Inspired Minds

Inspired Minds

The soul of artistry lies behind the scenes in the creative process and the heartbeat of greatness lies within the most inspired individuals. Listen to in-depth interviews with directors, writers, producers, authors, entrepreneurs, comedians, musicians and figures from all walks of life. Produced by writer and journalist Michael Lee Simpson and hosted by Warner Bros. Records executive-turned therapist in training Jeff Watson, “Inspired Minds” is filled with tales of life, joy, pain and imagination. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.


March 21, 2023 62 min

23 years ago in 2000, Jason Eric Perlman packed up a U-Haul trailer, hitched it to his Jeep and drove across the country to begin his new life in Los Angeles. Three years after that move, his same Jeep was crushed by a 2000-year-old Sequoia Redwood tree while shooting his USC Master Thesis Film. So— in many ways, his dream came true… 

Since his days in a fine art high school outside of Philadelphia, Jason had been fascinate...

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A former film critic and scholar with M.A. Degrees in Philosophy from Harvard University and the University of London and in Cinema Studies from New York University, producer Steven Schneider has quickly risen the ranks of Hollywood to become one of the go-to experts in genre films. After having authored and edited numerous books on world cinema and horror, Schneider moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in producing. Following t...

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February 17, 2023 48 min

Michelle Holbrook was diagnosed with Schwannomatosis, a type of neurofibromatosis also known as “NF,” at the age of 30. The disease causes tumors to develop throughout her body. But despite the pain she goes through each morning, she is now serving as an Ambassador for the Children’s Tumor Foundation and wants to educate others about the rare disease.

Hosted on Acast. See acast....

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January 29, 2023 49 min
BuzzFeed Editor Morena Duwe discusses her rare journey from ballet dancer and film school student to finding her place in the world of journalism. Duwe is a Contributing Writer for Rolling Stone and the Los Angeles Times, and has written for CNN, Guardian News & Media, Business Insider, VICE Media, Billboard, Flaunt Magazine, LA Weekly, The Huffington Post, among others. She’s also a video host and producer, and her work explor...

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January 8, 2023 48 min
Maximillian Potter is a best-selling author and a Contributing Editor to Vanity Fair. He has been a staff writer and/or editor at Philadelphia MagazinePremiere, Details, GQ and Esquire; and he has contributed to Outside and The Atlantic, among other publications. Potter has written two books: "The Opposite of Woe: My Life in Beer and Politics," the memoir of Colorado Governor and Democratic Presidential / U.S. Senate Candida...

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December 26, 2022 54 min
Mara Reinstein is a New York City-based entertainment journalist who's contributed to The New York Times, Parade, The Television Academy, CNN, The Ringer, The Hollywood Reporter, The Wall Street Journal, AARP, Vulture and more. She’s also the film critic for Us Weekly magazine and Reader’s Digest and a Top Critic on Rotten Tomatoes. Read more at 

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December 21, 2022 45 min
Heather Langenkamp began her career as an extra in The Outsiders (1983) and Rumble Fish (1983) before debuting as a lead actress in Drew Denbaum’s film Nickel Mountain (1984). She is best known for her performances in several movies, including A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) and Dream Warriors (1987), as well as her return to Freddy in Wes Craven’s New Nightmare (1994). She has also appeared in films such as The Butterfly Ro...

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December 11, 2022 53 min
Cole Haddon is an Australian-American novelist, screenwriter, and journalist. His new novel "Psalms For The End Of The World" was called ‘Ingenious and compelling’ by The Times. "Dracula," his first television commission, was produced by NBC and Sky Living starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers, and he has gone on to develop dozens of feature films and TV series around the globe. His graphic novels have been published by Dark Horse and...

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December 6, 2022 55 min

Peg O’Connor, Ph.D., is a Professor of Philosophy at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minnesota. Her training is in moral philosophy, feminist philosophy, addiction studies, and the work of Ludwig Wittgenstein. She believes that philosophy helped her to get and remain sober. Avoiding Alcoholics Anonymous for the first 20 years of her sobriety because of the concept of a “higher power,” she is focused on using some ...

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November 18, 2022 41 min
Christopher Lockhart is a Hollywood executive, filmmaker, and teacher. As a story professional, he has worked in the talent agency business for almost 25 years. He started at ICM, worked his way to William Morris, and transitioned to WME, the world’s largest diversified talent agency, where he serves as story editor, curating projects for “A” list talent such as Denzel Washington. As an Emmy nominated, independent producer, hi...

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November 14, 2022 46 min
Jessica Toscano is a skilled content creator and editor with experience in print and digital media. She founded unisex lifestyle publication, IntrigueMag in 2014, having first published as a blog (its formal recognition as a legal entity was in Sep 2020), and continues to serve as CEO and Editor-in-Chief. Additionally, her articles have been published in Cosmopolitan, Men's Health, SELF, SHAPE, Health, Glamour UK, Vogue Taiwan, Yah...

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October 28, 2022 51 min

Alicia Dennis is a content executive, award-winning journalist and editor innovating the telling of mass media stories across print, digital and broadcast. A true crime and pop culture expert, Dennis leads teams of breaking news reporters in crime and serves as an executive within multiple brands. Dennis's success as editor, digital content director, creative producer, story consultant and on-camera-talent coupled with her dri...

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October 19, 2022 44 min

Standup star Jeremiah Watkins appears on Inspired Minds to talk about film, comedy icons, and his widely-acclaimed style in front of the microphone. Known to make Judd Apatow fall in love with comedy again, Jeremiah lit a fire in the industry that hasn’t been blazing since Chris Farley. 

His debut 1 hour standup special “Jeremiah Watkins: Family Reunion” is streaming now on Amazon Prime, and you can hear him as the new voi...

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October 17, 2022 38 min

Eric Morse is an author and activist who wrote the twin children's books, "What Is Hip Hop?" and "What Is Punk?" featuring claymation images of Biggie Smalls, Tupac, The Ramones, The Clash, and other luminaires from their respective scenes.  He cut his teeth in the music industry while joining bands and eventually became a music industry executive.  As Eric says, “When I love something, I advocate for it.”


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October 4, 2022 43 min

Jillian Dale is a journalist and has written pieces for The Huffington Post on film as a Contributor, as well as a producer/director for her own company, Bella Luce Productions.  She has directed and created shows like "Omniscient," "Up In Arms," and "Beverly Hills Canine Club."  She was formerly a research attorney and a US Army 2nd Lieutenant, and is currently a digital content producer for the State...

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September 22, 2022 53 min

Pulitzer Prize-winner Marc Fisher is a Senior Editor at The Washington Post, and reports and writes on a wide range of topics. Most recently, he wrote "Trump Revealed," a biography of Donald Trump. He previously was The Post’s Enterprise Editor, leading a team of writers creating narrative journalism and experimenting with new forms of storytelling for digital and print editions of the newspaper.  His books include "...

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September 18, 2022 53 min

Entertainment journalist and author Randee Dawn writes for the LA Times Envelope, Variety,, and a number of other outlets. fiction. She's also a former editor at The Hollywood Reporter and Soap Opera Digest. Her short fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies and online publications; she also dreams up trivia questions for BigBrain Games. Randee's science fiction/fantasy/horror novel, "Tune in Tomorrow,&...

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September 8, 2022 51 min

Drew Fortune is a pop-culture journalist and screenwriter, who has been actively publishing for the past ten years. He is a regular contributor to Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, Esquire, and Vulture, but his writings on music, film, and television have been published in Cosmopolitan, Playboy, SPIN, Billboard, the A.V. Club, Stereogum, and many others. His favorite bands are Week, Superchunk, and the Replacements. He loves fly fishing ...

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September 3, 2022 53 min

People Magazine Executive Editor, Entertainment Jeremy Helligar opens up about his journey through life, the journalism field, being the underdog as a gay black man and a newfound passion for writing. He’s written for numerous publications over the years: Variety, HuffPost, Reader’s Digest, The Wrap, Queerty, Popular Science, among others.  While living in South America, Australia, Asia and Africa, he wrote two acclaimed travelogue...

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August 26, 2022 52 min

Oscar-winning screenwriter, bestselling author and producer Diana Ossana discusses the magic behind art, her thirty-five year friendship with Larry McMurtry and crafting powerful stories and characters. After co-writing novels “Pretty Boy Floyd” and “Zeke and Ned” with McMurtry, the pair’s collaborative partnership exploded with the onscreen adaptation of “Brokeback Mountain,” which forever changed the way the world saw romance in ...

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