1) What advice do you have for new directors? 

2) What advice can you offer to up-and-coming producers? 

3) Learning is an ongoing process even for the most seasoned producer. Would you share a recent lesson learned on the job, perhaps related to a project involving new technology (i.e., VR, AR, AI, etc.) or another experience? 

4) What recent project are you particularly proud of—and why? You can include a direct link to it. 

Mike Lobikis
Executive Producer
Mass Appeal

1) Don’t make spec spots, it’s like playing tennis without the net. If you’re making something without a client, tell stories that are important to you, not what you think other people will want to see. Surround yourself with people who care about you on a personal level, and who will challenge you. Early on, you’re going to need people who believe in you and who will make sacrifices for you to get you where you want to be. Later in your career, you’ll need them to be very real with you if you want to stay sharp.

2) Looking for new, innovative, faster, more efficient ways to produce is always important, perhaps now more than ever. Having said that, it’s crucial to remember that there is a process to creating great advertising content. You can only cut so many corners before it starts showing up on screen. Trust the process. Protect the craft. Give great filmmakers and creatives the space to do what they do best.

3) I have always tried to learn as much as I can from experienced EPs that I’ve been around, and among the many things I’ve learned the two that stick out are: Think fast and think ahead. Production is not unlike poker in that you always want to be pushing the action. That doesn’t mean that you’re manipulating or forcing things, it just means that you’re thinking ahead about what a client or director might ask for and you’re preparing for that 3 steps ahead. I feel like I’m re-learning this lesson all the time and constantly finding new ways to think faster and think ahead.

4) I love the project we just completed for SoundCloud, launching their first brand campaign. We shot with seven artists (including Kehlani, Galimatias, and Taylor Bennett) in three cities and produced films, stills, and audio ads for the brand. We were able to collaborate from the jump and develop creative together. It allowed us to flex all of the MassAppeal’s muscles and put our unique fingerprint on the project.

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