Marcus D. Spencer (BIG SPENCE) began his career in entertainment as an actor but over the last few years he’s delved more into the writing, producing and directing aspect of film. Spencer, an Oakland native’s titled his most rest film “Straight Outta Oakland.” “Straight Outta Oakland” which was released worldwide on DVD to stores such as Walmart on July 5th 2016.
“Straight Outta Oakland.” is loosely based on Spence’s life. He carefully crafted a creative approach on telling his story. This film is a coming of age story about a black man from Oakland where the odds are against him. He navigates through life while attempting to be set free from his own mindset.
“Film is a visual story. It’s my job as a filmmaker to get people to relate to the characters. That’s my own personal formula to film success,” Spence said. “This film is based on one man’s life so it shouldn’t be hard for a viewer to relate to at least one character if not all,” Spencer says with a hopeful tone.
This particular film tackles love, betrayal, drugs and the family dynamic. This film is based on Spencer’s life so what he did was took his life and broke himself into the four characters while each was played by Skipper Elekwachi (Licks), Alphonso Thompson (Watch Phoenix Rise), Alan Walker (The Last Wolf of Ezo). Spencer also included himself as one of the four leads depicting himself. Big Spence has gone through (personally) or has been close to someone who has the issues that each of the characters face. Coupled with Spencer’s true to life experiences, he added a little Hollywood flair to keep it interesting, educational and entertaining.
The film, which was originally called “Set Me Free,” won awards throughout the US such as; Atlanta, Florida, Hollywood, Washington and New York to name a few. The film won (9) to be exact. “Oakland, my city has been given a bad rap and I wanted to show the world that WE and THIS CITY has substance. You can’t label ‘us or put ‘us in a box,” Spence said.
Not only is the movie exciting for the city of Oakland because its writer, producer and director is from there; but Oakland is the backdrop of the film and Oakland’s name is in the title. On top of the local aspects already going on in the film, Spence also hired many local actors and crew. These entertainers aren’t some unknown performers either as you will recognize actors from films such as “Fruitvale Station,” “The Shop,” “Hunting Season,” and more.
“I’m pretty familiar to who’s who in the Bay Area,” Spence said. “I was fortunate to have worked with many of them (cast and crew) throughout my earlier acting years. Many films that are filmed in the Bay Area bring talent from outside the area,” Big Spence. “One thing I really wanted to do was hire local actors and local crew and show the world that there is talent here.
“The hope is Hollywood would see these actors and start to offer substantial roles to them. These actors are talented definitely worthy. Acting is what I do first, but as a filmmaker my goal is to spark change in the world. I want to give insight on whatever subject I wrote about and leave the viewer as more of an expert on the subject than they were before they watch the film. I want to change the world one film at a time. Oakland gets a bad reputation,” he said. “Everyone talks about shootings, robberies, gangs, but there are some good things that come out of there,” Spence went on to say. “This was a community film. Everyone opened up their arms to us,” Spencer stated.
Marcus D. Spencer won’t be slowing down after the release of “Straight Outta Oakland.” In fact his company ‘Touch The Heart Productions’ is in the final steps of editing on a new film “The American Dream.” Spencer wrote, produced and starred in. In addition, “Dead End II” which Spence executively produced is already with the distributor. Both films will be coming to DVD this year. Lastly, Spencer wrote a film that he is currently directing, producing and acting in, “State of Consciousness.”
“Straight Outta Oakland” is my baby in every aspect of the term,” Spence said. “It feels good, but still a little stressful. I’m hoping I make my city proud and give the world a little insight on our intellect.
Order DVD: http://www.walmart.com/ip/Phase-4-Films-Usa-Straight-Outta-Oakland-Dvd-Std-Ws/52041981
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