Private Project

Young King

Diondre Howell struggles to adjust to civilian life after returning home from Iraq during the height of the Iraq War in 2005. As he copes with the scars of war, he becomes an increasing threat to those he cares about the most - his family.

  • Bryant T Griffin
  • Bryant T Griffin
  • Selena Leoni
    Smile or Hug, All I Ever Wanted, Eid Mubarak, JEROME
  • Vince Washington
    Key Cast
    "Diondre Howell"
    Bad Times at the El Royale
  • Vaughn Wilkinson
    Key Cast
    "Isaiah Howell"
    Straight Outta Compton
  • Tarra Riggs
    Key Cast
    "Zoe Howell"
    Ballast, The Help
  • James Arthur Sims
    Key Cast
    "James Howell"
    Instant Family
  • Kirby Griffin
    Key Cast
    "Fatimah Danel"
  • Vittoria Campaner
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Drama, Family
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 30 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    November 30, 2023
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Bryant T Griffin

Bryant Griffin is a writer/director based in Los Angeles, California, and holds an MFA in Directing/Production from UCLA. With over 16 years of experience as a visual effects supervisor, Bryant's career began at Lucasfilm's Industrial Light and Magic, where he dedicated 12 years of his professional journey. During his tenure, he contributed his expertise to over 30 feature films, including renowned titles such as Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith, Pirates of the Caribbean, and the Avengers franchise. Bryant's remarkable talent has been acknowledged through prestigious awards, with his project "Young King" earning recognition as the recipient of the ARRI Franz Wiesner Grant in 2021 and achieving semifinalist status for the Sundance Uprise Grant.

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Director Statement

Three years into my undergraduate degree, I dropped out and moved back home to live with family. For several years, I dealt with minor depression as I struggled to find a path for myself. I did what many African Americans do, instead of getting medical help, I went to church. My grandfather, the pastor, would often tell me stories of being a young man in the military, and how his service in the Korean War turned his life around. He insisted that a career in the military would help me too. Advice that many young black men, desperate for direction in their youth, receive. One of these individuals is the basis for the character of Diondre Howell.

As I went back to finish my degree at North Carolina State University, my friend enlisted in the National Guard. Three weeks after my first day of class, the September 11th attacks happened. Shortly after, my friend was deployed to Iraq. He was never the same. I often wonder if this could have been me.

"Young King" deals with the consequences of an American culture of toxic masculinity, guns and God. It is important to know that the consequences of wars that men and women of the armed forces fight never stay confined to a foreign battlefield; the effects of war always come home. The psychological effects of war on the men and women that serve often go under-reported, untreated, and it is the families of soldiers who are the least prepared to deal with these challenging problems.