Today I bring to you a movie based on gentrification which affects small businesses and neighborhoods today especially in NY. It’s a serious issue and somebody somewhere has got to take action. Before I get into specifics, let me introduce you to the definition and the man who created a movie I believe will open the eyes of many.
Gentrification is “the process of renewal and rebuilding accompanying the influx of middle-class or affluent people into deteriorating areas that often displaces poorer residents” – Merriam-Webster definition.
Taquan Pugh, 24 and a Brooklyn native; is a man in control of his own work with high goals to inspire the world with his message. He is the true meaning of a young, innovative, upcoming entrepreneur that is multi-talented.
I had the pleasure of having a quick Q & A with him. Check it out:
1. What inspired you to write such a great script?
“Gentrification is very prevalent in major cities across the country especially in my hometown of New York City. While I was in college every time I came home during breaks I was seeing how much neighborhoods were changing and how heavily it was affecting the natives of the city such as myself. So I wanted to write a script that spoke for us.”
2. How did you find casting? Are they all your friends?
“I worked with a casting director and utilized the network of some of the actors and actresses who were already cast in the film. Also some of the actors are my friends who I went to school with.”
3. Do you see yourself making black history for the big films?
“History has always been a very important thing to me. It is the foundation of any group of people. Therefore history will always be taught in my films.”
4. Will there be humor films in the future of your work?
“Laughter eases the soul so humor will play a big part in all of my productions. ‘My Block’ actually has some humor in it. When the full film is released you will be able to see the humor.”
5. Is your goal to be writer, director and actor?
“I plan to do writing, directing, and acting throughout my career. I also plan on attempting to compose music for my films in the future.”
6. Who are the top 5 idols that inspires your writing?
“Spike Lee, Martin Lawrence, John Singleton, Tupac, and Sam Cooke.”
7. Have you thought of doing a mini series?
“If some decent proposals come along then I would definitely consider a mini series. Gentrification is a very complex issue that ‘My Block’ can’t even cover in its entirely.”
8. You have an internship now, will it help improve your skills/knowledge?
“I cant speak on the internship as of yet lol.”
You can see for yourself all of Taquan’s creative talent in the trailer here:
Let me just say that I agree with him. Gentrification affects everyone in the community. It is best to speak now, while we still can. He has some wonderful icon choices and I am sure we will see the influence throughout his work.
I wish Taquan the best of luck with his success for the movie. I believe this internship can and will lead to bigger productions. I know he didn’t want to jinx anything, but my fingers are crossed. We all will be waiting for the premiere of “My Block” and future endeavors.
Taquan can be contacted via Facebook: Taquan Pugh; Twitter & IG: @film_prophet