AUGUSTA, Ga (WJBF)- Thursday night, a local film maker will host a screening of his new movie “For the Love of Christmas.”

The filmmaker, Karlton Clay, is part of the WJBF family. He is one of our digital producers. But Clay has been writing plays and films for nearly 20 years. He said he loves his day job but writing and making films is his lifelong passion.

“Actually I’ve been writing since I was a kid. I’ve always loved writing. My Aunt Carlyn is a writer and I used to be in the room with her and just watching her write, so I would pick it up. So I’ve always loved telling stories.”

Cast of “For the Love of Christmas.”

Clay wrote, produced, and directed “For the Love of Christmas,” his 3rd holiday film and his 10th feature film.

After his first one, Reindeer Games in 2020, he decided to do a Christmas film every year.

“And I wanted to do something fun about love. Of course I’m a dramatic guy. I love drama and creating different scenarios of everything. It’s like a ‘dramedy,'” Clay laughed.

The film follows Rashad Williams, a teacher and published author, who is faced with the pressures of making a career choice while dealing with some romantic drama.

“He’s in love with this woman and she really wants to get married. She wants to get married by Christmas,” Clay explained. “So, he’s kinda having to stress out about his job and his relationship and all the other elements that come into play.”

Karlton Clay and Nakia Burrise on the set of “For the Love of Christmas.”

The film was shot in Augusta using local actors that Clay has cultivated relationships with over the years. But he said he was thrilled to get to work with Nakia Burrise, best known as one of the yellow Power Rangers.

“Working with Nakia Burrise was a dream come true for me. Again, I am a big Power Rangers fan, so I never in my wildest dreams thought I would be actually working with a Power Ranger. It was just surreal for me,” Clay said.

The film’s cast is made up of mostly African American actors. Clay explained that it is important to him to give those actors prominence in his films.

“I’ll work with anyone. Black, white, Asian, any race. It doesn’t matter to me. But I know for me, right now, in a lot of my films I do focus more on African Americans because there are not a lot of opportunities given to us. And I feel like it’s my responsibility, if I have that platform, to make sure that door is open for them.”

Tonight’s premiere is not open to the public, but “For the Love of Christmas” will be available on Amazon Prime, VuduFandango, and for free on the streaming app Tubi starting November 1st.