Jonah Louis Bryson is an American-French award-winning filmmaker, scuba diver, musician, and political advocate. He is currently Creative Strategist and Director for Martin Luther King III. He has worked with March for Our Lives in Parkland, heading the Carry You On musical production, advised on U.S. Presidential and Congressional Campaigns, and was an official spokesperson for the 2018 midterm elections on CNN.
Bryson’s interest in oceanic issues began at an early age. He studied climate change and underwater cinematography under oceanographer Sylvia Earle, and later became a judge for a United Nations contest, organized in part to find the best ideas among young people to protect and preserve the oceans.
At 14 Bryson met his hero, Rob Stewart, with whom he would eventually co-direct The Fight for Bala, a film about preserving first nation lands from corporate destruction. Sadly, Stewart came to a premature death in 2017. Bryson went on to receive the first-ever Rob Stewart Youth Award later that year, an honor meant to promote better stewardship of the planet, while highlighting their close friendship and collaboration.
Bryson has been published in several magazines and newspapers, including The Huffington Post, National Geographic, the Toronto Star, and The Parklander, of Parkland Florida, where he currently spends much of his time. In 2017 Bryson interviewed David Prowse, who played Darth Vader in the original Star Wars trilogy. Published in the Huffington Post, the interview would become one of the last Prowse would ever give.
In 2013 Bryson began working on a film about oceanic exploration and climate change entitled A Sweet Spot in Time (a term coined by Dr. Earle). Bryson subsequently composed a song for the film by the same name, which he went on to record with members of Taylor Swift's band in Nashville. Though the song was left unfinished, Bryson continued his work on the documentary, of which the song had become an integral part. He eventually screened a version of the film, for which he received an award sponsored by Prince Albert II of Monaco and Dr. Sylvia Earle, in Tampa, Florida, in 2014. He would later meet undersea explorer Fabien Cousteau (grandson of Jacques Cousteau), with whom he is currently working to remake and complete the movie. They began production in late 2018, filming underwater in the Cayman Islands.
Bryson has been recognized for his work as a youth activist. In April 2017, he joined David Suzuki at Canada's 150th Celebration conference in Vancouver, Canada, talking about climate change and the world's oceans. National Geographic’s Scott Wallace described Bryson as "the whiz kid at the forefront of filmmaking in service of the preservation of the planet." During the 2018 midterm elections, Bryson worked with CNN as an official spokesperson for their voting campaign, both for social media and television.
Bryson was born in Lyon, France, in 2000, and is fluent in both English and French.
Jonah Bryson directing Parkland's Carry You On music production with friends who survived high school shooting.
As a musician, Bryson has composed, directed, played piano, and sung in several musical productions. In 2018, he directed a Miami-based production for friends who suffered the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida. The song, Carry You On, was co-written by survivors Sara Imam and Kali Clougherty, as well as Bryson. Released by People Magazine on the eve of the 2018 U.S. midterm elections, it hit #1 on Rolling Stone's trending list. It was widely backed by a variety of notable people, including Sir Paul McCartney, U.S. Congressman John Lewis, U.S. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, the cast of Dear Evan Hansen, CNN's Van Jones, U.S. Congressman Joseph Kennedy III, and actress Julianne Moore. All proceeds from the song have gone to March For Our Lives.
As the Creative Strategist and Director for Martin Luther King III, Bryson often travels with the King family across the United States. He is in charge of Mr. King’s filmed addresses, photography, and online media. He also designed the official card commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 90th birthday in January, 2019, sent expressly to the members of the United States Congress. Alongside TOMS and the King family, Bryson advocated to pass Bill HR-8 (a gun control legislation), delivering action-oriented 'postcards' signed by everyday Americans to members of the House and Senate. In March Bryson joined Isiah James in his run for Congress in New York’s 9th District (Brooklyn), as his first campaign strategist and creative director. He continues to work with King.
Jonah Bryson at Capitol Hill with Martin Luther King III