James Barton Kicklighter
June 26, 1988
Claxton, Georgia. United States
|Alma mater||Georgia Southern University|
James Kicklighter (born June 26, 1988) is an American film producer, writer, and director from the small village of Bellville, Georgia, United States.
He was recognized by Heather Huhman's series in the National Edition of Examiner.com as one of the Top CEO's Under 25 in America. Outside of his professional work, he serves as a mentor and documentary advisor for "Ambition", a non-profit based in Los Angeles sponsored by high-end boutique JAMAH, promoting entrepreneurship among high school students. JAMAH named their messenger bag, The Kicklighter, in his honor.
He began his career at 18, as co-executive producer of That Guy: The Legacy of Dub Taylor, interviewing the late actress Dixie Carter, rocker John Mellencamp, director David Zucker, actor Buck Taylor. In an interview with Seattle Youth Media, he stated "the great thing about living today is that anybody can make a film. So if you want to make a film right now, you can run out there with a camera, edit it and produce that film, but the question is, can you tell a story?".
During his studies at Georgia Southern University, he, under the supervision of a professor and along with a fellow student, helped to kick off a decade-long celebration of the Golden Age of Radio for the Broadcast Education Association. While directing the film that became Theater of the Mind, he met Edith Ivey, who starred in his short film, The Car Wash.
The Car Wash has won numerous awards and was mentioned in the Rome-News Tribune, including Audience Choice Award at the National Film Festival for Talented Youth, the largest youth film festival in the world.
Followed, based on the story by Will McIntosh, was one of 24 films to win an Audience Choice Award at the 2011 National Film Festival for Talented Youth, and has been picked up by Dragon Con, The Rome International Film Festival, Garden State Film Festival and Central Florida Festival, with international press coverage. Ain't it Cool News gave the film a positive notice for his direction, stating "Directed with a delicate and gentle hand, FOLLOWED is probably the most unexpected horror surprise I’ve seen in quite a while."
His 2012 film Final Acts was a finalist in the Macon Shorts Competition, part of the Gateway Macon Initiative. The film won Grand Prize.
His first feature film was the international crossover Desires of the Heart, which shot in Savannah, Georgia and India in 2012 with numerous releases to film festivals in 2013 and 2014. The film was released in theaters across India in November 2015.
Film Threat stated, "The cinematography in the film matches its narrative’s expansive ambitions with gorgeous visions that turn both Georgia and India into almost permanent states of postcard-friendly imagery,", and The Independent Critic noted Desires of the Heart as "a beautiful and involving film featuring two fine performances by its leads who are tasked with bringing to life a film that is both intelligent and fantastic, no small task." 
Kicklighter is developing a biopic on football legend Erk Russell, who started the football program at Kicklighter's Alma Mater, Georgia Southern University, which named him to their inaugural "40 Under 40" Alumni list.
In 2015, he released the documentary A Few Things About Cancer, called "an intimate look at a newlywed couple’s quarterlife crisis through stage four cancer.". The film won Best Short Documentary at the 2015 FirstGlance Los Angeles Film Festival.
His music video "Branches" for solo artist Shel Bee won Best Music Video at the 2016 Garden State Film Festival
After the 2016 Garden State Film Festival, Kicklighter directed the documentary "Digital Edition," a profile on the future of journalism framed through The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, which debuted to critical acclaim.
In 2017, he directed Angel of Anywhere, starring Briana Evigan, Ser'Darius Blain (Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle), David A. Gregory, and introducing Axel Roldos."Angel of Anywhere". Jameskicklighter.com.</ref>
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