When he was in middle school, Sean Doyle became fascinated with films. His favorite genres were action, drama, martial arts and sci-fi. The impressive graphics, detailed choreography and gripping storylines drew him into places where creativity knows no limits. Eventually, they inspired him to create worlds of his own.
Today, at 24, he is a media and film student at Radford University, and is set to graduate in spring 2011. He has already created three short films and launched a YouTube channel with 144 video clips. In addition to acting, he also has experience with writing scripts, directing and editing.
“I get kind of nervous sometimes,” Sean said. “I might stumble because, as you may have heard, I have a bit of a speech impediment.” He refers to a slight stutter that made itself almost scarce about five minutes into our conversation. “I’ve learned ways of controlling it. It also depends on the way I talk. Occasionally I don’t really trip on my words at all.”
He changes his expression slightly, raises one eyebrow, and speaks with perfect clarity. “I talk like this, see? Let’s get down to business right now. Talk things over. Do it nice and easy. No game now, right?”
His ability to emulate various personalities is evident whenever he is in front of the camera. His YouTube channel, Chosenviper, is made up of a variety of topics, including discussions about his projects, reviews of different types of media, and funny character impersonations.
“I impersonated Doug Walker. He has a YouTube series called ‘That Guy with the Glasses.’ Viewers ask him questions and he gives hilarious answers,”Sean Doyle said before launching himself into character mode. “What should you do if you are kidnapped by aliens? Absolutely nothing. Just let them take you.”
Humor is not the only thing Sean brings character to. His newest film project, “Daring Intervention,” was completed in 2011, and a sequel is already in the works. The plot follows an FBI agent who finds himself in the midst of a dangerous game. A former partner that he’s previously fired plants a flash drive with codes that have the ability to prevent a missile from launching and hitting the governor’s mansion.
“People might nitpick about it,” Sean said. “It’s not perfect, but I’m trying to get a better feel for what film is like.”
His education in filmmaking began long before he came to Radford University.
“My brother Devon and I started doing theatre in high school,” Sean said. “We were in two plays, ‘What Use Are Flowers’ and ‘An Italian Straw Hat.’”
That same year, both brothers got to work as extras on the pilot episode of “Commander in Chief,” a drama series on ABC.
“The thing is, I think our scenes were deleted because when the show finally aired, we didn’t really see ourselves,” Sean said.
They did show up onscreen later in the HBO miniseries “John Adams” as Redcoat soldiers in the Boston Massacre scene.
In 2006 and 2007, Sean and Devon attended Southern Mystique Film Camp where they made two films, “A Beautiful Murder” and “Fish Story.”
Devon, recalls his enthusiasm for “Fish Story,” which he directed.
“I was passionate about making a fresh and fun movie for the camp,” Devon reminisced.
Since then, Devon has created an equally impressive resumé, such as working as a videographer with pro wrestling organization UPWA, making a demo reel for the Landfall 2010 Golf Tournament in Wilmington, N.C., and making a short documentary called “Squeak Etoys.”
“Sean and I, along with another friend, are now in the writing process of a possible TV pilot episode about a high school for students who wish to face the supernatural,” Devon said.
Devon is proud of Sean’s accomplishments at Radford University, and points out the strengths that he appreciates when the two of them work together.
“Sean is the type of student and film maker who appreciates the little details in what he does and is one who knows how to use the camera to help tell the story.”
Dr. Joe Flickinger, a media studies professor, has been one of Sean’s greatest supporters at RU. He has taken two classes with Flickinger, and has impressed him with his talents with editing.
“I think he learns better visually than he does from a written standpoint,” Flickinger said. “I think that ties in with the films that he’s making. He can see what he’s doing in the films and he can start to apply what he’s doing. I know I’m one of those learners, too.”
After graduation, Sean wants to move to North Carolina to be closer to his brother. He plans to apply to companies that work with news, television or film, such as Screen Gems or Warner Brothers.
Whatever he winds up doing, Sean made it clear that it was important that he do what he loves and that fame was only secondary.
“I doubt it will lead to fame or anything like that, but who knows?” Sean said.