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Meet Stephanie Steponovicius

Today we’d like to introduce you to Stephanie Steponovicius.

Stephanie, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
Every child loves TV, but very few have the courage to pursue the dream of actually making TV. I can say I’m one of them.

I recall being obsessed with everything from documentaries to when I was as young as six years old. Since then, I had no doubt I would do anything I could to be a part of that world. And I did!

My mom would take me to do a bunch of commercials as a child, and I have this memory of a young Stephanie dressed as the greatest Brazilian basketball player of all time Hortência Marcari shooting hoops on a set for a Johnson & Johnson Band-aid ad. I was thrilled; However, it wasn’t the on-camera atmosphere that caught my attention, but those people behind the cameras. I knew I would be part of their world.

In college, I enrolled in a Radio and TV major in one of Brazil’s most prestigious universities for media and entertainment, Faculdade Cásper Líbero. And I didn’t even wait to graduate to start interning and getting my hands on the job. From the very beginning, I started working at a 4-hour daily live TV show.

It’s been 13 years and not a day has gone by without working and contributing to the entertainment industry. After college, I worked as a producer for ESPN Brazil, the most important sports channel in the world. There, I got to coordinate and participate in the coverage of big events such as Brazil’s World Cup in 2014 and Rio Olympics in 2016.

My proudest moment was during a very sad incident, though. It was when the airplane that carried Chapecoense, a small Brazilian soccer team from Chapecó, a city in the South, crashed in Colombia when they were on their way to play the final of the Sul Americana, South America’s most important soccer cup, for the first time in their history. Not only the whole team died, but many journalists and one of my colleagues passed away as well.

As someone who has always been deeply in love with my job, I wanted more. After ten years working for ESPN and with a well-established career, I decided it was time to take the next step. And what better step than to learn about business and management of entertainment in the world’s Mecca for entertainment?

When I found out about a nine-month program on the subject at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), I again had no doubt of what I should do. I took a leave of absence from ESPN, hopped on a plane and moved to the 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?
Along with the decision to move to another country comes a lot of challenges. Am I going to adapt? Am I going to feel lonely? Am I going to find a job, a house, friends? If you live in LA you’re known what I’m talking about. I saw myself at my 30’s starting over.

Giving up a whole career to become a student. I knew I would have to work all my way up all over again. I took internships, I worked as an usher at UCLA, but I always kept a positive mindset and I enjoyed the ride as much as I could. LA feels like home to me,

The opportunity to get closer to the world’s best filmmakers, producers, showrunners, writers, and directors kept my love for my career strong and made it worth it.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Stephanie Steponovicius story. Tell us more about the business.
I became an expert on budgeting and creating content without spending a small fortune, which is one of the most valuable skills nowadays. At least that’s what they say.

My passion for the industry is so tangible, that even before the program ended I already had a job offer at Pixelogic Media, one of the top companies in its segment with clients as Disney, Apple and Netflix. When I first came here, my idea was to learn as much as I could and go back to my old job, I never expected to be recognized so quickly.

I started working there as a production coordinator as soon as the program was over, in October 2017, and I was recently promoted to production manager. It was really scary at first, but now I see that it was all worth it. In Brazil, I was a big fish in a small pond; here, I am a small fish in a big sea, and that is thrilling. It makes me want to explore all the possibilities and who knows, maybe someday even be able to create my own TV show?

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
“Luck” is my middle name! I’ve been blessed my whole life with amazing people and opportunities. They say LA is about the people you know and what they think about you. I’ve made organic connections throughout my career and they have been pushing me forward to where I am today. A bit of luck and a lot of hard work and dedication can take anywhere you want.

You just have to be ready when luck strikes.

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