Tag Archives: Airlift Productions NOLA

From the Airlift Productions Studios to “12 Years a Slave”?

The Airlift Productions Studio doubles as the Ultimate Home Theater!
So I’ve got the Airlift Studios in the ‘home theater mode’ the other night to catch another blockbuster in 5.1 surround sound. It’s my favorite way to watch a movie. No texters, no talkers, no cell phones! I get to actually hear every word. And imagine my surprise!
McQueen’s ’12 Years a Slave’ – 2014’s Academy Award winning Best Picture – is a brutally painful one to watch for sure.  But I reveled in it. For personal reasons. Very personal.
Astonished I was to catch not one, not two, not three, not four… but FIVE different  and wildly talented  individuals who’ve recorded, laughed and spent time with me at Airlift Productions …. IN THE MOVIE!
There was – for all the world to see – Quvenzhane Wallis, John “Spud” McConnell, Donald Surtain, and that dynamic mother-daughter combo of Deneen & Devyn Tyler!  Wow!
And they all comported themselves quite admirably.  No.  No starring roles, but in very key supporting ones.
Quvenzhane as Margaret Northup in ’12 Years a Slave’
Playing Solomon Northup’s daughter Margaret as a child was little Quvenzhane, all dolled-up. And in the critical closing and final scene, playing Margaret as an adult and mother … was Deneen’s real-life daughter – Devyn Tyler!
In fact, as she cried while holding the lead character (Chiwetel Ejiofor/Solomon), Devyn had the final words in the entire movie! Double wow.  
Deneen Tyler On-Camera teaching Mathematics for JRL Enterprises & I Can Learn


In scenes where Solomon was seen playing the violin, Chiwetel was faking it, but Donald Surtain  – who was in the Airlift Studios just two months ago now, recording with Greg DiLeo –  was on-camera and laying-down the REAL thing!
Violin Virtuoso Donald Surtain lays down his totally awesome violin tracks at Airlift Productions January 2015

Spud was a plantation owner picking up a slave down along the Mississippi River in the French market and Deneen, as Phoebe, sure cried a lot.

 OK, so my work with this talented crew was nowhere near as dramatic.
John “Spud” McConnell as slave owner Jonus Ray,  on-screen in ’12 Years a Slave’
Spud McConnell sold air conditioning installation & maintenance via radio spots for Comfort Engineered Systems, Deneen & Devyn Tyler worked on educational software tracks for John R. Lee and I Can Learn at the Airlift Studios, and little Quvenzhane , the youngest actress ever to earn a best actress Oscar nominee nod, recorded VoiceOvers with me to sell cars for Chrysler & Maserati.
God, but I truly admire, love and respect talent.  At the Airlift Productions microphones … and on the big silver screen.
Congratulations, Kudos & High-Fives gang!  Proud to work shoulder-to-shoulder with you … and know you I am.
So as Hollywood South continues to explode in NOLA (they’re starting to call Hollywood ‘New Orleans West’!), I’ll see you at the cinema.  And next time, the popcorn’s on me.

Airlift Productions Proprietor Micheal Ziants along with the youngest Best Actress Nominee in the history of the Academy Awards - Quvenzhane Wallis - at the Airlift Studios 2014
Airlift Productions Proprietor Micheal Ziants along with the youngest Best Actress Nominee in the history of the Academy Awards – Quvenzhane Wallis – at the Airlift Studios 2014
                    To Communicate is the Beginning of Understanding.
    Airlift Productions Communicates.        

Timeless Cherokee Thought for 21st Century Man

Airlift Productions NOLA Proprietor Micheal Ziants at age 25 in the woods of Pennsylvania, in a reflective picture taken by an old friend back in the day … with a vision from and for the Cherokee


Since the dawn of recorded time the world’s philosophers have disagreed on many things, but on this one point they are all in unison.
As a man Thinks … so he Is! 
What can any of us act on … but what we choose to think about? Thought creates reality. Thought, while invisible to man’s five senses … is the most powerful force in the universe.
As Emerson so eloquently phrased it, “The ancestor to every action … is a thought.”
Every building, every highway, every hit song, every book, everyTHING – including you & me – has at it’s root an invisible, imperceptible to the senses … THOUGHT!
According to the universal law of cause & effect, our thought is ‘father’ not only to our every deed, but to every condition we attract!
In the days before what we call ‘America’ was born, in fact in the days when all Europe was but a wilderness, the natives on these shores knew that.
Thousands of years before the time of Abraham, before King David, before those we call the Christ, the Buddha, and Muhammad walked among us … the Cherokee taught their young this same weighty philosophical issue late at night before sleep around the campfires.
The Story of the Two Wolves.
Every moment of every day, select and choose your thoughts wisely … for from your thought springs your action, deed and virtue.  Which wolf wins? The one you feed!
Now, if you, the reader of these words – this ‘thought’ – are nodding your head in agreement as you read along, vow today to take action. Take control of your own mind. Do not allow yourself the ‘luxury’ of a negative, harmful thought.
After all, if you are not in charge of every morsel of food that passes your lips … and every thought that passes through your mind, I’d like to respectfully ask you – who is?
Feed the Right Wolf!


With bountiful blessings, heartfelt prayers, and a fervent wish to IncreaseThePeace … from New Orleans, the new Jer-USA-lem, and Airlift Productions.  ~ Micheal

Airlift Productions ** A Catalyst for Positive Change from New Orleans since 1984