Nick Jones Jr. served in the United States Marine Corps before leaving to pursue a career in the film industry. He started his career as an actor. Before long he was itching to create the worlds he helped bring to life on screen. He studied filmmaking at the New York Film Academy where he learned to write and direct. He interned on the ABC comedy The Middle as a director, learning from the show’s main director Lee Shallat-Chemel. He later became the mentee of feature film director Dito Montiel and recently worked with him on his latest film, Man Down, starring Shia Labeouf and Gary Oldman as the film’s military consu
Jones’ film, Cold Choices, will be at the 2015 GI Film Festival.
Where are you from and what is your film background?
I was born in Voorhees, New Jersey but grew up in Montgomery, Alabama.
Who are your biggest influences in film and why?
Steven Spielberg is a filmmaker with no boundaries. War, comedy, action-adventure, drama, science fiction, you name it, he’s done it with critical and commercial success. The way he breaks down every scene, every shot, every cut tells a story. Nothing is wasted. F. Gary Gray is another director I admire because of the gritty urban feel he can express with a cinematic flare. His films feel so independent with a splash of studio that reminds you that you’re watching quality.
What was the hardest part about getting this film made?
Time and money; Especially on the independent, low-budget side of the house. You’re calling in favors, trying to work around people’s schedules, while trying to have them work for cheap or free. It’s always tough to bring so many moving parts together when you don’t have the money talking for you.
What do you want viewers to take away with them after watching your film?
I see so many films that tell the story of, “service member goes to war then comes home, immediately in the civilian world, dealing with PTSD while adjusting to civilian life.” Majority of the military is not like that. We deploy, we come back, we go back to work. We go back to work, carrying the disturbance of war. We find a way to carry on because we have to – Because the fight isn’t over.
What is a fun fact about you that would surprise people?
I spent my 2008 Christmas with President Obama.
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