Love What You Do
Episode 5: Mark Ordesky - Hollywood Film & TV Producer from Court Five Productions
Happiness is not a goal. Purpose and meaning are things to aspire to and if you’re going to bump into happiness, you’re more likely to bump into it pursuing purpose and meaning.
I’m super excited about my next guest, Hollywood film & TV producer Mark Ordesky probably best known for executive producing the Oscar-winning LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy. We met a number of years ago at a café I was working at – and also through mutual friends. At the time I had just finished acting in my first major feature film, and since meeting him I have always found his openness, energy and insight super interesting and up-lifting. I couldn’t miss this opportunity to share such a wealth of wisdom with you guys! Especially bc I know we’re all gunning to make a success of doing what we love.
This episode is jam packed with so much insight and practical advice you don’t wanna miss it!
No matter what industry, product or service you are in, everything he talks about can be applied and substituted for your own situation or vocation – whether you’re in fashion, coffee, architecture, small business, or creating a product…. You’ll definitely be inspired and motivated to perhaps look at another perspective.
From his thoughts on how he dealt with people suggesting that he had peaked too soon after making the Lord Of The Rings Trilogy, the lessons he learned from not only his HUGE successes but more so his “failures” - you’ll understand when you hear which Hollywood movies he failed to acquire – (I loved this bit!), his beliefs about purpose, “Mutually beneficial self interests”, and his perspective on what to do if money walked in the door right now! SOOOOO much more with great anecdotes too!
I’ll let you decide what the biggest take away from this podcast is…because there is one thing in particular Mark said, that has stuck with me since we spoke…
“I knew I loved enabling artists.”
More info on Mark
Mark Ordesky is a film and television producer and former Hollywood studio executive.
I first met Mark in London in 2007 where he was executive producing THE GOLDEN COMPASS and INKHEART. We shared coffee regularly at Mark’s Soho local, Flat White & Milkbar (I was usually making it), and discovered we had lots of friends in common so It’s great to have him on the podcast!
He’s probably best known for executive producing the Oscar-winning LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy – during which Mark spent the better part of five years in New Zealand supporting his friend Peter Jackson’s historic vision. He also met his Kiwi wife, Rachel O’Connell, there. The two split their time between Los Angeles and Masterton NZ -- where they own a 10-acre “lifestyle block” – what Kiwis call a “hobby farm.” - no, not a hobbit farm, a hobby farm! ;)
While growing up at indie studio New Line Cinema in the 90s and early aughts, Mark acquired or executive produced over 60 films, including the company’s first Best Picture nominee (SHINE) and it’s first Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival (Lars von Trier’s DANCER IN THE DARK). Mark also helped introduce Jackie Chan to U.S. audiences with the breakout hit “Rumble In The Bronx” while simultaneously championing films from cinema icons such as Terrence Malick, David Mamet, John Waters and Liliana Cavanni.
Now for a second act, he co-runs his own independent production company (called Court Five Productions) – making film and TV content for traditional Hollywood studios and broadcasters as well as global streamers like Netflix, Disney+ and Amazon. All this gives Mark a long view on the challenges and opportunities facing creators today.
He jokingly refers to Hollywood as his “Bruce Wayne life” because, as Batman, he has a side hustle documenting his preparedness lifestyle design at http://readyissexy.com/. Considering that earthquakes are a regular feature of Los Angeles and Mark’s adopted New Zealand, it’s not surprising.
You don’t want to miss this episode!