Venice Air Films was launched to support the narrative work of writer/director Chris Olness. Venice Air Films produced Coming Home, a competition winning Levi’s Brand film – AFI FEST premier. Produced Satin - distributed by Warner Bros., Showtime, and Gravitas Ventures. Created short stories for the Los Angeles indie rock band Wires in the Walls. Developes visual marketing materials for eco-luxury brand Las Rosadas. Venice Air Films has thrilling feature scripts in development and strategic relationships with industry leaders.
What distinguishes Venice Air Films is its taste for authentic stories, strong characters, universal themes and arresting visuals. Venice Air Films collaborates with the world’s most skilled and passionate filmmakers on challenging projects with commercial and artistic impact.
Both visual designer and actor’s director, Chris Olness is a confident storyteller who brings his ambition, skill and enthusiasm to his filmmaking. Olness wrote/directed Coming Home, a film for the Levi’s Brand – AFI FILM FEST premier. Out of 1000 submissions Olness’ pitch won the Levi’s “Show Us the Way” film competition representing stories about a better tomorrow.
Olness directed and co-wrote Satin distributed by Warner Bros. & Showtime, featuring a veteran cast – Melissa Joan Hart (Melissa and Joey, Sabrina - The Teenage Witch), Emmy winner Robert Guillaume (Benson, The Lion King, Phantom of the Opera), and Michael Cudlitz (The Walking Dead, Southland, Band of Brothers) – as well as a strong performance by newcomer Hamilton von Watts.
Olness’ career began in visual effects editorial for George Lucas’ Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) on films such as; Star Wars, Mission Impossible, Men in Black, Twister, Lost World - Jurassic Park, Contact, Dragon Heart – and commercials for clients that include; Honda, BMW, Energizer, Pepsi and Coke. When duty called for the Star Wars reshoots, Olness suited up as a stoormtrooper and blasted the Millennium Falcon.
American Film Institute (AFI), Directing Fellow – Sundance Lab, writing semifinalist – studied acting with Larry Moss, Emmy winner Jeffrey Tambor (Transparent) and Judith Weston (Acting for Directors) – analyzed thrillers with Robert McKee – U.C. Berkeley, B.A. Mass Communications – San Francisco Art Institute.
Olness is special in his ability to inspire actors and shape authentic performances. With Olness behind the helm audiences get emotionally charged entertainment with a distinct visual style drawn from his vivid imagination and diverse background. Focused on serving the story, Olness brings all the elements together to create high quality films. Olness’ cinematic work is complimented by his fine art documentary photography.
Olness was born in San Francisco and now lives with his wife and son in Venice, California. He visits Kauai in the spring and France in the summer. Olness enjoys: Channel Islands Surfboards, vintage movie posters, DJ Shadow – Endtroducing, family bike rides, NASA, Led Zeppelin, tumblr, Enjoy Handplanes, espresso, KCRW, Japanese koi, John Steinbeck, Zildjian cymbals, palm trees and redwoods, Neil Young – Old Man, Pacific Film Archive, Weezer, Sam Shepard – Coalinga ½ Way, Rainbow Sandals, Blue Note jazz album covers, Ruth Asawa, carnivals & flea markets, The Kills, Charles & Ray Eames, a double feature of The Conversation and Blow-Up, The National, Pablo Neruda, personal fitness, U2 – Joshua Tree, Hanalei Bay, Tadao Ando, Dogtown, the ink pressed pages of 1980s Thrasher Magazine, perpetuating the California Dream…
Writer / Director
15+ years experience spearheading development, production & post-production.
To cultivate a diverse creative community of talent who inspire each other and collaborate with efficient workflow to produce thrilling high quality stories.