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Home » Featured Business for August 2021: Freestyle Creative
Featured Business August 2021

Featured Business for August 2021: Freestyle Creative

Freestyle Creative is an award-winning Oklahoma City marketing and film production company specializing in marketing strategy, advertising, branding, design, video production and photography.

Can you tell us about how and why you started your business?

Freestyle Creative’s Founder/CEO Vahid Farzaneh grew up in a family of entrepreneurs and received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma in Film and Media Studies. He began his career as a cinematographer and founded Freestyle Creative in 2007 because of his passion for the film industry. As he grew the business and began purchasing cinema-quality video gear, Freestyle was able to provide services such as equipment and studio rentals. President & Partner Kelley Gann joined the company in 2014, and Freestyle began expanding into a full-service marketing and creative agency. Over the years, Freestyle has been involved in the production of over 30 feature films, documentaries and award-winning short films. The next step in our vision for Freestyle is to continue expanding and supporting growth within the Oklahoma film industry.

What services do you provide within the film/music industry?

With Freestyle’s background in the local film and video production industry, we have been involved in many partnerships with film projects providing equipment, marketing and PR, creative assets (promotional photography, key art, BTS videography and websites), producing and fundraising support. Freestyle offers studio rentals on a 20′ x 40′ green and 10′ x 10′ white cyclorama, and Freestyle’s camera equipment offerings include the BlackMagic Pocket Cinema Camera 6K Pro, Sony a7S and a7R, and DJI Mavic 2 Pro, along with cinema lenses, Aputure light kit and more.

Watch the Freestyle Sizzle Reel!

Has your company grown to meet the needs of Oklahoma’s film and/or music industry over the last 3-5 years? If so, how?

Over the years, Freestyle’s capabilities have evolved from a video production house into a full-service creative agency and film production partner. A talented team, great clients and exciting work opportunities have spurred Freestyle’s growth over the years (earning a spot on the Metro 50 “Fastest-Growing Companies” list). With the recent developments and growth of Oklahoma’s film industry, it’s been exciting to partner with many talented industry professionals in this creative atmosphere. Freestyle has had the privilege of working with talented local filmmakers, contractors, actors and film/music-based organizations on a wide range of projects — from creative work for recognizable Oklahoma brands (including the State of Oklahoma, the Oklahoma City Convention Center, the Chickasaw Nation, and Braum’s) to partnering with local films in different stages of production and music production company Onyx Lane.

What are the benefits of basing your company’s operations in Oklahoma?

Oklahoma is our home, and over the years we’ve seen our state grow to become what it is now. Our purpose is to uphold the Oklahoma standard, serve our community and help contribute to the growth of our state through our work. Our team loves living and working in Oklahoma — and experiencing all our great state has to offer (a great quality of life, good people, cool developments in Oklahoma City and a lower cost of living).

What would you consider your business’s greatest accomplishment to date?

Freestyle Creative’s growth over the years from a video production company to a full-service marketing and film company is our proudest accomplishment to date. Freestyle has garnered American Advertising Awards (ADDYs), Tellys, and Communicator awards for our work with a roster of exciting clients. After being honored in 2018, 2019 and 2020 as one of the Journal Record’s “Most Admired CEOs, Freestyle’s Founder/CEO Vahid Farzaneh was inducted into the Circle of Excellence, and Freestyle Creative has earned a spot on the Metro 50 “Fastest Growing” companies list. Most recently, Freestyle Creative was voted the “Best Advertising Agency” in the Journal Record’s Readers Rankings Awards.

Are there any recent successes your company would like to highlight related to work within the Oklahoma film and music industries?

Freestyle has been involved in the production of over 30 feature films, documentaries and award-winning short films over the years. Freestyle’s recent credits include Kyle Kauwika Harris’ crime thriller “Out Of Exile” and Cate Jones’ indie drama “She’s the Eldest,” which screened at deadCenter Film Festival in 2020 and won “Best Feature” at the 9th Annual Best of New Filmmakers Los Angeles awards.

What are you working on now/next?

We’re gearing up to collaborate with Kyle Kauwika Harris, Adam Hampton, Jacob Snovel and Luke Wyckoff on another feature this fall that we’re looking forward to.

Freestyle is doing a lot of work in the marketing, creative and commercial space with clients including the State of Oklahoma, the Chickasaw Nation, the Oklahoma City Convention Center, and Braum’s. Due to our film background, we approach our marketing and commercial work from a cinematic perspective and with more of a storytelling focus.

What is your goal/vision for the future of your company?

Vahid Farzaneh (CEO) and Kelley Gann (President) are developing a model for funding, producing and marketing to be able to make an even bigger impact for filmmakers in the future.

Our goals are to continue on our growth plan to position Freestyle as one of the best agencies in the state, a best place to work for our team, and a leader for marketing, film, entrepreneurship and creativity. With our incredible team at Freestyle, we’re excited for the future because we believe we can accomplish it.

What advice do you have for others who are considering starting a film or music business in Oklahoma?

For anyone considering starting a film or music business here in Oklahoma — keep persevering! Starting a business is tough in the beginning, and at times it may feel like it only gets more challenging. It’s worth it.

Find your greater purpose and translate that into your services. Put in the hard work, find ways to evolve and gain experience, and work with good people. It’s important to seek out great mentors who can give you advice and share their roadmap for how they’ve navigated the industry to find success. This can help you avoid the challenges and pitfalls most business owners encounter. Some books we recommend for those in the early years of starting a business include “Scaling Up” by Verne Harnish, “Start With Why” by Simon Sinek, and “The Compound Effect” by Darren Hardy.

Our community is supportive – networking and building great relationships within the community can bring new opportunities. The Oklahoma Film + Music Office team is a wonderful resource to help you. Seek out OF+MO educational events, networking opportunities and resources.

What opportunities do you believe await Oklahoma’s film / music industry in the future?

The time is now for the Oklahoma film industry. The new “Filmed in Oklahoma Act of 2021” recently passed, great film education organizations like the Film Education Institute of Oklahoma (FEIO) and Metro Technology Centers are fostering the upcoming crew base — and Oklahoma has studios now thanks to Prairie Surf Studios and Green Pastures Film Studio. The spotlight is on Oklahoma, and our industry is experiencing a lot of positive momentum. We believe there’s tremendous growth on the horizon for the Oklahoma film industry.

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