Jacob Whitley has worked as a producer and director in the film industry since 2009. During his attendance at Saddleback College, he produced and directed the short TV movie Brothers From Creatures Unknown. The film would be featured multiple times that year on a local cable channel. Jacob’s other early work would also be featured in film festivals, such as his short film The Bump In The Night, which won best picture at the Moonboogie Film Festival.
While obtaining his Bachelor’s degree in Communications: Radio/TV/Film from Cal State Fullerton, Jacob produced and directed his first independent feature film Edge. Being a detective thriller, he leveraged the resources of his uncle, Captain Jim Enright of the La Palma Police Department, who acted as the film’s police operations specialist and allowed the crew to shoot Edge at the police station with realistic sets and vehicles lent by the police department.
After finding VOD distribution for Edge, Mr. Whitley worked on Ubisoft’s promotional film project “Tom Clancy – The Division: Dark Winter” as the Line Producer. During this 17 hour shoot, he found the crew quickly falling behind. Taking the lead on the project, he rearranged the shooting schedule on the fly which allowed for production to be completed on time with all the proper shots in the can, completing the project.
In 2014 he was called in as a replacement producer on the feature film, Hide and Go Seek starring Vernon Wells and Don Scribner. Prior to Jacob’s involvement, the production dates and low budget had already been set, but with less than a month to pull the project together, Mr. Whitley was able to bring the project in under budget and on schedule.
In 2015 Mr. Whitley was hired onto the country music feature film Buckshot, starring Tim deZarn. Due to the extremely low budget of $38,000, he had to pull together every resource he had as well as wear every hat in the production department just to complete the project on time and under budget. The film would go on to win 5 festival awards, including best picture at the Rockport Film Festival, before being sold to Freestyle Digital Media for distribution.
During that summer, Mr. Whitley worked as a production coordinator and assistant with commercial companies, such as Film Orange and Hawthorne Direct, Inc., on several commercial projects for clients such as Land Rover and Goodwill. He additionally worked with the pre-production team as an Office Assistant under the Coordinator for the motion picture La La Land, the winner of 5 Academy Awards in 2017. Due to the prior commitment to Buckshot, Jacob had to leave La La Land before filming began.
In 2016 Jacob began to work in the audio visual industry, setting up equipment for various events across southern California. He found himself a full-time technician job in the audio visual department at The Resort at Pelican Hill for the contracted vendor Five-Star AudioVisual. In under 1 month, Jacob was quickly promoted to Audio Visual Manager under the guidance of the company’s regional manager, Eric Ortiz.
Continuing his education, he earned a Project Management Certification in 2016 from Cal State Fullerton, which he applies to his work across multiple industries. Continuing his passion in the film production industry, Jacob left The Resort at Pelican Hill in 2017 and joined his grandfather’s family company. Now a co-owner of a carpet cleaning business with his father, Jacob re-branded the company’s marketing strategy and is expanding the business while focusing on his film career as a producer.