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RISK TAKERS: PEAKS AND VALLEYS- Even When The Production Is In The Clouds, It's Good To Stay Grounded

Posted By Administration, Monday, August 10, 2015

Lauren Selig
SHAKE AND BAKE PRODUCTIONS | Los Angeles, CA

Executive Producer:
Black Mass
Everest
Meadowland
Lone Survivor
 

Every producer has at least one "movie that changed my life.”  What’s yours, and why?

My parents took me to see Out of Africa when I was so little my knees didn’t bend over the edge of the theatre seats. I remember thinking that a three-hour movie would be the worst experience of my childhood. Let’s just say my butt didn’t move off that chair. I was mesmerized. Hooked.


Goodness knows, there are easier and more reliable ways to make a living than by financing films.What draws you to film as a business opportunity?

I love the idea that stories last forever. Very few industries have that longevity and power. That said, from a business perspective, this industry sucks. Stick to technology or real estate, or be an entrepreneur. This biz can be insane. A good day is when someone does the courtesy of telling you they’re about to f**k you over just before they do.


What’s the most recent project you’ve backed?What got you excited about it?

I’m so excited about Everest. So many of my earliest memories involve camping, rock climbing and the outdoors. It’s a more personal movie to me, as many of my friends were on Everest in the days the film is set. I think Cross Creek is one of the best production companies out there, like a family you want to be part of. And of course, The Downslope, which Stanley Kubrick wrote; it’s hard to deny his incredible work. The truth is, I was most excited making my daughter’s home movies with her friends. A priceless experience, and the talent had "momagers” I liked.


What’s the biggest risk you’ve taken?And which project(s) had the most gratifying payoff?

The biggest risk I have taken was moving to LA in the first place after my husband passed away, out of the blue. I had two kids in tow and was starting a new career and new life from scratch, with only the support of my family and a few close friends like Alex Brunner at UTA. As cliché as it is, my kids are the biggest, most gratifying payoff. That and the fact that I haven’t yet run kicking and screaming from this town.


What are the essential qualities you look for in a producing partner?What flaws are you willing to overlook?

Essentials for me are honesty and outside-the-box thinking—two qualities that are becoming exceedingly rare in this industry. As for flaws … wait, people in this business have flaws? Gosh, I hadn’t noticed.




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