Student Film Examines Gentrification in WAKING UP WHITE

Student Film Examines Gentrification in WAKING UP WHITE

Press Release ( - ORLANDO, Fla. - Jun 08, 2018 - University of Central Florida graduate student Jason D. Gregory announces the production of WAKING UP WHITE, a thesis film about cultural identity, classism, and racism in America, starring Essex O’Brien, (“Marcus Jenkins”), Sarah Vaugn Anderson (“Sheree Jenkins”), Sean Phillipe (“Marcus Jenkins, Jr.”), Shardell Haralson (“Rashida Jenkins”), and Maye St. Julien (“Big Mamma”). Incorporating a cast of 40 undergraduate students from the University of Central Florida, local business owners, and residents, the pilot is being shot in several locations, primarily in the Town of Eatonville, Florida. The production schedule is set for June 4-11, 2018.

WAKING UP WHITE introduces a middle-class African-American family whose life is turned upside down when they “wake up white” and are given thirty days to decide to either return to their heritage or remain in their new skin. As the family is approached by a frighteningly powerful culture shock, the cinematic examination unfolds the conversation of Revitalization vs. Gentrification and shows how race could affect perspective.

The pilot is written, directed, and co-produced by Jason D. Gregory. Lorenzo Carswell serves as the film’s Executive Producer and Gene Culver is Music Supervisor. “I created this film with the anticipation that it will help establish a healthy dialogue between the races, allowing us to accept our differences and appreciate our similarities,” notes Gregory. “It is a highly relatable story that begs the question of what happens to the legacy of a dominant culture after those who helped build the community are gone,” he further states.

Communities nation-wide similar to the fictitious city of Wellsville, are being impacted by gentrification. Once thriving hubs for African-Americans prior to segregation, these areas, now deprived of resources are being revitalized by universities, local businesses, and local governments.  The film addresses this issue.

Gregory is currently looking for background extras for WAKING UP WHITE.  To learn more, follow the film’s Facebook page @WakingUpWhite and Twitter page @WUWPilot.

About Jason D. Gregory

Jason D. Gregory is a graduate student in the Master of Fine Arts degree program at the University of Central Florida.  He is also Founder & CEO of Gregory Media Group, LLC, a Central Florida-based Marketing, Advertisement, Branding, and Entertainment Agency.

Gregory Media Group specializes in event coordination, management and production and offers a powerful stable of media placement for television, radio, and digital platforms.  The agency also features a roster of renowned musical acts, entertainers, and DJs.  A trailblazer in digital innovation and niche marketing, additional information about the organization may be found at Inquiries may be directed to

Source : Jason D. Gregory

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