Harvey Weinstein - An Inspirational Tale of How a Poke in the Eye Can Lead to Great Things.

By Matthew Jennings

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Harvey Weinstein – bringing stories to life

Have you heard of Harvey Weinstein? He’s an Oscar winning Hollywood producer who founded Mirimax films. He’s worked with George Clooney, Quentin Tarantino, Daniel Day-Lewis, Martin Scorsese,  Uma Thurman and virtually every other ‘A’ list Hollywood star you can think of. In total he has produced 282 films and won so many awards he hasn’t got room for them all on his mantelpiece. If you name a film you like he probably had something to do with it. I just tried that with ‘Lord of the Rings’ (Executive Producer) and ‘Ella Enchanted’ (Executive Producer).

What a charmed life he must have had?

The truth is that when he was playing Cowboys and Indians, aged 10, he got his eye poked out with a stick. My own dad used to warn me about that, and it felt like a bogey man urban myth warning, but it actually happened to Harvey. Harvey needed 6 months recuperation. He soon realised that daytime TV in 1962 wasn’t going to cut the mustard for a 10 year old – not for 6 months of entertainment.  Harvey chose to read instead. He read and he read and he read and then he read some more.

“I read all the great stories and I was just entranced. maybe I needed to go to another world?” Harvey Weinstein.

Harvey knew what good writing was at 10 years old and he knew how important it was to sometimes be allowed to visit another world in your imagination. He knew then what he wanted to do with his life. He wanted to bring the stories to life.

40 years later Harvey still gets excited by a good script and wants to make the story come alive on screen. He’s good at it too. He gets paid millions of pounds to fulfil his childhood dream.

John Madden, the Director of Oscar winning film ‘Shakespeare in Love’ says:

“The great thing about him is that he is passionate and it is a fantastic quality in a producer. It gets him into trouble too, of course, but the worst thing for me would be indifference or expediency.”

There is a lot of mockery recently about following your passion. It seems to have gone out of favour, with the new sage advice being doled out willy nilly of following the job that is most likely to make you money. Because money equals happiness. We all know that, don’t we?

The Career Bible ethos is to follow your passion and get paid for what you love to do. Hopefully it won’t take a stick in the eye for you to discover your passion.

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