A filmmaker and producer of commercials and music videos.
I was born and raised in Indianapolis, my mother’s family migrated here from Canton, Mississippi, and my dad’s, Nashville, Tenn. I’ve lived in Indianapolis my entire life with a short stint in Argentina.
My interest in film started at 15 years old when I got my first home video camera. I started in the industry after traveling to Los Angeles to be a part of a master class in directing at 21st Century Fox. Among my instructors was the late, great John Singleton.
According to IMDB, I have directed 10 films [laughs], all of which I am very proud. In addition to those 10 flagship projects, I’ve also directed close to 50 commercials, music videos, live video productions, and more. I am currently going into production on my 11th film.
In terms of locally, I have great respect for a very young filmmaker, Deonna Weatherly (Indiana University ‘20); she’s a powerful voice; Jonathan Ockletree (Purdue University ‘11), a multifaceted visual genius; and Nick Braden, another emerging young voice with a ton of talent. Among the global icons, my favorites include Antoine Fuqua, Christopher Nolan, Spike Lee, Spielberg, Ryan Coogler, and, of course, the man himself, John Singleton. All the filmmakers I mentioned have used film to say something and captured incredible elements from life and history and infused them into live-action form.
I did indeed attend Broad Ripple! When the alumni learned the school was closing, there was a lot of angst about preserving the legacy and history of the school. I began following the story in 2017 when the announcement was made of the school potentially closing. Making the movie was my contribution to documenting what may turn out to be the last story out of Broad Ripple, its closing. The style and method of the film is intended to capture how much was lost in 2018 and demonstrate what the school meant to everyone. Also, my other goal was that there be some record on film of how things went down in the end. It wasn’t so pretty.
The Jazz Kitchen is great for showcasing the musical talent in the city. The Eagle for dinner and drinks. You can never go wrong with a classic: Nicky Blaine’s.
That’s such a great question. Only recently did I take the approach of directly inserting my faith in my films. Or to put it another way, I have been much more open about it lately. But I really like where that’s going. My next film will also be a Jewish story. In the past, I have found subtle ways to insert certain Jewish lessons in my films, even those films that were not Jewish centric. I’ve done that for years.
Great question! I would love to make a live-action film centered in the events and lifestyles occurring on Indiana Ave in the 1940s and ‘50s. That area was the center of Black Indianapolis culturally. My parents have told me so many stories. Just to see the fusion of cultures occurring at that time would be so fascinating to see on screen. My dad’s family arrived from Nashville, Tenn., and mother’s from Canton, Mississippi, and that was happening all over Indianapolis. So to see those various cultures coming together on the Ave at that time in history would be really exciting to bring to life. I have some very interesting stories my Dad has told me about the Ave that are movies all by themselves.
For takeout, we enjoy R&R Extreme Wings, Greek’s Pizzeria, and BBQ & Bourbon on Main Street [in Speedway]. For a nice sit-down experience, we love The Eagle on Mass Ave.
As a fan, my favorite film of all time is still Terminator 2: Judgment Day. James Cameron is another one of my favorite filmmakers of all time. T2 combines every element of great American cinema: spectacle; an unlikely, tragic hero; an iconic, relentless villain; and a satisfying, if predictable, ending. As a filmmaker, I think Saving Private Ryan is an almost unparalleled masterpiece.
Yes! This year I plan to release a live-action film version of the story of the Biblical character Queen Esther, titled The Hebrew Queen. Later this year, we release the sequel to The Dreidel.
My daughter loves going to The Children’s Museum. We were there during the first days of the reopening last year, and she was thrilled. She also loves the Tibbs Drive-In Theater.
President of the 2022 College Football Playoff Host Committee
Assistant Professor at IUPUI
Executive Director of Indianapolis City Market
Illustrator & Digital Artist
Co-Founder of Be Nimble Foundation
Restaurant Owner and Chef
Blogger, Tales & Turbans
Writer and Journalist
Influencer and Entrepreneur
Designer and Owner of Union Western Clothing
Deputy Mayor, City of Indianapolis
Owner of THE TRAP
HGVT's "Good Bones" and Two Chicks District Co.
Handpoke Tattoo Artist
Chapati and Shani's Secret Chicken
Local artist and gallery owner
Kennedy King Memorial Initiative
Artist and Designer
Hotel Broad Ripple
Growing Places Indy
Pediatrician and Entrepreneur
Owner of James Dant
Local Historian and Author
Phoenix Theatre Dance Company
Saxophonist and Restaurant Manager
Salumist and Owner of Turchetti's Salumeria
Barber Shop Owner and Barista
Realtor and Fashion Expert
Music Club Owner and Promoter
Vinyl Record Collage Artist
Food and Drink Purveyors
Ice Cream Innovators
Illustrator and Educator
Painter and Biking Enthusiast
Manager, RUCKUS Makerspace, and Executive Director, Latinas Welding Guild
Food Bloggers and Authors
Artist and Illustrator
Magician and Illusionist
Public School Principal
DJ and Founder, Rad Summer
Zoo Membership Director
T-Shirt Shop Owners
Owner, The Smoking Goose and Goose the Market
Co-Founder, Sun King Brewing
Writer and Exhibit Designer
IndyCar Driver and Team Owner
Owner, Indy Eleven soccer club
Former Colt Linebacker and Owner, Brackett Restaurant Group
Blogger, Seersucker + Saddles
Fine Artist and Musician
News Anchor, WTHR
Executive Director, Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library
Co-Founder of GangGang Culture
Executive Director, Pattern
Former WNBA Star, Indiana Fever
IndyCar Racer, Contestant on Dancing with the Stars
Chalk Artist and T-Shirt Shop Owner
Owner, The Gallery Pastry Shop
Founder of Felege Hiywot Center
Owner, Manayunk Calligraphy
Owner, Like the Lettuce: Fitness + Health Coach