Morocco Vaughn is a talented music video director who has worked with big names such as Kanye West, French Montana, Snoop Dogg, and Waka Flocka Flame. On June 4th, the director’s feature film debut, the thriller Mollywood, will be unleashed to VOD and Digital from Momentum Pictures.
World Film Geek took the opportunity to talk with Vaughn about his feature film debut.
Thank you Morocco for taking the time to talk about Mollywood. This was something I didn’t expect. It had a good story and your direction was just great!
Aw man! Thank you, man!
What inspired you to make this your feature film directorial debut?
I met with Ken Hoyd, who wrote the film. He said that he was a fan of my music videos and he wanted me to direct his script. Once the producers came around, I decided to try something different and make this my first film as a director.
You’ve worked with Waka Flocka Flame, who plays drug dealer Bijou in the film. What was he like working as an actor?
He’s great. He’s one of those artists that will give me a paintbrush and say ‘just paint’. If I did anything he felt was too far, he will say, ‘I don’t want to do that’ and I’ll say okay. Working with Waka is like a playground. He lets me do whatever and it becomes adventurous.
I think he did a great job with his character being one of important in Zack’s story.
Yeah, he’s the misdirection character of the story because the police know these killings are related to drug use. Bijou is a drug dealer so you assume he has something to do with the killings.
What astounded me were the performances by both Vinicius Machado as Zack and Micah Fitzgerald as Chase. They play two guys on opposite sides on the law with a common goal and yet they still do things their way. What were they like on the set?
We didn’t get to explore all the backstories, but Zack’s brother died tragically because of the drug scene. Chase’s experience is an accident from a similar incident.
They were both rock stars. Micah is a whole different kind of actor. He was like the Tasmanian Devil on set. Always moving around. He’s a whirlwind. When he came on the set, everyone else had to have his energy to catch up with him. He had about 2 or 3 notebooks of ad-libs and ideas and thoughts for the character. He knew about Chase more than pretty much everyone else on set.
What I was really surprised at is that Chase is the narrator of the story. That’s usually a plot device that’s not used as much today.
It’s one of those happy occurrences. Vinicius’ Zack was actually supposed to be the lead. We had to run and gun with our production. It was during post-production that we realized how much gravity was pulling towards Chase. We booked Micah to do some Chase dialogue and do some narrative excerpts. We eventually decides to make Chase the lead because of his dominating the screen.
As this was your feature film debut, what difficulties did you face during production?
The first big challenge was how many moving parts I had to work with. When you’re doing music videos, I shoot for one to two days next with a little storyline. I don’t have to look at storyline or have two sets of headphones. One would be to communicate with my crew and the other is to listen to the dialogue. To shoot a film is juggling. You have to be conscious of everything that’s happening around you and not just focus on one picture.
This was an impressive film debut. Do you think you will continue to do feature films alongside music videos?
Man, I hope so! (Laughs). I’m getting too old for music videos (Laughs). My kids will crack up when I talk to them about certain artists that I’m working with. So I gotta do something separate from my kids and me man (laughs).
Mollywood comes to VOD and Digital on June 4. This is quite an impressive film debut for Morocco Vaughn with quite an interesting story. Thank you so much again Morocco for talking about the film.
Thank you so much!
A Special Thank You goes to Katrina Wan PR and Morocco Vaughn for making this interview possible.