In 2017, Smith wrote, produced, and directed the short sci-fi drama Rumination with his production company “MisterDuke” Productions, LLC. The film follows Elliott (Kelvin Drama), a heartbroken man who travels into the past for a second chance at a failed relationship. He meets Renard (Danny Gavigan), a quirky neuroscientist who offers to alleviate his distress with a new scientific method: a top-secret drug that enables time travel. The film also stars former MISS DC USA, L. Angus Whinfield. Production occurred in the summer of 2017, key scenes were shot at Washington, DC area landmarks, such as the National Harbor, the H Street Corridor, and the DC Diner. Rumination became an official selection at over 30 film festivals, including the Martha's Vineyard African American Film Festival, the Boston SciFi Film Fest, the DC Black Film Festival, and the Indie Night Film Festival. It also won over 20 awards, including “Best DMV Film” at the Rosebud Film Festival, “Best Local Film” at the Capitol Hill Film Classic, and a Gold Peer Award in the “Directing – Fiction” category from TIVA-DC.
In 2018, Smith directed three episodes of the upcoming comedy series, "UpRoaR," which was filmed at the Uproar Lounge & Restaurant in the Shaw neighborhood. In 2019, Smith co-produced and starred in the short sci-fi drama Fatherless, which will hit the national film festival circuit in 2020.
“It's such an honor to be named the October Filmmaker of the Month. As a DC native, this is very gratifying. Thank you to the DC Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment. This is amazing,” said Smith.
Additionally, Smith is a consultant for the national non-profit Men Can Stop Rape, where he writes, directs, and edits public service announcements, promotional videos, and documentaries intended for the organization’s social media content and/or for third party stakeholders. Smith is also a founding member of the Diverse Writers & Artists of Speculative Fiction, a writers support group.
“To up and coming writers, I would say to just write. When you have a thought of something, write it down. You never know how that will be helpful in the future. When I write something, I'll put it down and come back to it two months or even a year later. And then it feels like I'm collaborating with my past self because the words just kind of sit there and marinate,” said Smith. He continued, “And as an actor, I was looking at an interview with Jonah Hill. He said actors are seen, but writers are heard. While it was fun to play the vampire in Dark Therapy, it was very cathartic as a writer, to have other actors portray some of the things that were on my mind with Rumination.”
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OCTFME launched the “Filmmaker of the Month” initiative as a vehicle for highlighting the talents and creative contributions of filmmakers that make the District of Columbia their home. The “Filmmaker of the Month” initiative is part of OCTFME’s mission to elevate the national and international profile of the District’s talented filmmakers.
***If you know of a filmmaker that would make a great future “Filmmaker of the Month,” you can send OCTFME your recommendations using this nomination form.
The Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment (OCTFME) produces and broadcasts programming for the District of Columbia’s public, educational, and government access (PEG) cable television channels and digital radio station; regulates the District of Columbia’s cable television service providers; provides customer service for cable subscribers; and supports a sustainable film, music, and entertainment creative economy and labor market in the District of Columbia.
OCTFME operates and manages the District’s government television access channels: the District Council Channel (DCC), the District of Columbia Network (DCN), and the District Knowledge Network (DKN). OCTFME’s award-winning content provides resourceful information on government activity, education, current events, history, music, arts and entertainment. OCTFME manages and programs DC Radio 96.3 HD4 digital radio station, the District of Columbia’s first government radio station in partnership with Howard University’s WHUR.
OCTFME provides production support services that advance film, television, video, entertainment, interactive, multimedia, and digital media content creators. These services include: permitting; location scouting; production support; job placement assistance; workforce development; and the DC Film, Television and Entertainment Rebate Fund.
OCTFME supports the creative economy through the Mayor Muriel Bowser Presents: 202Creates initiative, administering programs supporting the growth and sustainability of the creative industries in all 8 Wards of the District.
For more information, contact the Office of Cable Television, Film, Music, and Entertainment at (202) 671-0066, visit us online at: entertainment.dc.gov, and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.