Garcia Shares the Process of Creating his Own Feature-Length Script

This article was written by Jessie Colegrove, a senior public relations student and School of Communication Director’s Ambassador.

Vaughn Garcia headshotThe sun was setting over a hill on his drive home from FSU when Vaughn Garcia had an epiphany. He thought to himself, “if I crash right now and had to look over everything that I’ve ever done, would I be satisfied and okay leaving?” He then confessed pondering what would happen in that moment when the world ends and the afterlife begins.

“I don’t want to believe that this reality is it. It comes down to hoping that there is something that prescribes meaning to everything we do and it isn’t just this open, existing process where everything doesn’t have an impact,” Garcia said.

This thought process inspired the idea for the feature-length script that Garcia, a 22-year-old first year masters student from Sarasota, Florida in the Public Interest Media and Communication program at FSU, is currently writing. The project is an episodic series based on this concept of the afterlife and channeling the fear people have surrounding this phenomenon.

The plot follows a young man who gets into a car accident. The audience sees him in the hospital room unable to speak or move until everything slowly fades away into darkness. After panicking and hearing the terrifying sounds from the crash, a secondary voice comes in to explain that he is “in between.” The voice tells the young man that he can take them anywhere he’s ever been throughout his life on Earth and reflect over the choices he has made and the events he has experienced. In this afterlife of this reality, he can come to terms with himself, understand what his life meant, and walk out in peace. If he cannot do this, he will become a ghost-like entity.

“The character isn’t this perfect guy. It’s someone who went through some nasty things in life and had a determined perspective. It takes a lot to change their mind, which is supposed to be very realistic,” Garcia said.

Garcia’s experience within the industry has mainly been within the short film category. This project is a way for him to try his luck at a feature length production—something he’s never done before. Additionally, he wants to put a spin on the first-person filming style.

“It’s my attempt to take the formula and put a twist on it. I’m genuinely passionate about the art of telling the story, but I’m trying to be an innovative story teller,” Garcia said.

Garcia credits the School of Communication, specifically Dr. Brian Graves and Dr. Nick Sellers who inspired and helped him develop his projects.

“In both courses I taught Vaughn, I was impressed with his enthusiasm, attitude, and work ethic, but it was his work on his group’s final film project in Media Techniques where Vaughn stood out,” Sellers said.

As a graduate student, Garcia noted that FSU’s culture and environment has helped him develop this project.

“The great thing about FSU is that it’s very collaborative and it’s very open and broad in what you can do,” Garcia said. “I feel that the environment and the culture makes for the perfect foundation for that existential basis for which an idea like this springs about.”

Garcia’s end-goal is to develop the project as much as he can and one day potentially pitch it. For now, he views this as a test to see if he can create something outside the short film format. Thanks to the FSU School of Communication, Garcia is confident in his ability to complete this elaborate endeavor and continue his journey within the industry.