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Meet Marissa Gallardo of G-Funk Productions

Today we’d like to introduce you to Marissa Gallardo.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Marissa. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
It all started at the age of four when I saw the Wizard of Oz for the first time. My little mind didn’t know what “film” really was but I knew that I loved what I was watching and my imagination was completely captivated.

As a child, I loved reading. I was often inspired by books that I read and I would write my own little stories and draw pictures. Anything to be creative. I especially enjoyed putting on plays with the neighborhood kids and we often re-enacted scenes from movies, including dancing Step in Time from Mary Poppins on the living room table. Some of my fondest memories are watching movies with my childhood friends.

My love for movies continued well into my teenage years, and I sought out more independent films and tried to learn as much as I could about the filmmaking process via “making of” featurettes, IMDb, and anything else I could get my hands on. I made a few short films, mostly just playing with the camera and seeing what I could come up with.

After high school, I attended a junior college where I took every Radio/TV & Film class that I could. I wanted to know as much as I could about every crew position. I particularly liked multi-cam production and camera operating live sporting events at the college. I made a few more shorts and with each one learned from my mistakes. With each project, I knew that filmmaking was absolutely what I wanted to do.

After receiving a B.F.A in Cinema/TV with an emphasis on directing, I by chance fell into the Art Dept. on a thesis film. After working on this short as the art director, I was pleased to find that art directing/ decorating was a new way for me to really be creative in the visual part of storytelling.

Today, I am a set dec buyer, set dresser, and prop assistant with Iatse Local 44. I have mostly worked on TV shows such as Mayans M.C., Strange Angel, Superstore, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and I am currently working on Penny Dreadful: City of Angels.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Things have definitely NOT been easy. I’ve faced a lot of struggles along the way. I spent a good ten years in the low-budget/ indie world trying to scrape by. I even worked a part-time retail job to make ends meet. Even though it was tough, quitting was never an option. I kept at it, making more connections and networking.

Tell us more about your work.
G-Funk productions is my company. I started out doing wedding photography and videography and moved up to shorts and experimental projects. I am currently in the process of developing a documentary feature in which I visit one of my tribes, the Tohono O’odham Nation, and hope to learn more about my grandfather, myself, and try to bring awareness to the sorts of issues Indigenous peoples are facing today.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Any bad luck I encountered was a chance to learn and grow. If anything, it made me more determined to succeed.

To me, any good luck that has come my way has been the result of hard work and a positive attitude.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Casey Arakawa, Sonia Balcazar, Eric J. Vasquez, Bree McCool

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