San Antonian filmmaker Taylor James Johnson has produced one of three award-winning films that will be featured during the Neighborhood Film Project‘s first-ever screening of contest winners on Wednesday, July 22 at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center. The screening, in partnership with the San Antonio Film Commission, is the first of a Rivard Report series called City Block Cinema.
We’ll announce two more prize-winning submissions as well as an honorable mention for this year’s competition in the coming days and weeks. Stay tuned.
Johnson’s film, with the straight-forward title “Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade, San Antonio,” is a mini-documentary that captures what it’s like when “thousands celebrate the life and legacy of MLK.”
Footage for this film was collected during the local 2015 MLK march while shooting for a feature-length documentary project called “The Power of a Dream.” He discovered, however, that a moment within a larger documentary wouldn’t do the footage justice.
“It was supposed to be a little chapter in a documentary, but it accidentally became it’s own film,” he said. This “accidental film” is now a Neighborhood Film Project award winner.
Taylor knew from an early age that film would be his passion and career.
“There was never any other option. I remember when I saw ‘The Lion King’ at five years old and thought, ‘Oh yeah, that’s what I want to do.’”
He is also preparing for a screening of his documentary “Power of a Dream” at the Santikos Palladium IMAX Theater on July 26.
Having local artistic opportunities like the Neighborhood Film Project and their impact on the arts is not lost on Johnson.
“I’ve seen friends compete and win in the Neighborhood Film Project. Most of the greatest short fills that come out of San Antonio are inspired by it because we’re making films about us. No other film festival does that,” he said.
The films are based around local neighborhoods, providing an intimate view into the life experiences of the documentary maker.
*Featured/top image: San Antonio workers march to commemorate Martin Luther King. Courtesy photo.