Film director chooses Upstate pilot to film series benefiting yo - FOX Carolina 21

Film director chooses Upstate pilot to film series benefiting youth in aviation

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GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

"Taken Flight" is what a director is calling a new film series about  youth in aviation.
 
All of the money raised during filming schedule and from the episodes will go toward helping students get their pilots licenses. The series will carry about 15 episodes, one of them featuring Upstate pilot Jason Harris,

"Aviation has always been in my blood, it's always been a passion of mine," Harris said. "Now it's time for me to give back to the youth, and I'm all for youth and aviation."

Harris was hand-selected by "Taken Flight" director and owner of Pulsar Films Derek Banks to use his talent and passion for flying to help kids reach for the skies. 

"The money we're raising we're going to be donating to schools around the county to pay for kids for a pilot license to get them into aviation," explained Banks. Banks created the non profit and is a pilot himself. He chose Harris to be part of one of the 15 episodes the series will feature. 

Banks said his goal is to get aviation courses into public schools as an extra curricular option for students. 

"I'm the only one of four, you know. I was the only one born with an abnormality," explained Harris.

Harris said he was born without a left hand but said he doesn't consider himself disabled.  

"You can sit there and try to claim disability, get people to pity you, but why?" said Harris. "Life's too short, and my dream was to fly."

Harris, chosen not for the challenges he's faced but rather how he has risen above them, talked about his journey in "Taken Flight." 

 "If I can get out there and reach one kid, or one person that is missing their hand or something like that and just prove to them you can still do it," said Harris. "Don't let it hinder you."

He said he got a lot of his training from Greenville Aviation and encourages any youth interested to start taking lessons. 

Banks said he started this series and the non profit so public school students will help them walk away with more than just a pilot's license. 

"It's going to keep them out of trouble with the law. You do something like this, you're enjoying it too much, you get a DUI, you lose your license," Banks explained. "It's not like a car where you get a slap on the wrist. You lose everything."

"Once you go flying it's a different feeling, it's a different high," Banks said. That "high" is something Banks and Harris don't want to come down from, and something they hope more kids will experience through funds raised. 

"I'm hoping somewhere in this wonderful country that there's a bunch of other kids, in my same shoes who are going to watch this and see this, and say I'm going to try it now," said Harris.

Pulsar film director Derek Banks said the series will air on YouTube and possibly next season with the Discovery Channel and Velocity. 

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