Stage/screen/television actor and minister Clifton Davis brought his star power to DSU on July 17 to take part in an upcoming movie, several scenes of which were filmed on the DSU campus.
Clifton Davis (l) and members of the cast and crew prepare to shoot a scene in the William Jason Library. DSU's Jackye Fountain (3rd from the right) plays a member of media during a press conference scene.
The Dover-based production company Calvary Pictures, Inc. is producing “God’s Amazing Grace,” which features Mr. Davis starring as one of the primary characters in the later parts of his life in the last part of the film.
“God Amazing Grace” tells the true-life story of two brothers from their youth to their adult years. Despite their Christian upbringing, both brothers become involved with violence, drugs and other crimes as teenagers. One brother – played in his later life by Mr. Davis) is eventually able to break away from the immoral lifestyle to achieve great success in life, while the other brother never escapes the wrong road, eventually reaping the consequences thereof. The movie reveals the impact of God’s grace and mercy upon the lives of both brothers, despite their very different life choices.
“People ask me why I am doing this movie, and I tell them it is my way of giving back,” Mr. Davis said. “Everyone has to start somewhere, so this is my way of helping this young production company.”
Mr. Davis took a break from his performance in the play production Wicked, which is touring the West Coast, to fly out to Dover to do the filming.
Scenes for the movie where shot in the auditorium of the Price Building, and on the first and sixth floors of the William Jason Library. Among the local actors starring in the production were Dr. Rebecca Batson, DSU dean of libraries; Jackye Fountain, DSU tutor coordinator in the Department of Academic Enrichment; Maurio Watson, Wm. Jason Library technician, as well as several DSU students as extras.
The screenplay was written by Dr. Warren Rhodes, Professor Emeritus of Public and Allied Health Sciences at DSU, who is also the director of the movie. Dr. Rhodes is also an established playwright, having written and directed two gospel musicals, The Sermon and The Sermon, Part 2, which have been performed over the last two decades locally and throughout the mid-Atlantic region.
Clifton Davis gained prominence in the ‘70’s and ‘80’s starring in the popular TV series, “That’s My Mama” and “Amen”. . Over the years he has also starred in made-for-television movies such as Scott Joplin and Don’t Look Back: The Story of Leroy “Satchel” Paige, as well as big screen films such as Any Given Sunday and Kingdom Come. Mr. Davis has made guest appearances on numerous TV shows, and currently appears regularly as the host of “Backstage Pass.”
Dr. Warren Rhodes (l) discusses a scene in the library with actors Clifton Davis and Dr. Michelle Brown.
Mr. Davis, who is also an ordained Christian minister, currently hosts the TV shows Backstage Pass and Praise the Lord on the Trinity Broadcasting Network. He has also hosted gospel music specials such as Gospel Superfest, Take It to the Bridge, and The Stellar Awards. Clifton Davis will be in Dover in mid-July for filming and to attend a fundraiser in connection with the film project.
Calvary Pictures, Inc. is a subsidiary of Calvary Baptist Church of Dover. The movie – which is also being filmed in Baltimore, Md. and others sites in Dover on other dates – is projected to be released in the spring of 2013.