You supply the vision, we supply the logistics. With the increasingly high stakes of action sport cinematography it is important to ensure everything that can be planned IS, and that contingencies are available for weather conditions and extreme environments.
Glissemedia has been working in harsh outdoor and winter environments for over 20 years and has the experience get the most that budget and time allows. Having worked on both sides of the camera, Jim Conway has a unique perspective that gives athletes and crew confidence to achieve their goals.
AD and Production
Jim Conway's first experience guiding and assistant directing outdoor sports started in the early 90's when he was contracted by Warren Miller Entertainment as a guide and athletic talent. This was one of the first times in Alaska a helicopter was used to go out and start "bagging" first descents on film.
This lead to his working on medium sized budget film produced by HeliVentures. This scripted film involved snowboard athletes in action and acting scenes.
Next Jim worked with Standard Films on the highly awarded Totally Board series, TB5, TB6 and TB7. Working with some of the worlds best snowboard talent that included Johan Olofssen, the crew safey documented numerous first descents in the mountains around Valdez, Alaska.
This evolved into Jim taking a exclusive contract with Teton Gravity Research. Initially acting as a guide and talent, Jim morphed in to TGR's lead guide and safety director for the big mountain ski and snowboard segments in Alaska and Canada. Working with top athletes such as Jeremy Jones, Sage Cattabrigga-Alosa, Ian McIntosh, and Darren Rahlves, Jim developed a system to consistently manage risk in this extreme environment.
In addition to working the big mountain segments of TGR's annual feature film for ten years, Jim also worked
on large commerical shoots for Nissan and Under Armor. In addition to safety, logistics and some 2nd unit AD work, these productions also had to see to the comfort and safety of the clients and ad agency personnel, sometimes in 20 below temperatures and darkness.
TGR was hired to produce a two telivision pilots for NBC called Adrenaline X. During this production Jim's full range of skills were utilized for everything from permitting and set construction, to crew and athlete safety. On one location the entire Freestyle Motocross venue was flooded with 6" of water less than 30 hours prior to shooting. Using his production and engineering knowledge, Jim came up with a plan to dewater and regrade the site in time for the scheduled shoot.
In 2009 Glissemedia created and exectutive produced a motorcycle oreintation and safety film for the Marine Corps with One Eyed Bird. Using Curt Morgan of Brain Farm as the DP and the latest hi-def equipment (including Cineflex) this 55 minute feature has been shown to over 150,000 Marines.
Glissemedia's unique skills are producing film and video in harsh environments, risk management for adrenaline athletes, and the abilty to manage building sets and features in difficult remote places.
At Glissemedia we have worked with a number of production companies on sports action films, commercials, and feature films:
1999 - 2013
Lead Guide and Avalanche Forecaster
Lead guide on steep heli skiing locations all over Alaska and Canada. These locations were very remote and some had never seen heli ski or film operations before. Duties included:
Developed risk management plans and protocols for heli shoots and other foreign venues. Ensured locations had proper risk management, rescue and communications assets in place.
Acquired permits from state and federal land managers. Negotiated helicopter contracts and piloting staff. Organized local accommodations and travel. Tracked costs and expenses for TGR and athlete billing.
Safety Training Supervisor
Developed the International Pro Rider Workshop program. Now nationally recognized, this program is a 3 to 4 day annual course that trains athletes and production teams in avalanche safety, rescue, wilderness first aid, and technical rope work.
1994 - 1996 and 2013 - 2014
Jim Conway was talent in 6 ski segments for 3 films in the 90's, including the ground breaking segment in Valdez, Alaska where he skied the first Descent of the "Shower Curtain" (a 60 degree spine wall). More recently Glissemedia has put on Pro Rider Workshops for their production teams covering avalanche safety, rescue, and first aid. Also guided crew in Valdez Alaska in 2014.
Safety and field producer for two commercial spots that aired during the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. Both night shoots at Brighton and Park City Resorts in Utah.
First Assistant Director, Field Producer, and Safety Director on second unit for Nissan Pathfinder commercial. Heli based shoot with Sage Catebrigga-Alosa and Jeremy Jones at Hatcher Pass Alaska.
Field Producer and Safety Officer for reality based snowboard competition at Jackson Hole Wyoming, featuring Travis Rice. Also responsible for construction of rider features in high alpine locations.
Jim Conway has decades of experience organizing and running second unit teams in both snowsports and motorsports. The ability to generate realistic production schedules and to be flexible working with directors is what makes Jim an asset to any production. Shooting in remote and extreme locations requires a unique but also broad skillset. It isn't uncommon for Jim Conway to wear a number of hats during production from safety, to set construction, to producer or AD. With Jim's background he is also well suited to negotiate with people in remote and rural areas.
Glissemedia has long been an innovator in production safety in some of natures most extreme environments. Jim Conway's ability to look at a situation for what 'could' go wrong, then come up with innovation and realistic mitigation efforts that actually complement and support production goals can be invaluable.
Working with professional adrenaline athletes requires a perspective not only of the dangers inherint in the stunt itself, but also the athletes motivations and skills. Having been a professional extreme skier, Jim understands the risks and pressures the athletes can put on themselves. His ability to instill confidence in athletes with a solid risk management plan, and sometimes just some words to help an athlete focus on the task at hand can result in not only the athletes goals being achieved, but the production team as well.
Helicopters present a number of challenges to any production from saftey concerns to fiscal constraints, and production success. Glissemedia has 25 years expereince coordinating helicopter operations for filming and has been responsible for many of the safety protocols that are now standard in wintersports filmmaking.
Working with TGR, Glissemedia has developed tested and true methods of scouting and documenting rugged extreme terrain. Using GPS enabled cameras and mapping software, Glissemedia can deliver quality imagery and video of locations cross referenced to GPS mapping solutions. In addition Glissmedia uses a number of tech solutions for determining light and shooting schedules.
With a strong backgorund in engineering, Jim Conway has the abilty to generate detailed permit requests that meet all of the regulating agencies requirements. In addition, his years as an engineer for the government have also give him insight into the regulators mindset. In Alsaka Jim is on a first name basis with many of the public land regulators.
Building sets or athletic features in remote areas is a very specialized skill. With his background Jim Conway has the ability to negotiate and gain the confidence of local contractors and equipment suppliers to deliver the resources needed to get the job done. His engineering skills also complement the set disigners vision both in terms of construction and safety.
Salt Lake City, UTAH