By Ellie Lieberman
Max Gilberg’s “Scary Hours” video of Jordan Poole in the UPB gym is a dynamic one minute mixtape showcasing the high-flying guard’s latest work on the court. The video runs for about a minute, and has garnered over 12.7k on social media. Gilberg estimates that he put close to eight hours into that video from conception to release, and actually won a video competition from it. But, even the sheer amount of work can’t epitomize just how much Gilberg lives, breathes, and eats content creation. After talking to him for just a few minutes, it’s clear how passionate he is about what he does.
For example, mixing two Drake tracks from “Scary Hours 2” was a decision that Gilberg did not take lightly because he knows that music can set the tone for his videos. He wanted to channel Poole’s work ethic and grit in the gym, and so thought titling it “Scary Hours” was perfect.
“Two days before [shooting Jordan], Drake had dropped “Scary Hours 2.” The first night I had filmed Jordan and I was blasting music, and I was listening to “What’s Next?” I combined “What’s Next” and "Wants in Needs,” and I was feeling very creative when I was listening to them. I knew he was playing those when we were in the gym and working out,” Gilberg said.
It’s these decisions that rack Gilberg’s mind, as he’s always looking to combine his interests of videography, photography, sports, and pop culture. Originally from San Diego, Gilberg went to a specialized film and photography school for seven years before moving to Redwood High School in Larkspur, where he met Kylie Horstmeyer, and first learned of UPB. She mentioned UPB and Packie, and took Gilberg to an open run at the gym later that day.
“Off the bat, I was already like this is a great opportunity,” Gilberg said.
Gilberg got to know Packie and after he decided to take a gap year from San Diego State University to pursue videography, the pieces fit together for him to help UPB as a digital producer. At UPB, Gilberg’s put content together for Sabrina Ionescu, Isa Silva, Brandon Ashley, and so many others. When he gets to the gym, Gilberg places an emphasis on understanding the motivations underlying the workout, and really in shooting any particular athlete from as many spots as possible to cultivate a variety of content.
But, even looking back at his original shoots, Gilberg can’t help but acknowledge how much he’s grown.
“It’s crazy how much I’ve already advanced in the past couple of months. One of the videos I really like was Brady Smith’s video,” Gilberg said. “Now that I look back at that video, I see insane advancement on the quality and style of my videos.”
For the first time ever, Gilberg is solely getting the opportunity to focus on his craft day-in and day-out and he can see a path for his future unfolding because of the hours put in. And this is only the start.
“If I could picture what I was doing in the future, I really want to have my own brand and work with athletes and create cool content,” Gilberg said.
Make sure to follow Max Gilberg on Instagram at @mxgfilms.
There’s one particular exercise Clair Steele will never forget from UPB. And that’s Packie’s famous five-minute plank that would be thrown in at the end of workouts. Clair Steele used to dread those planks.