Kansas City companies make huge difference in Hollywood - KCTV5

Kansas City companies make huge difference in Hollywood

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The entire series of Bargain Mansions was shot in Kansas City and will air in the fall. It's the brainchild of Lee's Summit native Matt Antrim. (KCTV5) The entire series of Bargain Mansions was shot in Kansas City and will air in the fall. It's the brainchild of Lee's Summit native Matt Antrim. (KCTV5)
KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -

It's no secret southern California is home to all things entertainment.

Everything from music, movies to TV shows, most of it is created in Hollywood. But some of the magic that happens on the west coast has a Kansas City connection.

Kansas City will take center stage in a new TV reality series on the DIY Network hosted by hometown girl Tamara Day. 

"I concentrate on the really big ones with really little price tags that no one else wants. They're all over where I live in Kansas City," she said.

The entire series of Bargain Mansions was shot in Kansas City and will air in the fall. It's the brainchild of Lee's Summit native Matt Antrim.

"So when I came back here in 2010, the goal was to find great talent in the Midwest and build shows around them," Antrim said.

Antrim moved back to Kansas City after cultivating a career in Hollywood as a casting director. His production company, Reality Road Entertainment, is the driving force behind Bargain Mansions.

"The pitch of the show was so many of these beautiful houses that are all over Hyde Park and on the Westside that are 3,000 to 4,000 square feet and they're beat up really bad, but they're also $60,000," he said.

Antrim says viewers have a growing appetite for do-it-yourself home renovation shows. And he says producing and shooting a reality series in Kansas City has gone better than expected.

He said shooting a reality series in Kansas City has gone so well that it may have sparked a movement.

"A guy who was a vice president with the BBC from Los Angeles moved out here. Two amazing editors I knew from LA moved out here. All these people who would come out here and visit and say, 'I'm not raising my kids in LA. I'm moving here,'" Antrim said.

There's also a Kansas City connection to the sci-fi drama Westworld, which was a huge hit on HBO last fall. Some of the show's special effects were created in Kansas City by Bruce Branit.

"Sticking a drill up an actors nose is something you do every day," Branit said.

It may have caused audiences to wince, but that is Branit at his best. He used his special effects magic to help create the scenes where robots were powered down by sticking a drill up their nose.

Branit has been creating memorable Hollywood moments from Kansas City for years. He was nominated for an Emmy for his special effects work in the hit series Breaking Bad.

Branit says life is good as he now prepares to create more of his Midwest Hollywood magic for the next season of Westworld.

Westworld starts up in June for the second season and hopefully that'll be two more years until it hits the air.

Bargain Mansions and Branit's work on Westworld are just two Hollywood projects that have Kansas City connections. Local film director Patrick Rea just released a horror movie titled Arbor Demon.

Big Sonia is a Hollywood documentary that tells the incredible life story of Overland Park tailor and holocaust survivor, Sonia Warshawski. "Big Sonia" opens in theaters this summer. 

Copyright 2017 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.

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