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SAVA N NA H O N F I L M

CALLING THE SHOTS
“Film’s not just about what we put on the screen,” says the conscientious filmmaker. “It’s about the catering, the hotels, the transportation; it’s about logistics. It’s about all of the smaller things that become much bigger things. I feel like anytime I can shoot something here, that is a way for me to give back to the communities that I love.”

W R ITE R/DIR ECTOR JA M E S K ICK LIGHTE R I S

GEORGIA

native James Kicklighter is a lot like the boy next door. Smart and well-spoken, he is close with his family, loves spending time with friends and has a tremendous work ethic. His work just happens to be as a globe-trotting writer and director. Kicklighter’s current project is a feature film about famed Georgia Southern coach Erk Russell, slated for national release in late 2014. “We want to make sure it’s done right,” says Kicklighter, a GSU alum. “One of my old professors told me, ‘James, you know that professors can modify grades for up to seven years after one graduates.’ If I don’t get it exactly right, I’m probably not going to have a college diploma anymore!”

He’ll get it right. At 25, Kicklighter’s career has taken him around the world. He started his production company at age 16 and has made movies in places as far-flung as India and Italy. Although he splits his time between Los Angeles and Savannah, Kicklighter's favorite location is the great state of Georgia. “Film’s not just about what we put on the screen,” says the conscientious filmmaker. “It’s about the catering, the hotels, the transportation; it’s about logistics. It’s about all of the smaller things that become much bigger things. I feel like anytime I can shoot something here, that is a way for me to give back to the communities that I love.” See Kicklighter's work at jameskicklighter.com. —Kristen Smith

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southmaga zine.com

o ctober | nov em ber 1 2

PHOTOGRAPH BY JON THORPE

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9/18/13 6:12 PM

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