Vital Stats: David Collins, 37, Michael Williams, 47, founders of Scout
Company: Boston-based media company covering film, TV and integrated marketing solutions
Traveling Act: Though working as location managers on big-budget films paid well, Collins and Williams grew tired of living out of suitcases and hotels. The two (along with another partner, who has since left) were inspired to find their own projects, spawning their dictum "important stories well told."
Beantown Biz: Started in 1994, Scout operated from the guest room of a Boston bungalow as a location file company, providing photos and information on specific locations. The partners soon became a budgeting, scheduling, locations and crew resource for films shooting on the East Coast.
Wives' Tales: The Queer Eye for the Straight Guy concept was born at a Boston art gallery, where Collins heard a wife loudly berating her husband. "She said, 'Why can't you look like them?' pointing to three [stylish] guys." The three men surrounded the husband and offered some friendly, helpful advice on his appearance. Collins remarked to his friends, "That was kind of like the queer eye for the straight guy."
Thinking Men:Queer Eye's success and the Academy Award Williams won for producing the documentary The Fog of War have Scout's phones ringing. Marketing tie-ins abound: Scout Tracks, their record label under Capitol Records, has released music from Queer Eye; a Queer Eye book is also out. As Scout evolves into more of a creative think tank, Collins attests, "Our core is great stories-that's very much where we are and [where we] will continue to stay."