Welcome to the first-ever edition of the Be Brave Blog! This will be the place where your humble founder—and sometimes, my closest allies and business confidants—will sound off and discuss what’s going on in the world of Braveworld, and sometimes even the world in general.

In a few days from now, the film industry’s supposedly most elite will convene once again in the Hollywood district of Los Angeles for the 90th edition of the industry’s supposedly most prestigious event. Which makes this inaugural blog post all the more timely.

Let’s face it. Hollywood is on a decline. A serious one at that, and one that has been occurring for far longer than any of us would like to admit. There are many logical reasons for this, from the gradual rise of iron-fisted ideological conformity and questionable moralities; the current trend of rebooting and remaking literally everything in sight; and the recent uncovering of a long history of sexual abuse and harassment by literally dozens of people. I don’t know what’s worse: the fact that such things have happened and, at least to a degree, are still happening, or the fact that there has been a long line of complacency, apathy, culpability, and downright hypocrisy as far as any of those things are concerned.

Every single one of these issues comprise part of a wide-reaching, multifaceted problem that should have been addressed long ago. Up to this point, I already maintained a lot of tough love for mainstream entertainment and the industry supporting it on the grounds of accelerating political shoehorning and declining creativity alone. I already couldn’t care less about who patted whose back, or who won the Academy Award® for Best Sucking Up to the Machine. Why? Because I started breaking into this industry for one reason alone: to tell amazing stories. To provide the kind of entertainment that allows people to escape for an hour or two (sometimes just a half-hour), but also inspires and compels them to be more than they ever imagined they could be. Telling those types of stories requires one to rise above the thresholds, or lack thereof, currently set by the mainstream. It requires one to speak out and no longer be afraid. It requires one to be brave, be strong, and do everything they do with love.

I don’t hate Hollywood. Far from it. But I hate what it’s come to. I want the people who have stationed themselves in the heart of Southern California to succeed, but I want them to do so in the most creative and compelling ways. I may never see the kind of world depicted on Turner Classic Movies ever again, even if an occasional contemporary reminder like LA LA LAND comes along every once in a while. But I will at least be satisfied with a greater degree of originality, a higher standard of creativity, and really a higher standard overall in the way people in this industry work and interact with one another.

The term drain the swamp has been used primarily in politics, and it has recently gained a particularly strong resurgence in popularity. I believe there is another swamp to be drained, however, and it is in Hollywood. It must happen in order for the film capital of the world to stop the bleeding, or at least put a much-needed bandage onto it. It should happen with the new generation of filmmakers and content creators that want a new direction. And I believe, thanks only in small part to what we’re planning here at Braveworld but also due to what so many others outside this enterprise are doing as well, it will happen.

Be Brave! -MdeR

(Photo credit: Thomas Wolf, www.foto-tw.de / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.0)