In Proximity

In Proximity

In Proximity

Produced by

Proximity Media

Release Date

March 12, 2023

Listen Now

Listen on Apple Podcasts

In Proximity is a podcast from Proximity Media about craft, career, and creativity.

Listen below or on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, YouTube, or your favorite podcast app.

Find your favorite podcast app here.

Download the press kit here.

New episodes every Sunday.

Inside Proximity: Working in Film & TV

Step inside Proximity Media as our team members discuss topics and answer listener questions about working in film and television at our company. D’Angelo “D’Lo” Louis and Dezi Gallegos sit with Paola Mardo at our office to discuss breaking into the industry (1:40), working at a production company (12:19), and their day-to-day jobs as executives and producers (15:10). They also answer listener questions (19:28) and share their Prox Recs (31:40). Welcome to Proximity!

Read the transcript here.

Jamie Carragher and Paola Mardo

Before becoming a screenwriter and TV writer on HBO’s Succession, Jamie Carragher was a high school teacher turned graduate arts journalism student at USC Annenberg where he met Paola Mardo, then an aspiring film critic and podcast producer, now head of audio at Proximity Media, producer/executive producer of In Proximity, and host/creator of Long Distance, a narrative podcast and short documentary series about stories in the Filipino diaspora.

On this episode, Jamie and Paola discuss navigating unorthodox creative careers including attending journalism school (2:59), how Jamie’s sole Hollywood connection led to a writer’s assistant job (8:14), how and why Paola created the podcast Long Distance (10:47), Jamie’s role as Succession writer’s assistant (16:29) then staff writer and story editor (20:23), and their Prox Recs (24:20).

Projects discussed:
Long Distance and the Filipino Tiki Bar episode

Read the transcript here.

Charles D. King and Ryan Coogler

Charles D. King is the founder and CEO of MACRO, a multi-platform media company representing the voice and perspectives of Black people, indigenous people, and people of color. Some of their projects include Dear Mama, Mudbound, Fences, and Judas and the Black Messiah, produced with Proximity Media and Warner Brothers. Formerly a partner/senior agent at William Morris Endeavor, Charles was the first Black partner in the company’s 100+ year history and the first ever Black partner at any major talent agency. In 2021, when Judas and the Black Messiah was nominated for Best Picture, Charles became part of the first ever all-Black team of producers nominated for an Academy Award alongside director Shaka King and Proximity founder Ryan Coogler. The team worked closely with an esteemed group of Black creatives, activists, and executives including Chairman Fred Hampton Jr. and Niija Kuykendall, then SVP of Production at Warner Brothers, now VP of Film at Netflix.

Charles and Ryan talk about how they first met (2:40), the role of an agent (5:34), Charles’ transition to founding MACRO (10:27), Charles’ role in the launch of Proximity (23:30), the making of Judas the Black Messiah (26:00), and their Prox Recs for working in the entertainment business (40:03). Learn more and read the transcript of this conversation at

Read the transcript here.

Natalie Qasabian and Sev Ohanian

Natalie Qasabian is an award-winning film producer who has worked on independent and studio films including Searching, Run, and Missing. She is a frequent collaborator of writing partners (and previous guests of this podcast) Aneesh Chaganty and Sev Ohanian. Natalie and Sev are married and they are partners in work and life. They share their meet cute (2:20), how they started working together (6:00), their producing process (17:14), the power of a great email (23:17), and the secret to working successfully with your life partner (30:42).

Read the transcript here.

Pete Nicks and D’Angelo “D’Lo” Louis

When Proximity’s co-founder and head of nonfiction Pete Nicks and creative executive D’Angelo “D’Lo” Louis met through their friend Ryan Coogler, they connected as Bay Area creatives and through their shared experience of incarceration. Pete is a director and producer whose award-winning films The Waiting Room, The Force, and Homeroom serve as a trilogy of urgent and immersive documentaries that explore health care, criminal justice, and education in Oakland, California. His upcoming documentaries, produced with Proximity Media, include Stephen Curry: Underrated and Anthem. D’Lo is a filmmaker and music manager who got his start as an assistant on Space Jam: A New Legacy, Judas and the Black Messiah, and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. Most recently, he was an associate producer on Creed III.

On this special episode, Pete and D’Lo sit down to talk about their experiences for the first time (2:44), including how they found their way to creative work (13:15) and why it’s important for them to share their stories (21:45).

Read the transcript here.

Roman Mars and Ryan Coogler

Proximity founder Ryan Coogler talks all about podcasts with Roman Mars, host and creator of 99% Invisible, a sound-rich narrative podcast about architecture and design. They discuss holding pandemic meetings about the business of podcasting (3:47), Roman’s journey from science to public radio to 99% Invisible (5:10), finding the balance between being an artist and business owner plus why Roman believes a producer is the highest form of worker (9:56), collaborating on the Judas and the Black Messiah Podcast (14:29), the read-to-tape system (18:42), and Prox Recs that include a good coffee table book that will impress your friends and how to make great radio (25:19).

Read the transcript here.

Projects discussed: 99% Invisible, Judas and the Black Messiah Podcast

Tunji Balogun and Archie Davis

From assistant desks at Interscope Records to the Def Jam C-suite, Tunji Balogun, Def Jam Recordings CEO and Chairman, and Archie Davis, Def Jam Recordings Chief Creative Officer and Proximity Media Co-Founder and Co-Head of Music, share their journey as music industry executives. They explain what A&R really means (1:52) and discuss navigating careers in the music business (4:22), aspiring to be the greatest executive and rapper alive a.k.a. Jay-Z (23:10), the Black Panther soundtracks and Tunji’s Nigerian roots (27:06), their top 5 space albums (35:55), and Prox Recs (38:04).

Read the transcript here.

Projects discussed: Soundtracks for Black Panther and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Aneesh Chaganty and Sev Ohanian

Grab your Moleskine and spreadsheets! It’s time for a screenwriting masterclass with writer, director, and producer Aneesh Chaganty and writer, producer, and Proximity founder Sev Ohanian. Aneesh and Sev first broke out with the independent thriller Searching which premiered in 2018 at Sundance where it won several awards and was acquired by Sony Pictures. The film grossed $75 million worldwide and Sev and Aneesh went on to collaborate on the screenplay for Run (2020), the story for the Searching sequel Missing (2023), and an upcoming movie they talk a little bit about on the show.

They break down their writing partnership (2:12) and process including the blue skies phase (8:00), outlining (12:21), feedback (15:30), and research (18:45). They end with Prox Recs for making movies and finding a writing partner (26:05). Learn more and read transcripts of this conversation at

Read the transcript here.

Films discussed: Searching, Run, Missing

Tessa Thompson and Kalia King

Actor, producer, entrepreneur Tessa Thompson speaks with Proximity Media’s head of television Kalia King about navigating the ins and outs of the entertainment industry including attending general meetings (1:18), the importance of finding your people (7:50), career transitions from acting to producing (10:37), reality TV (13:47), authentic storytelling (19:10), and their Prox Recs (26:55).

Read the transcript here.

Michael B. Jordan and Ryan Coogler

From Fruitvale Station to Black Panther to Creed III, Michael B. Jordan and Ryan Coogler’s cinematic partnership has shaped culture and broken box-office records. They reflect on their first meeting for Fruitvale Station (2:41), going to their first boxing match to prep for Creed I (12:39), what they’ve learned from building and running their own production companies (16:14), and their Prox Recs (27:57).

Read the transcript here.

Production Credits
In Proximity is a production of Proximity Media.
Producer and Voiceover Host: Paola Mardo
Executive Producers: Ryan Coogler, Zinzi Coogler, Sev Ohanian, Paola Mardo
Theme Song Composer and Additional Music:
Ludwig Göransson
Sound Designer and Mix Engineer: Ken Nana
Production Assistant: Polina Cherezova
Editors: Cameron Kell, Cedric Wilson, Judybelle Camangyan
Artwork: Alexandria Santana