Today we’d like to introduce you to Hector G. Magana.
Hector, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
Oh boy, where to start?
I was born and raised in a middle-low class family in a small town of the Mexican southern state of Michoacan, and thanks to the hard work of my parents (and their very tough love towards their only child) I was able to receive a great education through my entire life.
Contrary to many artists, my parents didn’t dedicate their lives to fine arts (my father is an architect and my mother a biologist), but along with history, natural sciences, mathematics, and social sciences, art sort of always was present in our home.
From a very young age, my father passed to me his love for music, and my mother introduced me to her photography and lyrical arts; all of these were always balanced with the scientific (or ‘’non-artistic”) knowledge that I was already exposed to. Through Elementary and Middle School I loved visiting historical museums but I also enjoyed appearing in school’s plays and performances, so with so many things that I loved you can probably imagine how hard it was for me to answer the ever-asked question: “so, what do you want to do when you grow up?”
Almost every time I was asked I ended up answering differently: astronaut, lawyer, marine biologist, surgeon, cartoonist, musician, novel writer, architect… the list goes on. But funny enough, filmmaking wasn’t really between the options probably until my second year in High School, when I got the chance to properly write, produce and direct two short films. That’s when I found the answer: Why settle to have only one profession when I can explore all of them? When I can create any scenario from the ground up in every aspect possible.
To make a very long story a bit shorter, I was very fortunate to received a lot of support both from my family and from educational institutions, and after almost 2 years of working a full-time job, I moved to New York City and then to Los Angeles to get my Bachelors Degree in Film and TV Production. Here I found my passion for screenwriting, directing actors and, most recently, for producing. Two of my films have been featured in film festivals,2018’s “Blame Game” was an official selection of Burbank International Film Festival, and 2017’s “It’s Okay.” won an Honorable Mention Gold Award at the L.A. Neo Noir Novel, Film, & Script Festival.
It was almost since day one that I’ve been surrounded by extremely talented people, and 2019 is the year that my closest, most amazing collaborators and I decided to start a production company: West Wolf Media. In less than a year we’ve successfully produced five short films, two commercials, and one feature film, and as of the end of August, we have three more short films slated for the last quarter of 2019 and currently are developing a feature film to potentially shoot in mid-2020.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It hasn’t necessarily been smooth, but then again I believe that the way to success isn’t about its smoothness but about your stamina; no matter how high are the highs and how low are the lows, you gotta keep going.
We have a saying back home that roughly translates to “Pray to God and swing your hammer” which, putting the religious connotation aside, is pretty much the equivalent of “Things don’t work unless you do,” adding a little bit of hope.
Personally, I think that my biggest struggle along the way has been to keep up that “hope” part alive, but again I count with a core group that has my back and always finds ways to make me say “This is all worth it.”
Please tell us about West Wolf Media.
Although we are a relatively new company, West Wolf Media’s work reaches every aspect of a motion picture production, working mostly on narrative short and feature-length films, as well as commercial and corporate work. We have international reach with projects worked in the U.S., Mexico, Saudi Arabia, China, and most recently Egypt.
Since 2017 we’ve constantly been working as a team of four while collaborating with more people in different projects; sometimes it was only two of us on the grip department while another was the Assistant Director, other times it was one producing, another one directing, one being cinematographer, and the other editing the project; The constant variable on all of the more than one hundred projects that we have accumulated is our strong relationship and communication skills (just as those of a wolf pack.)
I believe that what I’m most proud of our company is also what sets us apart from others: our care for each project we are involved in. No matter how big or small the budget, how early or late the call time, how far or near the location, we’ve grown so fond and turned so passionate for the craft and the people that are a part of it, that we work in every project as if it was our own.
Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
In a way, I was some kind of outcast while growing up. I’ve always been very passionate about what interests me, and many times that made people with a different mentality than mine to back off, and while I wasn’t what you would call the most popular kid at school, I consider that growing up I had just the right amount of friends and acquaintances; these three to five usual suspects were (and still are) people that shared similar views on life, work ethics, and other common grounds with me, and to whom I owe a huge part of who I am today.
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @dirhector
Fei Chen, Yu Chen Tasi, Mairi Sõelsepp.