We had the good fortune of connecting with Allen Wolf and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Allen, what inspires you?
Since I’ve started hosting the Navigating Hollywood podcast, I’ve been inspired by my guests, who have overcome tremendous odds to succeed in the world of film and television. I’m also creatively inspired by my family, friendships, and adventures I’ve taken around Los Angeles and the globe. I love watching my kids create entire worlds using boxes and construction paper. Their limitless imaginations spur me on. I always feel creatively recharged when I visit museums, experience a great movie, enjoy a game night with friends, or visit Disneyland, where I’ve visited over 500 times. Everything in Disneyland is based on a story, and I’ve spent many hours at the park to work on novels, screenplays, or other creative ideas.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I wear many different hats as an author, filmmaker, game creator, and podcaster.
As an author, I’ve written several books, including The Sound of Violet, a romantic dramedy which is the basis for my upcoming movie that I wrote, directed, and produced. My other film is a psychological thriller, In My Sleep.
I’ve created five board games that have won 39 awards and have been played by people all over the world. My favorite game is You’re Pulling My Leg! which I originally created for two good friends to help them get to know each other better.
I recently launched Navigating Hollywood, an organization that encourages entertainment professionals to lead more relationally and spiritually holistic lives. I interview filmmakers, actors, and other media professionals on my Navigating Hollywood podcast that has become the #6 film interview podcast in the U.S.
I start most days around 4:00 a.m. and sometimes even earlier. In those early morning hours, I’m able to work on my creative projects without interruption. I try to work on a project consistently and chip away at it day after day. Then, one day it’s finished, and I’m able to move on to something else. Starting any new project feels like standing at the base of an enormous mountain, and it can feel overwhelming to think of what’s ahead. But if I can move forward with one small step after another, eventually, I discover I’ve made it to the summit. It takes a lot of perseverance, but it’s worth it when I see my creative work come to life and hear how what I’m doing is positively impacting people’s lives.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If you were visiting Los Angeles, I would suggest first visiting the beach. If you have kids and you’d like a calm experience, you’ll want to check out Mother’s Beach. If waves are more your thing, Will Rogers State Park is very nice. I’d suggest exploring the Abbot Kinney area of Venice and grabbing some ice cream at Salt and Straw. Next, you might want to go to Burton Chace Park in Marina del Rey, where you can watch boats and catch a glimpse of sea lions basking in the sun.
Next, if you’d like to get a glimpse of what happens in the world of entertainment, I’d suggest the Warner Brother’s Studio Tour. It’s not as over-commercialized as the Universal Studios Tour, and you’re more likely to see a TV show or movie filming. From there, I’d suggest checking out Hollywood and Vine and grabbing a burger at In-n-Out.
On your next day, start with the Getty Center. Enjoy the panoramic views of Los Angeles and the terrific art. Eat at the Getty cafeteria and roll down the grassy hill. The Getty is LA’s best museum. From there, you might want to check out Museum Mile. Start with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and take a gander to the Tar Pitts next door to see the beasts who got stuck in the tar long ago. Visit Milk Bar for some treats and end your day at The Grove, where you can find a tasty meal at the Farmer’s Market.
You can discover downtown Los Angeles on your next day. Visit Disney Hall and take lots of pictures, breeze through the Broad Museum and take in the art at MOCA. Download a walking tour onto your phone and stroll around the city. Visit the arts district and have a meal at Urth Cafe. You won’t regret it. In the mood for some more Salt and Straw? You’ll find a location there.
On your next day, visit the observatory in Griffith Park and watch the main show. It’ll take your breath away. Next, explore Griffith Park and sign up for a horse ride that will take you across the hills to enjoy dinner at a Mexican restaurant. If you have kids, be sure to visit Travel Town Museum and take lots of pics next to the impressive trains. Spend the remainder of your day a Universal Studios.
For your final day, go to Disneyland!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
There many people who have contributed to where I am today, starting with my parents and all the tremendous support I’ve received from my friends and community. I would not be where I am today without the tremendous support of my wife, Ramesh. She not only has my back but shows me a tremendous amount of love and encouragement. She’s my go-to person when I need feedback or advice, and she’s got great aesthetic taste. I frequently requested her opinion while putting together my upcoming movie, The Sound of Violet, and she has been a major support as I’ve launched Navigating Hollywood.