What Does It Take To Be A Filmmaker? by Mark Gantt [FULL INTERVIEW]

Film Courage: When did you leave Stockton, California (where you grew up)?

Mark Gantt, Actor/Producer/Writer/Director: Let’s see…I left when I was 19-years-old. I was 19 in 1990 and I actually moved my friend’s sister down to San Diego. We all drove down and she was going to San Diego State. She had a summer class that she was going to do at a community college. We got her into an apartment, signed her up at San Diego State and went to junior college to sign up for the summer class.

While we were there my friend and I were in line with her and like hundreds of people in Southern California signing up for classes. A lot of them in bikinis and shorts and tan and sunglasses. And Wow, it’s so much nicer down here than in Stockton. As we got closer and closer we decided we were just going to sign up. We signed up for classes, went around the corner and found an apartment, put down the deposit and then we drove back to Stockton.

I came home and told my dad So…I’m moving to San Diego. He just looked at my like You’re crazy. And I was like Yeah, we just got an apartment (I told him the whole story). He’s like Yeah…maybe you’ll grow up then…and walked out of the room.

What do you mean? I’m a grown up? At that time I just thought I knew more than he did of course at 19. And as I was getting closer to leaving he reminded me that my car insurance was paid by him which was no longer going to be paid by him and that I have to pay for gas, all of the things that I had taken for granted living with him for so long.

I moved to San Diego because I wanted to be close to LA. If I ever got a chance to act or direct, at least I’d be close to LA. I wasn’t actually moving to LA because that seemed too scary. This was the perfect safe way to get down there…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).

 

About Mark Gantt:

Whether he’s working on features or commercials, award-winning director Mark Gantt is in the business of authentic, creative visual experiences. With a diverse, 20-year career in the industry, he has learned the business from the ground up, and had the good fortune of collaborating with top directors, including Steven Soderbergh, David O. Russell, Sam Raimi, and Robert Rodriguez.

Whether he’s working on features or commercials, award-winning director Mark Gantt is in the business of authentic, creative visual experiences. With a diverse, 20-year career in the industry, he has learned the business from the ground up, and had the good fortune of collaborating with top directors, including Steven Soderbergh, David O. Russell, Sam Raimi, and Robert Rodriguez.

As versatile as he is ambitious, Mark has demonstrated a penchant for the entire creative process, using forays into writing, acting, and producing to inform his directorial philosophies. For two years running, Mark has created successful spots for ESPN and Nissan’s Heisman House campaign and popular and effective branded campaigns for GMC, AOL and Lifetime.

He has the unique ability to work with a wide variety of individuals. From celebrities and professional actors, to athletes, “real people,” and newcomers, he’s able to capture the small, authentic gestures and behaviors that bring stories to life. In his craft, he is dedicated to capturing the raw realities of life, and demonstrating the inherent beauty of the everyday.

A multi-medium visual and performance artist, Mark integrates his talents as a painter, photographer, actor and graphic artist into each production’s look and style. He utilizes technical expertise, a keen eye for detail, and a genuine love of storytelling to transform words from concepts into visual realities.

His feature directorial debut, Murder In Mexico, starring Colin Egglesfield, premiered on Lifetime and was well received by both critics and audiences. He also directed a dark action/drama pilot for Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s New Form Digital called Intricate Vengeance. As a Writer and Producer, Mark is best known for co-creating, producing and starring in the ground breaking, Streamy award-winning series, The Bannen Way for Crackle and Sony Pictures Television.

He is currently in post on his second feature, the indy thriller Model Citizen shot in New Mexico. He’s also hard at work on a number of TV and Feature properties in various stages of development. Mark lives in Los Angeles with his wife Brianne Davis, their son Davis and dog Bear. 

As versatile as he is ambitious, Mark has demonstrated a penchant for the entire creative process, using forays into writing, acting, and producing to inform his directorial philosophies. For two years running, Mark has created successful spots for ESPN and Nissan’s Heisman House campaign and popular and effective branded campaigns for GMC, AOL and Lifetime.


He has the unique ability to work with a wide variety of individuals. From celebrities and professional actors, to athletes, “real people,” and newcomers, he’s able to capture the small, authentic gestures and behaviors that bring stories to life. In his craft, he is dedicated to capturing the raw realities of life, and demonstrating the inherent beauty of the everyday.


A multi-medium visual and performance artist, Mark integrates his talents as a painter, photographer, actor and graphic artist into each production’s look and style. He utilizes technical expertise, a keen eye for detail, and a genuine love of storytelling to transform words from concepts into visual realities.


His feature directorial debut, Murder In Mexico, starring Colin Egglesfield, premiered on Lifetime and was well received by both critics and audiences. He also directed a dark action/drama pilot for Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s New Form Digital called Intricate Vengeance. As a Writer and Producer, Mark is best known for co-creating, producing and starring in the ground breaking, Streamy award-winning series, The Bannen Way for Crackle and Sony Pictures Television.


He is currently in post on his second feature, the indy thriller Model Citizen shot in New Mexico. He’s also hard at work on a number of TV and Feature properties in various stages of development. Mark lives in Los Angeles with his wife Brianne Davis, their son Davis and dog Bear. 

CONNECT WITH MARK GANTT
Markgantt.com
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Scriptapalooza Screenplay & Shorts Competition  Over 90 producers reading $50,000 in prizes

Scriptapalooza Screenplay & Shorts Competition. Over 90 producers reading. $50,000 in prizes.