"Nothing But A Number" Features Local Talent and Filmmaker
By the time “Nothing But A Number” debuted on YouTube on May 5, it was the result of years of work and planning. But long before that, Brock Eastom was already working his way toward a career in video production.
“It really started when I was in middle school,” Eastom recalled. “My uncle Darren and I would steal one of our parents’ crappy VHS camcorders and make goofy videos. But I kept at it and ended up having a knack for it.”
What started as a hobby became something more, launched in part by a job that wouldn’t necessarily promise career ascension.
“I had a job at what was then Carmike at Jefferson Pointe,” he said. “I was assistant manager, and my boss wanted to make some promotional videos. They actually started to get some traction, and I realized then that I might have a knack for doing something professional, not just goofy videos.”
The video production company he eventually founded, Frosty Pictures, also picked up some traction in an unexpected way, one which he could never have predicted.
“I hate to say it, but COVID led to a lot of opportunities for me. There were all of these local companies that couldn’t do what they planned and were looking for ways to do virtual shows. I had donated a production to Arena Dinner Theatre for their fundraiser, and then I started getting a lot of opportunities for work after that.”
By the time he left his job at Fort Wayne Community Schools last October, he had already started making plans for “Nothing But A Number,” inspired by a real-life friendship with Becky Niccum, an actress somewhat older than Eastom.
“Becky and I have been friends for a long time. I met her when I was in Youtheatre. I was working at the movie theatre and was depressed with this high school job. I helped her write some plays, and we became friends. Then when I turned 21 we started going to Henry’s weekly. People always thought it was weird because of our age difference. People just didn’t understand.”
Having thought for years that he’d leave Fort Wayne to find success in New York or Los Angeles, Eastom also related to Niccum’s story of seeking the same in New York only to return to Fort Wayne to care for her parents. Her happiness in being back home no doubt eased Eastom’s desire to bolt, and it also inspired the storyline at the heart of “Nothing But A Number.”
“Becky was happy to be here, and I was saying ‘I want to go chase a dream!’” Eastom said. “I started to wonder what would happen if two people like us met in New York and became friends. We started talking about it in 2018, and Becky has been very patient. We started shooting it last June, and one day Becky said ‘Oh my God, is anyone ever going to see this?’ I said she should set a deadline for me, and first she suggested April. I knew I couldn’t get it ready that soon so she suggested May 5 because that was her Dad’s birthday.”
In the first episode, currently available on YouTube and via frostypictures.com, their characters – David and Greta – meet rather inauspiciously (a twist on a “meet cute,” to say the least) as both head to New York to seek show business glory. Although the show takes place in New York and New Jersey, it’s shot locally and some familiar locales (not to mention performers) will add to the fun for Fort Wayne viewers. The show will air new episodes every other Thursday, with upcoming Season 1 episodes 2-6 available May 19, June 2, June 16, June 30, and July 14. If successful Eastom hopes to have a season two, but in the meantime, he is learning he works best with a deadline.
“Becky will appreciate you posting the dates,” he said. “Because then I actually have to get the episodes ready in time.”