Andrew Foley; The Future of Film


(PHOTO FROM FOLEY) Foley, 12 years old, working on a talent show video.

McKenzie Zobrist


You settle into your seat on a February evening in 2012 to watch the Mariemont Elementary School Talent Show. Curtains draw back, lights go dim, and down comes a screen. 4th grader Andrew Foley walks onto the stage, and presents to you his LEGO stop motion film titled “Midnight in Mariemont” by AJF Studios, his production studio name. 

Almost a decade later and Andrew Foley is leaving his LEGO stop motion films for something bigger: college and film school. He explained that while he enjoys creating characters and scenes on his own, he hopes to move into live action film-making. He said, “personally I enjoy the more collaborative process when I have the resources to pull it off.”

As a child, Foley was intrigued by film. He said, “I used to watch Saturday cartoons with my dad and I’d always recreate them with LEGO or action figures.” He then stumbled upon Youtube videos about stop motion, and thought he would like to try it. “I went from there and started practicing and started my own Youtube channel called AJF Studios,” Foley explained. 

It wasn’t until 2015 when he created his first Youtube channel titled AJF Studios, but his first films started in 2011 and were aired in the 2012 talent show. He said, “It was at the talent show when I first showed a film and said AJF Studios. I then went from there and thought I’d make a Youtube channel called that.”

Flash forward to 2020 and AJF Studios is a big name in online pop culture papers including Cinema Blend,, IMBDtv, and many others. How? You might ask: Foley explained, “I’ve made a lot of friends online over the years and we all talk about film and we saw the new Batman movie trailer came out over the summer. Everyone was really into it, so we said ‘Oh! Let’s make a recreation of that in LEGO!’” 

The group’s goal was to recreate the entire Batman Movie trailer that released in the summer of 2020 out of LEGO stop motion film and get noticed by Matt Reeves, the movie director. Foley explained, “There were about 14 of us and maybe about an average of 4 or 5 shots each, so it took a lot of editing work to make our shots look similar and make sure there wasn’t a disconnect between our different cameras and settings. We had to do a lot of color correcting and special effects.”

After almost 2.5 months of work, the group posted the trailer recreation to Twitter and received a wave of responses. Foley said, “Unfortunately, I don’t think Matt Reeves has visited Twitter since September, so he did not notice, but one of the screenwriters and an actor, Jeffery Wright, retweeted it, and some entertainment magazines picked it up as a cool piece, and some Youtube reaction channels also did a video about it.”

What tells a lot about who Andrew Foley is as a person is, as excited as he was, he brushed it off as not a big deal in Mr. Wiseman’s first bell Literature class. He’s not quick to brag, or show off, but he is an internal creative genius. 

When describing his stop motion film process, Foley explained, “I usually just think of everything I need ahead of time and then improvise on the spot.” 

The cast of Mariemont High School’s musical: High School Musical will put Foley to the test this spring. “We’ve filmed the play before, but it wasn’t filmed like a movie how this is going to be filmed,” he said, “we’re essentially trying to make a movie in two months, and that’s what I’m a bit concerned about, but I’m all for that kind of project.”

Until then, Mariemont will be looking forward to Andrew Foley’s final AJF Studios Production in the Mariemont School District.