We had the good fortune of connecting with Kacie Lehner and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kacie, what is the most important factor behind your success?
Staying true to my core ideals. It sounds trite, I know. My producing partner and I have a production company called The Good Soil Collective. Our foundation is based off of the idea that we know a lot of good seeds, whether they are people or stories, and with nurturing those seeds we can help grow something special. We aim at making the world a better place than when we found it, aiming at saying something important and improving lives through art. So when a project comes across our desk, we ask ourselves: Is this a good seed? Is this something that is inherently us?
It’s easy to see a paycheck, an opportunity to work with big companies, big talent, or big budgets, and want to take it and run with it. But we always go back to our litmus test. It has to feel right and has to fit what we set out to do. With that being top priority, we have never taken on a project that we haven’t been passionate about, and we’ve passed on a lot which peopled have deemed “crazy to do”. And that passion we do have resonates with the people we work with, which, in turn, has afforded more and more opportunities. This is the key to not only immediate success, but lasting success.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I own a film and television production company with a goal to improve lives and tell stories that say something. I started off at a studio, learning the intricacies of filmmaking through a larger, corporate lens. It afforded me the opportunity to learn big picture operations and be part of big, successful projects. It solidified my passion for the industry, but also opened my eyes to wanting to create myself, and not rely on corporate structure or strategy to make art. While my time at a studio was invaluable, taking the leap of faith to become an independent producer, leave a steady paycheck and try to do it on my own was the best decision I’ve ever made. It hasn’t always been easy, and there have been many moments of doubt, but I never gave up. I’ve come to realize that my dream can be my reality and there doesn’t have to be a timeline for my own success. I’ve learned that you’re nothing without the people you surround yourself with, and good people are the key to taking the next step forward.
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?
I grew up in Los Angeles (born and raised), so I think I have a very different view of the city. I didn’t grow up going to the touristy places, so I’d say I’ll either be the best or worst guide…no in-between.
Eat & Drink
Jon & Vinny’s
San Vicente Bungalow
Drinks at Hotel Bel Air or Waldorf rooftop
Tea at The Beverly Wilshire
Fun Things To Do
Paintballing (you read that right)
Concert at The Ace Hotel
Movie at Hollywood Forever Cemetery
Movie with live orchestra at the Hollywood Bowl
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are too many people in my life who have contributed to my success and where I am today. Family, friends, mentors. It would be unfair to single out any one of those individuals. Instead, I’ll shout out my idol, Joan Didion. She crafted culture yet was the queen of counter culture. She made intellectualism chic, yet cool. She was and continues to be unapologetically herself and has always viewed things with a lens that was years ahead of most. Her work ethic, social prowess, conviction (in spite of the majority), and ability to shift minds through the thoughts in her own head, is something that inspires me on a daily basis. In her very own words: Do not whine. Do not complain. Work Harder. I see this quote every day as the background on my screen, I think of her, and I keep going.