Today we’d like to introduce you to Russell Reed.
Russell, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
It started out with me acting. Acting was my passion and according to my theater teachers, I was good at it. My mother was the one who introduced me to my acting potential when she encouraged me to take theater my freshman year of high school. Since then, I have taken theater throughout my entire high school career. Throughout high school I would write, direct and star in these plays I would write. My theater teacher would allow me to perform these plays for the school where it was well-received and took on a huge following. Fast forward to senior year going into college — I knew theater was not something I could go into college for if I wanted to make money. So I pursued business marketing.
However, I continued to act through creating my own little YouTube skits and short films. I started realizing that I needed to make my videos posses a better quality to them. In the midst of trying to make my videos look better, more cinematic and more pleasing — I fell in love with the process of film making. From that point on, I took a step away from being in front of the camera and would have actors, or family and friends at the time, play the roles I needed them to play while I focused on the directorial aspect of things. That is how I started my journey of discovering my path as a filmmaker.
Has it been a smooth road?
With all glory to God, the road for my career so far has been very smooth and gradual for the most part. Every point in my life I have spent on perfecting my craft, further and further, has paid off tremendously. Every time I pick up a camera to shoot a short film, web series or even a freelance video, I have gotten noticeably better each and every time. I believe that just goes to attest that when you believe in your skillset and talents, there is sure promise at some point. Just keep working at it. Go hard! Let that be all you believe in.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Vilite Films story. Tell us more about the business.
Vilite films is a company that tells YOUR story through OUR lens. It is a production company platform that focuses on the cinema aspect of storytelling. Short films, TV series, feature films and narrative documentaries are what we specialize in. Our goal at Vilite Films is to provide you with the quality that your project deserves. As of today, Vilite is known for its most recent short film project, Baby Nick. Directed and Written by Russell Reed — the owner of Vilite Films. The goal for this film is to continue inspiring hearts and uplifting souls through the feature film that we will make from this short film.
Baby Nick centers around two amateur boxers— both with their own reasons for fighting. The film encompasses each of these boxers as they fight their way through the obstacles and tests of their own environment.
This short film, Baby Nick, was completed this past April. Since then, we have submitted the film into numerous film festivals across the country/world. So far, the film has received five total film festival selections. The film was screened in a New York online film festival. The film screened in a Toronto film festival. The film also just received word that we are screening in this year’s Capital City Black Film Festival in Austin on the 30th. We will be competing with other short films for “BEST Short Film”. The film has also just been officially selected in a film festival out in LA on the 24th of September. It will screen there at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood. Last, but not least, we just received word that the film is now screening at a major music festival called “Lights On Fest”. This is the first year this festival is running (to my knowledge). It is a festival for famous r&b/pop singer “H.E.R”. She is bringing out other artist such as Jhene Aiko, Daniel Caesar and Ari Lennox. Baby Nick will be screening there on the 14th of September at the festival. All in all. The film is doing really well.
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I am a big dreamer. I definitely see myself in the next 5-10 years becoming one of the most well-known, up and coming cinematic directors. Leading the box office and impacting the big screen. I do see myself directing a superhero movie. I also see myself having already touched thousands and millions of people through my cinematic art form. I see myself changing lives. Lecturing to thousands and millions of people about filmmaking, inspirational thoughts, motivational outlooks on life and overall spirituality encouragement. And at that point, I would have JUST scratched the surface. My mission is to move mindsets so that we can ultimately live amongst one another in a greater society. In the next 5-10 years, I have the FAITH that this will be my stamp.
Also, over this time frame, our industry will have definitely shifted in a major way by then. More minority films. A lot more perspectives. An increase in female involvement at the “above the line” positions in the movie making industry. I see an industry that has the capability of re-shaping modern day reality.
- Website: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLtfDX6Ifc9iaxt6QlU1Oog
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/vilitefilms/
- Other: https://www.instagram.com/_russellreed/
Photos Courtesy of: Russell Reed