We all love some good reality television, right? Then you all should check out The Millennials of Dallas web series created by producer Dorian Payton. After watching the first episode of The Millennials of Dallas, my eyes were glued to my phone screen waiting to see what happens next.
I caught up with Dorian a few weeks ago hoping he’ll give me some more insight on what would happen next during Season 1 of The Millennials of Dallas, and he simply replied, “Well, I don’t want to give too much away,” but I did get insight on why he decided to produce The Millennials of Dallas and what his ultimate goals are for his web series and life.
Dorian Payton The News Anchor
“Funny story actually, The Millennials of Dallas Reality Web Series actually started off as a joke between me and a group of friends,” said Dorian. “We would sit around and watch different web series on YouTube and other sites and critique the work and say, ‘Oh, we can do better than that, we should create our show.’ However, I was the only one out the group who took it seriously and put it into action.”
Dorian and I were classmates in college majoring in broadcasting. I felt he was one of the best male news anchors and producer in our TV Practicum class, which explained why he would produce a series such as The Millennials of Dallas.
During the introduction of his show, he stated he wanted to go far and beyond just local news to ultimately become his own boss, which led to his production company MalcolmXtraHD which specializes in photography, videography, producing and directing.
Dorian moved to Dallas in 2015, six months after graduating from Mississippi State University.
He said the inspiration for his web show comes from a plethora of places. He studied and did research on all of the popular reality shows that are on networks now.
“I would watch episodes of the Love and Hip Hop franchise, Real Housewives of Atlanta, as well as my all-time favorite show Basketball Wives over and over again, looking at them from a filmmaker’s perspective instead of just an average viewer,” said the producer.
He would pay attention to storylines, camera shots, different characters and personality types, what worked and what did not work.
“From there I put it into my show, and it worked,” said Dorian.
Dorian on Picking His Cast Mates
Dorian created an online application and did his open casting via social media, primarily Instagram and Facebook. With over 60 applicants, he chose his final cast.
“I knew exactly how many people I wanted, how diverse I wanted them to be and chose the finalists,” said Dorian, adding, “Once I chose the finalists from the stack, I did video chats and FaceTime calls so I could see their personality and gauge if they would be a great fit for the show.”
Dorian’s cast, Markel, John, Eric, Tye and Brandon all bring something different to the show. They have different career goals and aspirations they are trying to achieve, and as the season progresses, the viewers will get to see them develop.
Dorian also stars in the web series. When asked what it is like to star, produce and direct everything on his own he said it can be extremely difficult at times, but not impossible.
“What makes it easier is when I am not on camera or in the scene, I can have a more creative approach as to how I want things to look visually and perfect the shots I’m going for,” says Dorian. “When I am in the scene, I have to be really crafty with the shots that I set up and the angles I used,” he added.
Dorian mentioned he now has a production assistant who helps out when he is in the scenes but admitted, “Even with him there, I’m still calling out shots and directing him after every take that we do.”
The Future of The Millennials of Dallas
Ratings from episode one of The Millennials of Dallas were a huge hit. It has currently over 5,000 viewers and over 300 subscribers on its YouTube channel.
Dorian’s web series isn’t like the normal reality television series that is being watched. He says there a lot of hidden gems and positive messages within each episode.
Dorian said, “We touch on a lot of issues that are relevant in the black community, and outside of the drama you see on screen, we manage to get a message across and make audiences think which sets us apart from other shows.”
Dorian has plans of making The Millennials of Dallas a huge hit, eventually expanding and turning it into a franchise. His ultimate goal is to have the series based in Los Angeles once he moves there.
“The Millennials of Dallas will go where I go. Of course, the name will change but not the people or the formula that started it all,” says Dorian.
The Millennials of Dallas plays every Tuesday night at MalcolmXtraHD YouTube channel.
To watch all of Season 1 episodes, subscribe here.
Episode 1 is down below.