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Friday Feature: Firelux Attends the Creative Startups Accelerator

by Nikki Kroushl on August 18, 2017

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The CCP team

Firelux (formerly Corey Chandler Productions) is the second of two member startups that were chosen to compete in the Winston-Salem Creative Startups Accelerator (the first was Kidobit—see their feature). Hosted by the Center for Creative Economy, the Accelerator is an eight-week course for startups based in creative pursuits. The first seven weeks will be an online course dealing with “everything from customer acquisition to unit economics.” The eighth is a “Deep Dive” where startups will travel to Winston-Salem for a week of intensive workshops, pitching, and networking with industry professionals and angel investors. The week ends with a pitch competition that splits a pool of $50,000 between the top three companies.

Firelux began with chemistry.

Cofounder and Executive Producer Meredith Jones explains that she originally hired Assistant Director/Creative Director Mary Margaret Folds for a music video she was producing.

“We realized there was a lot of synchronicity between the three of us, and we worked together creatively in this beautiful way,” Jones explains. That was in 2016, and it was a short step to form Corey Chandler Productions, which later became Firelux.

Firelux is a young company that focuses on helping businesses and individuals connect to their core values. It values storytelling that helps clients connect with their target audiences. When it comes to their documentary work, their focus is on helping clients and subjects tell their stories in an authentic way.

In their year of operation, Firelux has worked on commercial and documentary pieces for the North American Butterfly Association, a tech company called Advocate, Chowan College, and many others. The staff recently returned from Maine, where they filmed for a documentary on women in lobster fishing—what Jones says will be “a piece that empowers women, challenges stereotypes, and reinforces that idea that women can do anything a man can do.”

Filming

Jones and the other partners of Firelux went to the info session for the Creative Startups Accelerator hosted by the CIE and decided that the program would be valuable for their company.

“As a young business, as three cofounders who haven’t been to business school, I think we’re missing some tools in our toolbox,” Jones says. “I think the education we’re going to receive with the startup accelerator is going to be almost like getting a little MBA.”

The company is especially excited for the opportunity to network with mentors and angel investors, as they are currently looking for funding for specific projects that include a reality docu-series and a docu-series based on a North Carolina man.

“I think that the CIE is an amazing, resourceful tool for young startups, especially because of the education,” Jones said.

In recent months, the CIE has helped launch film and media ventures beyond Firelux’s accelerator attendance, too. It has helped host and promote the nc fILM forum, a monthly gathering of local filmmakers geared towards networking, discussion of film issues, showcasing local artists, and providing a platform for presentations. The FILM Forum has also launched a fILMp3 project, the fruits of which will be played at the Cucalorus Festival in November.

Editing

Director Diane Durance and Manager of Operations Laura Brogdon's focus on media production (in partnership with local film icons like Cucalorus) recognize the potential for Wilmington to become a hub for documentary and commercial production. “Businesses and individuals are realizing the power of video and how important it is,” Jones agrees. “It’s going to drive the market for independent filmmakers who are specializing in commercial work.”

Jones continues, “What’s important about documentary work”—like Firelux’s powerful piece about lobster fishing women in Maine—“is possessing a relationship or a story, an idea that’s investigative, or the rights to a story that is extraordinary.”

With the education from the Creative Startups accelerator, Firelux seeks to tell (and sell) even more of those extraordinary stories.

Make sure to follow Firelux on Facebook and Instagram for more updates.

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