The Journal of Mr. Willaby (2009)

This was my first publicly released short film. I wrote and directed the film. We shot the film in four days with a budget of less than a $1,000. It took a lot of begging, borrowing and stealing to make this one, but I believe it set the precedence in my life for squeezing the highest production value out of the smallest of budgets.

Aidan Wilcox (Josiah Armstrong), a willful pre-teen foster boy, is looking for a way to earn some extra cash during his spring break. Meeting Mr. Willaby (Bernard Nelson), an African-American war hero, at first doesn't seem like it'll pay the big bucks; but after learning of Mr. Willaby's journal, a book that contains the next day's events already written in it, Aidan decides it might be worth stealing a peak - an act that could have mortal consequences.

The Journal of Mr. Willaby is a dramatic short film, set in the present day. The story depicts the helter-skelter life in a foster home and, through the relationship between a boy and a decorated veteran, the effect of knowing too much about one's own future.