By Jennifer KimLos Angeles [US], April 7 (ANI): Medha Jaishankar has had an all-embracing career in the ball industry. A self-proclaimed “Tamilian Chameleon,” Medha, of South Indian heritage, has lived in eight countries and calls Mumbai and Los Angeles her two capital “current homes.”A above camerawoman, editor, producer, and anchorman for the BBC World Blur Analysis appearance “Talking Movies,” Medha formed for several years in India as a blur controlling afore affective to the US.
In the aftermost few years, she produced several music videos (including two with the backward cinematographer Halyna Hutchins), and the abhorrence abbreviate blur “Facelift,” showcased at top brand festivals common that currently has added than 100k angle on YouTube. Of late, she’s produced a blur starring A-list actors Jacob Elordi (“Euphoria” and “The Kissing Booth”) and Zachary Quinto (“Star Trek”) and has a array of projects actuality developed in both the US and India.
I met Medha via the mentorship affairs StartWith8Hollywood as her mentee, area she has clearly mentored 24 women in the aftermost two years. I am afflicted and aggressive by how Medha navigates altered media and worlds with ease.
I afresh sat bottomward with her at one of her favourite West Hollywood restaurants, the Tex-Mex cuisine “Justin Quesos,” to allocution about how COVID has impacted the way she produces and mentors.
Q) Good to see you in person, Medha! It’s consistently aberrant to accommodated in absolute activity aback we absorb so abundant time chatting on Zoom.
A) And acceptable to – what I alarm an addendum of my active room! My neighbour owns this restaurant, and I’ve fabricated it my new abode to do meetings, my own clandestine Soho Abode if you will.
Q) Let me activate by allurement – what got you absorbed in the blur and ball industry?A) Aback I was a child, my ancestor (Indian Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar) admired 80s music videos. So the aboriginal words I anytime accurate were from Peter Gabriel’s music video “Big Time,” area at the end, an activated monster says, “Hi There.” The cine I watched the best cardinal of times at that age was “The Blues Brothers,” and I apperceive every distinct band and every distinct ball move in that film! I grew up in abounding countries, but one of the few constant things culturally beyond these countries were films and music videos.
Over the years, we acclimated to adapt home videos with my ancestors and set them to pop music. My brother and I would additionally shoot and adapt re-enactments of Calvin and Hobbes with our friends. By the time I went to aerial academy in Prague, I was already asleep set on alive in the blur industry. I abstruse how to adapt on Adobe Premiere, attempt a music video, and fabricated a abbreviate blur about my admission class.
When I activated to college, I alone activated to institutions that had blur assembly programs. I got a scholarship at Denison University, a advanced arts college, and abstruse to shoot and adapt 16mm blur there. The academy had been abounding by Michael Eisner, Steve Carrell, Jennnifer Garner, Alex Moffat (who’s now on SNL), and several added notable ball industry folks. In fact, my acquaintance and acquaintance Tariq Vasudeva acted in the Indian blur “Band Baaja Baaraat” and, added recently, in the alive alternation “Aarya”.
Q) You accept a continued abysmal accomplishments in this! What was your aboriginal blur credit?A) In college, I did an internship affairs in Philadelphia and landed up at a post-production house. Lee Daniels had attempt his aboriginal film, “Shadowboxer,” starring Cuba Gooding Jr. and Helen Mirren. Mo’Nique, who afterwards went on to win an Oscar for “Precious,” had to smoke in a scene, but she didn’t absolutely smoke. So as a post-production intern, I smoked a cigarette adjoin a blooming screen, and they acclimated my smoke on Mo’Nique! (laughs). I additionally abstruse about cameras, lights, and VFX, of course.
Q) Did you get awning acclaim for that?A) Yup! I’m accustomed as a post-production intern at the end of the film!Q) So you were an intern, and again what was your aboriginal job?A) I got my aboriginal job carrying a band from Mira Nair – who I was briefly interning for – to the BBC, and they happened to charge an editor that day! I again concluded up alive for the BBC blur analysis appearance “Talking Movies” as a camerawoman and editor for two years.
Q) I saw you aloof Controlling Produced the blur “He Went That Way” starring Jacob Elordi and Zachary Quinto. How did you get complex with it?A) I met my acquaintance Travis Oberlander about nine years ago at the altogether affair of an Indian filmmaker. And afterwards this altogether party, I would aloof run into Travis on the artery in LA, which is aberrant because, as you know, LA is not necessarily a walking city! Anyway, aftermost summer, I was in New York, and Travis alleged me to altercate this activity and asked if I knew any investors to affix him to. My actual acknowledgment was NO because I was afraid on the 6 train, authoritative my way aback to Harlem, area I was staying. But again I managed to advice facilitate some introductions to abeyant investors and got added complex in the project, including allowance the administrator beef out a appearance I helped cast.
It’s aberrant because accepting appear from a accomplishments of actuality a camerawoman and afterwards a development exec, I acclimated to consistently think, “Oh – it’s addition else’s job to accord with the money. I’m not a money person. I’m not a business person.” However, in the aftermost few years, I’ve apparent that I’m absolutely rather accomplished on the business side. I’ve now begin myself honing a new skillset – allowance to brace financiers with creatively and fiscally complete projects – and carnality versa.
Q) You and I – as mentee and coach – accept generally talked about how to embrace accustomed abilities as we abound and advance career-wise. Can you allotment a little bit of acumen on this?A) (Laughs) Aback I formed as an exec, I anticipation I would assignment best if I agilely sat abaft a board and did what I was told. I’ve alone afresh started to use my affable attributes to its advantage. I’ve amorphous to coin my own aisle and career application this accomplishment as adjoin to afterward a added acceptable path. Afterwards capitalizing on my congenital extroverted-ness, I’ve become added assertive of myself and, in the process, accept been offered added administration roles. However, with abundant ability comes abundant responsibility! I’ve occasionally had to accomplish the abhorred best of continuing up to assertive able bodies – mostly to assure added women in this industry. I won’t go into the capacity today, maybe one day in my memoir, but these adventures accept apprenticed me to accommodate added women-to-women mentoring assignment in the admirable arrangement of things.
Coming aback to my change in the aftermost two decades or so – I anticipate a lot of bodies acclimated to assort me professionally. For instance, in my aboriginal canicule in New York, bodies knew me as that woman with the camera. Again in Mumbai, bodies aloof knew me as a blur adviser with an American accent. In LA, I was alone as the “India person.” I’m generally asked to accompany a activity artlessly because it’s set in India. But luckily, I’m an acute extrovert. Even if I don’t absolutely bell with the adventure and characters, I still try my best to acquaint association to added able colleagues and accompany who would be bigger ill-fitted for the project.
The 2020 COVID lockdown helped me stop, anticipate and apprehend that my accurate passions in activity are abutting the dots, association building, and advancement the underdog. Absolutely accepting into the base of a adventure and allowance to acquaint them in different fashions and mediums.
Q) Speaking of which, you accept a podcast advancing out?A) Yes, I’m appreciative to allotment the barrage of a new podcast alternation with JetSynthesys and Warner Music India alleged “EkWomen,” area my aide Monika and I will be showcasing alarming belief of South Asian Women and the challenges and hurdles they’ve faced as they’ve climbed the ladder of success.
Q) By the way, I’ll absolutely be affairs that account you mentioned beforehand – already you abode it! What trend in women empowerment do you acknowledge of late?A) One of the contempo phenomena I absolutely acknowledge is all-embracing one’s femininity. I was alert to Jake Gyllenhaal on Howard Stern afresh talking about how he’s apparent Maggie Gyllenhaal abound as a administrator afterwards acceptable a mother. Sherry Lansing additionally refers to trends like this at the end of her adventures – and that we’re no best women aggressive adjoin added women for that one job. In fact, we don’t charge to abrasion a clothing to be taken seriously; I mean, attending at my blush hair! As a woman in blur today, I’m so beholden for the women who’ve absolutely paved the way for us in this industry, admitting I feel like we charge to accumulate blame the boundaries in agreement of what we can activity and accompany to the table.
Q) I’m so animated StartWith8Hollywood commutual us together! What’s been the best accomplishing allotment of mentorship so far!A) Thanks, Jennifer! I’ve absolutely acquired a lot from affair you, too! I accept that mentorship is a two-way street, and both parties account equally. During COVID, I accomplished in abetment and coaching, so aback I assignment with my mentees, I agenda one hour blocks of time to apprentice about their backgrounds, abode accepted hurdles, and end the 60-minutes with a abeyant activity plan. I try my best not to spoon-feed my mentees with solutions, admitting the astronomic buck in me does accept a little addiction to coddle! I additionally animate pivoting and cerebration alfresco of the box, such as adapting to new media technologies as a agency for storytelling.
Mentoring has benefited me abundantly – case in point, the activity I’m now developing with you! It additionally keeps me on my toes and in tune with the zeitgeist. I generally acquisition myself acquirements as abundant from my mentees as I do with my own mentors! I achievement to advance a mentor-mentee ecosystem via “EkWomen,” and throughout India, area I’m encouraged by the acceleration of women-oriented able groups.
Q) This was a alluring interview, Medha, and the chips and salsa are so good!A) Cheers! Here’s to the activity we’re developing calm and advancing added women in film!The account has been done by Jennifer Kim, who is an award-winning biographer and announcer based in Los Angeles and repped by Industry Entertainment. (ANI)
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