« Good Life Project

Arian Moayed: Fear Never Leaves, Just Keep Going [Best Of]

2020-08-31 | 🔗

Maybe you’ve seen today’s guest, Arian Moayed, on HBO’s Emmy-Award winning show, Succession, where he played Stewy. Or, in movies where h worked with legends like Bill Murray, Spike Lee. Or, on stage, where he was nominated for a TONY. Or, you might’ve caught his groundbreaking thriller, The Accidental Wolf (http://theaccidentalwolf.com/), which he wrote and directed, starring Kelli O’Hara, Laurie Metcalf, Denis O’Hare, and a cast of 36 Tony nominations. Stumbling into a love of acting, Moayed began to pursue it as a career early in life. He was met, as most actors are, with an unending parade of "you can't do that's." But, to him that just meant, make it happen on your own. "Do" your way through it. And, so he did. Which has been an enduring theme in his life.

Arian's family fled Iran when he was just a little kid, taking a years-long journey that split the family between different countries, and eventually landed them just outside Chicago, where they set about building a new life in a radically different world. Acting became a fast passion and he began to develop a genuine love for theater and set about crafting a career. But along the way, he also realized that acting, for him, was also a pathway to writing, advocacy, and education. He became an award-winning writer/director and co-founded the theater/film production and arts education venture, Waterwell (http://www.waterwell.org/), where his heart is most boldly on display in the guiding the growth of teachers and 6-12th graders in New York City’s free theater training program, and exploring not just performance, but citizenship, service, equality, advocacy, justice, and what it means to be human. We all need more of that these days.

We're so excited to share this Best Of conversation with you today.

You can find Arian Moayed at:

Website : http://waterwell.org/personnel/arian-moayed/

Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/arianmoayed/


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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
The so maybe you have seen my guest already lead on hbo's emmy award, winning show succession where he played stewie or maybe seen him acting in movies, alongside legends like bill, Murray, spike Lee or on stage where he was nominated for a tony or maybe you caught his ground, breaking thriller. The accidental wolf, which he wrote and directed storing, Kelly, o hara or met calf dennis o hare and cast of thirty tony nominations, but what you likely didn't know about his powerful quote back story as a lot of votes in the act and world would call it is that his family fled around when he was just a little. had taken a year's long journey that split the family between two countries and actually landed them just outside chicago, where they
said about building an entirely new life in a radically different world and acting became a fast passion for our end, and he began to develop a genuine love for you her, but, as is common in the field he was met, an unending parade of. You can't do that to him. No, that just meant make it happen on your own, and that is exactly what he has done. Yes, with ie collaboration of so many people, but it was the attitude that says I will not stop just because somebody says this is going to be really hard- that pushed him through so do your way through. It became his mantra and that's exactly what he did: building a really beautiful career on the way. He also realise that acting for him well, it was also way to writing and two advocacy and education, and that's where his sir deeper hark started d. Itself. He became an award winning writer director and cofounded the theater and film production,
Arts, education, venture water, well, where his heart is most bull on display in guiding the growth of teachers and six to twelve. graders in new york city is free theatre, training programme and exploring not just performance. But ideas of citizenship and service equality, advocacy justice and what it means is to be human, and we all need more of that. These days, I'm so excited to share this best of conversation with you today? I'm jonathan fields, and this is good life project girl, right. It is supported by the economist sue. The world seems to be moving faster than ever: climate economics, politics, a eyeing your wherever you look. Events are unfolding at a rapid pace and it's hard to stay on top of it, which is why I love that now, for the first time, you can get a one month, free trial of the economist, so you won't miss a thing. I have
we ve been reading the economist who want to safer decades. I love that it covers more than just economics and finances you'll find coverage on topics from politics to science, to technology, even arts and the environment. The economist offers this global perspective with really incredible clarity and deeper analysis, so you can dive into specific issues or catch up on current events, I was just checking out this article on the changing landscape of tech, jobs for recent computer science grattan how everything is changing so fast. It was a real eye opener and with the economist free trial, you'll get access to in depth independent coverage of world events through podcast webinar as an expert analysis. As soon as you sign up, if you're interested in subjects like this go to economist dot com, slash project for full access to the topics that matter to you, an original analysis as events unfold, that's economist, dotcom, slash project or just click. The link in a show notes to start your one month, free trial with the economist today, because the world won't wait.
So the ten percent happier podcast has one guiding philosophy. Happiness is still that you can it's a? Why not embrace it? It's hosted by dan harris journalists who had a panic attack on national television and then send out on this journey of transformation and he's now on a quest to help. Others also achieve peace and happiness, and every week Dan talked you top scientists, meditation teachers. Even the odd celebrity in wide ranging conversations that explore topics like productivity, anxiety and lightness, psychedelic and relationships. The interviews cover everyone from bernay brown to cerebral ass to SAM Harrison more. I love learning from his questions and experiences and incredible guess think of listening to ten percent happier as a work out. For your mind, fine ten percent happier where every listen to pot casts how does a I even work where it is creativity? Come from,
it's the secret to living longer ted radio, our explores the biggest questions with some of the world's greatest thinkers. They will prize challenge and even change. You listen to and purist head ted radio, our whatever you get your PA in curiosity, I just I just think that we can't do anything without it really and just asking people to obey the law is basically a version of empathy, know what I mean like empathizing with who people are and what they do or were you the curious kid like? Is this something that's been ready for her life for some eight hundred year. I dont know I mean I think the circle stances of my life. You know being in iran and then move here as young immigrants, in the eighties where iran was like,
anime enemy number one. If you recall in I'm like IRAN, russia, which, what kind of back there again, I kind of felt that like ina, I was so curious about this world as culture, and I think, that's kind of where it started. Also, you know it's crazy. It was crazy. My parents don't speak in my experience. English is not great. They know they came here when they were forty and fifty the enemy? Do it's not like they? You know, I'm thirty, seven, so like imagining myself in three years time, taking of an ivy and chrissy, and sang a well gonna move to china and want to make this more gonna. Take we're gonna, make life better in china as its show a minute. all you can be as curious yeah I get so how so? How old were you and you actually letter? Well, we laughed iran. You know it's hard to tell because it I'm here was so crazy. There was a war happening I think a lot of you and wish you a bit younger, don't
We don't really remember that whole window of of our history and our relationship with sir yeah, the middle east yeah yeah. I know it's complicated, it's long and it's going to either bore or fascinate all of you guys, but the the the the the the truth is. We now. It is it's it's it's hard to talk about, because so many levels to like how crazy it as one is. My mom was married to my dad at the age of thirteen, my mom thirteen went out arranged marriage. I was pretty standard, you know it was on the outs that time period, yeah. Well, my parent, my mom's ma was a single mom. She was the youngest you know she couldn't make. She couldn't make it happen, and so she had to like you know she had to like give, I guess her yet her door, her lawyer, youngest, are aware, and so then, my dear my dad said they were more religious to my mom side was, and so they got arranged. I met her first kid at fifteen years. Old
her sang kid at sixteen and our third kid eighteen and then had me when she was thirty five so my siblings or seventeen eighteen and answer yes, seventeen, eighteen and basically, twenty years, all them. So and then and then the revolution hidden. Seventy nine and then warhead right after that cause saddam invaded with you and then got the support of the united states, because we of the iranian The situation and then we were in a war, and so everyone was closed inside as there is bombings happening all over to IRAN. All over the border, and so we were indoors and when you know when, when people get indoors and there's a lot of fear in the air of uncertainty, you eat you procreate in and The baby boom in iran happen at that moment in seventy nine, like eighty five, where he alex like sixty percent of uranium pop nation, but right now in iran is under the age of forty fascinating, walk down the street everyone's young,
is there anyway and then and then crazily my brother. My older brother was sixteen when he graduated high school in IRAN. His name is a mere, and then he went to us. You got you got except to school in Chicago right when he was sixteen, so sixteen, like twenty ash he's in Chicago ish ish assure like something like that and then the revolution, and then my brother was like. Should I come back my parents are like you're, never coming back here will come to you and I, in that time, peoria. My youngest, my brother, that's closes him, who seventy islamism mead, amin, was drafted in the IRAN, iraq war and fought three years in that war. With a couple of my cousins who are who are who have passed away? Who died in that war, one of them, which states that were in the night my brother was in war. My
sister, was in the middle there I was just born. We got the F outta town and we were. We went as far as my dad's connections and money, and you know, and you know, connections could could could take you, and that was dubai. We ve got to dubai, had lived in a united arab emirates and we were therefore often on for about five years and then and then we and then you know a long period of time, No one heard from my brother was faintness war. and trying to and trying to china like move. Pieces ahead while also like making sure the pieces back here. You know it's it's a chess game, you know and a dangerous one and then my dad We had word that made us live. We went back to IRAN, my he got back. He was you know now, nineteen ten you now for three years and a war in a city What oh mead. His name is oh mead, which means hope and wherever one like was
laundered and murdered and died, because it was a brutal war. Brutal war and you know, he's a twenty year old brainwashed. You know ptsd kid and in that time period, as were figuring out to go back to dubai and combat my sister falls in love, falls in love with a guy and and then that made things tricky and then and then we all laughed and my sister's day. So our sister cuts the states in two thousand and three we all left in eighty five, so an and then we came to the states and again you know the the analogy that chinese like us, like you and me, and you taking your family and is also going to china or whatever, language that you dont know are culturally. You know and you're like this is the best news for us now. You know you're gonna eat it's not going to be easy, and so in all of that, you just get him well as a sense of like the world and a very kind of complicated way at a very young age. An end and
Not only do they not speak the language they dont know what christmases they don't know. What hanukkah is they don't have any idea why people are going to church all the time. They have no clue why the cars or this, where they dont, know why the food is packed. You there's nothing that is familiar, there's nothing. you can empathize with as it as an iranian living in the states and being like. I know this thing and so in all what you are learning rapidly, you know in a very drastic way and so that curiosity might have had something to do with it, and that really- your and then plus landing in the states at that time, in our history Where did you intervention here? We had to go to school, my brothers in Jakarta, so that's how we Where is always we always? Why did he go to schools in los angeles, perhaps what we always talk about like we take the coldest pretty soon you landed with it with the rest of the family, then there at the time in iran in community there, or were you sort of like ok, there's a group of people who are not like
anyone else around us both There was no running community Emmy, a small one. Iranian everywhere, just like there's enough tibetans everywhere. Just like you know, there's jewish folks everywhere they had to find it, and you know a friend of mine who is a friend who was a cause, of the guy that you went to high school with murmur him. He lives in chicago. Let's get his phone number, that kind of a game that you boy and then all of a sudden you we were just talking about like a communal communal you're set the You have added an extra. Is that with you in that committee alchemy, I still saying I'm not gonna set where all these people come together. You know we europeans would do that all the time, because we only had each other, but also you know we were, rich, you had we had no, we have no access to anything in one it, and so we all of a sudden were dumped into you know yet be we weren't.
Rushed but we'd dumped into like the lower and middle class neighborhoods, which our apartment, buildings and other stuff, and so those neighbourhood are full of immigrants and so all of a sudden, you instantly bonds. worth haitian and taiwanese and korean and jewish, and over as witnesses who is just an you, just become friends with everybody that is not the That only understands america as a second place, it's kind of like you know when you go with it on a trip to like a country with a goop like westerners, are you meet a bunch of westerners? Also, you can buy connects be like oh, my god. This is so different than it is or whatever it's kind of what happens to. If you just go to the people that kind of like know, you know that and that's kind of what happened in in in the next steps were were kind of like the greatest things that my parents have ever done and again kudos to them.
for their ingenuity, that we went. We lived in a pretty enough curve crappy neighbourhood, nor set of chicago at the time called nurse and bill, which is now not crappy, it's like the new williamsburg and but you know I came home with. I found it can I put school. I asked my parents, we know my brother, my oldest they're like what the middle finger when and how like the first like three months, I was swearing a lot and I was in india cell class will that, yes, all classes were full of hispanic speaking, So I was now all speaking spanish, so so my first link which outside of Persian was like span broken span? It was a thing and so an end. And my parents in there all of their wisdom, they said Let's move to like a really really really like you know. its neighbourhood, where china, like upper class neighbourhood.
And live in, like not the upper class part, because there are those neighborhoods and that's what we did. We moved to this like apartment complex. That was like full of these. You know immigrants, but we went to these this great schooling and the reason why it was the greatest decision is because, all of a sudden, I had access to public school education that was really inclusive or it seemed inclusive and and art a lot of art and so is- is that we're sort of the light bulb went on for yeah. There was that side, huh yeah, all of a sudden it was, it was just it was fascinating and you know I probably You saw so much, you know, and I am using trauma with small tee of just my parents and my lifestyle uploading, unlike not now
I was. I was watching. Small little trauma happened, left and right. You know not even about money, though some of it was about money, but some of it about language and culture and loneliness and and in all that stuff, that I kind of also felt like it was my duty. Make everyone feel good. Maybe, and so I remember doing a lot of like things that other people wanted to still. I saw so let people feel better sudan that involve some level perform here. I was playing piano. A lot I was in, I was was playing her piano a lot, and but I was also like I made everyone laugh. I knew how to like do jokes. You know I just and and again this is also here to fight me for my parents. You know, like all all immigrants you only will get the hollywood entertainment. That's like ten or fifteen years ago, thought like now that, like everyone's getting my direct access to whatever blacklist its back there and you still dealing with the things that were fifteen years old, the enemy and so on,
We, IRAN run missed star wars, but we never had store, to us it was like twelve thirteen, because then I was like what star wars, but we did my parents love charlie chaplin, so I watched her lodge applicant films when I was a kid my parents love. I love lucy, I wash like every our love, Lucy episode it's really understood threes company, which was like a modern show at the time, so we watched threes company all the time and so these were my like social influence. and whenever they wanted. Like a dramatic movie, we would watch like things that they knew like bicycle thief and like things like that and so Then often I have this really weird education of like comedy that came from. seal ball that was so addictive to me, and I could do it echoed like pratt fall and might do all these like
I'm gonna look silly thing, that's kind of how it all started. Three quarter of the cylinders, amazon, so you're, getting drawn to this on a personal level expressing in playing with hand answer with it. When did you click in your mind that harm this might actually be something bigger for me and I'm curious also coming from the lake, your parents, I may submit a lot of times like the classic story. When you are first generation immigrants, is that there's there's a strong emphasis in the family in the community, on education and in following one of the quote professional tracks, and that may be like doctor a lawyer, man, yeah and maybe an answer like me like painting with a broad brush. There was sort of like a common cultural phenomena. You see when you start to express hey, you know like there's. I think me who my thing is actually not that, but it's more along the art merlin performance.
Which is notoriously yeah. The automatic assumption is oh great, so you're gonna, like I'm, going to be paying my kids rent for the rest of their lives, yeah or just you're, going to struggle. I'm curious, whether your head kind of like how did that those conversations happen with your folks the question I mean you know in an quite out of it so complicated, because I was doing a lot of shows. I was just doing a lot of shows, so they sire and they also saw that, like I was just telling you earlier, but I say it again like I went into my senior and junior year asking my high school teachers. What do I need to do to get like a bee like what, like I dont need till I get all fancy with it. Just what's the beat? What what does be look like so they my parents, also knew that that, like I could have itself,
that kind of stuff, but I just was like just let you know so they kind of knew it. You know it's funny. A lot of this was because of my brothers, my oldest brother, the one that was here. Who, who is you know an iranian that was that in the first sixteen years of his life in iran, and then then america, he he was he was. He was an engineer was like a computer engineer. So, and in iran, really like it more important to have education than it is today like money in a weird way like we We all know and, as we always say like this ina with ease our minds, like our honeymoon. This is like is like saying, oh She is, and she is a top level engineer and that's how you described them in introducing someone, they would say like out jonathan meat a man this. Who is it? Who? I will merely saying? Mr engineer, you know that's what the level, so my brother was that my other brother ended up being a doctor innocence
I'll, just as you know in in in the dc maryland area, some appearance had bragging right now is kind of way decided they can it give you cover lover, and you know, without trying to get to a euro. Six are cooking. You were right, my mother, my dad, you know, instilled a lot of you- can do absolute, let anything you want to do. And they made it seem like they ate, they nurture an environment. That said you will do whatever you want. It. so there was never any crazy doubt about. I mean, there's always doubt I'm still. I have doubt right now saying what I'm saying to you, but
its, but there was never a feeling that whatever I want to do, I wasn't going to like try my hardest love it as best I can unlike excel at it or my dad, always used to say you can be a garbage man. I dont care, but if you're not the best garbage man pick something up, and that was like that's also very hungry immigrant. He survive of the fittest mentality, where I see it in an immigrants. You know sometimes more than I see it in in a second third fourth generation, americans and investors, as that there is this ability to. You know we came all the way over here through war through which barriers through culture. You know all we did all of these crazy stuff and now all of a sudden you can do anything you want to do in that kind of like the household. I grew up in.
and I remember telling you know an end. I think my parents I kind of wanted me to be a doctor and then and then- and then I remember- I was seven gene and I was in my room and had my biology book open and my senior year, and I was I think it was failing. This clause that was just not doing well in this class was an a p biology class that I was like you're still, taking cause. I don't know why, and I was failing at it am I should have got now. And I might comes in goes. Are you ok and adjust weep? Certainly weeping and in an uncontrollable. You know when you're, like tommy, you know who's short breath like you can control it coming all out, as it was the magic. I want to be a doctor and he's like you want to do. So. How do we get out of here ok, here's the cares, come back, you know all in farsi and then and then, and that was it and then and then that senior year, like you, know everything you know
Sure you talk as so. Many people have worked out their own little thing. Pieces just fell into my web. Two things fell into my lap. That I couldn't ever get rid of one was one wise. I took a film studies class my senior year of high school and read a book called rebel with a crew about Robert Rodriguez and how he made them. the owl murray archie on seven thousand dollars of drug money and in the end of this book there is an appendix one and there's a couple lines and there that's. How do you be a great film director make seventeen bad movies or something like that, and I was seventeen and I read that and it just it broke my brain. I understood it. Oh, if you do thing a lot eventually you're gonna get someone get this thing it's the ten thousand. Our rule is like all these things that we will be no I've heard Surely you are going to just like stumbling
the something ok then made a lot of sense to me. and then I read as I was like visiting schools. I read this David Emma book, which crazy, because I'm not a David mount fan anymore, but I read: this book called tune false and I read the whole thing and I didn't understand anything that he was talking about, but one of the things He says, as you want to be an actor act Unlike oh yeah, I understood that as well as this is It made sense to me like. Oh, you want be annexed act whose who's gonna stop you from acting. and so then, all of a sudden, I think that's when the entrepreneurial spirit started like coverlet Yonah. Does he opened the door for that united openly What I can do anything real and it also I mean help how powerful for you to gain those. Lessons so early in life that I think so many of us are still struggling to figure out now like one is, you want to get better something you're like okay study it, but but more than anything else Just do it due to the fact they do the hell out of it here over and over really wrong law, and that's the second part right, which is that
especially when you look at some form the arts like people to enter your wedding, decoding like some like app or whether you're painting or with your acting people, tend to, I think, judge pretty early on they're like oh this. This person has it or this person doesn't and there's now I mean. There's absolutely pretty strong body research that she backs up what you just saying about that one was a rodriguez quote quoth. He I got there a messing up about me ever whatever it is. But the idea that no, no, in fact, for the best of the best yes, there may be like the thinnest slice of humanity, which has some sort of like bizarre savant like thing which they, but but the vast majority people who we hold up to be so bastards best, whatever they do in the world there, not that person they're the ones who have produced a stunning volume of work like that dear, that becoming extraordinary even at the arts.
In no small part of volume game and it's the people who like say. Ok, let me bring out these seventeen movies and learn from it. So I can get that like that crappy stuff out like behind you start to be, less and less less grabbing, then maybe at some point have decent that. Maybe at some point good like having met mindset, early on so powerful yeah. Anyone have happened. If I didn't take this, I'm telling you in my public high school, a film studies class that I couldn't have been that unless my parents moved the inner, let it all led to that moment and an end to go off right off. What you're saying there is you know there is no possible way that if you do something for long enough, you're not gonna have some expertise in that thing in a tough, Thirdly, Wyatt you know who's the co founder of water. Well with me, the artistic director, what we will talk on the second I'm sure, but like we this coming together and in college monsieur your college. He Now who we were roommate, he would say: listen
and we're going to shoot for the moon. But if we end up in the clouds were still flying and it's like a great way of thinking about it. It's like yeah. I would love to be clouds flying in love to be on the moon to, but wouldn't it be, awesome did just even be flying in and we still going to. For the moon, our whole lives ahead of us and so and so that those those things never kind of ended. For me, that doo, doo, doo, doo, doo doo. Still, I still say about in the industry, there are so many people that have plays movies are script and they all want. Me they're, like senator water, well or santa water, while films or whatever, and they want to like us to do it or somehow. You know what I mean like
a producer or whatever, and I understand that and that's I love that grit. I I I I love that persistence of it but half the times. The answer to their question is I'm so sorry to tell you this you're going to have to do it. Your script is probably amazing. It probably is great you going to have to do that thing and, and and you're going to have to do it and you're going to have to do it and and and succeed at it for either next one to be for the next one to be for them and just like moving up the ladder, because there is I don't care if you are a doctor, a lawyer and accountants, a you know a mortgage you're going to have to do that things eventually. You're gonna have to do stuff. Well, they always say in the acting business like how do I get an agent like young students that come? How can an agent tell me get an agent? And I always say you know the agent gets ten percent,
because they do ten percent of the work they make a couple emails that get you are not. They hopefully struck a deal the ninety percent, is you man? You look so like get ready, just having an agent doesn't mean that your life, over and they're going to make everything ok used, I have to do ninety percent of it. You know. met. Yet global private aviation leader is known for personalizing every detail of your travels because net, yet standard is not just to meet their definition of perfection its exceed yours, discover more at netjets dot com,
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notes and use promo code. Good life choose. I herb, because wellness matters can t you ok, see you get the lessons right? You get the download the knowledge bomb, but then at the same time this is a profession which is notoriously brutal, notoriously filled with rejection or tourist filled with walls, which means you have to keep doing it in doing during early in in a space in an industry which choose up a lot of people. One of the things that I have found across all different people only for industries is that the at some point, one of the biggest catalysts for somebody saying I'm willing to keep doing this and then go to a point where a case I'm starting to her right, through a break out, is the sometimes near near magical, appearance of a mentor in some way, shape or form some person who comes in and says this yeah was there anything like that in your life
You know I feel, like everyone around me of that person. Honestly, I feel like I take everybody's best and I just steal it, and I tell them that steal it. I feel like tom. Originally, as my mentor is my age, the mean this professor in college, who who said to us in a directing class a in the theater a plus b does not equal c a plus b equals giraffe, and He said that to us and again like oh, you can do anything in the theatre you can do any the art is any anything that you wanted. I've got a fit in any norms out of the way for anyone to tell me what to do out have to wait for an hour. You can do anything, You know, if you say giraffe, you might as well say blue, you might as well say you know, most will speak where's. It doesn't matter because you can do anything and then- and you know, and anne and tom in our time is a big deal
because Tom and I met in college at any any and every day I went in university because the undergraduate adviser I asked him. How many shows can I do here and he said to me as many as you want, I don't of doing fifteen getting close that seventeen. I met Tom my freshman year. We both were cast. as freshmen as the in the lead on the main stage production of indiana rusty, were all these requests was going to Emma face. Didn't we came friends. Nine eleven happen. All of a sudden we said we are, we gonna do something we have to like actively tried a better the world literal that was in that's not hyperbolic. We were very game on you know are influences were martin luther king gandhi, you're, like these people and just like
These were the people that we were too and then we were reading like julie, Taymor and Peter brook, and so nine eleven happen tom and I that the summer before decided that we're going to come to new york, I'm going to start a theatre company one. whatever the heck. That meant, I mean we had no idea what we were talking about. You know nine eleven happened. We moved to new york, we wrote a show in a month and a half performed at one time at a collective unconscious of just five hundred dollars of our money and that we were first on the roof of our hartman, and I learned from Tom's resilience and then the first show was one show five hundred dollars called lost in yemen or the bizarre bizarre, a pretty like radically progress, I've insanely. You know irresponsible play, but we were twenty two I want to change the world and then we another play right after with of other any any oversee france, three others, and then we pick the duplex cabaret theatre if
being honest with you, we didn't even know it was a. It was a gay in our cabaret theatre. We just found out that you they just take the door. We didn't have to pay them rent, which was mind boggling to us like that. The pay? You you're going take a walk, a great we're, not gonna bring anybody. People came you now and then. You know so. Tom was a mentor we may, given that teacher was a mentor. You know mark ferguson. These are the p along the way. I just tried to think of that as my philosophy for art you know like or where I'm on a film set. If I'm directory of in acting, I don't need to have the idea, actually don't even want to have the idea. Sometimes I'm like what is the best idea for this. Meant on screen. Can someone just tell us what you tell me all your ideas me tell me all your ideas and in my job as director or actor or right or whatever is the funnel.
Well that noise and say you know what I've looked at all this, and these are the three best ideas, and this is what's going to happen, and then you just roll the dice and hope for the best Oh that's kind of, and that's how we started the company to the company became this ensemble company. So tell it tell me That seems, like I, mean simply nine eleven, let this a new test short of explore the intersection between performing arts and citizens. Exactly you absolutely right, we weren't as eloquent twenty two of, but you know we would you say, yeah, that's it that's exactly what was happening. What was happening as we start, realising that theatres actual function is not to get us more jobs. Fears actual function is to leave a lasting mark on our society. Like the greek state, like the persians did like shakespeare. Did that that will tell us how to live life. Better. That's the greek plays are nina and thomas, understood that at a very young age, the two thousand
where a year of like I run exterior, there's a lot of irony in theatre, a lot of like cynicism, the surgeon yeah generally. I just think people were scared of not dealing. One can deal with things generating the risk they're just so scared, and I understand that you know it's scary time warner I mean not. A scary is as as moments maybe but we were in a war that we didn't know anything about. We were scared of another terrorist There are so many things that are happening and during that time period Tom and I just are on our way to help society was to make this theatre company called away. Well and the mission statement is essentially we're going to do socio. Actually we're going to do socially, conscious, civic minded theatre as accessible to all, and that's that is it's enlightening. Engaging and pathetic. And really entertaining and we saw writing and shows we.
we didn't know anyone in new when you nobody in new york, so that we can you not by the rights to anything. So we will place and we do not directly directed the place and there was no way to know other actors that we acted in the place and the milk you need to become a nonprofit. We became a nonprofit and then we found again now we can have any lawyers. I thought that we just found out. Oh, it's the iris, his job to help us get this thing, not the ira's job to help us not get this thing and that's a little difference thinking, so it's like we'll just turn it in and tell us what's wrong with it. So we too, in a draught of our none. You know five once c three and it came back like denied, and here Forty five things wrong with it, as it were like so silly. They just told us what's wrong, so we literally copied and pasted verbatim what they row and we put it in the application we become a nonprofit forks there
it was the easiest, yet not the easiest, but you know and and then we became a nonprofit every step of the way you have to raise money. Okay, well, we'll ask people for money. We have to write a grant or how'd you. Do that we'll write a grant will get it wrong and we got it wrong and every step of the way, whatever the obstacle that was in front of us just like took head on try the best we can, you know being is fair and ethical and and moral. Unlike quick as we can, and using our wits about us, and then we did it and then the fifth shell was a show called the persians a comedy about war with five songs and we adapted this escalates play and we made so this vaudevillian rat patchy. You know our and thirty minute. Shall we did it? this, you know amazing, small forty seat, theatre called honour on saint marks and people loved it, and this was our fifth shower sick show,
and again we did like six shows like three years that we welcome all which is fast and it became a hat then some general manager another in a mentor not amend but another, like you know, iconic figure came that I acted in a play that he general manage like maybe six months prior and he saw the plans. You guys. I think you should move this to a bigger theater and then he found us a theatre called the old parrish street theatre, and he said, if you, these twenty thousand dollars. I bet you, I can help you move this plate of this theatre and then what impossible. Thousand. Now he was ass brown in twelve hours. We called everyone, we knew and said hey and now again I've of doktor brother in those illegal over the cash. Now, as I said to them, I say we might is we want to move the show to an off broadway theater in twelve hours we had like ten thousand ours, so we called up that guy Jamie chaser, and we said: let's do it we're going to do this thing? We did it
theatre, the new york times came. They gave us a rave review and then you know- We extended a bunch and and sold out tickets, and we have thirty nine persian night and it like we made it when we were like smart starting this little business and all this to say that you know another crazy thing william morris, showed up one night unbeknownst any of us. I was twenty five and they signed me as an actor and in that being a kind of vaguely that first meeting again those twenty five I had no idea what I was doing. I had no idea what they write and represent me, and I genuinely- and I said to this guy named Derek. Yes, it will that's fine at all. But what have you? represent me you, you have to also represent my company to any kind of like. I think you like I bet he doesn't even remember it kind of. Like probably looked, he looked at me confused like what the fuck is, this guy talking about, threatening and he's like, okay, yeah sure, whatever but then there was the confidence that I needed to be like. Now
went by william morris or whatever, which wasn't probably true, but that gave me the and the. used them abuse them. We greeks, the mob, hey, I want to know how you know this is done to teach me how you know commercial, affright, broadway or teach me. How can I talk to this? agent and along that way you know was getting these acting jobs and then and then within like six, of being with many more ass. I look this like really high profile pilot. At the time there was directed by spitefully that was produced by bury levinson and written by the incredible tampon tenor and that like twenty six- and I was in this like major big deal pilot and then I think that and then it just like you know, their source cassimeres come live there and, as I said, sir lincoln sit here and listen to you tell us, it seems so matter of fact like and and- and this is just what happens and was
time at all, where You said yourself are not worthy, I'm not ready! I'm not good enough. This isn't good enough because it doesn't the way you tell it that's not coming through, which is astonishingly, unusual yeah no garda. I am. I am totally constantly in fear and doubt of every decision I make, and yet you still make them and say, like I'm doing, I'm just going to do this, I'm I'm I'm you know is so for him, I'm even getting emotional, just thinking a bit. But I leave you know I am so fascinated with fear. I have so much of it. so scared of the minutia of it all a failure of this interview of you know. Looking at sir, am of some scared of life, and I just but I don't know what else to do-
don't you mean, like I dont know how to conquer fearsome until I just do it, and then I just know that, like you know becoming ice and make the nonprofit story feel like whatever I'm telling you at that? we were writing the application at three in the morning I, mean two years old. You know probably like four weirdly like we used to buy forties in r and just like dwight this nonprofit replicate. We were we, it was all fear it still is. It still is. I mean the company. Fifteen years old whereby to do this may ensure legacy project you'd legacy project and were so scared, where's, skin and- and I just don't know how to conquer fear, though I do know how to deal with fear. Unless I just You know, you know one of the people there along the way is a guy named ali, far nokia ali fire knocking who owns the people's improv, theater and simple studios
and was a right for her son live and an amazing improv come comedian a regional, you c, b member, you know this guy. We used to work with dull close, who is this like improv god who wrote this book culture within comedy and the fear is follow the fear. His method has followed a fear following just follow that fear until they were, and so I do, I followed the fear and I and I push it and I put it to the very end. The very end it myself, what's goin on, am I going to die? Am I going to hurt somebody you know? Is this going to alter the way? I live in. If you surely the answer, those three questions are now here. Let me remind you just had and then and then and then you get you, you know it's funny, I think in the active community it so tricky
the act in community. They see me as this like actor. Do I me like on broadway nominate. Wasn't the humans like all these. accolades that are on my back, but the people that really know me close know me as like the water well guy first and then acting is like this other thing and there were like how do you do the. How do you like become a great yeah? How are you been able to get somewhere accolades as an active is because I've I've, let it all good I've, let all the bs, of of all of the noisy, fearful actor bullshit, I'm sorry,
I just am just not interested in that, and it doesn't scare me I I'm and I will fall flat. I I fall flat every. I tell this to my students I to or I fall flat every day, and I just like push through that thing and just say: like okay, you fell for what it's not going to kill anything. You know I feel like I'm going all over the place, but it's, but it's all these ex Hence it is is this? Is it goes back to do you know just like doing the thing from workout playlists to your social media, feed personal, the way to go and personal leads to an affordable price, even better, with stay farm personal price plan. You get the covered. You want at an affordable price. Just for you a policy that helps cover was most important to you, like it a neighbour state farm is there.
I gotta stay form dotcom today to create your state farm personal price plan prices very by state options. Elected by customer availability and eligibility may vary you mention your students a row time. So here we are, but the fact that you're not producer and writer along the way you become an education part of this thing that you do with water. As is here, is you? Yes, you you create a list of things, but at the same time you have a very strong and no element of the mission. Here I mean the mission. The mission is always access right, it's always giving people access to he now socially conscious. Civic minded work and one of my first day jobs was teaching at the peoples and the professional performing arts school on forty eight zero,
and years goes by and water will has Ex noble excelling in the theater community before the the economy crashed, and we were just you know, tumbling through the economy crashed and all of a sudden. It's like foundation. Grants are going. You know you know at your nine. We were like you know what your seven or eight we were like a thousand dollar operating budget? You know but also everything is fiddling away and theatres. Not changing their prices, and then you know they asked us to. You know apply to be a vendor for the professional performing arts school and we did and we won that bid and that bid helped us to realize that our mission can start them younger, and so what we do is the professional from our school, the waterway drama programme. What we do is we teach them not only from great six through twelve, how to become great actors, how to become theatre makers and teach them with vienna volk voice. You know vocal class,
is, and and you know, movement, classes and and and again we're in the curriculum. It's a it's a public school and we're in the curriculum, and but we also teach them citizenship, we teach them. The classroom. Teachers called the artist as citizen, it's teaching them what it means to make great art an using that art to come back to you Many local, big small church cynic doesn't matter an end and facilitate some of that are into that world. And an and show them a direct line to success through that. Not all these kids are going be active Not all of them are going to be in the field, but I can't
show them that income, for example right, you know one of the things that we have done in our schools. We work with global glimpse and they basically a bunch of a bunch of our students, go to a third world country and they create art with people their school and now imagine put your emphasis empathize with that students they go third world country. They data they work with some local town there and they create a piece of theatre or a moment that they feel good, but they, done something really rather massive enough, even local. Even if it's one person that built of a shitload of confidence- and this young, sixteen seventeen eighteen year old kid that confidence translates to going into the audition room with a little bit more bite and when
with a little bit more. What's that skip in their step or whatever, that is that phrases? You know a little bit more confidence there, that confidence gets them that job. That job leads to couple other jobs, because the directors liked that confidence to then all of a sudden that confidence to their relationship, competence and often you're. Now that one person that you ve influenced in, wherever you know, nicaragua or haiti or wherever they go, has now infiltrated a spectrum of thousands of people that have just and that's the end of what we do at the school. You know through art training through the get your vocal technique up where all blacks, there is one more year dead here is theatre history, and on top of all that you know We ve been producing theatre for us, so long, professional theatre on an off often off broadways. You know but
so we know how to cut corners. So we took the money that was allocated for one production a year. If you can imagine the performing arts school, there was only one. In a year- and we now do last year, we did eleven shows every student at our school performs every year on stage. That also builds confidence that shows parents. You know, parents, whether they become actors or not. That shows them there's an ability for them to follow the fear and do that shows them. I can speak out loud that shows them not only would it means, as a group of individuals coming together to make a piece you remember those high school or middle school play as several members. Have you don't remember the play just remember the time the process of the fun the cast party member of the experience of creating something, isn't local community and making something for for people to watch and then that
hold on top of and then overseen imagine becoming into politics or imagine if that these kids start their own theatre company and what happens if there, the next public, later we don't know, then I was in your influencing the scope gets wider and wider and wider and all the long way you know we're not doing. You know we're not doing like small little plays europe. We're not doing like you were not just doing twelve night were also doing brecht at Nina would incur this year and this year we do raw offer jerry's play about. You know a dictator no, no, it's an absurd play. We're about addict, because a summer dictators on earth right now we did. We just did an all female, julius Caesar we just where and the seniors. Oh sorry seniors, one. The coolest things that we have is called the new works lab because we have such an leg in the professional arts, world
We, the senior year, hire a professional playwright and professional director. They come to the school and they do a world premier at the school and now all of a sudden, these kids get a chance to work on a new play about things that they want to talk about, which are not what we think the enemy. Then I just thought they want talk about homelessness them out about immigration. They wanna talk. They won't talk about some stuff, so now when you have this play right. That's like let's talk about this stuff and then This year I say this because the play that we're doing this year's written by lovely, letting a playwright by name of surest castro smith, and she ought to play that's just about now and TAT, is coming from there and it's gonna be awesome ina, you know that's kind of them. That we do there and that's now built into a bunch of other schools where else at the new school in trying like spread this. He notices
kind of like artist citizen, you know track to the world. There I mean so interesting is just watching. You had your talking about this, your fists one or two you become so much more animated. Then, when you talk about other things out there, you talk about like new you at after me. Talk about this there's something that animate you different near. I just I just at the I can see you will there's something. I want to say that some stumbling, it's what we have to cheat with its just about the education. You know You yourself your questions where your car, who your mentors like we have to do. We have- give more leadership, and I'm not that leader for these kids. You know, Heather lands, as the leader are still you irene. Ladders is are, as is one of our leader, a stimulus teachers, deputy Mccrae, you know gregg parental, there, the they're the ones on the ground rang whereby they, the one they're like doing the work for these people have
and were giving them foundation to do that. That will happen change society for the better means, and that's it. It's also probably because acting seem so singular in a weird way. It seems so about like quota for me, and I just No, that's the end, I'll be all of my life. I just don't know. If that's what I want to, I don't know that, if that's listen, I love acting. I love love doing and as much as I can Try to advocate for iranian voices and middle eastern voice says you know, and telling stories that are like you know, break down these ridiculous myths about the middle east? and I'm I'm guessing for all ethnicities. You know, and so I try to do my part in it, but I am just an actor. I am just a car, in that we all and- and I know my places in that and that in that world and so
there? There is less of a energy. Now, I'm very lucky, because Validated as an actor- and that has given me the confidence and I've been validated, our know how to say, that's made me feel confident about these other things that it and then at that. I can that has made me like feel better about, like are not let's go to another school or or or hey. Let's do this, you know the ex, although fort. Let's do you know, work with veterans, you know all these things to just like constantly put push push, push push and then again, like I said to you, I don't give. I don't really care too much. So when I go on, sat around you know what we're doing look the humans are whenever I try to just be as honest as I could possibly be, and do my job and you leave you now and let it all out there in the best most you know human, whereas I can advocating for my characters so at the same time, there is a side of you and you have like you said you have
there is a tremendous energy and emphasis put into all the different programming and things that you dive water, while with kids were schools in education, since shipmates art and then there's you as the actor who is also been involved in. We have really gone there. You ve been involved in big productions. You ve been above and dig movies, you work side by side with a bill Murray and robin Williams, and all these other icons. businesses, some so many different ways seen it at nearly every level and these are all lessons at you can bring to students, took for entry. At the same time, you seen the good and also you seen seen a lot of struggle what happened with driver? You have proof it was where I was first, was just right. Yeah I mean I I talked to robin and the main before he passed away, and I talked him because our Gotta go do bear eleven, send movie called rock the casbah, and I was the secondly of this huge bill murray,
swell ass. So addition out, like epic thing in morocco, speaking three languages, you know and two of which I didn't speak and- and so I called him in eye- how that will happen anyway, the robins assistant or something I to like, and I called robin and I eventually talked someone who I see sound down at the time, but I asked him like hey man, what's bill Murray like what's with bare eleven, some, like you know, I'm butter walk into really scary waters as up as a younger. All that, and he though he was, he just was his honest self. He was yet another mentor along the way, someone that I really really loved and admired for many reasons. We were the two leads of this play on broadway called the bengal tiger at the baghdad zoo, a play about two soldiers guarding two thousand and three baghdad, the Baghdad zoo where they kill a bengal tiger. chop, the hand of one of the soldiers off basin at your story, and we here we are in two thousand eleven doing this iraq war play where they were,
The tiger play by robin williams, is one of the lead and I play the iraqi. Try. Translator monitor play about spirituality and myths and an end in war torn and art and robin and I became real tight and we had a lot of ups and downs too, because I was nominated for the tonia warden. He was which was tricky and it hurt him back from being honest but he doesn't matter anything it. May I thank you. He was things a third person. The call me and when I got nominated that morning, and he was so gracious, he was such a good person. He is such a great advocate for humanity. He believed in the arts he believed and he did the play, because he was huge yourself guy, and where these strong narratives about ptsd and honest with these words the eyes of the soldiers, he never let up about helping people after the show would be done. everyone and their brother wanted me. There would always be like three hundred four hundred people outside the door trying to get an autograph with one hundred williams. Obviously, but
you are on the list, you can go back stage and come on the stage and like talk to look ass members and every once in a blue moon and every night there being a hundred fifty in the same, it's a tax havens for hamilton right now. If you go on the stairs you, it was in the same space, same theatre, maybe five times five times. I would see this person The head, you know, ready, cliched, ignorant aryan speaking here, but being like this guy with a blue mohawk. Unlike deep piercings, unlike does seems a little out of place, and Curious aryan would go up and be like hey give you looking for ok, I'm a friend of robins, oh well, will be out in a second dude,
meet him in there? I was like oh dude. How do you know robin? Because you know you don't also like give everyone access to robin will feed before he's ready, and he goes oh robin robin is my sponsor and be like. Oh wow, because yeah raman took me off the streets and sponsored me and that's in his follow any got me a ticket to come and see him in the show I'm going to weep now at five hours. That happened ten times I don't even know all the time and working with robin I saw a human being. I saw so many little stories like that. Another story is I'm a big letterman fan and he and letterman asked robin to come on and I ask: can I go with you or whatever and saw the answer? Is yes and then we do the thing and and but the day before he was like how much about this- about the sharm, went about this about the shamrock. But this about the shoe and
a getting like really in the heart of like why this place so great and and then he would apply the guy's after it was all done sudden done about how he the produce, came up to him and they really wanted him to like be like old there, rob an legal robbing it up put on quote so he didn't get a chance, but he saw loyal to the dave. like saying note of that and then so, like robins it up. We all know and like that that energy and then you come up, guys to me feeling let here with you, he let the play down cause you didn't take it seriously like it was a. whenever at the time a trolley rose interview that we just done. That's a lot of empathy. There s a lot of levels of understanding to come to me. It's all wearing a lot of mass. I mean you wonder whether he like wireless
two separate world, whether such a radically different public facing mask, and then there a very different internal life, whether that place into some the suffering that goes into so when they came on so many other people in some way have those two different near like there's the public persona. What is profoundly different than the run and so saw I not even go. There were so many stories of just people taking in and turning it into something awful, but there. Also these stories of I mean tell any of these stories. I don't know either these stores until after he died, but the others too. I just I keep on wine to talk about is because it was so human Is that a do we we we had. We were like the two quote: unquote leads of the show and we had dressing rooms right next to each other, and so I can't tell you how many times maybe it does times at intermission. Come into my dressing room closed the door behind him and asked me. How did how I thought the show was going. I'm have great he's said I'm
someone. I know it's amazing dasa It's not throwing you off right now, he's like. Let me know if it was like. I know, god's great, it's all great revenue or great and then just because he was so in secure about his own work and sometimes, if I'm just being honoured, sometimes I'm I was thirty thirty, one years old in my first broadway debut rocky translator representing a community in a very like your specific way,. sometimes I wanna be like robin wire you telling me how good I'm doing, I'm being honest about doubt and fear, but then it dawned on me he's just like me: he's got the same fears you know, he's got the same stuff noise messengers of like how you know it's how hard it is to be a human, and he understood it really wholeheartedly. There
I mean it seems like that's one of the the higher the profile you become, sometimes the more amplified all everything becomes, two fingers and successes and all that stuff, and I think I think, we're seeing that lot survive in the increasingly public lives and personas of so many different people on the inescapable reality that you know you are you're being you're telling the story of your life in a very public way, especially if you want to quote establish yourself in some field where it's based on you, your reputation, your quote personal brand, that you've got to be public facing and forward facing all these different channels, which means at the same time, you have channels to project outwardly and but a lake. Very often it's a complete illusion or delusion of what's really on inside and people have equal channels to project back at you through the anonymity of a screen which can be we're not equipped to handle no
that and on any level that makes most of us, okay, and I think, we're still really struggling to navigate and figure out lake. Where is the sweet spot, where you know we can breathe again where we can be okay, and maybe being massively forward facing, isn't yell at me all the time right answer, and I think I can feel the pendulum swings back to a certain extent, and certainly unless I think you might be right or I think it's a good thing. I think so good to you one of the things that you've done recently. Archie was last year, which I thought was really fast is this like seems to me this really interesting offshoot of this again. This maniacal search for the intersection between citizenship and theatre performance, which has fleetly folly so or new york city from those who I know, there's there's a that happens in new york city called fleet week where, along the peers, there's like all this military, certainly docks, and for a week
the at least the west side and a lot of downtown manhattan is taken over by like our our service people and you you and I guess- harm your partner throughout involved in supporting this community, really interesting, indifferently, yeah yeah. This is all this is all something that we know we were we we ve always been, and when we were in the war, the iran, Iraq one we still are in work with afghanistan. But when we were in that the crux of the two thousands when we were in the that war even back an way before then, all of our shows for free for veterans and without grants. For that now there were getting that many and what do we get? You know even five, six nine. That would be plenty for us, because why not and on that. You now interesting journey tom, an olive is brilliant stomach upon a long, winded Emma shorten the story but stumbled upon some. They called the blueprint specials
the nineteen nineteen nineteen. Forty four, the? U S, war department, hired a young private named frank, lesser movement away, has also so yeah in in nineteen. Forty, four, the? U S, war department hired a young private to write for musicals to be performed by directed by produced by soldiers, active soldiers on their off time. So as a waiter cope with, shall shock? That's what they were saying so just break that down for a second, the? U S, war department thought that doing musicals after killing nazis was the way to deal with shell shock, which is a really profound statement, because it shows that there is a deep understanding that this these soldiers needed it and deepen asserting that art was the way to solve it, this young
wrote these four musicals. They were never performed three years later. He writes guys indoors and he becomes the biggest and most important influential in a musical some alive seventy two years later, we have. We find these, they were lost forever. We find the musicals. We find the blueprint specials, which are exactly that. Blueprints on how to make a musical and, along that way we find these things. We put them, produce them and put them, on the intrepid, which has a warship decommission warship on forty six street. We put him on the intrepid, with a cast of sixty half of which were veterans and the other half were broadway stars doing well, for me, frank, lesser musical, which so many levels of insanity there on the
the cathedral side on the veterans, and we did the fu fulfilled what the war department wanted, which is. We gave an outlet fur. Many of our veterans that were in the show did Afghanistan that Iraq, that haiti, that curry, like they were all involved, many of which had at we're still dealing with ptsd, so we use the art that was commissioned by them to help their shell shock at the time now called pts. There was an experience like for them that you talk to all the time or a I'm still friendly with. So many of them it was incredible that they gave him the confidence and and in one of the cool things about the show. We only performed it six times, but it was a big big musical and we oversold it by thousands really and the you didn't know the audience member who was an actor and who is a veteran until the very end when all the actors, when all the actors came out in their regular close and the in the veterans, came out in their military.
Nl, seeing their faces just for getting a standing ovation and like all that stuff was so impact full and so powerful for them. For me, selfishly, you know for the audience is for all of us- and this was you know, january of two thousand and seventeen a very tricky time in middle. You know of of new york city before the inauguration where everyone had a different and we had people in the cast. Will you know veterans' communities that we were working with, that probably were on the opposite sides of the spectrum, but one of the things that we one of the reasons why we did this thing is to bridge the gap is to bridge the gap between red blue, Why veteran civilian like we're all in this messy world together? You know, and that's all the things that in all of the work that water, while does he know we'd, have even talk about the accidental wolf.
Accidental wolf is a massive. You know. This is tv series that I wrote an and directed starring. All these broadway starts to global thriller where, where it, why start shooting on season two on on Sunday. Oh, my gosh. I just got scared, but all this to say I was very My wife, my amazing, strong, you know beautiful incredible wife that you know so well. who does so much so much for our communities and so deeply locally. Skinner on our everywhere. You now I would watch her as I was due bengal tiger goin on morocco rays two lovely ladys and saying how a faint hearted is not only to be a mother. How Evan hardest to be a mother. That's trying to change the world with yoga and and and mindful nest. as a mother, trying to change the world in in in
male dominated society with norms that are put upon them and then, if you look at all for those things that I all those obstacles that a young mother might have this? Those were no. Different than what my iranian mother was going through when she moved in this country and then all sudden I was now in it well the I want to I want to be apart. I want to empathize with this story. You know not that I'm I'm going to be an expert and I'm not an expert in it. So I got hell yeah for those who might or might not know that the one of the two biggest stars of broadway alive, three stars, five stars whatever you know, she's a big deal here, and and and she and I had done a play together I'd never seen her. Do a musical ever
I just saw her in king lear as a reagan, and I went up to her and I said: if I write you something: will you do it and she goes yes and then here I have two girls and she's got a little boy and a little girl, and I and then I I wanted to You know I would say to Kelly le K Kelly on until the story about a woman. That's it it's a thriller too. That gets a phone call and I don't want to say too much for those that want to watch it, but gets a phone call from across the globe. Have someone asking for help. And here she is a young mother and she wants to help. But society is saying: stop stop helping on both sides. Her rich uppercross society is telling her just vienna volunteer time and just you'll be fine, stop
and on the other side which about sierra leone as well. The sierra leone euins commentaries like baby I want your help. We don't want your white privilege help, and so I tell both those story so part of that is empathizing. If both sides of It- and I am- I Don'T- know, shit about being a mother, so I talked chrissy. I talk to my mother, I talked to Kelly and I take all of that data, and I said: let's put this all- let's put it all in their messy beautiful, gorgeous wrong right. All in there or the sierra leonean community. What do I know about sierra leone, nothing so I met with sierra leonean actors and rappers and intellectuals and historians, and I just I say, tell me everything- and I take all that information. I put it in there and I even sometimes say: ok, cool, I'm also making a thriller so here where I need this to end. The enemy like here is
I need this idea to end. Can we get there in a safe why and sometimes I say, yeah this this and that maybe, if you do this, oh cool, I suppose, like that's, not believable, and then you cut it simple. You know it's a deep deep! You know empathetic struggle that we're all going on as artists on the x now wolf and then Now I made this short form: thriller that has Kelly o hara lorry met carve out. You know Dennis o hare the entire castle, the human, thirty five tony nominations in the cabin crew, like it's a huge massive thing and its, but I've made it short form and it's a thriller, an eye, and I made it short form a four because I think that's all it's necessary for these chapters, as we call them. The first season is out and its two hours law, but every chapter
once five minutes, which twenty five minutes, one, seventeen and and then so we did this thing and we shot of exactly like the me know. The are wanted it to be and then- and then they like will. How does puddle people put us out there so producer, damon earlier, was a partner one. Well, films is also a really smart businessmen, so he, instead of he, takes he download all of his contacts trains and says here is a model that we can do it ourselves, even though we met with age yo and all these people we all love the show but they're like we, don't even know how to begin to do we love the show, we know we don't have the facility to try to do that. Another obstacle. So we made our own platform, you know, that's you you're you're, like how does it go? We go to the end, Road and then there's like a roadblock insight. Well, this need now be released so,
We made our own immersive website at asks. You questions after a chapter is done even call phone numbers. If you want to tell you We can text you and then you can see where she's at exactly where she's out while she's don't it's like. become the sleuth with her, and we only did that. Of necessity- that we wanted to just put it out there. You know- and he his, but you know so I'm demons and other matter in other all these pieces together as a kind of make. This call- and you can watch assured the actions of the com for all you lovely woman, awesome by the way yeah check it out. It's really we're really proud of it. Yeah I mean it's it's it's kind of like a good place for us to come full circle, also because it's like we're going back to the same everything as a man of they of the same sort of relentless blend of curiosity, a willingness to act. Willingness to stumble willing to say I know nothing who can help me
and willingness to say if it's Okay, so it's never been done before or I've never done it, but that doesn't mean I shouldn't do it, and that doesn't mean I can't figure it out along the way and and just and openness to taking the saps And seeing what happens over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over again until it just like something happened. Or doesn't, and then you figured out new serves ok, so what I ve forgotten and how can they do differently all Well I mean I feel like you, you must really did you write a book before before europe, your book, same thing, it is people who have asked me to advertise like well, you need it. the big change, you're a liar, and then you went to become an entrepreneur and then another whether, yes, what you like, as I did, leave behind high powered career and to me a thousand hours, personal trainer, entirely new industry, and that was twenty years ago,
you know I haven't done something similar over and over and over and over again since then- and I think you eventually it becomes a process where are you you realize that, yes, she can completely screw up behind you smacked back so many times and hear every time you figure. I had to navigate your way through you're like alright, so yeah it hurts, but I'm going to be okay, so I'm gonna keep trying something different and triangle young men to go left instead of right here and eventually you know those those things start to give you a sense of. I fear that it may not be thought you gonna make it banged up allow away, but eventually a minute I just have. Since then, I'm going to get where I want to be where I need to be, and I'll figure it out. Jim Henson was like that. You know, or charlie chaplin was like that. You know all this Churchill, middle short, films and their blossom about
That's ok, this is your name. Is I look at lake. You know always does This squire, like unknown notebook from cattle from this famous orders from the first three years. of their lives and now it's up on auction and anne, and you laugh because if you neild. That was first we need these artists who didn't hit there tried, a really producing extraordinary work until ten fifteen years later it It's like somebody wants to own a keepsake that had the name of that particular artist on it in the very early days, but the actual product was terrible.
Because we that's where we all start like. We have to start. Netflix do come crap and its there's. Seventeen bad film right all seek the hacker. So can you come full circle here also says rang and I have, in this conversation naming assist good life product. So I always wind up with the same question, which is if they offer the phrase out to live a life. What comes over, you know, who I am. I am I thought about this, and you know it it's all these little nuggets. You know what a lot of it for me. I think you know there is that there are two main things in life that I think matter and that's love and war
That's that's. That's basically, all comes down to that, and inside of love is empathy. Inside of love is his kindness and caring and respect and responsibility and and citizenship, and inside of work is, you know doing acting you not failing trying trying and again failing again failing again, you know, I think those are the two things that just that that that just constantly push forward for me, love and work, because and and and and tom ridgely, another man.
well. The first mentor I mentioned is the one that says that to me, because that's all that matters, Levin work and and everything and love is a big pocket and work as a big pocket, and you know, and those two things really push me forward and the only other thing I want to say just like another, you know mentor, you know you know you're also coworker and not coworker. Like a colleague of mine, you know a contemporary has the word I'm looking for is to rama craning. He wrote on moonlight, but he's this fabulous incredible phenomenon:
right and he's also a macarthur genius grew up in the you know: the the ghetto of miami as a you know, a black gay kid imagine, and he came and talked at my artist, susan glass and he studied he was an apprentice of an august wilson. One of our great playwright and August Wilson told him, and now he told my students- and he, which I learned now, I'm telling you is that all great art, slash life, slash creativity, slash whatever runs on three cylinders: the interpersonal, the global and the spiritual. That's why we do shakespeare and over again is constantly dealing with. Those three thinks he's just not ease unrelenting on it. You know romeo and juliet global montague, capulet romeo Julia,
interpersonal, obviously the two of them falling in love. They want to be together and the spiritual they die. Yet you know yet on graves with the friar making a mistake. You know like all of these things and so immediately as a creator. I latch onto those three things, but then, if you take one step back, that's really life two. What are my relationships like with my wife my mother, my father, my brother, my sister, you kid children who are these people that I wanna like me with strangers like how do I want to represent that interpersonal spiritual of like we were in spiritual, could be god it could be religion, it could be, is locked. It could be any of these things. It also could be the spirituality of nature. It could be the spirituality of nurture of art of crete.
devotee of whatever that might been to you constantly trying to be like putting out a good energy out. There would energies whatever that might mean to you that so important that we all have to like latch onto one version or another of that and the global? How are we doing the interpersonal and taking met spiritual, putting them together and betty better ring? our communities locally, big wide small. You know, I think those three things and what love and worker, like my you know, are just might go to him, for he knew how to live a good life, Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. So much for listening and thanks also to our fantastic sponsored who helped make this show possible. You can check them out in the links we have included in today, show notes and while you're at it, if you ve ever ask yourself what
I do with my life. We have created a really cool online assessment that will help you discover the source code for the work that you're here to do. You can find it at the spark: a type dot com- that's s, p, r, K e t, why p dot com or just click the link in the show notes and of course, if you haven't already done so be sure to click on the subscribe button in your listening app. So you never miss an episode and then share share the love. If there's something that you've heard in this episode, that you would love to turn into a conversation, share it with people and have that conversation, because when ideas become conversations that lead to action, that's when real change takes hold, see you next time. The.
Transcript generated on 2023-06-23.