We had the good fortune of connecting with Alex West and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Alex, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
Wanting to create freedom for myself and show others how to take the same path. I also wanted to change the narrative by shifting the power back into the hands of the culture.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
My wife and I founded Life After Life Productions LLC in 2014 because we were frustrated actors who were not getting cast for the roles that we wanted. As a Black owned film production and development company we strive to create opportunities and content for people of color. We have definitely hit some potholes along the way but we always keep our focus on the mission and remain dedicated to our purpose. There are a multitude of lessons to be learned in the film industry but the most imperative lesson for me is to only do business with those who can reciprocate your energy. Not everyone has the same end goal or intention as you, so you have to cross the t’s and dot the I’s on your research and use your decrement early on in the business relationship. Cross the t’s and dot the I’s on your researcher. I am most proud of us building the company brick by brick and controlling the narrative of our content. 6 years later we still operate from the same mission statement and we strive to do more. In fact, we are launching our own streaming channel called Culture Forward TV. As a department of Life After Life Productions, Culture Forward TV will have a heavy focus on content from creators of color and it will be available on Roku and Amazon Fire TV summer 2020.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
California is known for its weather so the beach (Junipero) would be first and foremost. Hiking the trail to Griffith Observatory is also a must. As far as the food: Compton Vegan, Jackfruit Cafe, Vegan Hooligans, Bayou Grille, Roscoes (Inglewood), and Randy’s Donuts. Places to visit and hang out would the the Baldwin Hills African American Museum, the Nipsey Hussle mural on Crenshaw, The Marathon Clothing Store itself and the Kobe Mural near the Staples Center. To chill and vibe at night, 4th Street Vine in Long Beach has live music and Sip & Sonder in Inglewood is a dope coffee spot that has live music, poetry and social events.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
First and foremost I would like to thank the most high for all strength, resilience and abilities. Then of course I have to shoutout my parents, family, friends and fans who show support. I would like to thank my Earth (wife) Ruby Lee Dove II for having faith in me and showing the utmost love support and dedication. Special thanks to Deon Taylor and Roxanne Taylor at Hidden Empire Film Group for their leadership, encouragement, and constant motivation.