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Meet Stephen Spikes Jr. of House of Spikes in North Miami Beach

Today we’d like to introduce you to Stephen Spikes Jr.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Stephen. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I was fascinated with movies as a child. However, I as got older, science, history and politics began to creep into my life. By the fifth grade, I told my parents I wanted to be a Neurosurgeon. I was going to study and become the lead surgeon at John Hopkins and eventually the Surgeon General of the United States. Ironically, that same year, “Titanic” was released. I was obsessed with the Titanic prior to its release. I had received my first book about the ship while I was in the fourth grade. Therefore, I was excited about the film, which I absolutely enjoyed. It’s my favorite movie and James Cameron was my inspiration into the world of film.

I received my first camera at the age of 14. I joined the Drama club at 15, but nonetheless, I continued on my medical journey. I majored in Biology, but during my freshman year, I called my parents and told them that I was transferring to film school at The Art Institute of Atlanta. They weren’t happy about it at all, my dad said, “why are you going to a silly acting school.” I was bothered, but I continued anyways. After the completion of film school, I moved to Miami where I got my first industry position. I was hired to be an extras casting assistant on the set of ABC’s “Charlie’s Angels” reboot. It was tough. The demands seemed like they changing from minute to minute. It was at that moment, I realized TV wasn’t for me and that I would stay with film.

I needed work, so I applied to a restaurant, became a line cook and 4 months later they closed. This was all in less than one year! Miami wasn’t kind to me at all in the beginning. I told myself this film career has to work. My then girlfriend wrote a book titled “Black Women Don’t Deserve to be Loved” harsh title, but it’s not what it appears to be. I read it, and thought this would be a perfect opportunity to create a unique web-series. I finally had my mojo back and I wasn’t going to be stopped this time around. Shortly after development and casting calls, we shot our first episode. Three episodes in, we were being winning an award for best web-series. I was ecstatic, things were going great, what could go wrong.

It’s Miami and life has a way of reminding you, what can go wrong, will go wrong. Production stopped! Funds were drying up because of yet another restaurant failure. I was without work again but it wasn’t long before a Hollywood based producer reached out to me about being a production assistant on reality TV show that was shooting its pilot here in Miami. I worked on that show, eventually working my way up to lead PA. That project lead to a host of other opportunities.

Has it been a smooth road?
It has not been a smooth road by any stretch! Low to no pay! I’ve encountered egos and bad attitudes. Production assistants are treated horrible. One of the things I hate about this industry, is its ease and the ability to say “no”. This film journey has been challenging, rewarding and at times, deeply maddening.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with House of Spikes – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
We specialize in developing creative non-fiction short film projects and music videos. I’m most proud of being able to able to create content that most people would shy away from. I enjoy pushing the boundaries.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I love that I’m surrounded by water! It’s my favorite element. I also enjoy the mixed cultural aspect of the city. The insane real estate prices drive me crazy! Where I’m from, 1,200 dollars is a mortgage that will get you a lot of house. Here 1,200 rent in a decent area. The driving is also horrible. Turn signals are a novelty and apparently all colors of the traffic light mean go!

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Getting in touch: VoyageMIA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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