PODCAST: CHAD HARTIGAN & MARKEES CHRISTMAS ON MORRIS FROM AMERICA

Morris From America

Morris From America

Morris From America is a coming-of-age film about a young American teen in Germany. The movie is told from a 13-year old boy’s perspective and how he tries to fit in with his German school mates and falls in love with an older teenager.

The film screened at this year’s San Francisco International Film Festival which is where we caught up with director and writer Chad Hartigan and Markees Christmas, who makes his debut in the film as a young, 13-year old teen. Hartigan and Christmas take us behind the scenes and share how they prepared and shot this film. One of the highlights of the film is the music track and Hartigan explains how Keegan DeWitt composed the rap and EDM/electronic music for Morris From America.

LISTEN: CHAD HARTIGAN & MARKEES CHRISTMAS ON MORRIS FROM AMERICA

Morris From America has biographical elements from Hartigan’s life. He moved from Cyprus to the USA when he was 13 years old. This is Hartigan’s third feature film.

Morris From America released in San Francisco Bay Area on August 26, 2016. The film stars Craig Robinson, Markees Christmas, Carla Juri, Lina Keller and Jakub Gierszal.

  • Title:MORRIS FROM AMERICA
  • Running Time: 91 minutes
  • Status: Released in the USA  
  • Country: USA/GERMANY
  • Genre: COMEDY

 

VIDEO: VINOD DHAM ON TECHNOLOGY & COMING TO AMERICA

Ever wondered how Vinod Dham got the moniker  “The Father of The Pentium Chip?”  Well, we did and got an opportunity to talk to Dham on how he got this moniker. We were also curious to find out  how he developed his interest in science and technology. What brought him to America? How did come to Silicon Valley in the 1970s to work at Intel and eventually in other hardware companies?

After graduating from Delhi School of Engineering in India, Dham worked for a hardware company in Delhi before coming to America for his graduate studies in the Midwest. He had to buy a map from Connaught Place to find out where exactly his university was located in America. His first job in America was at NCR, a pioneering company in Ohio before he  headed west to Silicon Valley in the 1970s. It was in Silicon Valley that Dham established a name for himself in the hardware space. He eventually became an investor and is now the co-founder of a startup called Acadgild.

Tune in to find out all this and more about Dham on coming to America and his work in tech industry.

This interview aired on TV in the US.

VIDEO: DANIELLE APPLESTONE & VINOD DHAM GEEK OUT ON DESKTOP MILLING MACHINES

What happens when you bring two engineers together to talk about a desktop milling machine? Excited is a mild understatement to describe how they geek out over product. Watch how Danielle Applestone and Vinod Dham geek out over Other Machine’s desktop milling machine in this video interview. They discuss how this desktop milling machine changes the timeline for V mother boards and other Internet of Things products. The machine opens a whole new way of manufacturing and reduces the time to market as Dham points out.

Applestone is the CEO of Other Machine and Dham is an engineer, investor and entrepreneur and is often known as “Father of Pentium Chip.”

Stay tuned for a longer interview with Dham and Applestone.

VIDEO: KEN FLORANCE OF NETFLIX ON BINGE WATCHING, BUDDHISM, MUSIC & TECHNOLOGY

Meet Ken Florance, Vice President of Content Delivery at Netflix. We sat down to speak with him about how we get to binge watch all those pictures and shows from Netflix. How do they do that? As a kid Florance was more interested in literature, philosophy and music. How did he segue and chart this career in the tech industry?

And, then we switched gear and talk about his counter-culture lifestyle as a teenager and a young man. He was a huge fan of The Grateful Dead and traveled thousands of miles to attend their concerts around the USA. Florance is a practicing Buddhist and plays the sitar. What drew him to Buddhism? It was an interview by John MacLaughlin with the Dalai Lama that started his journey towards Buddhism and meditation. How did he come to learn sitar from Ashwin Batish of Santa Cruz?  Tune in to find out.

VIDEO: CHEF NAREN THIMMAIAH OF KARAVALLI, TAJ GATEWAY IN BANGALORE

Karavalli is your ticket to taste the wonderful cuisine of Southwestern coastal region of India. Chef Naren Thimmaiah of Karavalli at Taj Gateway in Bangalore takes us through a quick culinary tour of this region that is a rich tapestry of different communities. Each community has a rich repertoire of dishes that use a wonderful and complex mix of spices ranging from pepper to cloves, cardamoms, anise seed and cinnamon. Bland is not a term that comes to mind when you taste the food from this region.

Chef Thimmaiah’s association with Karavalli goes back to the early days of Karavalli. This was first of its kind restaurant in Bangalore that showcased the homestyle cooking of Southwestern India. Many of the dishes served in the restaurant were sourced from various homemakers in this region that stretches from Kerala to Goa and includes Mangalore and Coorg regions of Karnataka.

VIDEO: NACHIKETA YAKKUNDI ON HINDUSTANI MUSIC

Nachiketa Yakkundi is an engineer in Silicon Valley. When he has not tethered to a computer, Yakkundi spends all his spare time pursuing his passion for Hindustani music, North Indian traditional classical music. He teaches music at Rajguru Sangeet Vidyaniketan school of music. He frequently collaborates with Naatak, a SIlicon Valley-based theatre group.

In this short interview we get a quick 101 on Hindustani music like what is a raga?  Is there a western equivalent to raga? Tune in to find out.

We have a longer interview coming up with Yakkundi where we talk about his journey to America, how he learnt music, his guru Padmabhushan Pandit Basavraj Rajguru in Dharwad. Dharwad is home to well-known Hindustani singers and has a rich musical legacy. Yakkundi frequently collaborates with  and working with Naatak, a Silicon Valley-based South Asian theatre group.

 

VIDEO: KEN FLORANCE ON THE GRATEFUL DEAD

Ken Florance is Vice President of Content Delivery at Netflix. Growing up in Washington DC area Florance was a big fan of The Grateful Dead, an iconic San Francisco Bay area band. He and his then girlfriend, now wife, traveled more than 10,000 miles to attend the concerts of their favorite band.

Stay tuned for a longer interview we have with Florance on Netflix, Buddhism and music.

 

VIDEO: AMY LOVE ON SOCCER, WOMEN’S SPORTS & SOCIAL MEDIA

Amy Love was described as one of the best-known 10-year-old girls in the Bay area. Even Pele knew about Love. This was in the mid-1970s. She was famous because she  fought for her right to play soccer in the USA.

Love grew up with parents, who loved and played sports. Her mother was a synchronized swimmer and her father played tennis. She played baseball and soccer, but discovered as a 9-year-old that she was not qualified to play soccer for her Northern California youth team. The reason? She was a girl. Love was puzzled. She had just returned from a 2-year stay in Brazil with her family, where she did not face any problems playing soccer. She played goalie for her team in Brazil.  Why can’t I play soccer she asked her parents. And that innocent and honest question from Love led to  Love v. California Youth Soccer Association, a class action suit that she and her parents filed. They won the case. That legal victory paved the way for girls to play soccer in America. Ironically, 40 years after that legal victory Love points out it is still not easy for girls to play sports, including soccer. The reasons this time around are very different and Love talks about it in our interview.

We sat down to speak to Love about her love for sports, her parents and their support in fighting the legal case, her role as an entrepreneur and founder of  sports magazine for women called Real Sports, which is not available online and social media. Love is the chief marketing officer of Violin Memory, a publicly traded Silicon Valley company.

#Amylove

PODCAST: FILMMAKER MEERA MENON ON THE MAKING OF EQUITY, BOLLYWOOD & MAKING FILMS

Meera Menon

Meera Menon’s new film Equity is billed as the first female driven Wall Street picture. It is not often we get to see women investment bankers in films. Neither do we see women bankers admit they love power and money. Such dialogs are usually reserved for male characters. Manon previously wrote and directed Farah Goes Bang.

We spoke with Menon about the making of Equity and how she got selected to direct it. Equity’s  script is written by Amy Fox and is produced by Alysia Reiner and Sarah Megan Thomas, both of whom star in the picture. Menon shares that Equity is more  of a corporate thriller drama.The film feels more like a mashup between House of Cards and Mad Men she adds.. We also spoke to Menon about growing up in New Jersey and how she developed an interest in films, filmmaking and Bollywood. One of her earliest memories is watching Kuch Kuch Hota Hai.  Does she plan on making films in India? Tune in to find out.

LISTEN: FILMMAKER MEERA MENON ON THE MAKING OF EQUITY, BOLLYWOOD & MAKING FILMS

Equity follows an investment banker Naomi Bishop  (Anna Gunn) and a high-profile Initial Public Offering  (IPO) for a Silicon Valley tech company. Bishop hopes the IPO will lead to a promotion. A promotion that she thinks is long over-due.This is not your year is how Bishop’s boss put it when she has taken 9 companies public. Bishop is also  recovering and fighting a fall-out from a failed IPO. Then there is the legal investigation side of the story led by Samantha (Alysia Reiner), who works for the US Attorney’s office. Samantha is investing some corrupt hedge fund members, one of whom is dating Bishop. The film takes an unexpected turn towards the end with a surprising transformation of one of the characters. You will have to see Equity to find out about it. Menon is right – Equity feels more like a corporate thriller. The film has more of a TV look and feel than a cinematic one. “It is clinical,” is how one of them described the film after watching it. I enjoyed the film because it showed a different side of women, Wall Street and taking a company IPO.

Equity releases on August 12, 2016 in San Francisco Bay area.

Picture courtesy of Meera Menon

AMY LOVE FOUGHT FOR YOUNG GIRLS TO PLAY SOCCER IN AMERICA

Amy Love is the chief marketing officer of Violin Memory, a publicly traded Silicon Valley company. As a kid Love enjoyed playing baseball and soccer. Then she discovered she was barred from playing soccer in her youth team in Northern California. And the reason? She was a girl. Girls ware banned from playing soccer and Love was puzzled. Why did it matter that she was a 9-year old girl she asked her parents.

Love and her parents filed a class action suit Love v. California Youth Soccer Association. They won the case in 1975. The legal victory allowed Love and all the young girls to play soccer.

Tune back in later this week when we will have a longer interview with Love on soccer, entrepreneurship and marketing.