“They just fit me like a glove,” the now experienced filmmaker recalled of his early exposure to acting and directing. “My first show was an Easter play depicting the last week of Jesus’ life before going to the cross. Not only was I acting in the play, but they also asked me to direct!”
Only a teenager at the time, Prentice Dupins felt God stir something in his heart through this early experience. It seemed to be connected somehow to who God had created him to be. It was as though a seed was planted, a God-given dream released in his heart.
This sense was only further confirmed as he continued to lean into the opportunities that arose. “Not long after my brother recruited me to produce a music video for the Arkansas State Department of Health to address the growing crack cocaine epidemic that was sweeping our community at that time. That too just seemed to fit.”
Enthralled with these new mediums of expression, as a young man, Prentice never looked back. He dove head first into serving in the drama ministry at a local church. He became fascinated with using his passion to make a difference in the world around him. As his skills and experience grew, Prentice took great interest in theatrical writing and eventually took on the role of drama instructor at a local high school.
What started as a hobby began to blossom into a full-blown calling. A calling that was further clarified as God pulled on Prentice’s heart to make film his focus. In 2016, he attended the Act One Writers’ Summer Intensive and returned to school to complete his Master of Fine Arts in Digital Filmmaking. He now sees himself to be a storyteller whose media of choice are words, film, and theatrical performance.
“It was a leap of faith to transition to film for sure. But now I’m fully immersed in producing various forms of digital media such as feature films and TV episodic series as I move into the business of film and theatrical art.”
Since making the shift to film, Prentice has produced a number of film projects including the short film Last Stop, which been featured and honored in a number of festivals for its creative screenplay and deeply impactful message.
Even with all of his success as a filmmaker, Prentice recognizes that his growth is ultimately rooted in the one who actually filled his heart with passion all those years ago. “I’ve seen God combine my gifting in the creative arts with my passion for teaching to produce experiences on stage and film that help others to experience His grace, love, mercy, and forgiveness.”
Prentice now pours his energy into creating and making available Biblically-based relevant media and performance content that provides a clear understanding of the Kingdom of God. Not only that, but he also hopes to inspire others to incorporate Kingdom principles in their own lives to produce an abundant life and unlock their God-given dreams.
“I feel like I am created to bring clarity to those that are struggling to understand the things of God. I want to help them understand Him in terms they are able to comprehend so that they can grow and release the dreams placed in them by God.”
This draw to bless others with the creative gifts God has given him sets Prentice apart. In my time with him at the Grove’s yearlong Cultivated Artist Experience, I have been personally inspired to not only seek to create but seek to create with purpose. His life has pushed me to ask how my creativity can be leveraged for God’s Kingdom.
To me and those of you who resonate with my desire, Prentice offers this encouragement, “Allow God to grow your talents keeping focused on the ‘why?’ of your art as well as ‘the how?’ Increase your craft. Grow spiritually. Make magnificent art that speaks to you first, then to others—To thine own self be true!”
We'd love to hear your thoughts and comments.
What about Prentice’s story resonated with you in some way? How would you like to use your own creativity to serve God’s Kingdom?
Drew Tilton is an experienced writer, creator, leader, editor, pastor, spiritual director, and project manager, who is passionate about Jesus, His Kingdom, and His Church.