As I announced in my previous post, I have begun reaching out to a diverse circle of people who will definitely be able to motivate, encourage and enlighten my readers through their unique stories of success. This first spotlight is a special one and not only because it is the first within my series, but it represents exactly what we are all searching for…a purpose driven life! I became familiar with his story after I spontaneously began following his Twitter page (@ScreenVaultCEO). Yes, it’s random, but sometimes in life you are drawn to something or someone and cannot begin to explain the cosmic connection of two parallel universes; you just know that it’s for a purpose greater than yourself.
Named Vaughn Givens and a Washington, D.C. native, he began his journey in a not-so-traditional way. Not sure which direction to go in, he hung close to his grandmother’s side, whom he reveals is his inspiration. Throughout his life she would always encourage him to do what he loved at all times, but as we know, life isn’t that simple when you don’t know what you love. Not having all of the answers, Vaughn was unsure which direction to steer his efforts. However, one thing remained definite; he wanted to make his family proud. When asked about his educational background, his response was simple, “I have some college background. I hated school. I never really took it serious…” To some, his answer might be a bit raw and unorthodox, but to others it could be a sign of greatness in the making.
In true roller coaster form, his life took a dramatic turn with the passing of his grandmother. While dealing with the death of his inspiration, a.k.a. “Nana,” he began to dig deeper and take heed to her familiar words of wisdom, “do what you love!” Vaughn took matters into his own hands, realizing that his life was destined for something great. He attended the Hollywood Film Institute and began motivating himself. Outside of the collegiate walls he began reading on his own, as well as, seeing the world with a more visual perspective. Mr. Givens began developing what would become his passion for film.
Through this passion, he has been able to manifest his dreams into a startling reality with the birth of his very own production company. Vaughn is the sole founder and creator of The Screen Vault; an independent film production company that prides itself on being the change that the world needs. In his words, “Most people these days have lost their sense of imagination and we plan to bring that back!” He has begun the production of Inner City Blues and is actively piecing together what could become D.C.’s very own masterpiece. His film depicts the many experiences he has lived first-hand or witnessed through those around him. When asked about the storyline, here’s what he had to say:
Inner City Blues is a very powerful story about three high-school students who grow up in the slums of Washington, D.C. They never really have time for their childhoods because of the situations that they’re put in. It tells of the day to day struggles that kids in the inner city go through and it promotes change in our community.
His passion for this project can hardly be described and without witnessing his daily grind, you may never understand what the success of his very own movie would mean. He has pride for his city and will stop at nothing to reach his ultimate goal of re-writing film history…becoming a legend. Most importantly he wants to show the young kids in his city that, “you can make your dreams a reality.” You can’t help but feel the pride that he has for his hometown when he proudly declares, “I love my city! D.C. is one of the greatest, most beautiful cities in the world to me. I believe that [our] stories should be heard…we have so much more to offer than just politics.”
While some of us are still searching for a step in the right direction, Vaughn has realized that his God-given purpose in life is to “change the world through film-making. It’s a very powerful tool and most filmmakers take that for granted.” He believes in his abilities and has a goal in mind; sometimes that is the hardest part of any journey. How can DC support? WE can start by spreading the word about The Screen Vault and as Vaughn perfectly explains, “We need our city’s support more than anything! If I can get my whole city behind me then I can get the world. That’s how I feel!”
Want to show your monetary support and help take The Screen Vault to the next level? Vaughn’s project needs funding! He is heading this project with his own money and donations. All funds go toward the cast, crew and production. Please keep in mind that this is the first major role for many of his actors and for the DMV to show support, would be the first big step towards making their dreams come true! Helping this cause, could grant Inner City Blues the elite opportunity to be invited to the Cannes Film Festival; one of the biggest and most prestigious film festivals known. To make a monetary donation, please visit: http://www.indiegogo.com/INNER-CITY-BLUES-1
Let’s not forget that some of the biggest talents such as John Singleton and Tyler Perry began their journey just like Vaughn Givens…with nothing but a passion and an opportunity to make a difference.