We had the good fortune of connecting with Aaron Grasso and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Aaron, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
Solo Cinebot was started with the intention of getting people back to work during the pandemic. We wanted a safe alternative to traditional filming that followed social distancing guidelines but didn’t compromise quality or the creative control that content creators hope for. Our systems have allowed the safe filming of countless VIP talent in their own homes, including many elderly and patients with autoimmune deficiencies, veterans, celebrities and more. Because of the suite of functionality within the system, it requires a small crew to operate. All members of the crew and production can work from home and we’re proud to have trained a significant number of crew members globally and stimulated new work and continued content creation in our industry. It also has allowed filmmakers from across the globe to collaborate and work together in ways that were never before possible,
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’m a cinematographer by trade, however I’ve always loved creating things. I’ve been into everything from music to carpentry since I can remember. My career as a DP took off over the last ten years and it’s someone who could never leave well enough alone, I decided to open my own camera equipment rental house, Antagonist Camera. At first, I was my own number 1 customer, but after some time operating the company and brand began to gain traction. Long story short, we were doing quite well right up until March 2020, when the world shut down, along with my shop. Terrified of losing everything and unsure what the future might hold, I was looking for a path that might lead me to anything less than the demise of all I had worked for. My dear friend and long time colleague, Josh Shadid, came to me and sparked an idea to create a remote operated production solution. Admittedly, the idea was barely half baked at the time, but it was clear that this was the only hope to pull out of this nosedive we were in. We put together a small team and were unrelenting in our efforts to create a system that wasn’t the first thing to come to mind, but rather something that was truly spectacular and innovative, that addressed the real demands of the production lifestyle. A product that required nothing from talent and gave creatives absolute control over the images we were capturing,- from anywhere in the world. And that’s what we created – the SOLO Cinebot was born. I figured it would do well, given the climate, but I had no idea it would take off like it did.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Really depends on who the friend was and what their general vibe was. I can take you to the fanciest restaurants in LA, best cocktails, crazy nightlife, etc- or, if you’re into nature I’d take you way up the 395 to the eastern sierras or maybe Big Sur to show off California in all it’s glory. I’ve lived in LA all my life so, not to brag, but I feel I have a considerable repertoire for establishments to visit locally, as well as geographic destinations.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Big shoutout to my good friends and partners Keith Jones and Josh Shadid, who buckled down hard during this pandemic and brought this incredible product to life at breathtaking speeds.
Aaron Grasso – Cinematographer Vanessa Nicole – Choreographer/Dancer