Producer Bruce Edwin Discusses Sexism, Life, Death, and Hollywood
Moira Cue is a multi-media artist who sings, paints, writes, and acts. She will be debuting her first music video for one of her new singles later this year.
Bruce Edwin is a film producer, talent manager, writer and publisher, and public relations expert. He is CEO of Starpower Management LLC, and publishing editor of The Hollywood Sentinel, the free entertainment site which publishes only the good news. More about him can be read in his biography in the link at the bottom of this story. The following is rare and exclusive interview with Bruce Edwin conducted by Moira Cue.
Moira Cue: What is the hardest thing you have ever had to go through in the entertainment industry?
Bruce Edwin: The most difficult thing would have been dealing with difficult people who were rude or trouble makers, or those who that I later discovered were psycho, and not handling that correctly which made things worse, or not accurately predicting their characteristics from the beginning and ceasing to avoid dealing with them to begin with. That lack of ability to predict certain insane human behavior created many problems. The good news is that based on further education, experience, and new firm policy implemented, I have learned how to better spot psychos or those who want to create problems, or whose personal life is full of drama which effects every thing and every one around them, and I now cease to deal with these drama queens to begin with, or if they manifest their craziness later on, I immediately terminate dealing with them before they can contaminate me or the business.
Moira Cue: What is the biggest misconception about being a producer?
Bruce Edwin: The biggest misconception about being a producer is that it's all glitz and glamor and that any one can do it. Most of it is a lot of countless hours spent alone over paperwork, and countless phone calls among more, and only a select percent out there really have the guts and tenacity and ability to do it and more importantly, to do it well.
Moira Cue: Can any one call themselves a producer?
Bruce Edwin: Yes, any one an call themselves a producer, but that does not mean that they are one. I can call myself God, but that hardly means I am, and I won't be fooling any one. To be a producer, one has to produce, and that is more than just calling yourself a producer. It is not an action verb, like a swimmer. It is not merely something one thinks they are and then automatically is. Instead, it is a complex and varied profession that requires many skills on an increasingly higher gradient level that one implements if one does it at all. Further, there are various areas of the producer job. For example, one may excel at finding deals, another may excel at packaging them, another may excel at closing them. One producer may not have the best people skills, but may be a genius with financial scenarios and complexities. It is a wide and varied field. A producer is made- not born.
Moria Cue: Is producing regulated, and if so by who?
Yes, producing is regulated by the local government in terms of one having their own business as a producer. In addition to that, producing is regulated by the federal government through the body known as The Securities and Exchange Commission which effectively controls how producing deals of substantial magnitude- in terms of financing offers- may be presented to another party or not, and under what terms and conditions.
Moira Cue: That's interesting. What is the worst way to kill a deal?
Bruce Edwin: The worst way to kill a deal is by lying. I don't care how much I love a script or a film package, if I discover someone on a deal- that can not be removed from a deal- that lies to any degree about any facet of the deal, I will run. There is so much smoke and mirrors in Hollywood, that it is actually a rarity to find a great film deal that is packaged that is not encumbered, or that is not a false representation of what is said that it is. For example, years ago, one producer I knew who has actually had a string of successes with films funded, once told me that a major star was attached to one of his deals. After talking with the stars' agent, I discovered that this was not true, and the producer later admitted to me that the star had not even read it. That is insane. So, to be truthful is a must to succeed.
Moira Cue: Do you have any regrets, if so, what is your biggest regret?
Bruce Edwin: This is a big question to me and one that deserves a big answer. I don't believe in feeling regret. To regret means that one feels bad over and mourns past actions, and there is no reason to feel bad about that which can not be changed. Most would agree that it is not good to feel permanently bad over the past. To do so, we would be miserable all of our lives. So, why feel bad for any duration of time over the past? I feel that if it is not desirable to always and indefinitely feel bad about the past, and so consequently it is not desirable to feel temporarily bad about it either- no time limit for it is acceptable or desirable.
To put this in to perspective for example, the motivational success speaker Brian Tracy once gave the analogy of a woman who was crying and upset. Someone asked her what was wrong. She explained that five years ago, she went on a picnic, and it rained. Mr. Tracy went on to explain that people would call this woman crazy, because she was still upset that it rained five years ago on her picnic. He went on to explain that to be upset over anything in the past, is equally crazy and not logical. It's no longer in present time. It is over, so stop letting it effect you. That's a brief explanation of why I say I do not believe in having regret.
With that said, certainly I have done things in the past and probably as recently as yesterday or even today that contained an error in my desired action or outcome, or at times may have been unkind. And for that I have felt what people consider to be 'sorry' and have been apologetic, and I will try to do better next time in the future. We are not perfect, and therefore, not every one of our actions will be perfection or perfectly aligned to our desirable outcome. We can analyze the situation, and correct it next time, instead of beating ourselves up over it.
And, I feel that we are biologically wired to feel remorse if we hurt another life, because I feel that we are biologically wired to be loving, good people. So, to hurt another is to go against life and our very own nature of life itself, so therefore, when we do, the pain of the universe kicks in it's judgement against us and we feel that- we feel bad. Some people try deliberately short circuit that feeling of remorse, or, they have been so hardened that they inadvertently have done so- buried that feeling.
So it is vitally important to be aware of the yin and the yang of the universe- of the fact that - if I do something bad to you, it will probably make me feel bad, or, worse for me- something bad may happen in turn back to me. That is actually a good thing- this nature of the universe, because it promotes survival. Humankind is hardwired for survival, and our basic goodness and basic desire to do good for ourselves and others is a part of that survival mechanism.
So, as long as we are not out there deliberately trying to do others wrong in present time, we should not beat ourselves up over past actions. To do so is masochism, and masochism is served best to be left in certain masochistic religions- not in a healthy life. I could explain a lot more concerning my philosophy on this, but hopefully this signifies to some degree a clear explanation of my answer.
Moira Cue: Thank you. What is your goal in producing, is it to make money or to bring great films in to being?
Bruce Edwin: My goal with producing is both, to make money, and to bring great films in to creation. If my goal were to only bring great films in to being, then I would be still be working in the underground film scene, in relative obscurity. While there is nothing wrong with that if that is what one wants, that is not longer my goal. My goal is to be financially successful doing what I love- making great films, that are seen by a large segment of the world which can have the greatest impact across the largest possible population.
Moira Cue: Is it true that Hollywood is still a boy's club?
Bruce Edwin: I think that out of many of the industries of labor or creative fields, Hollywood- much more than many- has provided more advantages to women and other minorities concerning less power, due to the generally prevalent liberalism of Hollywood. Granted, there has been a great deal of sexism in Hollywood, and the so called glass ceiling, with men at many times getting more pay for doing the same work as woman has existed and does exist, however, this is not isolated to the motion picture industry. I think that for those women who work hard and push hard, they have greater opportunities than ever to succeed in our industry and do just as much and just as well or better than any man- which they are by nature, capable of.
Even more importantly, what we put our attention on tends to persist. So, If I go around saying, an obstacle exists, obstacle exists, obstacle exists, well then- what do you think my experience will be based on that perception? I will generally encounter that obstacle. So, whether it is a boy's club or not- and I won't get in to the problem I have with that phrase on a linguistics level- whether it does or not, should not be the focus for a woman to succeed. The focus should be- I am the glass ceiling. I am the boys' club. I am the power- my will begins and ends with me, and baby, if I want it- I will get it!
Moira Cue: How has the industry changed since you've started?
Bruce Edwin: Technology has greatly changed things, and morals have declined. For one, hard copy submittals are virtually a thing of the past, virtual auditions are happening, and hard copy headshots and zed cards are barely needed. More and more print media has died, including with the trades, and the internet has become respected as a viable producing platform for film, TV, and music. The music industry has finally started to turn itself around a bit more, and now the majority of film dollars are made overseas and on DVD or other ancillary markets. Nudity and profanity has become more prevalent in media and on televison, gays have gotten more acceptance, and marijuana is being legalized at certain state or city levels and promoted. Also unfortunately, more pharmaceutical related deaths in our industry have occurred due to the push by these industries being more heavily marketed.
Moira Cue: What is the single most important thing you can do to maintain a positive mental attitude?
Bruce Edwin: For my self, it is a combination of things which include to daily do the following; listen to positive, self help, motivational lectures, sleep well each night, eat good, and work out daily. Also, to only surround my self with winners who are optimistic abut life, and to have a zero level of tolerance for oppression, insanity, and ignorance.
Who would you most like to work with in the industry and why?
Actually, all of my current clients and the other people I am already working with. I have a great number of massively talented and super successful people in my circle, and for that I am very fortunate and blessed. With that said, some other screenwriters, producers, and directors who I greatly admire are Martin Scorsese, David Lynch, Jean Luc Godard, Atom Egoyan, Quentin Tarantino, Oliver Stone, The Cohen Brothers, Alan Parker, Guillermo del Toro, Pedro Almadovar, Danny Boyle, and Sofia Coppola, for their fierce independence and artistry. Actors I admire are Sean Penn, Leonardo Decaprio, Naomi Watts, and Natalie Portman to name a few, for their range of emotion and mastery of their craft. Singers and bands I admire are Patti Smith, PJ Harvey, Depache Mode, Jane's Addiction, and The Cure to name a few, for their phenomenal body of consistently great work.
Do you believe in life after death?
Yes. To me, it's a scientific fact based on the laws of physics. Think of it like this if you will; If you burn something, such as a log for a fireplace, the log burns up and is no more, but its' energy turns in to heat from the flame and some of its' by-product goes up in the air as smoke, and yet more still turns to ash. It is no longer a log per se, but its' energy is still there- it's in the air as smoke, it's in the room as heat, it's in the pit as ash, it's a different energy and a different form, but you can't destroy that. You can't burn that log and make it have no ash, or make it have no heat or no smoke. It's existence has to turn in to something else. It has to turn in to some other form. Human beings are the same way. If we burn up, if we stop the energy that is this brain and this mind and this body- this human machine, all that energy has to go somewhere. Maybe a part of our mind could go in to a cloud, into some rain droplets, into a fire, or a storm, or into a new body, or a new realm, or wherever it goes, the fact is - energy does not end, it merely changes shape and form and substance, and it has to shift somewhere else. Energy is eternal as far as we know. Even if we split an atom apart, that energy goes off somewhere big.
So the question to me is not whether I believe in life after death- life after death to me is a scientific fact. The question to me is moreso, what manner of life after death do I believe in? And, can it be directed eternally or even in one subsequent lifetime with the force of ones will in the prior lifetime? Can the life after death be directed in a quantifiable manner so as to manifest a specific conscious or meta-conscious awareness, or even deliberate physical formation of a specific body type? And, can one train for and procure former life memory, and is that memory genetic or trained?
I think that these are the big questions we have to ask and may find scientific answers to, and ones that the great religions and great thinkers have pondered since the dawn of time- assuming time has a dawn-which I think it does. I believe that yes, we can train for the acquisition of previous life memory after death, and we can even train for physical or conscious manifestation of future life in forms desirable and imaginable. Based upon my two decades of study of philosophy, religion, metaphysics, and sciences, this to me is the logical and practical conclusion.
The office of Bruce Edwin and The Hollywood Sentinel do not endorse any advertising that may appear on this page or in connection with this story with the exception of Jimpressions.Film producer Bruce Edwin is publishing editor of The Hollywood Sentinel and President of Starpower Management, the celebrity model and talent firm. Contact Bruce Edwin at TheHollywoodSentinel.com. Read stories by Bruce Edwin.
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