Two friends, refusing to make excuses of why not to be successful, started Notis Studios – a local production company.
“We do all of our own production, from pre-production all the way thru postproduction and release and distribution as well," One of the owners, Dr. Dekoven Riggins said.
It’s a small company, but they are doing big things.
"We are a black film company, we may be the only all black film company in the state at the moment,” Riggins said. “We just want to bring good black entertainment to the screen. What we are most known for is Black Wall Street Burning."
Black Wall Street Burning is a movie shot entirely in Oklahoma depicting the 1921 Tulsa race massacre.
And the two committed to do this movie right.
"All you have right now on Black Wall Street is documentaries, that’s what everybody does. So, having a film to teach you, to keep the younger generation more interested ‘cause not everybody wants to sit and watch documentaries all day," owner Marcus E. Brown said.
Day’quann Ervin is one of the stars of the film and said he was really nervous about this role.
"The only reason I was nervous about it is because just like them I had never heard about the Tulsa Massacre that happened in 1921 in Greenwood, but I knew it was something I had to do research on," he said.
Cordney McClain also stars in the movie and said it’s really sad this story isn’t being taught.
"I didn’t find out about the massacre until I was in college myself and I was studying African American studies, and I was like how am I born and raised in Oklahoma and I’ve never heard this story?" she said.
So, the movie was release last year in February locally in Harkins theater. The response was amazing, they sold out nearly every showing, so much so, Harkins began showing the movie across six states, and there were plans to increase that until COVID.
Dekoven and Marcus have plans to expand the story. And the interesting thing about this is the complete budget for the project was only$5,000. The movie can currently be seen on Vimeo.