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Walkup Films grinds out ‘B’ movie trailer

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Walkup Films grinds out ‘B’  movie trailer

Jon Walkup looks through the viewfinder of a Hollywood film camera.

Photo contributed/

POSTED October 28, 2009 2:24 a.m.

Jon Walkup sees just about everything through the perspective of his viewfinder.

The Sierra High School senior – who just got done with the writing and staging of the school’s Lobo Gold Rally as well as a ‘70s-era B-movie trailer – is constantly looking for new and interesting things to which he can turn his video camera.

With his love for cinema and film being central in almost everything that he does, Walkup plans to pursue his passion after graduation in some form.

“Without film I don’t even know what I’d be doing with my time,” Walkup said. “It’s like a never-ending love affair and an obsession, and it’s something that I’m always going to have in my life.”

Walkup initially parlayed his love for movies into a real activity by planning short movies with his friends that revolved around a variety of topics – some that were sophomoric and others that touched on topics that were deeper in nature.

After putting the fruits of their labor onto YouTube, Walkup Films has since garnered more than 1,200 subscribers – giving friends, family, and anybody else with an Internet hookup the chance to see, critique, and encourage the young filmmaker on his quest.

Just last week, Walkup posted “Dead Love” onto his YouTube site – the faux trailer to a throwback “Grindhouse” style zombie movie. It took him just over two weeks to film after all of the planning was done.

“I had to do things like make-up and fake blood and make guts that would look real, so that took some time,” Walkup said. “We filmed the entire thing in the back of my house, and it turned out to be something that I was really happy with.”

With editing programs and techniques Walkup was able to turn the digital footage that he had captured into a two-minute trailer that displays the same grainy film-like presentation as something you’d expect to be from decades ago.

The movie’s main protagonist – Hatim Hanif – is a lot more than just a guy in a pseudo-trailer.

After meeting Walkup in a video production class, the two hit it off and Hanif now manages – a website that he created that includes material such as “Dead Love” trailer, footage from the 2009 Fall Lobo Gold Rally that the duo wrote with the assistance of English teacher Daniel Dolieslager, and a variety of other videos that have been made over the last several years.

Now the duo are well-known among the entire student body at Sierra High after reviving what Walkup called “dull” Lobo Gold rallies with skits that included a showdown between famous magician Chris Angel and J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter.”

“All of the students were saying that they weren’t very good, so we wrote out a script, submitted it, and it was eventually denied,” Walkup said. “Mr. Dolieslager – who is seriously such a cool guy – liked it and he had us rewrite it and was a perfectionist in the process. It turned out to be a big hit.”

But even if his movies and his scripts go without the recognition, Walkup says he’s going to keep doing what he loves to do because that’s what he’s interested in.

“I love everything about filming – the writing, the storytelling – I want to write and direct for the rest of my life and it doesn’t even matter to me about the money,” he said. “Some of the people who watched ‘Dead Love’ said they didn’t get it, but in the end, I got it, and that’s what I was going for.”

To get a look at the handiwork of the Sierra High teens, go to

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