Five Questions with Videobred Producer Raph Cecil
Shortly after college, Raph Cecil joined Videobred as a grip, moved up to director of photography and then migrated in to a producer role. More than two decades later he is a client and staff favorite. Here’s five questions to give you a peak at this creative talent and dedicated family man.
1. How did you get into Filmmaking?
As a high schooler, my neck of the woods was late in getting cable television. When we finally got it, I would plant myself in front of MTV and watch videos for hours. I thought that being a VJ would be the coolest job ever! That led me to Mass Communications my freshman year at Kentucky Wesleyan in Owensboro, and then on to Telecommunications at UK for my remaining three years. The deeper I would get into the classes, the more I wanted to get behind the camera. Junior year, I took a promotions class that had us write and produce 30-second spots and a longer video campaign. That’s what hooked me. I really loved the idea of trying to sell a product or sway a viewer to a certain opinion in just 30 seconds.
2. How would you describe the Art of Telling a Story?
To tell a good story, you have to listen for the story. The entire process of prep, acquire, and edit allows you to create a special relationship with the subject. You get extremely familiar with certain aspects of their lives. Along the way, there are twists and turns that can take you to in a whole new direction. If you’re not paying attention – listening to what is said, you could miss it. There are so many gems that are uncovered when the right questions are asked.
3. What are your favorite projects and why?
Changing Habits is a prime example of paying attention and following the twists and turns. My dad is a true character. He won a gas station as a teen in a craps game, ran moonshine to make a few extra dollars, and was one of the finest mandolin players in the region. How can you miss with all of that to work with? I set out to interview my old man and tell the story of Pappy Cecil. I started out by interviewing my mom. Now Mom has her own story – before she met my dad, she was a Sister of Charity. That’s right, I’m the son of a nun. Well, sort of. Of course I had heard the stories about her life as Sister Mary Raphael, but I hadn’t really listened to how all the pieces fell in to place, and the Moonshiner married the Nun. To quote the opening line, “You never know where the road of life is leading…” I never knew that her interview would lead to capturing one of the sweetest love stories you’ll ever know!
4. What is your favorite quote?
“I am strong.” Any time I need a pick me up. Couldn’t tell you who said it, but it’s my go to when life starts to get in the way or I’m somewhere in the middle of a long run and need that extra push to get to the end. It’s also very good for those super long shoots where you might as well throw the schedule out the window!
5. If you could have one super power, what would it be and why?
The one super power that I would love to have would be speed—like Flash. That way I could cover a lot of ground, and in essence be in multiple places at nearly the same time. Being the father of three, that would really come in handy! I could also vastly improve my running times!
Raph Cecil is well-versed and experienced in all aspects of production. With more than 20 years of media development, Cecil has worked as director, producer and director of photography for international clients such as Papa John’s, Yum! Brands, General Electric and UPS. Cecil has the skills and background to see projects through from concept to completion. He attributes his success to cultivating the right personnel to fill appropriate roles in front of and behind the camera.by