Diverse City – 1108 Media

February 28, 2024 | by | Diverse City |

In the summer of 2023, Dalton Okolo, Owner and Operator of 1108 Media, participated in a panel on filmmaking as part of the Richmond Film Network. Okolo was attending the Richmond Film Network to screen She’s Mine Now, his short film about a female criminal. With the Richmond Film Network, and other film festivals both locally and nationally, he feels that festivals are the perfect opportunity to network, promote, and connect with other filmmakers. To that end, Okolo’s work was met with overwhelming praise, and elevated his name in the Virginia film community.

Okolo has been a resident of the Fredericksburg area since December of 2022, and has established 1108 Media as a production company in the City of Fredericksburg. He has strived to build his name in the local community, and sees potential in Fredericksburg as a hub for film production.

“Making stories in Fredericksburg is both easier and more exciting than most people would give it credit for,” Okolo said. “There are so many resources, and so many stories, that can be told in this area.”

Okolo’s talent stems from his experience as Creative Producer for Freddie Mac, a job that he started in November of 2016. He views 1108 Media as a catalyst to not only work with clients throughout the local and statewide community, including his videos shot for both Water’s End Brewery and Brock’s Riverside Grill, but to fund and resource his narrative cinematic works as well. Okolo’s goal is to make 1108 Media not only his passion, but his full-time job as well; driven by working with local clients in the Fredericksburg area.

“That’s the dream, man,” Okolo said.

Okolo has recently come aboard as Executive Director of the Fredericksburg Film Festival (FFF), which will be operated under the umbrella of 1108 Media, and will take place from May 2-5. FFF will be held at venues around downtown Fredericksburg, the details of which will be announced soon. FFF will feature both Virginia films, and selected films from top ten festivals such as Sundance, Tribeca, and Berlin. Okolo is excited to bring this first annual film festival to Fredericksburg, and believes FFF will emerge with one of the most impressive festival lineups in Virginia.

As a person of color, Okolo believes that while the metropolitan areas of Virginia (particularly in Northern Virginia) have grown in their community of diverse filmmakers and production companies, there should be more diversity of thought among all factions of Virginia cinema.

“I think it’s very easy to get wrapped up in your own frame of ideas,” he said, and encourages filmmakers to grow in different types of story perspectives, such as featuring characters of a different skin color, gender, or sexual orientation.

“As long as you are doing your best to bring authenticity to the person or to the group that you are putting in front of camera, I’m okay with it,” Okolo said. “I think it becomes a problem when you start to say ‘I understand this group just as well as the group, even though I’m not a part of it.’” He noted that for his next film, which he will be announcing soon, he has seeked consultation from LGBTQ+ people regarding one of his characters. Okolo is intrigued by the growth in diverse thought in cinema, and is excited to bring more film production to the city of Fredericksburg.

Follow 1108 Media on Instagram.