Interview with Hrisheek Panchmatia

Written by Divine Magazine

Hrisheek Panchmatia is a film Producer who has been on projects such as ‘Get Lost’, (Terrance Howard, James Cromwell), Ridley Scott’s ‘House of Gucci’, (Lady Gaga & Al Pacino), and ‘Napoleon’. He associates produced ‘The Runner’ which has won multiple awards such as “Best Feature film at London Independent Film Festival, Best Thriller Film at Paris Film Festival etc. I am also managing up and coming talent such as Ella Travolta, daughter of John Travolta as well as up and coming Netflix star Jan Luis Castellanos.

Tell us a bit about you and how you ended up in Entertainment.

That’s a funny story because I was close to not ending up in the Entertainment Industry at all. I was born and raised in Hong Kong, studying Economics and Finance and entered the Finance Industry. I always had a passion within filmmaking but didn’t quite know the best way to approach a career in this field. Upon graduation I realized that if I didn’t try it now, I would most likely never get the chance. So, I have gave myself 6 months to go to LA to learn more about the industry and what opportunities lie within it. Those 6 months have now turned into over 3 years, and I am extremely proud of the accomplishments I have achieved. I have been fortunate to work on several projects with A-list talent such as House of Gucci as well as assist as well as manage 3 rising star actors and at the same time having multiple features various stages of production.

Give us some details about a typical day in the life of *YOU*

I am currently on location in London shooting a film for Apple. I manage one of the actors, and usually spend the morning making sure that everything is ready and that he’s all set to go for his shoot day. Then I usually check my emails to see what has been going on in the US either for other projects I am developing or my other actor clients and their work. The rest of my day usually involves reading scripts, running strategy meetings with actors and producers and reviewing footage from the latest film that I have been on.

What do you think has been your greatest experience in the industry?

My greatest experience within the industry has been getting to watch Sir Ridley Scott work.  Having been a fan of his for so many years it was such a surreal thing and such a pinch me moment.  The scale of his productions is beyond anything that I had experienced before so it was truly a great moment.  I also got to spend last summer in Budapest on a shoot which was absolutely amazing. We shot everything on live locations, so we really got to explore the entire city.  We were all staying in the same area as well, so it really felt like we were on a foreign exchange program in Budapest which was really cool.

What motivates you?

Definitely the people around me. I am fortunate enough to work with such talented individuals such as Edouard Philipponnat (House of Gucci, Napoleon), Ella Travolta (Get Lost, The Poison Rose) and Jan Luis Castellanos (Tall Girl 2, 13 Reasons Why) who are so driven and hungry in their respective fields that it really pushes me as well. Seeing their success and how much they have grown since we started working together is a huge motivator and makes me want to strive for more not just for myself but for them as well.

Do you have a motto or a mantra you apply to either work, life, or both?

It’s not a mantra or motto per say but someone told me something very interesting in regard to stressful stations which I try to apply in my day to day life and that is “If it is not going to matter in five years, then it is not worth stressing more than five minutes about”. I think this is such an important quote especially in the entertainment industry which is so incredibly fast paced, and you have so many things constantly coming at you, it is a useful way of being able to step back, evaluate and make logical and pragmatical decisions.

What’s your way of hunting talents and building effective working teams to achieve great results?

I have been incredibly fortunate in the sense that I haven’t really had to hunt for talent so far. The partnerships and relations I have formed have been very organic. However, I have learnt a lot about building effective teams and the most important thing that I found is to make sure that there is a sense of trust and communication between all team members. That in my opinion can make or break a team. In an industry like this one, it is extremely important to communicate truthfully. Your team’s trust is incredibly valuable. That in my opinion is what will ultimately help everyone achieve success.

What was the driving force behind you wanting to become a producer?

I had always wanted to be in the Entertainment Industry so when I was exploring the various opportunities within it, I was drawn to producing due to the fact that I felt like the skills that I had acquire during my time in Finance were transferable to this field too. I believed that this career path would allow me to work on projects that were meaningful to me while at same time using strengths that I naturally had. Producing is all about day to day problem solving. The truth is every day on a production set is unique and will bring with it unique problems that need fixing. You can never get too comfortable, but at the same time, it’s exciting to walk on set and think, “I wonder what today will be like”. It is a hard feeling to describe if you have never been on a film set, but the energy is something else. When becoming a producer, a friend of mine from the industry told me, “If you’re unsure about wanting to become a producer, go on set. There you’ll know the answer within seconds”. Needless to say, when that day came, I found my true passion.

What’s coming up next for you?

I am involved with the postproduction of the film ‘Get Lost’ which we shot last summer, our editor Jeremiah O’Driscoll and director Daniela Amavia are doing a fantastic job and it’s shaping up to be something incredibly special. I’m also producing two television shows based off New York Times Bestselling novels, as well as packaging a feature film that is in development with an Academy Award nominated writer attached. The project is very much under wraps at the moment, but if all goes smoothly, we will be shooting not too far from Hong Kong early next year which would be a dream come true.

What was the last TV series you watched?

I have been watching the latest of Drive to Survive, I love Formula 1 so this is always a fun show for me to watch. For those who aren’t familiar with this sport, this is a great way to get into it.

If you could learn any language fluently, what would it be?

My answer to this always changes. But right now, it would probably be French. Because of work I have spending a lot of time in the South of France over the last year, and I only know about 5 words so I would choose French.

Are you a valuable asset on a Pub Quiz team?

Yes, absolutely I am an expert at sneakily googling answers under the table.

If you were talking to a younger version of you, what advice would you give yourself?

Probably to just take it easy and not stress out as much. To remember that everything has a way of working out and just to work hard and enjoy the process.

And lastly would you rather be the one in a movie who gets the hero/heroine or the baddie with all the good lines?

Definitely, the baddie with all good lines. No one does it better than Heath Ledger’s Joker.


© 2022, Divine Magazine. All rights reserved.

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