Next Gen School
for Next Gen Creators

S.I.C. Film School uses technological innovation to tell stories and makes an impact with BOXX

by John Vondrak


Located in Yonkers, New York, S.I.C. Film School overlooks Hollywood on the Hudson, a massive, state-of-the-art studio complex of 18 sound stages and home to Great Point Studios, Lionsgate Studios, and MediaPro. The location of the S.I.C. campus offers students access to real world film production, including on-set experience.

Hezues R HeadshotS.I.C. is the brainchild of filmmaker and entrepreneur HEZUES R and is a place where students take part in a broad curriculum, from film theory, story development and screenwriting, to camera, lighting, sound, and other aspects of pre-production, production, and post. All of these disciplines are focused on the acronym that makes up the school’s title: SOCIAL IMPACT CONTENT, an “innovative and disruptive” education model prioritizing lower tuition, higher engagement, as well as post graduate opportunities. By funding student content and helping structure development deals, S.I.C. empowers its grads to “create a greater proliferation of positive content in society.”

S.I.C. Film School is the first film school located inside a major studio development like Lionsgate Studios. In the youth program, students range from ages 14 to 19, but S.I.C. also runs an adult program which was formulated for anybody over those ages where participants can achieve certifications for minimum required skills to secure entry level jobs in the film business. In addition, S.I.C. is building a state-of-the-art campus (slated to open in early 2025) including a Hollywood-level soundstage for its College Level Advanced Film program, a tuition model disruptive of four-year degrees focused on a 10-week program with access to the film industry.

One of the key avenues for making this goal a reality is the school’s dedication to technological innovation. One such marvel is the SIC Tank, a high tech mobile production vehicle converted from an ambulance and capable of livestream, mobile edit, video village, and drone operations. As the first film school to have a campus in the Metaverse, S.I.C. also finds itself at the forefront of VR/AR/XR in arts education with a hologram stage which allows students to create 3D and other content.

Ted Brooks, Hezues R and Student
SIC Students

Volumetric Capture

SIC Hologram

And it’s that stage which led S.I.C. CTO Ted Brooks to BOXX, which is surprising since his background is not in film production. A self-described member of “the Atari generation,” Brooks is in fact a 30-year IT pro with his own company which creates virtual environments.

“We integrate products and likenesses of people into the Metaverse for the recreation of companies, storefronts, and more,” says Brooks who has been friends with HEZUES for over 40 years.

“We’re working together,” he says, “dealing with motion picture technology, video and film production, volumetric capture, 3D modeling, and the Metaverse. We're teaching these technologies to the youth. We have children who come for workshops every Tuesday free of charge.”

Brooks says S.I.C. is looking to expand with technology integrated into the school, i.e., larger sound stages, green screens, hologram technologies, visual effects, and other aspects of virtual reality. “So this is definitely something that's up my alley,” he says. “HEZUES has an extensive background in film and video production, so our partnership makes sense. So does integrating hologram technology into what we do.”

Brooks confides that multiple celebrities have been scanned in their hologram studio, including some hip hop artists.

“We're working to bring these holograms into virtual productions, which seems to be the way that entertainment wants to go,” Brooks says. “It’s more cost effective and the end product is something that is very appealing, especially to younger people. You can deliver holograms in music and video music production where you can actually watch them in your living room instead of watching it on a 2D screen.”

Creating 3D environments and virtual production can indeed be cost effective, especially when compared to constructing physical sets on soundstages the traditional way. Either green screen or an environment where on-camera talent is volumetrically captured and then placed into an environment in post production opens a world of possibilities creatively, commercially, and financially.

Which brings us back to BOXX.


The S.I.C. Film School BOXX APEXX S3

  • Intel i9-13900K (13th gen) at 6.0GHz
  • 64GB DDR5-4800 MHz (2 - 32GB DIMMS)
  • 2 x 1.0TB SSD NVMe/PCIe 4.0 M.2 Drive
  • NVIDIA  RTX A4000 16GB
  • 2 x Startech USB 3.0 4 Port Controller PCIe - 61182 
  • Microsoft Windows 10 Professional Edition 64-Bit High End

BOXX Systems and Support

At S.I.C.’s volumetric capture studio, the process involves scanning a person or object then cleaning up the 3D meshes with a render engine like Blender or Unity. “We build some of the environments after the imperfections are removed,” Brooks says, “followed by post-production integration into VR, XR, and AR.”

Since products can also be scanned, they can be used for marketing objectives like product placement. “We can create 3D duplicates or 3D twins,” says Brooks, “and attach QR code systems and deploy them as a marketing tool.”

S.I.C. has an association with volumetric capture application provider DepthKit Studio, so when it came time to find a workstation powerful enough to power the process, the pros at Depthkit recommended BOXX.

“The challenge of this workflow are system resources,” say Brooks. “Sometimes it becomes a little bit more extended because this is a new medium, a new technology. We're in uncharted waters. Sometimes we’re running multiple high-end applications involving 3D rendering and scanning and that can be taxing. In our studio downstairs, we have ten cameras hooked up and the BOXX gets the job done. We're using Blender and/or Unity and we don't feel like we have too much overhead to get these things done.”

Lionsgate Studios

Brooks does admit that the school will eventually need to upgrade to a beefier BOXX. “If we're going to do a livestream, volumetric capture, and run DepthKit, or any other scanning software simultaneously, while streaming live onto the same workstation into Unity, it’s understandable because that's a lot of tech being run at the same time. Ideally, we want to run this on two different workstations—one for the environment and another one for the scan. That would be ideal.”

When the topic of system support arises, Brooks extols the virtues of legendary BOXX Technical Support, particularly tech Dov Yaffe. “Tech support was awesome—great!” he says. “It was probably the best tech support that I've ever experienced because Dov sat with us to resolve some issues. We pulled logs, tried every avenue possible to find the cause. He was awesome at what he did and was very patient. He was so patient that I asked him if he needed a break. “We had some appointments that we needed to make and we couldn't have if we had to wait an extended period of time, Brooks continues. “I've dealt with a lot of other companies, billion dollar companies, and I'm not sure what your market value is at this point, but I believe your tech support is some of the best, if not the best that I've had.”

Powerhouse Students

Student of SICAs our conversation nears its conclusion, Brooks discusses the exciting future of S.I.C. Film School and the role BOXX will play in it. “We're probably going to need a lot more workstations running a lot of VR tech. As a school that incorporates virtual reality, AR, 3D modeling, Blender and Unity, we’re going to have to have computers that are capable of getting this done. We’ll definitely look to BOXX for those types of machines based on our experience. Time is money and the ability of BOXX to offer support is definitely a plus too.”

Brooks wraps up by once more emphasizing the school’s mission. “We want to prepare our students for these industries and give them a head start,” he says. “The school is open to everyone, but our major focus is kids who are on the borderline, economically and socially disadvantaged. We want to give them options so they don’t go in the wrong direction, give them something they can actually grasp and make their own. These types of technologies with holograms, 3D integration, and the Metaverse is a $328 billion dollar industry. Our students will be ahead of the game instead of being left behind. We have our relationships with Great Point Studios, LionsGate Studios and Media Pro, so we expect to create some powerhouse students that are going to be able to transition into these fields.”

SIC Film School Students


SIC Tank


The S.I.C. Film School’s SIC Tank is a converted ambulance that was once used for catastrophe management, so it is larger than most emergency vehicles. A fully operational production suite with an 85” television monitor, the OB truck has the ability to broadcast over 5,000 feet. It also houses a drone for aerial photography. Brooks confides that another is currently being retrofitted while a third, HoloTank is in the planning stages for mobile hologram production. “S.I.C. launched a partnership with LiveU to outfit all of its SIC TANKS with best in market live broadcast capabilities,” added founder HEZUES R. “And of course we plan to put a BOXX in the HoloTank, making it the first mobile BOXX.”