Roderick Red believes that sparking change is the best use of art. The 28-year-old filmmaker and producer is using his multimedia business, Red Squared Productions, LLC, to help spread messages of activism to Jackson and beyond.
Red, a Jackson native, went to Murrah High School and earned a bachelor's degree in broadcast production from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2011. He started Red Squared Productions in 2012.
He generates media content such as commercials and documentaries for businesses and nonprofits in the Jackson area. Depending on the span of a project, he may act as producer, writer, editor, videographer or in a combination of the roles.
He has worked on a number of projects, including film features for the Mississippi Health Advocacy Program and Springboard to Opportunities, as well as the "We are Jackson" promotional video that the City of Jackson commissioned.
When VICE came to Jackson to film a documentary about HIV in the South, Red acted as the field producer, pulling people together and overseeing production on the local end.
Red Squared Productions is a member of Southern Cult, which is a network of freelance graphic designers, filmmaker, musicians and more in the Jackson area who collaborate on local projects.
Red also helped create a commercial for Entergy Mississippi.
"It was the first project that we got to see from start to finish," he says.
Through Southern Cult and his experience as a producer, Red says he's learned the importance of working with a team. "The production community in the area is small, so it's all about networking," he says.
Planting his business in midtown was a conscious decision for Red. He says he wants to be in the heart of Jackson, where the stories are. "It's a real community that fosters growth," he says.
Red says he is looking forward to taking on bigger and better projects and growing his business throughout Jackson and the state. He has a documentary project on the Central Jackson Soccer Organization in the works and plans to break into the film festival circuit soon. "I want to tell stories that get recognized on a regional and national level," he says.
Red is also the president of the Business Association of Midtown and a member of CityHeart Church's creative team. He loves traveling, speaking to students about filmmaking and playing basketball with his small group at church.