Jim and Joe Hanna have always been passionate about food. Coming from a large family, mealtimes were when everyone gathered together around the table. The joy and happiness of sharing great food with people is what led Joe to his early career in restaurants and catering, and, eventually, opening his own restaurant. While on location, production companies began to discover Joe's amazing recipes. Soon, Joe was in demand, traveling all across the country, perfecting his winning combination of delicious meals and friendly, dependable service.
During this time, Jim was following his dream of studying business and playing football at the University of Louisville, eventually signing with the New Orleans Saints. Joe had always been a big supporter of Jim’s, and when the football career was over, the brothers decided to team up.
Aside from their mutual love of preparing and serving great food—Jim, too, had been working in restaurants since he was a teenager—the brothers share something even stronger: a mutual appreciation and great affection for the other as a person.
Joe: I remember when Jimmy was at the University of Louisville, I knew he was very busy with studying and football. I wanted him to be able to give those areas his full attention, so I would send him a little bit of financial help, not a lot, just a little every month to help him get by.
So, the day after he signed his NFL contract, my doorbell rings, and I answer the door and there, out of nowhere, stands Jim. He smiles and hands me a shoebox. I took it and I was thinking, He came all this way to give me a pair of shoes? I open the shoebox, and it was full of money—he had kept track of everything I had ever sent to him and even though we never talked about it, he wanted to pay it all back to me.
That’s what kind of person Jim is.
Jim: The thing about Joe is I’m pretty sure every single person who has ever met him agrees he has the biggest heart in the world. He just really cares about people, as individual human beings.
Lots of folks talk about giving back to the community, and for Joe, it’s more than just supporting or donating to local organizations, it’s about connecting with people. The other day, he opened up our big kitchen to Wow in Sync, a group who works with disabled young children with disabilities, to have them come in and learn to do some cooking. The joy in the kids’ faces was only matched by the joy in Joe’s as he was helping them. And that’s the kind of thing he makes a priority in his life.
That’s what kind of person Joe is.
Jim and Joe purchased some mobile equipment and started Hanna Brothers Motion Picture & Event Catering in 1997. The equipment was in such rough shape to start, they felt it was a successful day if the catering truck did not need to be towed to the shooting location. But, what the brothers had both learned on their journeys was that persistence and commitment make all the difference. This positive, “can-do” attitude allowed them to complete every project, on time and at budget, innovating and inventing along the way. Their core principles—providing top quality food with unparalleled service, under all conditions—remained steadfast. Industry executives began to take notice.
In 2004, Hanna Brothers opened a facility in Slidell, LA, to service the busy film production industry in Louisiana. As word spread, they continued to add mobile kitchens, support equipment, and more staff who shared their commitment. In 2014, they added a second, state-of-the-art location in Fayetteville, GA, to work with Georgia’s booming film industry.
Further expansion has led to:
- Hanna Brothers Film Catering—For over twenty years, Hanna Brothers has been providing premium catering to over 200 film and television productions. Since 1997, we have delivered the best food, great value, and exceptional service to a wide variety of locations worldwide;
- Hanna Brothers Event Catering—which provides one-stop shopping for all size and budget special events, from destination weddings to corporate retreats;
- Hanna Brothers Disaster Relief Catering—Hanna Brothers is proud to be able to assist and provide catering services to disaster relief workers across the entire Southeastern United States, as need arises.
- Hanna Brothers Studio Café—a movie studio-style commissary open to the public, which is located in the Pinewood Studios Production Centre;
- Hanna Brothers To Go—inspired by the fresh, homemade menus crafted on location, these snacks and light meals come prepackaged in kiosks for individuals or corporate clients on the go.
Throughout the years and experiences, Jim and Joe have never forgotten the simple pleasures of a lovingly prepared meal, shared around the dinner table. Their attention to detail and commitment to service has only grown stronger, and they have attracted like-minded individuals who help Hanna Brothers achieve continued success in providing “Great Food. With Character.”