-art production technology to a 9,000-square-foot building that once served as the base for shows produced by and about city programs and politicians.

Suffice to say, the content about downtown people might be a little more engaging. But the studio also plans to reach out nationally to brands and businesses that need a high-tech studio in Vegas to produce, edit and create content, said Freeman White III, director of production.

“We’re really dedicated to making this a comfortable space for people in this business,” White said.

White and studio Founder Mimi Pham have spent more than a year putting the studio together. Pham works for the Downtown Project, created by Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh. Zappos is moving into the old City Hall this fall; the studio is part of the City Hall space Zappos is leasing.

“It’s great to be at a point of completion, to be part of a project that people are excited to part of,” Pham said.

White, who started as a safety at the University of Nebraska for famed Coach Tom Osborne, has also had a long career in the film industry, producing and acting. For a dozen years, he was the personal videographer for the family of “Men in Black” actor Will Smith; he was also operations manager for Wesley Snipes for many years.

His acting career includes a short stint in Snipes’ movie “Blade.” The Internet Movie Database identifies White’s role as “Menacing Stud.”

More significantly, he produced the movie “Five Thirteen,” which will premier at the Cannes Film Festival in May.

White, described by most who know him as “humble,” chuckles at the role, which he said he was thrust into at the last minute.

Among other projects, White and fremont east studios have already been taping and archiving speeches, in addition to documenting the growth and development of downtown.

The studio’s grand opening is Tuesday.

Joe Schoenmann doesn’t just cover downtown, he lives and works there. Schoenmann is Greenspun Media Group’s embedded downtown journalist, working from an office in the Emergency Arts building.

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