MTV Entertainment Studios partners with Morehouse College on film honoring MLK

Morehouse Cinema, Television & Emerging Media major (CTEMS) junior Vijay Williams. (Courtesy of MTV Entertainment Studios)

 For the second year in a row, MTV Entertainment Studios has collaborated with Atlanta’s Morehouse College to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The result is the student-led film “Keep Moving,” which was released on MLK Day and will continue to run on all MTV platforms throughout Black History Month.

“City Lights” senior producer Kim Drobes heard from the people that helped this unique project come together, both Morehouse students and faculty, and the decision-makers at MTV Studios.

At Morehouse College, students interested in filmmaking often pursue an education path within the school’s CTEMS program, or, Cinema, Television and Emerging Media Studies. The department’s chair, Dr. Stephanie Dunn, explained how the program introduces students to the intellectual study of film as well as the art and craft of filmmaking. “It’s sort of a comprehensive program, so that they can go out and continue their studies or development at graduate school, or into professional industry programs, or go to work as PAs on sets,” Dunn said.

It was Professor Dunn who got the conversation started with MTV back in 2021, when the studio took an interest in the work being done by her students.

“It really began with a conversation with myself and Rosa White, who’s with MTV. We had met on a totally different project, and in between sets I was bending her ear on my favorite topic, which is that industry insiders who really care about diversity should recognize the rich pipeline that exists at historically Black colleges,” Dunn recounted. “It would be cool for our students to have opportunities where they’re really producing projects that are going to end up on air. And she ended up taking it back to the rest of the MTV team, and lo and behold, they loved it.”

Given that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. himself was an alum from Morehouse, it made sense for a student film project to celebrate his legacy. Deva Newman, SVP of Marketing at Paramount Media Networks & MTV Entertainment Studios, elaborated on MTV’s role in the project.

“We really wanted to look at the students as creators, and allow them to write, produce, and star in their own film that focuses on and celebrates Dr. King,” Newman said. “Our goal was to just provide the resources, the guidance, and the platform.” According to Dunn, students took on roles in the pre-production creative team, on-set work behind the camera, assisting direction, props, lighting, and in every other facet of the project.

Morehouse CTEMS senior Kennedy Womack was one of these student collaborators, helping the project along from the pitching stage to script supervision during production. Through the experience, he’s gained valuable experience working on set, and gotten to know professionals in the industry.

“After college, I definitely want to be a screenwriter,” Womack said. “My aspirations are to eventually start my own production company. I think it’s very important that you recognize the power that your voice holds, in terms of the stories that you’re able to tell.” 

The short film “Keep Moving” is airing through the end of Feb. 2023 on all MTV Entertainment media platforms. More information on the Morehouse College CTEMS program is available at