Every great film and TV maker began as a Red Carpet Rookie. In this podcast each episode you’ll learn from the life and career story of someone who’s grown to the top of the entertainment business, hearing how they mastered their craft with lessons you can apply to harness your own creative talent in your own career and everyday life.
From lessons given by Spielberg to Oscar-winners tips on imposter syndrome, and some pretty crazy on-set anecdotes thrown in for good measure…
My name is Mike Battle a film crew member turned screenwriter and I’ll be your host…and this is Red Carpet Rookies.
#48 - John Zaozirny, Literary Manager on The ‘Magic’ That Makes a Hollywood Script, Screenwriting Lessons from Tony Gilroy, How He Finds Clients, Network Building, and Why Not to Write for the Market
36:56Hello and welcome to Red Carpet Rookies, today’s guest earned his early entertainment industry stripes working at Village Roadshow and Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company Appian Way, later transitioning to the world of literary management, where he has since set up his own management and production company Bellevue Productions.There his clients have had projects set up at Warner Brothers, Paramount Pictures, Fox, and more, some of which he has taken to producing himself, for example, Infinite starring Mark Wahlberg and Netflix’s Eli. My guest is John Zaozirny.
#47 - Rhys Thomas: Directing SNL, Secret Marvel Security Meetings, The Handiness of a British Accent, & Making Documentary Now with Bill Hader and Fred Armisen
47:45Born to a sleepy town in South Wales, after university, he swapped the countryside for the Big Apple where he made his name as the film unit director at New York institution, Saturday Night Live.In addition to his time at 30 Rock, he’s also managed to peel off and create the hilarious documentary satire series Documentary Now with friends Bill Hader, Fred Armisen and Seth Myers, and more recently, took a step into the Marvel Cinematic universe helming the pilot and multiple episodes of the hit Hawkeye TV show and much more. My guest is Rhys Thomas.
#46 - Sam Bain: Writing Peep Show, Crafting Four Lions With Chris Morris, Pre Success ‘Disasters’, Screenwriting Myths, And How Kids TV Made Him
29:47Hello and welcome to Red Carpet Rookies.I’m very excited to introduce today’s guest who cut his teeth working on the British children’s TV that made up my childhood with shows like The Queens Nose, Tracey Beaker and My Parents are Aliens, before transitioning to his own creations like Fresh Meat and most notably the one and only, the great Peep Show which he co-created with longtime collaborator Jesse Armstrong and won a BAFTA for.In the years since he has had a lauded and varied career with work on projects including Chris Morris’s incredible category of one terroism-based comedy Four Lions, material for The Thick of It and more recently, even his own movies such as Corporate Animals with Demi Moore and The Stand In with Drew Barrymore.My guest is Sam Bain.
#45 - Julian Caldow: Designing Tim Burton’s Batmobile, World Building Game of Thrones, Bond Gadgets, Proof of Work, & The James Cameron KY Jelly Incident
38:30Today’s guest began his career working as a runner on James Cameron’s legendary action movie Aliens but found his home in the art department where he honed the skill of concept art becoming one of the foremost illustrators in the business.With a resume that includes movies such as Star Wars Rogue Rogue, The Martian, Gravity, Casino Royale, Tim Burton’s Batman, Game of Thrones and even a few Harry Potters thrown in for good measure, I’m looking forward to delving into his creative process.My guest is Julian Caldow.
#44 - Charles Steel: Producing Top Boy, Meetings With Drake, Importance of Hustle, Finding Your Why, & Putting Jude Law on a Russian Submarine
31:50Today’s guest has one of the most varied resumes of anyone in the film and TV business. Having produced everything from megahit Top Boy to winning a BAFTA for The Last King of Scotland, making documentaries and more, I can’t wait to hear his story and learn from his journey to success in the industry.He also has one of the coolest names of any guest I’ve ever had!My guest is Charles Steel.
#43 - Adam Epstein: Editing The Bear's Best Episode, The Addictive Life of Saturday Night Live, Compounding Relationships & The Music of Editing
28:54Hello and welcome to Red Carpet Rookies.Today’s guest is a first for a the show. Someone who began his career in the world of comedy editing. With eight years at the legendary Saturday Night Live to his name, he’s been in the cutting room for skits featuring Margot Robbie as a murderous librarian, Ed Norton in a Wes Anderson themed horror movie parody, Andrew Garfield as a Beyonce Fan on the run and so many more.Whilst there he picked up two primetime emmy nominations before moving onto more recent shows including Tina Fey’s Mr Mayor and breakout culinary hit, The Bear. My guest is Adam Epstein.
#42 - Juliet Taylor: Legendary Casting Director on Taxi Driver & The Exorcist, Discovering Meryl Streep, Spielberg's Pot Smoking 80s Crew, Career Luck, Woody Allen, & Collaborating With A Holocaust Survivor on Schindler’s List
36:34Today’s guest is one of the most notable casting directors in the history of movie making.Beginning her career under the tutelage of legendary casting director Marion Doughtery, our guest then transitioned to making a name for herself and by god did she.Now retired, during her epic career she was responsible for the casting of films including but not limited to, DEEP BREATH NOW - Taxi Driver, Schindler’s List, The Exorcist, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Network, Terms of Endearment, Big, The Killing Fields, Dangerous Liaisons, The Mission and Sleepless in Seattle. Not to mention her longstanding collaboration of over 40 movies with Woody Allen including Annie Hall and Manhattan AND finally she was also the woman to cast Meryl Street in her first motion picture.My guest is Juliet Taylor.
#41 - Andy Horwitz: Assisting Christopher Nolan's Producer on The Dark Knight, Getting Kathryn Bigelow into Brazil, Producing American Hustle & How A Movie Script Gets Bought
39:53Today’s guest began his filmmaking career under the tutelage of legendary Producer Charles Roven where he was a producer’s assistant on Hollywood blockbusters such as Get Smart, The International and of course, Christopher Nolan’s, The Dark Knight.Following his apprenticeship, he was swiftly promoted through the ranks of Atlas Entertainment, soon becoming a leading producer for the company working on projects such as American Hustle, Triple Frontier and Suicide Squad.Now heading up his own exciting new venture, Big Swell Entertainment it’s a pleasure to have him here.My guest is Andy Horwitz.
#40 - Ali Plumb: Life as BBC Radio 1's Film Critic, Career Authenticity, Creating Great Media and How to Interview Harrison Ford
29:58Today’s guest earned his early entertainment industry stripes working as a journalist for publications including Digital Spy and Empire before gaining what must be one of the world’s most fun jobs as Radio 1’s very own film critic, a position he has held since 2016.Since then, his career has only risen with recent projects such as hosting the red carpet of a little-known awards show called the BAFTAS and the BBC’s new series ‘The Film Fans Guide’.My guest is Ali Plumb.
#39 - Chris Lang: Writing Record-Breaking TV with Unforgotten, Screenwriting Rituals, Finding Humanity in Murderers, and Dealing With Failure in the Entertainment Business
29:42Today’s guest is the king of British detective drama writing. Having discovered his talent for the written word whilst in a comedy troupe with a pre-movie star Hugh Grant, my guest later transitioned to drama where he has produced over 100 hours of primetime television including a multitude of hits including Innocent, which pulled in EIGHT MILLION viewers on ITV, The Thief His Wife and the Canoe which was watched by TEN million in 2022 and picked up our guest a BAFTA nomination as well as a pick of the year slot in The New York Times and of course his soon to be 6th series of record-breaking detective drama Unforgotten.Along the way, according to his IMDB at least, he also appears to have had a stint as a voice actor in the Harry Potter video game series. What can’t he do?! My guest is Mr Chris Lang