Documentary feature CHI-TOWN to Premiere in Competition at SXSW

The SXSW Film Festival just announced its 2018 lineup and CHI-TOWN will have its world premiere this March in the Documentary Feature Competition !

Congratulations to everybody at Northern Lights who worked on the film, a project that took 4+ years to shoot – David Gioiella + Mark Littman, executive producers; Robin Hall, post producer; Chris Carson, editor; Chris Hengeveld, colorist; and Jody Nazzaro, sound mixer.

Directed by Nick Budabin + produced by Terry Minogue, CHI-TOWN tells the story of an underdog basketball player from Chicago, Keifer Sykes, who goes on a meteoric rise to become one of the best college point guards in the nation. But while he pursues dreams of the NBA, his success contrasts with the effects of gun violence on his friends back home.

The Iceman Skateth: Haley Geffen + Bodega gear up for Under Armour + US Speedskating

Just in time for the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, BODEGA CD/director Haley Geffen takes to the ice to debut Under Armour’s new “speed skin” for the US Olympic Speedskating team. With VFX by Zoic Studios combined with edit + sound design from colleagues Chris Carson at NORTHERN LIGHTS + Jody Nazzaro at SUPEREXPLODER, the piece showcases the suit’s asymmetrical skin design that matches the athletes’ natural movement.

From UA: to support US Speedskating’s renewed training efforts and intense focus on Pyeongchang, Under Armour’s innovation team set out to deliver a new Olympic speed skin that maximizes comfort, mobility and speed. Fabrics and concepts were tested for hundreds of hours, creating an asymmetrical skin design that matched the sport-specific movement of always turning left. This build matches the athletes’ natural, ergonomic movement on the ice while keeping comfort and mobility at the forefront.

SHOOT’s Top Spot of the Week: Bodega’s Mark Littman directs “Arpita Mandal” for Trickle Up

Arpita Mandal spends her days in distress about how to feed her children two meals a day and ensure that they are able to get an education of their own in her small village in India. Arpita and her family do not have any land to cultivate, living in just a 5’X7’ one single room home with a small veranda. Arpita shares her home with two children, her husband and mother-in-law. After Arpita’s husband was forced to leave the family to make a decent income, she discovered nonprofit Trickle Up and was able to earn her own income and join in a community of local women in similar circumstances.

Trickle Up focuses on the toughest challenges in global poverty alleviation: to reach the poorest, most vulnerable, isolated people and create trajectories towards financial independence.

Titled “Arpita Mandal,” this video directed by Mark Littman of BODEGA peers closer into Arpita’s journey with Trickle Up and how the empowerment of its services have not only boosted her financial situation, but also her outlook on the future and self worth.

BODEGA has lent its talent and expertise to media messaging for Trickle Up for more than a decade. Littman, BODEGA co-founder/partner, has journeyed to such places as India and Guatemala to tell the story of the nonprofit Trickle Up.


Client:  Trickle Up

Production:  Bodega   Mark Littman, director; Min Park, producer

Post-Production:  Northern Lights + SuperExploder   Chris Carson, editor; Chris Hengeveld, color; Brady Hearn, mixer/sound designer

Congratulations to the Bodega family for their 20 PromaxBDA nominations !

CD/Partner/Editor David Gioella proudly announced that the Bodega family of companies – Bodega, Northern Lights, Mr Wonderful + SuperExploder – has garnered a “personal best” 20 PromaxBDA nominations across a range of categories.

You can see all the nominations for this year’s awards here:

The winners will be announced at the PromaxBDA Conference June 8th in Los Angeles.  Good luck everybody !


Welcome to the S/R family ! Bill Hewes & HU_SH join Bodega’s new animation division

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BODEGA Launches New Animation Division Led by EP Bill Hewes

Animators from London-based studio HU_SH + NY design shop Mr. Wonderful will comprise the new department

New York/San Francisco-based content creation/production company BODEGA has launched a director-driven animation division under the leadership of Executive Producer Bill Hewes. Hewes has over two decades of producing experience with expertise spanning animation, live action, VFX and design at th1ng/th2ng, FilmTecknarna and Digital Kitchen.

Bodega launches animation division

“BODEGA is a thriving, integrated content creation studio that produces compelling work across all platforms,” says Hewes. “I’m excited to lead their move into animation and introduce new talent to the roster. Our animation directors run the gamut from narrative storytelling, to design and illustration. From 2D to 3D, hand drawn, stop motion and mixed-media techniques, it’s a perfect fit.”

Initially, the roster will consist of London-based animation studio HU_SH, led by Lydia Russell and Ru Warner, and New York-based design shop Mr. Wonderful. Hewes previously collaborated with Russell and Warner at th1ng / th2ng and will offer HU_SH’s entire slate of diverse talent to the U.S. market, including Academy Award-nominated French filmmaker Sylvain Chomet, world-renowned animation director Will Barras and award-winning filmmaker Kirk Hendry, as well as Alon Ziv, Nerdo, Chris Weigandt, Light + Mathematics, Dave Anderson, Kirk Hendry, Julien Bisaro and Woodwork.

Recent HU_SH work includes commercials and large format displays for Prudential Global Investment Management, and a Ben & Jerry’s spot out of Mekanism. Mr. Wonderful just wrapped a series of co-branded assignments for Nickelodeon and motion design work for The Kardashians on E!

BODEGA Executive Producer Clint Goldman notes, “I have known Bill for many years and to have the opportunity to work side-by-side with this well-respected EP and bring these amazing animation directors to BODEGA really expands the artistic potential of what we offer. We are making a long-term commitment to animation and these additions complement our growing family.”

Bodega + director/CD Haley Geffen team up with Discovery to launch Naked + Afraid

New York/San Francisco-based content creation/production company BODEGA teamed up with Discovery Channel to launch the newest season of the reality series Naked and Afraid.

In the spot, a man and a woman stand side by side suited up for outdoor adventure, then begin removing layers of clothes and are left with only satchels and completely naked with dirt on their skin, while a narrator says, “Fully equipped, mankind can handle anything—but naked and stranded in the wild, we’re back in the food chain.”

Bodega director Haley Geffen worked with Discovery VP, Creative Pablo Pulido and senior writer/producer Luke Aeschliman to create the promo.

The spot was cut by Northern Lights editor Mark Tyler, who worked with the VFX team to incorporate effects. SuperExploder mixers Ted Gannon and Ted Marcus augmented the promo with a sound design that tied together the visual transitions. And Lustre colorist Chris Hengeveld added the finishing touches with his color grade.

Geffen worked with Pablo and Luke to create the subtleties of the stylized promo, overseen by Discovery Channel SVP Lara Richardson.

“We focused on how to remove clothes in a stylized way that enhanced our concept,” notes Geffen in a statement. “We didn’t want the act to look silly or even sexy. On the show, there’s nothing sexy about being naked. So we choreographed their actions and focused on specific motions that added energy to the visuals and uniquely branded the promo without sensationalizing the nudity.”

Naked and Afraid airs on Discovery Channel on Sunday, March 5 at 10 p.m. ET.


Client: Discovery Channel
SVP Creative: Lara Richardson
VP Creative: Pablo Pulido
Sr. Writer/Producer: Luke Aeschliman
Production Manager: Daniel Oleksiuk
Production Manager: Chau Hoang

Production: BODEGA
Director/Executive Creative Director: Haley Geffen
Head of Production: Kris Walter
Line Producer: Jordan Tarazi
Line Producer: Michael Flexner

Post: Northern Lights
Editor: Mark Tyler
Lustre colorist: Chris Hengeveld
After Effects Artist: Matthew Lucas
Executive Producer: Robin Hall

Audio: SuperExploder
Sr. Sound Designer/Mixers: Ted Marcus & Ted Gannon
Producer: Shannon Botts