Meet Evan Morton | Director, Cinematographer, & Producer

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

Hi Evan, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I’ve always wanted to start my own production company to create high quality films with captivating stories to share with others. When I was in college and all the other filmmaking students were making short films, I decided to dive into making my first feature film about a hitman leaving the business, clearly I was raised on 90’s action films. Being 20 years old, I didn’t have a budget, I did everything guerrilla style, no permits, just shoot your shot and get out before anyone notices. But as you get older you lose the blissful ignorance excuse.

I’ve worked for BBC/National Geographic the past 3 years and have had the pleasure of working both in the field and in post production for the hit series, “Life Below Zero”. I got to see the in and outs of making a successful docu-series and I wanted to shoot my own documentary, a feature film, on wolves in the United States, it’s a very controversial issue with various sub species across the country.

I realized in order to properly shoot this film I would need talent and location releases and it was time to go from working for other businesses as a freelancer to create my own LLC, Blindview Productions. Really it came down to wanting to tell a story and be at the helm of the ship, which meant having my own business.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
The passion for art is creating it, the beauty is being able to share it with others. Whether it’s music, writing, painting, photography, or film I think it’s the passion and persistence that really separates who makes it and who doesn’t.

I didn’t have a financial backing for my films, I didn’t have a Hollywood producer for a dad, or an inheritance. Heck the first job I got with my filmmaking degree was as a door to door salesman for ADT. Which really shows that piece of paper isn’t as valuable as you’d like to think if you’re an artist.

If you are passionate about what you do, you won’t give up when it gets hard, you won’t make excuses, you’ll figure a way to somehow add a brick or two to the house you’re building everyday. By that, I mean you won’t send one email or make one short film to change the rest of your life usually, it takes years, and you have to separate yourself from the rest if you’re going to put yourself in a position for success.

Maybe you need to write for an hour before work, maybe you’ll need to cold email businesses with marketing ideas to create content for them, maybe you’ll need to start a youtube channel, or sign up for a 48 hour film project (or 14), or take screenwriting classes over zoom during a pandemic, maybe even all the above. But what you won’t do, ever, is give up.

I was doing freelance, writing scripts, taking classes, signing up for film fest competitions, shooting short films, youtube sketches, while doing this door to door job. Skip forward a few years after transitioning to a freelance filmmaker and I’m at the Greek Theatre for an Emmy Consideration event. I got to meet some of the filmmakers for the show Life Below Zero, I spoke to them and figured out the equipment they shot on, which I knew inside and out. I built some rapport, just like I learned from being a salesman, and met the executive of the show. I got his contact info and after 6 months of emailing/texting every 2 weeks I found myself on a plane to Alaska to film a family living remotely on the other side of the Arctic Circle.

My point is, it wasn’t a college degree, it wasn’t someone I knew, it was being assertive and persistent to the point of making a name for myself as someone who wasn’t going to give up, someone they weren’t going to forget.

Until you get blocked or a message saying stop, the worst thing that can happen is they say no. You have nothing to lose by putting yourself out there.

It reminds of those hot summer days knocking on doors selling security, it’s all about your mindset. You can see every door closed on your face as either one closer to you quitting or one closer to your next sale. Every opportunity that didn’t work out in film was one closer to the best one yet, so I always kept a positive state of mind even when I kept hearing the two letter word, NO. It was one NO closer to the YES I’ve been working for.

That’s why I made Blindview Productions, it’s about keeping the audience engaged. Keeping them guessing, because I always strive to tell a story unlike any you’ve seen before. My goal is for you to talk about what you saw during dinner after the screening, the next day with your coworkers, and to not simply entertain you, but to make you think.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If you’re in LA for a few days I want you to experience the culture to the fullest. We’re getting drinks at Clifton’s Republic, a french dip at Phillipes, catching either a Dodgers or Lakers game, seeing a film at Tarantino’s New Beverly, going for a stroll down 3rd Street in Santa Monica and a walk along the beach, checking out Universal City Walk, and after that stopping by the Baked Potato for some live jazz music. You also can’t go wrong hitting the Griffith Observatory and checking out the planetarium or seeing a comedy show Tuesday nights at Yamashiro’s, you might even remember those spots from films such as Lala Land and Kill Bill. If there’s a concert at the Hollywood Bowl that could be fun way to cap off a trip.

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 have to give a shoutout to my dad, Peter Morton. My dad, unlike many parents, genuinely wanted me to find something I was passionate about and to go for it. Whereas many friends parents wanted them to go where the money is and to be a doctor, a lawyer, or other high paying job.

When I was little my dad would tell me bed time stories, often making them up from scratch. As I got older he showed me classic tv shows and films, before we had all this CGI and superhero movies we have today. I grew up in a pivotal time, the 90’s, and quickly fell in love with films such as Jaws, Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, E.T., Reservoir Dogs, The Truman Show, Unforgiven, Rocky, Goodwill Hunting, Terminator 2, Forest Gump, Predator, Schindler’s List, Titanic, Pulp Fiction, and Silence of the Lambs to name a few.

So ever since I was a kid, I was fascinated by the art of storytelling thanks to my dad telling me stories and showing me films, even some that may have been PG-13 and R before I was 13, but he did watch them with me!

When I was little I was obsessed with action figures and playing with them, I’d have all these scenes and characters in my head, so I think that foreshadowed my passion for filmmaking.







Image Credits
Mike Austin Jules Quass