Thursday, November 17, 2016

Markees Christmas - Film

(C) 2016 by Rych McCain, All Rights Reserved. No part of this column may be reprinted, re-posted or duplicated without written permission from Rych McCain Media/Syndication. Violation is subject to applicable laws

 Markees Christmas - Film

Rych McCain International/Nationally Syndicated Entertainment Columnist, LinkedIn and Facebook Rych McCain Superstar Interviewer (Like Me) 

Markees Christmas 
Makes His Playful Film Debut

  Teen newcomer Markees Christmas stars as Morris Gentry in a new coming-of-age movie titled “Morris From America.” The idea here is that Morris is a 13-year-old who has just relocated with his single father Curtis, played by Craig Robinson, to Heidelberg, Germany. Morris’s rap skills leave a lot to be desired but he fancies himself to be the next Notorious B.I.G. To complicate matters further, Morris quickly falls hard for his cool, rebellious, 15-year-old classmate Katrin played by German actress Lina Keller. Morris sets out against all odds to take the hip-hop world by storm and win the girl of his dreams. The film was written and directed by Chad Hartigan and won two prizes at this year’s Sundance film Festival i.e., the Waldo Salt Screening Award and a Special Jury Award for Robinson. This film is Robinson’s first dramatic role for which he has received great reviews. Robinson is best known as Daryl Philban on the smash hit NBC-TV show “The Office.”

Morris (MarkeesChristmas) meets Katrin (Lina Keller)
   Markees Christmas is a native of Los Angeles and is currently a high school student. He began acting with a school play in the 6th grade which led to acting in a series of channel 101 shorts. With such an unusual last name, is he razed a lot for it? Christmas laughs, “As far as school, everybody on the staff calls me Mr. Christmas. People in the town that I live in, call me Christmas when they see me. I mean It’s just something that you catch regularly when you have a name like that.” One can imagine how stupid crazy it gets during the actual Christmas holidays. Christmas laughs, “They like to do it. They think it’s funny. Once I’m done eating my Thanksgiving dinner, I’m just like I want to go to sleep until Christmas is over.”
Morris and Katrin talk
     Christmas secured his role in Morris via regular appearances in an online project called Channel 101 where anyone can shoot homemade shorts and upload them. How did he become aware of Channel 101? Christmas explains, “I was with my mentor from the big brother program for like two years before that. He never told me about it. That was something he enjoyed by himself. I didn’t have anything to do with film back then. I wasn’t even thinking about that back then. I was doing real bad in the 6th grade and they basically told me there’s a school play coming up and if you don’t participate you’re going to be in the 6th grade again. I said that can’t happen to me so I ended up participating in the school play “A Rasin In The Sun” by Lorraine Hansberry. Of course, it was revised a little bit because we were in the 6th grade. I tried out for the part of Travis the son which doesn’t have a lot of lines. That’s what I was going for so I could get to 7th grade. They lied to me and told me we already have a Travis. It’s Walter or you’re going to be in 6th grade again.

L-R Craig Robinson and Markees Christmas
    I took Walter, I got my lines down, I practice my lines with my mom and anybody I could find. I wanted to question why would they want to give me this part? I don’t even know why they would trust me with this part. I’m not experienced; this is my first time acting. I didn’t know that’s what I was going to end up doing. I wasn’t expecting it but it came out better than I imagined it to.” Christmas started to shoot the small Channel 101 shorts which he used to audition for Morris and he got the part. As they say, the rest is history.

Markees Christmas
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