Hollywood Spotlight: Ash Avildsen
In the world of Hollywood it seems success stems from the golden rule of, “It’s all about Who You Know.” In the case of rising Hollywood producer/director, Ash Avildsen’s inner drive to succeed comes from a personal mission to impact the world, to change lives through powerful messages, and maybe in some way follow in his father’s footsteps yet forge his own path to success in Hollywood. Son of Oscar-winning director John Avildsen of famed film classics such as Rocky, Karate Kid and more, the assumption is he had a silver spoon that gave him his opportunities. The truth is Ash Avildsen, who unfortunately has no relationship with his father, has boldly become a Hollywood success on his own.
He has a certain drive, tenacity, and a passion that fuels his growth and ambition to be the best in the business. Ash began his entrepreneurial career as Founder/CEO of Sumerian Records. He has been named Billboard’s Top 30 under 30 for selling millions of albums during the worst climate ever in the music business. With a social media reach through his Sumerian artists of over 20 Million people on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Check out the band, NEW VOLUME, recently signed to the Sumerian Records label:
Ash is now determined to change the independent film game as he did with the independent record label game, one film at a time, through Sumerian Films.WHAT NOW is the directorial debut of Ash Avildsen, in the same vein as SWINGERS, OFFICE SPACE, THE HANGOVER and SUPERBAD comes this new off-beat comedy ( In Theaters March 19th/VOD on April 3rd) which follows 3 best friends navigating the brave new world of online “swipe dating”. In addition to writing and directing WHAT NOW, Ash Avildsen stars as “DJ” alongside his two real-life best friends who are all trying to come to terms with being unfulfilled by their careers and lack of girlfriends. They discover the swipe dating app Tinder which leads to a wild ride as doors open and close, and the friends discover that anyone who would judge someone based on how many followers they have online, where they live, work or the car they drive has their own soul-searching to do.
Please see the hilarious trailer now:
Hot off the heels of this comedic winner Ash already has his next projects lined up and ready to give to the world. We spoke to this Hollywood hitter to learn more about his personal road to success and all the lessons that come with it.
Beverly Hills Magazine: How did you get started in the business and what inspired you to do so?
Ash Avildsen: Ever since I was a kid my Mom would take me to Metallica concerts and I just fell in love with music. I’ve also always been a fan of film, and I believe that both music and films are the most powerful and influential things in life. I wanted to be a part of them. The love of the music and the messages in film is why I gravitate toward them.
Beverly Hills Magazine: How do you decide which projects you’re going to dedicate yourself to and bring to life?
Ash Avildsen: Intuition and gut instinct is a huge part of my decision making process. Of course, there are the practical matters such as timeframe, budget, and a realistic idea of what can be accomplished.
Beverly Hills Magazine: Is there an “ Ash Avildsen” signature in each of your films?
Ash Avildsen: Depending on the genre, each film may be stylistically different, but the overall message in my films will speak to the hearts of viewers and send an inspiring and positive message. I want viewers to feel inspired to be a better person after watching my movies. I hope that becomes my signature.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What is your opinion of Hollywood?
Ash Avildsen: I think Hollywood is a double-edged sword. I compare it to the power of a pencil, metaphorically speaking. The power of a pencil is in the hands of the person holding it. It can be used to write the greatest stories in history or it can be used to stab someone in the neck. Hollywood is the ultimate magic wand. People in Hollywood need to recognize the power they hold in their hands and the influence they can have over other people’s lives, and use it for good.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What do you love most about filmmaking?
Ash Avildsen: There’s an amazing sense of accomplishment seeing an idea come to life. The whole concept of creating a scene, then editing it to make it a piece of reality that is forever immortalized… That’s the magic of what we do.
Beverly Hills Magazine: What advice would you give to other aspiring producer/directors?
Ash Avildsen: Don’t wait around for someone to make it a reality for you. Figure out what you can realistically do on your own, and just do it, even if you start with a short film. Use your resources and then constantly be building your resources. Set goals and achieve them. Try your best. Also limit yourself from big distractions like social media. Don’t waste time on distractions when you can be using that time to further your family life, your personal life, or your professional life.
Take it from someone who has put into practice his own advice. Ash Avildsen started with a seed of ambition that has steadily grown into a successful career in the music and Hollywood filmmaking business. With the rising success of Sumerian Records & Films we won’t be surprised to hear his acceptance speech when he wins his award for Best Director at future Academy Awards. What can we say; we have an instinct for this sort of thing.