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Victor Migalchan is a Hollywood actor, director, producer, investor and the CEO of Movieverse Entertainment which creates movies and shows around the world.
And while the COVID-19 pandemic may have caused some productions and people out of work, that wasn’t the case for Victor and his team. With some of his current projects slated to come out soon that include My American Family (season 2), Modern Kung Fu and a new cooking show entitled, Dragon Chef, Victor has been busier than ever.
We caught up with him to learn more.
What is the biggest issue you see happening right now in the entertainment industry?
Right now I see it in a bit of chaos. It is adjusting to new rules, conditions and environment.
There are a few segments or layers of it. First, I'd say, it is talent, managers and agents. Many of them advise the talents of something that is in the past. Now it is a new era and, instead of advising to take headshots, get some acting classes and they will submit them, by clicking, on a casting profile, talents should focus their work and resources on building their own name, become hot on the market, develop their own "est", to be the strongest, the funniest, etc. Not a plein regime, copied from the 90s-2000. Now there are so many platforms to show and broadcast your talent, gain this value. Recent fights of Jake Paul are a great example.
The industry is adjusting to new rules of filming with limited amounts of people, tests, even forced vaccination. We are on our way to something new, the process isn't finalized yet.
On one hand I see that smaller productions are getting more opportunities because they have smaller crews and are more mobile. On the other hand, it feels like the circles of large productions, studios and their "entourage" is becoming tighter, so for new talents, who want to get in, it might be more difficult, unless they come with real and impressive value, whether it's money, connections, media, distribution etc.
I was proud to be selected as a judge of the EMMY awards in 2021, and I feel like we might witness scarcity in film production and we will have some new changes. Hopefully we can get back to normal and understand, using common sense, what is what. But it's just my hope.
How have you personally been navigating the industry since the start of the pandemic?
My navigation in the industry since the start of the pandemic was pretty efficient. We had to stop filming as per instructions of the US Government and the Union, so we went into post production. I was able to keep my team safe and at the same time, work never stopped. We had not only successfully presented season 1 of the My American Family TV series, with Danny Trejo and Michelle Waterson, which is streaming on Amazon Prime; We prepared and when we were allowed we filmed season 1 of a cooking show "Dragon Chef", a new show "Modern Kungfu". I believe that time is the most precious gift we have and should never be wasted. The pandemic I used with 100% efficiency, working on these 2 shows, my book in which I describe how I created and produced my show, it may be a rare practical guide into the industry, with not too much water; also we started developing an educational animation series for children.
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What new projects are you working on right now, and have any been delayed because of the pandemic?
Currently we are working on further distribution of the 1st season of My American Family. After our successful presentation and premiere in the USA, we started showing our show in the UK; next week we are signing an agreement with Brazil, then China, then the EU. After all these countries and regions are broadcasting our show we will start working on season 2. In the meantime we are finishing the postproduction of the season 1 of the Cooking Show "Dragon Chef", pilot of the "Modern Kungfu" TV series. We signed a collaboration with EMMY Winner Nicolas Coster and will be producing 2 of his feature films; we plan to have the pilot of the animation series for children by December and in November we plan to film a holiday musical, which will unite people of different cultures and nationalities. Of course, while working on all these projects, I keep working on my book. We also signed a distribution agreement with China on animation and will be able to help small and medium size businesses in their development and sales.
What are the main tips you would give others who are working in film/TV right now?
The main tip which I'd like to give is to stay in touch with the reality of the market, and not only domestic but global. There are topics, stories and information which viewers (the market) wants and there are those which the viewers need. When you begin - you produce what the market wants, the more powerful you become - you will produce what the world actually needs. Depending on different specialties in filmmaking (actor/actress, producer, director, writer etc) there could be many different tips, which I describe in my book. The main ones would be to develop skills, personal brand and it's value on the market, at the same time keeping up with proper education which correlates with the changes in the industry and on the market, being professional, realistic, humble, with good working ethics and attitude. Ego, as one of the main issues in this specific industry, should be calmed down really well.
What have been some of your favorite actors to work alongside?
Since I moved from New York to Los Angeles in 2015 and started working in the industry I met a lot of great and accomplished actors, athletes etc. Among those were Arnold Schwarzennegger, "Sugar" Ray Leonard, Oscar De La Hoya, Michael Buffer, Michal Jae White, etc and of course, Michelle Waterson and the one and only Danny Trejo. There are many great and accomplished people, however when I was developing the story of "My American Family" I had Danny Trejo in my mind right away, together with another actor who I believe has potential to become a movie star - Steve Jacques. I had Mr Trejo and Steve in my mind before the story was born. Working with Mr Trejo was an amazing experience. We met a while ago, and right then I learned about the huge heart Mr Trejo has, his deep inner world and philosophical beliefs. He contributes to the community a lot and his life story is inspiring. I had a great pleasure to work with, probably one of the most humble Hollywood A- listers. Working with Michelle Waterson was also super light and a lot of fun. It is the truth that the more accomplished the person is, the more humble and real this person is. For the next season we plan to have more Hollywood celebrities invited, their names we keep secret at the moment. In general I'd love to work with Meryl Streep, Johnny Depp, Jason Statham, Jeremy Piven, Sylvester Stallone, directors Guy Ritchie, Doug Ellin, Martin Scorsese, James Cameron, Steven Spielberg, etc
Do you feel movie theatres are a thing of the past and online streaming is the future? Or what are your views on this?
Movie theatres are definitely suffering now, therefore I believe that when it's ok we should go and support them. I could never substitute a movie theatre with a streaming platform. It's like substituting a book with a pdf version which you read from an ipad, or an email vs a letter, or an e-card vs a postcard. The feeling is different. I'm old school in my beliefs and views so I cherish real things, traditions, real people, touch with the world and common sense. So many people are living in the online world, whether it's tv or video games or social media. Pandemic pushed it even more. I believe, for the sake of the health of humanity, we need to find balance and get back more to nature and reality.
Anything else you'd like to add entertainment-based?
Entertainment business as a platform is shifting. I'm describing a lot in my book "How I created and produced my first tv show", but briefly I see that there are two main titans, one of which is great for branding and establishment; another one is a great market with it's growing potential which no other market in the world has. Who will be able to catch this and get into it properly, be flexible but strong like water - will not just survive, but win.