We had the good fortune of connecting with Sam Mirpoorian and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sam, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I subconsciously pursued an artistic/creative career once I stopped playing competitive basketball. In high school, the first video I made was about encouraging my classmates to recycle. I dressed my best friend up as a tree and we shot the piece in my backyard; it was a revelatory experience to say the least. The journey early-on felt subconscious due to my father’s IT-based job. Every night he’d bring a new gadget from the University (where he worked) for me to play with. From my childhood through my undergrad and grad studies, I had always been exposed to filmmaking and storytelling, juxtaposed with technology – all because of my father. Growing up in a strict Iranian household, I was mandated to pursue the antithesis of an artistic/creative career. As I reached my early-mid 20s, division brewed between my family and I because of the sacrificial choices I made to sustain my artistic/creative career. Between wanting to become an NBA player, to contemplating furthering my education into the doctorate space, I feel grateful and blessed to be where I’m at in my artistic/creative career.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Talking about art feels/sounds pretentious as I provide these responses. I’m hoping to sound comical as I share this information, just like how I dressed my friend as a tree. I picked up my first DSLR in 2012. From 2012 through 2016, I made somewhere around ~100+ music videos for local hip-hop artists around town. I usually didn’t charge, but if I did it’d be like $10-$50/video. Every quintessential up-and-coming filmmaker story about shooting videos is 100% true – mainly to the point where you’d constantly put yourself in danger every night in the most outrageous way possible.

These experiences helped mold my character, passion, and drive into who I am now. Every ounce of pride dissipates as you navigate into such a precarious and uncertain space as you work toward finding your identity. That opaqueness is what compelled me to keep pushing forward. Amid the hardshell exterior of making rap music videos, I spent a lot of time shooting weddings and sorority recruitment videos. Shamelessly will share a few of the sorority videos went viral on YouTube during the mid 2010s at a time where Barstool Sports, Total Frat Move, and Total Sorority Move were sharing the videos like wildfire.

Since 2017, I’ve made two doc-shorts and edited a third. Since 2018, I’ve been working on and most recently picture-locked my debut feature documentary; my third doc-short is set to premiere in a few months as well. I’ve found myself extremely interested in the climate change, sports, time, and introspection space. A prevalent motif throughout the Midwest (where I’ve made these films) resides in the world of mental health, mental illness, and suicide. As bleak as that may sound, it’s fascinating to understand as a quasi-therapist the the way of life for people living in the Heartland. The Midwest is a beautiful place to live and is one of the more unique hotbeds to be.

It certainly hasn’t been easy as many internal and external factors continue to make it a daily grind. I have yet to feel like I’ve even scratched the surface of my goals and expectations for myself. Nonetheless, I’m so fortunate and blessed to be here. Trying to ascend in the world of film is incredibly difficult but at the end of the day, I just want to improve and work on myself as a person and focus on my health. Health is wealth and none of this would be possible without it.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’m a huge fan of the Santa Monica/Venice Beach area. I would specifically stick to that area for a night or two out. The food, drinks, atmosphere, and overall vibe is incredibly unmatched. As a visitor, I would say it’d be a fantastic cultural experience to walk through the Santa Monica Pier. You truly get a vibrant look at the amazing cultures that make this City, and frankly Country what it is. America is built on diversity at its core foundation – LA encapsulates that 100%

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?
I’m incredibly grateful and blessed to be in the position I’m in. There’re many people to thank, but to name a few, the list goes as such: Andrew Cohn, Ian Kibbe, Jason Stephens, Ali Fusion, Deion Casey, Jim Poyser, Don Sawyer, Thomas Lewis, the wonderful people at Doc Society and Exposure Labs, and Adam Oppenheim. I can confidently say I wouldn’t be in the current position I’m in without the individuals I listed.

Website: https://workofmiro.com

Instagram: @WorkOfSam

Twitter: @WorkOfMiro

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