As a child growing up in Houston’s Fifth Ward, Courtney Ja’Paul Glaudé dealt with abuse and bullying. He found himself escaping into his imagination, creating a different reality, and uncovering his passion for filmmaking in the process.
Now, his childhood passion has led to a career in movies.
Glaude has written and produced two short films: “Row” and “Pit Stop.” Both films are in the film festival circuit now with “Row” winning the Los Angeles Short Film Festival for Best Drama 2017.
But it’s his latest work that has Glaudé ready to use his platform to educate the public about important issues, particularly domestic violence.
Glaudé has embraced the diversity of Houston with his latest feature film called “Blink,” about a teacher who, on the surface, appears to have a perfect marriage but in reality, is dealing with an abusive husband.
Written and Directed by Glaudé, the movie will premiere in Houston on July 29. Here he talks with the Defender about his motivation and how the Bayou City has influenced him as an artist.
Defender: What message do you hope people get from “Blink?”
Courtney Ja’Paul Glaudé: I’d like people to see that domestic violence is a learned behavior that stems from a broken place within an individual. No one just randomly wakes up one morning deciding to beat his or her mate. “Blink” reveals the reasons people make these choices, and also looks at why the people around them choose not to say anything.
Defender: Why did you decide to focus on domestic violence?
Glaudé: When I was a kid; I saw my mother try to work it out with a man that abused her. My original thought was that she stayed because of fear, but that wasn’t the case. My mother stayed because she believed that was love. I also wanted to know why he only hit my mother sometimes? Curiosity made me think that maybe my mother was doing something to trigger this action.
Defender: How has being a native Houstonian shaped you as an artist?
Glaudé: Honestly, being from Houston teaches you that you have to be more than just an artist. You have to have resilient faith in what you’re doing, with a work ethic to match because Houston won’t just give you anything; you have to earn it. Houston helped shape me into a self-made businessman, because it won’t support you until you prove you can do it.
Defender: What’s next for you?
Glaudé: I’m trying to reach out to sponsors, organizations, and domestic violence support groups to do a 10-city premiere tour with the film. I’d like to play the film with a panel of advisors and survivors to let the women in these cities know that there are resources available to them and that they are not alone or to blame.
Defender: What will people be surprised to know about you?
Glaudé: I’m cooler than their daddy was in the ‘80s. lol j/k
Saturday, July 29
6 p.m. and 9 p.m.
3400 Main St.
Tickets available at https://matchouston.org/events/blink