Skip to content

Former Villanova guard Tony Chennault beginning career as filmmaker

May 23, 2014, 7:30 PM EDT

Getty Images Getty Images

Tony Chennault’s collegiate career came to a close in the NCAA tournament with an early exit in the Round of 32, as eventual champion UConn upset No. 2 seed Villanova.

Chennault had returned home to Philadelphia in 2012, transferring from Wake Forest after two seasons. The move was to be closer to his mother, Crystal Morton, who’s was dealing with health issues. Several weeks after announcing his transfer, his stepbrother, Michael Jay, was killed. In August of the next year, his mother died of a heart attack.

Those tragic moments in his life have led the former basketball player has into filmmaking. One of the films he made in college was inspired by his brother’s murder, entitled Chris.

“These are elements that happen every day,” Chennault told Valarie Russ of the Philadelphia Daily News. “We are losing a lot of good people, people in the prime of their lives, people doing a lot of positive things, all because of gun violence in our community.

“That’s the point I wanted to focus on. Why in urban communities don’t we realize the significance of the people in our lives until they are dead? It’s about not valuing life.”

On Friday night, Chris had a scheduled screening at The Dreaming Building in Philadelphia.