In this episode, Brian Beckcom speaks with screenwriter and Hollywood producer Javier Chapa about his journey from a bartender with a law degree to the founder and CEO of a successful Hollywood multimedia company.
Javier first got the acting and film bug in college, when he worked as a military extra on Ed Zwick’s Gulf War action-drama “Courage Under Fire,” an experience that changed his life’s trajectory forever.
Javier made his first film, “Harvest of Redemption,” for only $25,000. The film is a true story about a Latino boy who witnesses his father’s murder and his struggles as a migrant farmworker. The film was awarded the best foreign drama at the 2007 International Family Film Festival. Later, Javier was chosen to be part of the prestigious Disney-ABC directing fellowship, where he worked on shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Castle.
Since then, Javier has worked with Ed Harris, Viggo Mortensen, and Renee Zellweger.
Watch this episode on YouTube
Brian and Javier discuss:
- Javier’s formative years as a competitive barrel roper and cowboy
- The value of seeking discomfort and Javier’s advice to aspiring filmmakers
- Hispanic heritage and the power of storytelling
- Javier’s transition from a bartender/model to Hollywood producer
- Javier’s company “Mucho Mas Media” and his work to change the narrative of Hispanic caricatures in Hollywood
- The future of entertainment as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic
- Onset experiences with Javier’s favorite movie stars: Ed Harris, Dennis Quaid, and Tom Cruise
- And other topics
Javier Chapa grew up on a ranch in South Texas. He graduated with a law degree from St. Mary’s University of Law before deciding to move to Hollywood to pursue a career in filmmaking. Today, Javier lives in Los Angeles with his wife and seven rescue dogs. Javier is the CEO and founder of Mucho Mas Media. Mucho Mas creates compelling, elevated, and high-concept content for a Latino audience that has been underserved. To learn more about Javier or Much Mas Media, visit www.MuchoMasMedia.com or visit their Facebook page.
Read the show notes!
Brian Beckcom: Welcome to the Lessons from Leaders podcast. I'm your host, Brian Beckcom. My next guest is genuinely one of the most interesting people I've ever met in my life. I'm talking about Javier Chapa. Javier got the film bug while in the Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M when he and some of his fellow cadets worked as military extras on Ed's Zwick, Gulf War action-drama Courage Under Fire. That experience inspired Javier to ultimately move to Los Angeles to pursue a passion for filmmaking.
After graduating from law school, he made his first film for $25,000. It was called Harvest of Redemption. It is a true story about the struggle of migrant farmworkers, and it won multiple awards, including the best foreign drama at the 2007 international family film festival, which was sponsored by Warner Brothers and DreamWorks.
After Harvest of Redemption was released. Javier was asked by Oscar-nominated actor, director, and writer, Ed Harris, to assist them in his new film Appaloosa, which starred Viggo Mortensen, Mr. Harris, and Renee Zellweger. And August of 2010, Javier was chosen to be part of the prestigious Disney, ABC directing fellowship, where for two years he worked on shows like Grey's Anatomy and Castle.
He has since launched his own multimedia called Mucho Mas, which focuses on producing content and representing people of color on both sides of the camera. His company recently produced On The Line, starring Dennis Quaid with a Latin cast, which will be released in 2021. And he's also secured the life rights to Myrtis Dightman, who is on the July 2018 cover of Texas monthly and considered to be the Jackie Robinson of Rodeo.
Javier grew up in South Texas. He comes from a tremendous family. His father is a well-known attorney. His brother's also an attorney. Javier was a competitive cowboy and competed in roping competitions. He was also a star football player and went on to graduate from law school.
After law school, he also worked for a short period of time as a model. Javier is one of those people that when you first meet him, you immediately like him. He's a servant-based leader. His focus now is helping people, young people, especially that want to get into the entertainment industry. And he has opened a lot of doors for a lot of people, and in the podcast, Javier and I talk about his biography, how he got into Hollywood, what young people who are interested in the movies can do to prepare themselves for an entertainment career, his philosophy about leadership and what he's doing to help people of color land not only acting jobs but also producing, directing and writing assignments.
We talk a lot about his philosophy of leadership, what he thinks the future of Hollywood movies looks like, the future of entertainment, and a lot of other things. I think you're really going to like listening to Javier. He is truly an intelligent, kind, energetic, positive leader. And now I give you Javier Chapa.
Brian Beckcom: Hey, everybody. I truly have the most interesting man in the world on the podcast today, Javier Chapa. How are you doing, buddy?
Javier Chapa: Great, Brian, thanks so much. Thanks for having me on your wonderful podcast.
Brian Beckcom: Thank you as well. Thanks for coming on. You're in California right now, and it's the beginning of September. I've talked to a bunch of my guests on podcasts,
and as you know, there's a bunch of stuff going on in the country that is not very positive. We still got the virus going on. We've got the political stuff, which is rather heated. We've got some civil unrest about various issues, but I'm so glad that you came on the podcast. Cause when I say the most interesting man in the world, I mean your resume, your story is unbelievable.
So, but before we get into how you're a Hollywood producer, you've been an actor, and you've been a director. Uh, how you doing, man? Everything going okay?
Javier Chapa: Yeah. I mean, given the state of the world relative to everything happening, I certainly feel terrible, you know about these terrible, tragic deaths and people losing their jobs, but otherwise, I'm doing okay.
I'm doing this outside, It's a nice, beautiful day here in sunny California, and I'm tired of being ensconced in my house to be really honest.
Early Life Aspirations and Turning Negatives into Positives
Brian Beckcom: Yeah, no, I don't blame you. So let me ask you this question right out of the gate. I noticed this on your biography, you live with your wife and seven rescue dogs.
Javier Chapa: Yes, that's correct. I've got seven rescue dogs. Those are my kids, let's just call them that. They're great; we love them all. They come from all over, from Mississippi to Texas to Canada. Those are pretty much our children.
Brian Beckcom: What's the story behind having seven rescue dogs? Like how did you get interested in that?
Javier Chapa: Obviously, I grew up on a cattle ranch down in South Texas. So we always had dogs around, but this has certainly gotten a little out of control. I think I'm one dog away from being on animal hoarders. That show on TV.
Brian Beckcom: Yeah,
Javier Chapa: When my wife and I got together, she had a dog and then we got another dog, then my Dad sent us a dog from Texas, and then it just got a little out of control. But we love them, and they are great dogs, they're all so unique and different in their own way. But we love rescuing dogs, and I think that's really important.
Brian Beckcom: You've come from an incredible family in South Texas. I think your Dad's a lawyer, and your brother's a lawyer. You were a badass cowboy growing up. So you've always been around animals, right?
Javier Chapa: Yeah, no, absolutely. Yeah. I grew up in South Texas, on a cattle ranch 30 miles from town. I am definitely the black sheep of my family being out here in the movie business in Hollywood. My old man is a retired criminal defense lawyer. My brother's a personal injury lawyer and my sister-in-law's a judge. So, it was quite a shock to my family when I told them after I had graduated from a law school that I was going to move out to Hollywood and get into the movie business.
Brian Beckcom: Yeah, I can't imagine. So what was it like? Tell us a little bit about what it was like growing up in such a cool South Texas family. And not only were you truly a really good cowboy, but you are also a very high-level high school athlete. So tell us a little bit about what it was like and some of the lessons you may be learned growing up in South Texas as both a cowboy and a badass athlete.
Javier Chapa: Well, thank you for saying that Brian. I don't know if I was a badass athlete, but I mean, it was great. You know, it's funny growing up on the ranch, because I don't think I appreciated it at the time. You know, when your young, you want to move to a big city and work in that environment. I feel like now, as I am getting older, I certainly want to be back at the ranch.
Growing up, I had great parents. I feel like they taught us to have a strong moral compass and to be good people. I'm the youngest of three, and I have an incredible brother and sister. My brother was very competitive, and he always taught me to be better than him, which I loved. It was not out of competition, but more like, "Hey man, if I'm an all-district football player, you need to be all-state."
And that always resonated with me and stuck with me. My brother was really supportive to this day, and he still is. And he's a good man, but you know, growing up on a cattle ranch out in the middle of the country, I had to drive 30 miles back and forth to school every day. At one point, during my freshman year, my parents sent me off to military school at a school called Texas military Institute. Which was great, I learned a lot of discipline, met some wonderful people and colleagues that are still friends of mine to this day.
It was a 2A private school outside of San Antonio, and as such, I was never going to be able to play college football if I stayed at that school.
So, my old man moved me back to a 5A public school to play Football. It was a new school at the time and I started as a quarterback. The coach was like, “you're too good of an athlete, and I want to put you on the football field when you were a sophomore”. And so, he put me on the other side of the football, he's like, "you understand quarterbacks, I'm gonna make you a free safety." So, that's how I became a free safety. The great irony of this whole story is that my dreams of playing college football were ultimately crushed. During a kickoff in the fifth game of my senior year, I was running to tackle a guy, when two guys came and took my knees out, and that was it. So, I think it was honestly a godsend for me personally, just in terms of my personal trajectory and career.
Brian Beckcom: Isn't that funny? How that works? How I can look back on my life, and there are two or three major events that at the time, I thought were terrible. I'll give you one example when I left the big law firm I started at, I tried to get a job at a very small law firm, which I thought it was a shoo-in for, and I did not get it, and I was so upset about it.
But looking back on that, it is probably one of the best things that ever happened to me in my life. If I had gotten that job, I would not have met my current law partner, who is one of the best people I've ever met in my life. I wouldn't have the firm I have now, and it's funny how sometimes the worst things that happen to you turn out to be some of the best things. Right?
Javier Chapa: Well said. Yeah.
Brian Beckcom: So, tell us a little bit about what it was like to be a competitive roper.
Javier Chapa: My brother was a header, and I was a healer, and we roped calves on well-known competitive circuits. It was a great way to keep us out of trouble. It taught us responsibility and gave us a competitive spirit.
I actually started barrel racing because our roping coach at the time explained to me that you've gotta be a good horseman first. So I used to go to the Sheriff's posse in Edinburg, Texas, every Friday night. With my horse name Rojo, which means red in Spanish. He was a 16-year-old horse that wasn't very fast, but he was very docile and gentle. And that's how I learned how to ride barrels when I was six years old. I became pretty good on a horse and eventually got into calf roping. My Dad built an arena out in the ranch for us, and we would wake up in the morning for school, come back, and rope until the sun went down.
And then at one point, my old man got us some lights, So we'd rope into the wee hours of the morning. It was something I really loved. I loved traveling, loved taking care of the horses, and I loved the competitive nature of it. I roped with world champion cowboys like Cody Ohl & Blair Burk, and it was a great competitive environment. At the same time, It taught us a lot of discipline and responsibility that I think is important in your formative years. And eventually, I wanted to be the Latino version of "The Man From Snowy River."
I told my old man that I wanted to be a professional cowboy. And he's thought I was out of my mind and needed to get an education. And once again, my dreams were crushed, even though he did the right thing at the time.
Brian Beckcom: For sure. Well, you know, one of the things that people understand about the Rodeo lifestyle is the different events. Such events are designed to mimic what Cowboys would actually do when if they were actually out there cowboying. The rodeo now is more of a demonstration of cowboy skills, but these were practical skills that people were actually using on their ranches.
Javier Chapa: That's right. I did a lot of ranching in my younger year. In fact, my grandfather had about 200 head of black Angus cows, and we would work cattle on horseback, brand them, and build fences. I've been on horseback like I said since I was a kid, and that's the one thing I miss about having moved out here. Being out here now 19 years is like not being able to ride. There are certainly places out here that you can find to ride and equipped with equestrian stables. But like I said, when we started this conversation, I've got to get back to the ranch.
Brian Beckcom: Exactly. So you grew up in a well-respected Hispanic family in South Texas. You're an experienced rancher, cowboy, and a high-level football player. Did you go straight to A&M after you graduated from high school?
Javier Chapa: The first school I got accepted to was the University of Texas and one of my dear friends, Brandon Henderson, who is still a dear friend since the early days growing up in my town. You obviously know the Henderson's. Well, Chris Henderson persuaded me to go to A&M. He wanted to be my roommate and join the Corps with him, where his brother was the First Sergeant. He insisted that it'll be fun, and so I thought, what the hell? And that's how I ended up going A&M, ironically. And, you know, had I not gone to Aggieland, truth be told, I wouldn't be out here and in this business, which is crazy.
Brian Beckcom: Yeah, and that's why I want to get to that here in a second. Because, how a guy from South Texas that's a rancher and a football player and ends u going to A&M. Who joins a Corp of Cadets and ultimately ends up in Hollywood, I think it is a really interesting story. Did you then go to law school after you graduated from A&M?
Javier Chapa: Honestly, this business really found me at Aggieland, when we had the opportunity on Courage Under Fire, I'd never been on a movie set before in my life, and I was just very taken by the experience interfacing with these actors like Denzel Washington and Meg Ryan. That's where I got the glint in my eye. You know, and that fire in my belly and I was like, wow, this is cool. You can make movies for a living, and I was very fascinated by it.
That's where the seed started for me at Aggieland of all places. I ended up graduating after that, with a degree in AG development, and I didn't want to go home to be a farmer. Even though I loved farming and respected my grandfather, it just wasn't something that I was super passionate about. That film experience really stuck with me. I remember telling some buddies of mine after my movie set experience; I was gonna get in the movie business. They thought I was nuts; they probably still think I'm nuts.
Brian Beckcom: Yeah, with both of us being in the corps, I think it's fair to say the idea of going to Hollywood at the time would have gotten a little bit of grief for that, to say the very least.
Javier Chapa: So yeah, as I said, I got the fire in my belly to get in the movie business when I was at Aggieland and worked on that film. Even though I graduated with a degree in AG development, I was like, what the hell? I'll go and get a law degree. I thought it'd be a good degree to have, and it would give me some time to figure out how to get into the movie business. I ended up getting accepted to St. Mary's, which is probably the only school that would take me at the time. Honestly, I spent more time studying film while at St. Mary's.
Brian Beckcom: When you say you got the bug at A&M, you really, really got the bug. Once it had captured your attention, you were pretty obsessed with it in a way
Javier Chapa: Yeah, I knew it was what I wanted to do.
Brian Beckcom: Not to interrupt you, but let me ask you this for folks that are interested in getting into the movie business or the entertainment business, what things were you studying? What were you looking at? What would you recommend to people that are interested in going into the entertainment business?
Javier Chapa: Yeah, it's a really good question. And I think there's no right or wrong way into the business. You know, I engrossed myself in a lot of reading.
I read a lot of books on producing, editing, and writing. As much as I could get my hands on, in terms of reading was important. Especially if you want to be a storyteller, you've gotta be reading stories, not just books. I was reading Texas Monthly magazine, finding articles, and just finding incredible stories out there. And so that's a big part of it, for sure. I would say. The other thing, I bought a camera. If you want to tell stories, you got to buy a camera. I think information is ubiquitous and tech is at your fingertips, and there's no exclusivity. If you have a great story to tell, you've got to go out and tell that story. You're gonna make mistakes, I promise you. You're gonna make some bad films and I'll continue to make bad films. I've made a share of bad films. I've made my share of good films as well, but that's a part of the process. Being fearless and going out there and not being scared to expose yourself emotionally as well sometimes because it's part of your craft in terms of whether you're a writer or director, it exudes who you are.
There's a lot of different ways to go about it. I took the do it yourself way. I didn't go to film school. Instead, I started to read, I started to write scripts that weren't very good, and eventually, I got better. I started to audit Meisner courses when I was in St. Mary's. I would drive twice a week with a friend of mine, to Austin, Texas, and we would audit Miser courses. That's where I met guys like the Duplass brothers, and I started making movies using credit cards. I knew that l the only way that I was going to figure out where I wanted to be. Do I want to be on this side of the camera or do I want to be on the other side of the camera? I knew that I had to expose myself to those relationships and those opportunities.
I knew that I had to be well rounded enough for when I was a producer that I'd done all those jobs. I'd worked on a set; I've set up moving lights, I'd been behind the camera before, I directed, and I've written before, so that way, I understood the people that I was working with. That way, I had a point of view about what they were doing and so that I could help them be better at their craft. That's what stuck with me.
When I was making my first movie, I had $25,000. I read the book "Rebel Without a Crew," which is an incredible book, and it really inspired me. I was amazed and thought, if this guy made the movie "El Mariachi" for $7,000, I could do mine for $25,000. You know, I had a pretty ambitious film. It was based on a true story, a period piece. I had like 33 actors and 40 locations. I went to my local mayor, and I explained how I had a 35 man crew. I don't know how I'm going to house them. I don't know how I'm going to feed them. So I told him I'd got an ambitious film here, will you help me out? Sure enough, he basically gave me the keys to the city and said, "I'll give you cops, I'll feed your crew, and I'll house them," and it was my first lesson in producing 101. My point to all of this is that's where my film school started.
I think the only way to really learn outside a theory. Obviously, it's important to meet your colleagues and your peers that you're going to be working with. For those two reasons alone, that's why I think film school is really important. But I think the only way to learn is to take action. Whether you want to be a writer, director, producer, or actor, or you've got to take action and do the work.
Brian Beckcom: I totally agree with you on that. I think that concept applies pretty much across the board. For instance, I like to play golf. I cant become a good golfer by reading golf books; I got to get out there and start swinging the damn golf club. Right? Same thing with being a lawyer, same thing with being a businessman.
You can read yourself into futility. I mean, at some point you got to get out there and actually do the work. There were so many things that you said just now that are very, very wise, and I really want to talk about them. Let me break down some of the things you said so I could have you elaborate on them.
One of the things you talked about is "The Hero's Journey", the hero's journey for those people that don't know, it is a book by Joseph Campbell. It's basically the idea that throughout all of human history, there have been certain archetypal stories and the hero's journey is like the classic archetypal story.
Essentially, if you want to tell a compelling story, this is one framework in which to do it. You typically have a protagonist who is confronted with a series of challenges and ultimately overcomes them. It's such a famous book and a fundamental principle of storytelling. Tell me a little more about the hero's journey and what you learned from it.
Javier Chapa: I haven't read a hero's journey in a long time, but I'll do my best with the cliff notes version. I think with any of these books, you come away with ideas, and it helps you find your own style, your own point of view, and your own voice.
That's what I've learned. There are only five ideas in the universe, right? How do you reinvent them in a fresh way? I think what these books teach you is structure, which is important. If you're going to write a screenplay or tell a great story, these are the things that should be in it. History has shown that films have been successful because of that structure.
The other book that really is great at breaking that down from genre to genre is "Myth in the Movies."
Brian Beckcom: I've not heard of that one. I'll check that one out too.
Javier Chapa: It's my bible for the business. I refer to and read it a lot. But I've read a lot of different books across the board, but certainly, the hero's journey is a very, very famous one. "Save the cat" is another famous one for writers.
But at the end of the day, Brian, I think it's about finding your own voice. That's the most important thing. It takes time to develop that voice and to find things that you really gravitate toward. What genre do you love? Do you love core and thrillers? Do you love comedy? What are the genres that really resonate with who you are as a person and the stories you want to tell? I think that's an important part of the process.
Brian Beckcom: Yeah, the point I had, and it's very clear from listening to you, people don't become a Hollywood director by accident. You don't become a producer or an actor, it's a craft, and you have to work hard at it.
One of the other things you said, which I think is super important, one which I had a realization about earlier this year is, you got to be willing to fail.
You have to be willing to make a movie that is a complete bomb, in order to have a movie that's really good. One of the things that I caught myself earlier in the year was being too complacent. I've got a great job, a great family and all that. The thing is, I'm not challenging myself enough.
I need to get out there and try some new stuff. So I did; I started jujitsu and some other things that I was a little bit uncomfortable with, including this podcast. I told myself, I just got to get out there, I've been playing it too safe.
The Value of Seeking Discomfort
You have to be willing to get out there and totally fail. The thing about failing in your profession Javier; you can't hide it. It's public, and people know you failed. Right? So how do you think about those risks? How do you think about success and failure as it relates to you?
Javier Chapa: That's a good question. I want to expand on that because I agree with you, and I apply what you are talking about. This is something that I always remind myself to do, is to seek discomfort, right? To progress, you've got to try different things.
Brian Beckcom: I get a reminder that pops up on my on my iPhone every morning that says, "whatever you're nervous about is what you should be doing." Seeking discomfort, I love the idea of seeking discomfort.
Javier Chapa: I think seeking discomfort is an important part of my life and business. Whether you're an athlete, whether you're exercising, you're doing the same repetition over and over, it doesn't get you anywhere. It's the same thing with your brain. You've got to disrupt it a little bit and try different things and teach it new things. That's how you grow. Part of that growth is experiencing failure and being fearless. Not being idiotic, stupid, careless, or reckless, but taking calculated risks based on not being scared of the outcome. And I deal with that every day. I'm in a business where we're risking millions of millions of dollars on movies with literally no guarantee that any movie is going to make one penny.
Brian Beckcom: The other thing is there's this book by a famous author Nassim Nicholas, he wrote a book called "The Black Swan" and a book called "Antifragile." The concept behind these books is three kinds of systems. There are fragile systems that break easily and robust systems that don't break easily. But, if you put enough stress on them, eventually they break. Then there are antifragile systems that get stronger when you put stress on them.
It's the same concept as lifting weights, right? You're putting stress on your body, but you're making your body stronger by doing so. The same applies to seeking discomfort and not being afraid of failure. By putting yourself out there over the long term, you're making yourself a lot smarter, a lot stronger, and a lot more resilient.
The other thing that, that you mentioned is about storytelling. I am convinced that the most powerful thing in human history now and all of human history is the power of ideas and the power of stories. I think the most powerful way to convey ideas to people is through storytelling.
So I want you to talk about your experience with the power of storytelling, your creative process, and the impact you can have by telling the stories that you're telling.
Javier Chapa: I agree with you a hundred percent! You know, content in general, not just film or television, whether it's a minute long or two hours, all forms are a very powerful medium. It can be a blessing or a curse; when it's powerful, effective, and compelling, it's amazing. Right? If it sucks, It's terrible. So you're either a hero or a goat, right? The up and downside of being in this business and this position is exposing yourself emotionally. It's like you're opening the window to your soul by sharing your ideas and by sharing your story.
In my last year of law school, I clerked for the first Hispanic federal judge, Hippo Garcia. He always wanted to be a movie director and told me, if you're not passionate about practicing law like you are about movies, why don't you get in the movie business? He said, "Take the bar or don't, but get your law degree and get the hell out of here."
Unfortunately, he ended up passing away two weeks before I graduated law school, and I took that as a sign. So I moved out here, and it has been about 19 years since. The first thing I realized was that if I don't pick a lane, I'd get swallowed up and lost in this business. I'm an outsider; I'm a fringe guy. I didn't go to film school, but I've got to lean into something that I understand. It inspires me; its what I believe in, and I really started to lean on my Latino roots and culture.
When I got out here, I realized there weren't that many filmmakers. Even though the Hispanic market is the most aggressive consumer media across all platforms, there wasn't a lot of people making films that spoke to and celebrated the culture. And so, that's where my creative process started. This is what I wanted to do and what I want to get really good at.
I stuck the flag in the ground and named my company HIPPO films after Hippo. A lot of people asked, why did you name your company after hippopotamus? I took that opportunity to tell them the story about how I named it after a federal judge who wanted to be a movie director. And to this day, it's still my holding company. Mucho MAS is still owned by HIPPO. It's a company that I will never let go of because of Hippo and the things that I learned from him, the inspiration he gave me, and the guts to move out here.
How I really leaned into inclusive narratives and seeing a lack thereof was based upon something that I really understood. I grew up on the border; I'm a half-breed, my Dad's Mexican, and my Mom is German. I'm very connected to my Latino culture, and it's something that's very important to me.
The way I got started was just by doing, and I had already been doing a little bit in Texas. When I moved out here, filmmaking was my full-time job and how I planned to make a living, aside from bartending at night and having some 23-year-old kid boss me around. I had to cut limes in a restaurant basement off Sunset Blvd so I could pay the bills.
That was a very humbling experience for me while pursuing this career. But when I moved out here, I was still doing some acting because I figured it was a good way for me to meet people. I knew I wasn't a good actor, I knew I'd never wanted to be an actor, but I would get these commercial gigs because I was this six-foot Latino dude that played the young Dad.
Brian Beckcom: I got to say this, not to interrupt you. But for those of you that are just listening to the podcast, I would strongly encourage you to go to YouTube and look at how handsome this man is. Because I mean, let's be honest. You know, you look like a leading man, and that is helpful. That's probably one of the reasons you ended up being the Latin Marky Mark, basically.
Javier Chapa: Funny, I'm going to use reductionism here. When I was dating a girl in school who wanted to be a model, I went to this model to search America thing with her. It was like this huge national modeling thing, and I was there being supportive. All of these agents were coming up to me, handing me their business cards.
I had to keep telling them that I am not trying to be in this business and that I'm fascinated by film. I want to get into producing and maybe filmmaking, not modeling or acting. Yeah, just on a whim, an agent from New York named Anthony Higgins. I'll never forget his name, his card was sitting next to my nightstand, and I thought, what the hell? I'm going to give this guy a call. So I call this guy up, and he says that he loves my look and that they don't have any Latinos on their roster.
He's like, You're a cowboy. I can sell all that stuff; we can do beer ads with you, yada yada. So he flew me out to New York for a test shoot, and the rest was kinda history. I ended up signing with a pretty big agency called Wilhelmina Models. You know, I was much skinnier back then, and I promise I did not look the way I look now. I also worked with a big agency in Dallas called Kim Dawson for a short stint.
That's where it all started for me in terms of being able to pay the bills. I'd fly out to places like Spain and do a beer commercial for a week and make a lot of money. Back then, those commercials were paying a lot of money.
Brian Beckcom: In all seriousness, modeling is a form of storytelling. Ultimately, they're putting together ads to tell a story that relates to the particular product. In some ways, I would think that your modeling experience was complimentary to your producing, directing, and writing experience.
Javier Chapa: Yeah, that's a very nice way of putting it. Brian, thank you, though. It's about meeting people. It's about understanding how to get people, to inspire people, and to get them to follow you really. That's what it's about.
You have to believe in what you're doing, especially if you're in a leadership position as a director or producer. It's important to be able to win people over and for them to trust in what you're doing.
Yeah, It's a form of storytelling in one way or another, but for me, it was a jumping-off point for bigger stuff. It was an opportunity to make some money while I was doing the bartending at night. During the day, I would do commercials or some print jobs.
Eventually, I transitioned out of that when I got the inspiration to do my first film as a director. That's when it became about how was I going to find my next film? And how's it gonna be bigger? And so my goal was to double if I made my first film for $25k, how can I make my next film for $50k? $100k, 200k, etc.
It didn't work out that way, I actually exponentially made each one for a lot more than that, but that was just for me; it's about setting small goals. And I think sometimes that's more important than setting these big lofty goals. I read this book called Atomic Habits, and it talks a lot about that.
Brian Beckcom: James Clear. I love that book.
Javier Chapa: So that's where it all started for me. I was living out here with a girlfriend I met doing modeling and eventually got handed this great story that I fell in love with. It was a story that was rooted in the Rio Grande Valley and needed a director. So I just jumped in, and I ran Robert's playbook, "Rebel Without a Crew." We wanted to raise about $150,000 for the movie. My partner and I set a goal that she was going to produce the film, and I was going to direct it. We decided we were gonna raise $150k by a certain date. If we don't, whatever we have, we're going to go out and make the movie. And sometimes, that's how you got to do things. The train has to leave the station, and I think people don't really take you seriously until you say to them, hey man, the train's leaving the station. We're doing this.
It's common for people to sit around and talk about doing things in business. Talk about writing, talk about filmmaking, but they don't actually do it. That was a valuable lesson to me; the second I decided the train was leaving the station, it was incredible how much support we got. It was amazing to experience how people really got behind our vision and passion for the story. Their support is what helped get us to the finish line, and that's what it's about.
Brian Beckcom: I'm literally getting goosebumps right now, listening to you talk. And here's one of the reasons why. I have discovered that there are a lot of commonalities between my guest, and they have all been incredible. For instance, I'm releasing a podcast on Monday that I'm so excited about. I can barely contain myself, and it's with District Attorney Dusty Boyd. One of the things Dusty does, he puts action behind his words. There are people talking right now about how we should do this or do that, or they can help here or there. What I have found is that people like Dusty, like Sarah White, whom I had on my podcast. They can talk as much as they want, but they don't just talk the talk; they walk the walk, they get out there and actually make things happen.
Solving Real Problems Substantively
Brian Beckcom: One of the themes that I've been exploring on the podcast, especially as it relates to the racial unrest going on right now, is the idea of symbolic versus substantive change. And the notion there is, tearing down a statute, doesn't accomplish anything of substance. Let's talk about how we can solve real problems substantively. So I love hearing you talk about being a director, and how other people talk about making a movie for 20 years and never do it. You know, at some point, you got to get out there and actually do the work, right.
Brian Beckcom: The first movie you released in 2007 was called Harvest of Redemption. It won a bunch of awards, and you made it for $25,000 bucks. It's an incredible story, so keep telling us about how you basically said, "I'm going to make a movie" and then went out and did just that. Keep walking us through that.
Javier Chapa: I'd say that gave me a lot of confidence. Given how many variables there were to that film and all the moving parts. It was a very ambitious film, especially for a budget like that. Typically, that size budget is reserved for craft services & coffee budgets for most people.
Brian Beckcom: On these bigger movies, you gotta pay somebody 25 grand just to take the orange M& M's out of the bowl.
Javier Chapa: That's exactly right, but it gave me a lot of confidence to reflect back, how I finished it, sold it, and even won some awards. Did it do anything for me in terms of my career as a filmmaker? No. What it did for me was it really inspired me to want to teach people of color that they can do this as well. I wanted to become a voice for them and help get their stories out in the world. That's when my creative hat shifted a little bit more to creative business initiatives, and that's when I decided I need to launch my company, Mucho Mas.
At Mucho Mas, there's a production arm that produces, finances, and develops content, both film, and television, primarily for the Latin Demographic. Then, I launched a called Inclusion, which is a management company where we represent about 70 actors, writers, directors, and producers on both sides of the camera. It was important for me to help people that didn't have my experience, opportunities, or mentors by showing them the ropes in this industry. I wanted to be that voice of reason and open doors to new opportunities for them.
In the last film we shot, our client from Austin, Texas, Julio Quintana wrote directed the movie, and our other client, Jimmy Gonzalez from Texas, starred opposite Dennis Quaid. That would have never happened for him if I didn’t help them. This was a pretty big film for the players that were involved between Sony Provident and Endeavor content. I really fought for Julio and for Jimmy and championed the idea that storytelling should be reflected in the world we live in. As you know, currently, that's not the case. So just had to do that with this film and continue to do it one film or TV series at a time.
That's why I get up in the morning, why I'm passionate, and why I get a fire in my belly to help people. I bring all this up to tell you a little bit more about my company. Building a company like Inclusion that supports our overall ethos and vision for what it is we're trying to accomplish. I grew up seeing Latinos reflected in a really negative light with their on-screen roles. They were either portrayed as perpetrators of crime, a gardener, gang banger, or the incarcerated. Because of that, we're trying to change that narrative, and I think the only way we can do that is to put out a product that's not reflective of that.
Bringing It Back to Our Roots
Brian Beckcom: Not to get on a side conversation, but I've been in Texas forever. I'm the seventh generation Texan, and I know your family's been in Texas for a long time also. The same for Julio Gomez, his family was in Texas before it was even Texas.
So for people that aren't familiar with Texas geography, the South Texas border area, to me, has always been one of my favorite places on earth. It is such a unique mixture of Hispanic, Latin, German, and all sorts of different cultures.
When I go down there, I feel like I'm in a different country. It's got the ranching, the hunting, the fishing and it's just a beautiful part of the country. I think it's cool that you are telling people about that experience and about that part of the country. A lot of people don't know that there are Hispanic families in South Texas that had been there for ten generations.
Javier Chapa: You're absolutely right. I think what we're trying to do is bring it all back to our roots through storytelling and celebrating the culture in a positive light. Aside from the economic opportunity, there's a real civic and social need right now, especially with everything happening in the world. Not to sound callous, the most important thing is all these poor people dying of COVID alongside with the movie business. What's funny about all this is, I never thought I would end up coming back to Texas, but I'll touch back on that later.
Let me finish the story on Mucho MAS, so I can tell you where it's headed. In the third vertical is a service we're launching called Video on Demand, a family-focused VOD channel. It provides a line up that includes Pet Service with Cesar Milan, Movies, TV Series, Gaming, and different things. The fourth thing we're doing, we're working with the city of San Antonio to turn the old Brooks Air Force Base into studio space where people can film. Just like what Robert Rodrigues did with the airport hangar out in Austin. I say all this because it all started with Hippo and Antonio saying to me, "Son, if you don't want to practice law, get the hell out of here and move to Hollywood." And through all that, I'm coming back to San Antonio, which is really exciting for me.
Brian Beckcom: I bet. That's really exciting.
Javier Chapa: It's exciting for me to educate young Texans from all walks of life and show them that you can do this if you want to. Whether you want to be a technician on a set, a filmmaker, a producer, or a writer, whatever it is you want to do, you can achieve it. Another important aspect for me is working with the local communities and bringing more jobs to the city of San Antonio and into the state of Texas.
We got a little bit of work to do on the legislative side to get there. San Antonio has already done an incredible job of giving filmmakers 10% more than any other city in the state of Texas.
That's why we're positioning ourselves there alongside partners that are investing in our company. It's an obvious fit for us to have a presence in San Antonio. We've got to stay out here in LA for all the obvious reasons. This is where the action's at. To drive home your point about telling stories, dance with the one that brought you, right? And that's something that I've never forgotten about.
Helping Others Help Others
Brian Beckcom: With you coming back to San Antonio, after being in Hollywood is an example of the hero's journey. I know you're too humble to agree with me on this. You went away, you faced challenges, you learn from them, and you come home. And you take what you learned to make your home a better place. It's remarkable to me how many commonalities there are in my guests who are all incredible people in a variety of different areas. One of the things you said earlier about helping other people accomplish their goals is considered servant-based leadership. Dusty talked about this quite a bit. He considered himself a servant, not really a leader.
I was probably 40 or so when I finally realized that life is not all about you. Life is what you can do for other people, and It took me a very long time to figure that out. I love the fact that you talk about how you're in business basically to help people. What I've found is that when I help other people, I feel a lot better about myself. So is there a better feeling to you than being able to help somebody in your community that might not otherwise have had an opportunity?
Javier Chapa: Not at all. I think that that's why we do what we do. I was certainly too selfish early on.
Brian Beckcom: I was a selfish asshole for a very, very long time. I'll put it that way.
Javier Chapa: You get a bit dazzled by Hollywood and all money you can make out here. And, the funny thing is, when you start to help people, and you shift your mindset, you start to make the money you wanted to make in the first place.
Brian Beckcom: Isn't that funny?
Javier Chapa: Yeah. But no, for me, it's why I get up in the morning. It really drives me and puts that passion in my gut to help people and to open doors. I don't care what walk of life you come from, what your background is, or what culture you come from; to be able to guide people in not making the same mistakes I made, or introduce them to the right people is what is great to me. I mean, perfect example. We just put a client on the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, a big movie, a big franchise. His name is David Garcia, incredibly talented. He grew up on the border in Harlingen, Texas. After I saw his film Tejano, I told him, “I really believe in you. I want to represent you and help to open some doors for you”. He was like, all right, let's do this. His last movie, Brian, was $56,000. He went from making a $56,000 movie to working with a big franchise. I signed him two months ago because I really believe in this kid and it's a great example of how fulfilling it is to help people. It's what I think helps keep kids inspired.
Whether you're an actor that just got off the bus from Texas or a filmmaker that made a short film, you can come out here, and you can be somebody. I think that applies in any business, guys like Robert Rodriguez, who had made El Mariachi for $7,000. Look what he's done since then.
I think that's the allure and the excitement of the business, not on the fake cosmetic side of things. But being able to propel somebody that wouldn't necessarily have the opportunities had we not put them in the right position, open the right doors, coached them and empowered them.
The Pandemic and Adaptation
Brian Beckcom: The cool thing about this is I can virtually guarantee that David is going to be helping kids just like you helped him in the future. Like, in other words, by doing what you're doing, that doesn't just help one person it's like ripples in a pond. It just continues out there.
Especially now, where there's this sense that half the country hates the other half. I think the impression you get from social media is there is a lot of division right now. And I think one way to make it through it is doing what you're doing. Stop focusing on only yourself and start looking at ways you can help people that need help.
One thing that I have wanted to ask you is related to the pandemic. I would imagine a lot of productions been shut down for a period of time and that there are not as many movies coming out. So how do you think this pandemic is going to change every industry, including Hollywood? What is your idea about the future of the entertainment industry? How's it going to change?
Javier Chapa: To answer your questions, productions. There are some oversea productions happening right now, but for the most part, the industry is trying to fight splitting like a lot of other businesses right now. On the other side, the streaming business is booming because everybody's staying at home.
Brian Beckcom: Eventually, don’t you think they're going to run out of shows? Netflix has started showing me Spanish and German TV series, and I think it's doing that because I've watched every other American show.
Javier Chapa: That is exactly right. The theatrical business is taking a huge hit because of all this. AMC and Universal made this deal where they closed the window so you can't show a newly released movie on streaming platforms for the first 17 days.
Brian Beckcom: That's a big, big deal. As a matter of fact, when I was in Colorado this summer for a brief period of time, my next-door neighbor was one of the executives at Cinemark, and he was on board meetings every morning on the back porch. I could overhear his conversations, and Cinemark is in all sorts of trouble right now. But like a lot of leaders, he's not crying about it. He's trying to figure out how to solve the problem.
Javier Chapa: I think the way people are viewing content is already changing and going to continue to change. I think the types of stories they're going to tell moving forward are going to be more aspirational, inspirational, like the film we just did.
I think right now, what we're telling all our clients is it’s a great opportunity to continue to develop your craft. You've got a script, and maybe it's not that good, now is the time to make it great. It's also a great time to package projects with filmmakers or with talent.
So, there's a lot of actors reading scripts right now or packaging deals for television. I think the content will double because studios now realize that the model's broken. They can't make these big tent pole movies anymore and spend the same amount on print and advertising costs. So I think what they're going to start doing is any movies that would have merited more of a theatrical release in the past, probably won't, and they'll probably end up on Premium VOD or streaming.
Brian Beckcom: For sure. I mean, one of the problems I have every night is with so much good stuff, what am I going to watch tonight?
But before we go any further, I want to talk about how they're use to be an agreement that when a new movie came out, it would not be streamed, or it would be in the movie theaters for, for a window of time before it was streamed. And there's been a couple of instances recently where that's changed, right?
Javier Chapa: That's correct.
Brian Beckcom: And what's the industry term for that?
Javier Chapa: Its called your first run window.
Brian Beckcom: So now, I think Disney is shifting to release a movie first by streaming, which is a major shift for their business model.
Javier Chapa: Mulan is a great example; it's coming out this weekend. It's was going to be a huge, huge release. They've since decided to release it on Disney plus, their new SVOD vertical. That movie needs a lot of downloads to pay off, but financially, it makes a lot more sense. It's more of mitigating the risk; it's a more calculated decision. Whereas imagine making it for $200 million, putting another $200 million in advertising behind it for a total investment of $400 million. If you're splitting the revenues with the exhibitors, meaning the theaters, the movie has to make $800 million just to break even.
So now, I see that as a very disruptive opportunity to make a lot more content films that don't necessarily need to be in theaters. I think what also is happening is a lot of these studios realize they have to fish in other ponds. Inclusivity is becoming very important, obviously, and reaching those targeted audiences is crucial.
For example, the Latino demographic, look at California, Texas, and Florida alone, that's where the majority of Latinos in the United States are located. So, they don't have to spend a lot of money to reach them and can do so in very effective ways.
And so that's the shift that I'm seeing, and I think it's a really good thing, truth be told. We needed to hit reset out here. The model was broken, and how people are viewing content has certainly changed how we're making content.
Brian Beckcom: It's amazing what you just said; I could not agree with you more. You said the model needed to change, and in some ways, it has. I think again; there's nothing positive about the pandemic. Let's be honest with it and learn some lessons from it. One of the things I think we can learn is not just in Hollywood.
There are all sorts of businesses that are taking this time to reevaluate whether their model is the right model or not like. A perfect example of that is the school systems. Right? Hey, timeout, does everybody in the entire world have to go to college nowadays? Of course, you don't; you can learn everything you want to learn online. The college experience has a very important role to play, and high school does too. The point is, if we look at this pandemic in a certain way, it can give us teaching points and can make things better there as a result of this.
Javier Chapa: That's how I feel; it also makes you appreciate your loved ones a lot more, right? Take the time to connect with them and be closer to them. But beyond that, I think it's a really disruptive environment.
We've had to evaluate our business and discuss how we are going to pivot in an effective way. And it's been good for us, you know? We've had a lot of team meetings and talked about how we're going to change things moving forward. We're doing really well because of it, frankly.
Not to sound callous about all the poor people dying in the world. I'm not glad that's happening right now. Right? But I am glad that things are changing in my business and that we had to make a shift. I think that's part of running a business, knowing when to shift, and not being scared to shift sometimes and try things differently.
Brian Beckcom: And the thing about it is, I've been saying since the very beginning of the pandemic, you gotta be mentally flexible. Because things are in disarray everywhere right now, and there are basically two ways to look at that. You can be nervous and afraid that things are in disarray, or you could look at it as an opportunity.
This is the time to strike; this is the time to invest in your skills. This is the time to figure out what the world is going to need more of and go fulfill that need. You know, it's a cliche, but the Chinese word for problem is opportunity. I think the symbol here is the opportunity. I love how you talk about the disruption not as a negative, but as an opportunity.
Javier Chapa: A thousand percent. Yeah. I've always had to look at those opportunities in my business, for sure. Especially me, I'm in a very specific demographic that's already underserved. So we're always trying to find unique ways to make more content that speaks to that audience. The problem is there's just not a lot of Latino leadership in our business industry. And the people that do call the shots, a lot of them aren't Latinos. The numbers don't lie with Hispanics. They're going to movies at two and a half times the rate of any other cohort out there. They are 20% of the population, and they are spread out across all platforms.
Besides the numbers and economic benefits, it's also about showing them that there are these great, incredible stories to tell. The third point we try to get across is about all these great Latino filmmakers, like the David Blue Garcia's out there, that they typically don't take a chance on. However, I'm really happy; things are changing in a good way. I don't think David Blue Garcia would have had a shot five years ago.
Onset Experiences with Javier's Favorite Actors
Brian Beckcom: Shifting topics a little bit here. I know you, you've worked with some very famous actors and producers. You worked with Ed Harris, Viggo Mortensen, Renee Zellweger, Dennis Quaid, and worked on Grey's anatomy. And so, I'm curious, who are some of your favorite people you've worked with and have a high opinion of.
Javier Chapa: I mean, I love Ed Harris, he is amazing, he is really about his craft, and I learned a lot from Ed. I spent six months with him and learned so much. You know, he's such a humble man, but he's doing it for the right reasons. He's a real artist, and that's what I've learned from him. Is to focus on getting really good at your craft. Don't do it for the money, but do it because you love it and you care about it.
Ed taught me a lot on the long drives home between sets or while sitting on a set, just smoking his cigarette. He would tell me about how storytelling needs to be about the moment, the moment in reality. He would show me different ways to look at a scene, and I've learned a great deal. I have a tremendous amount of respect for Ed, not just as an actor but as a human being.
His partner, a dear friend of mine, Robert Nod, actually introduced me to Ed, and that's how I became involved with that project. He wrote Appaloosa and grew up in Oklahoma in the oil field business. He worked in that business for a long time, and he's an incredible talent. So I have a lot of respect for Ed and Robert.
I just worked with Dennis Quaid and had an incredible experience with him. He really leaned into this film. He was a real trooper and really supported the kids. This film has a lot of Latino kids in it, and he just fell in love with the story. He was really supportive of them, which I really appreciated. And he's a true professional who shows up on time every day, sits and eats with a crew. He doesn't go and sit in his trailer and eat. He's friendly to everyone; he talks to the dude moving lights or moving a stand. He's just a normal, good guy.
I mean, those are some of the people that come to mind, you know. There are people that I've met in this business that I have a lot of respect for that I haven't actually worked with. I've been fortunate to run in some of those A list circles and meet some really great folks.
I would say you certainly have your fair share of a-holes out there. But you also have really good people, you know? And I feel like some of the best people out there are just good, hardworking people.
Tom Cruise is a really good example of that. I've spent some time with Tom, and I think the guy's still one of the biggest movie stars on the planet. Just go through his list of movies; it's incredible. And when you spend time with him or watch him on a set, you see how gracious he is with everybody. The same way Ed is and how hard he works and how much cares that it all makes sense. It all adds up to you.
Brian Beckcom: In other words, it's not an accident that a guy like Tom Cruise is as successful as he is. And I love hearing that because one of the things I think we have a problem with right now is we tend to judge people not as individuals, but as groups. So, there's this notion that everyone in Hollywood is a liberal asshole. Right?
Javier Chapa: Right. Of course.
Brian Beckcom: As part of my law business, I'll do focus groups, and we intentionally bring in the most diverse group of people we possibly can. Black, White, Hispanic, old, young woman, man, different religions, you name it. And I'll tell you what I've figured out; when they're sitting in a room together, nobody is fighting. When people are together in person, they are generally nice to other people. It's when we're looking at people on social media, or we're looking them up on the internet. We don't actually know them personally. We tend to judge people way more harshly than we would in person.
Javier Chapa: People come from all walks of life and from all over the world out there. You find, for the most part, you certainly have your difficult creatives to work with. It's not that they're difficult, It's just they look at things differently, and that's why they are who they are. That's why they're so talented, and I think sometimes they're relentless in their vision and their point of view, but that's what it takes.
Brian Beckcom: Yeah, for sure.
Javier Chapa: It takes that conviction, you know, to stand behind your point of view, your voice, your story, and yourself. I mean, you know, the best thing I learned out of here is when no one else believes you have to believe. Because if you don't, you will get shot down at every corner. I don't care if you're an actor, writer, director, you're going to get a hell of a lot of no's.
I can tell you that one now and to get used to it. And that's the first thing I learned is like, get used to the no's. You have to learn how to turn all the no's into a yes. It's like my old man always said, the harder you work, the better your luck gets. That applies to any business and in my business specifically. Because it's a high-stakes game, and it's a lot easier for someone to tell you no, then it is to tell you yes.
The second they say yes, they got to start writing multimillion-dollar checks, and it's their ass on the line.
Brian Beckcom: Ha! You know, I've kept you for 25 minutes longer than we talked about, but If you've got a few more minutes, I do have a couple more questions I'd love to ask. Do you have a few more minutes?
Javier Chapa: Of course. Yeah.
Brian Beckcom: Okay. I've asked this question to just about every guest. In general, as a leader of people, what are you telling your folks about how we get through these times?
And number two, where do you see us over the next 6, 12, 18 months? Where do you see us going as a society and as a country? What's your prediction on what the future looks like?
Javier Chapa: Look, in terms of my business and my team. I think I already alluded to this earlier. We see it as a disruptive opportunity to affect change in a positive way and to do things differently. It has been advantageous for us. I hate to say it, with the expense of all the bad things happening out there. But it certainly shines a light on the importance of us coming together as a country. Inclusivity is very important right now, and we have to work together and love one another to help one another.
It doesn't matter what the color of our skin is or what our background is or the culture we come from. You know, we're all Americans at the end of the day. It's going to take some baby steps, but I hope in the next few years, those baby steps start to ramp up more. That's when we will start to see more of that inclusiveness and more of that communal support.
I see it out here for sure. I see it amongst the African American community, the Latino community, the Asian American community, and the LGBTQ community. It's becoming more about how we respect one another backgrounds, decisions, points of view, and I think the country needs to be thinking that way as well.
I think that's how we strive, grow, and change some of the rhetoric and bad messaging in the world.
Brian Beckcom: I put this question on Facebook a week ago, because it was really bothering me. I wanted to get my thoughts out there about what has happened to us. One example, let's talk about the racial unrest as it relates to police brutality.
Why do you have to either be for or against the police? Why do you have to be for or against racial fairness? Why can't you say the vast majority of police officers freaking phenomenal people? But there are some bad apples, and we need to fix it. Right?
Javier Chapa: Exactly. Right.
Brian Beckcom: Why can't we say, look, there is no doubt that the minority community, in general, gets treated differently by law enforcement. But some of that, they need to address themselves. Right? So, in other words, why do we have to be on one team or the other? Why can't we all be on the same team?
It's the thought that I have, and we don't really have much choice, as a country, in my opinion. We're either going to realize sometime in the near future that we're in this together and that we're all on the same team, even if we have differences of opinions about certain things. Because if we don't figure that out, it's not going to end well. I love to hear you talk about inclusivity and realizing that just because somebody disagrees with me about something, that doesn't mean they're my enemy. They're still my brother, and they're still my friend.
Javier Chapa: I feel with you a thousand percent, brother.
Brian Beckcom: Well, Javier, I started off the podcast talking about the most interesting man in the world. For being a Hollywood producer, director, actor, and cowboy, you're very humble. That's one of the things I love about you. You truly have lived a remarkable life, and you've got so much more to contribute to this world. You're doing great things, and you are a force for good. You are a positive, inspirational person, and I just love you to death. I really appreciate you being on the podcast. You are exactly the type of person that I want to put out in the world because you're so positive, and you're out there doing really, really good things for people. So, man, I cannot tell you how much I appreciate all your time, and I know how busy you are.
Javier Chapa: Thank you for saying that, Brian. I have a tremendous amount out of love and respect for you, and the fact that you're doing this inspires me. I like the fact that you're a successful lawyer running a law practice.
You've got a family, and on top of that, you're running this incredible podcast. You're exemplifying all these esteemed guests, that I think are incredible leaders. I'm very humbled to even be part of this conversation with you. I commend you for doing what you're doing and for shining a light on some really important things we should all be talking more about.
Thank you so much for having me and for letting me participate. I want you to know you can always consider me as your friend and ally out here and in Texas.
Brian Beckcom: Absolutely. Same back at you, my friend. Would you do me one favor? When you come to Texas next time, text me so I can come out and watch you while you do what you're doing? Or maybe we can even just grab a beer or something.
Javier Chapa: Absolutely, man. Consider it done, brother.
Brian Beckcom: All right, my man, good talking to you!
Javier Chapa: Good talking to you; stay safe and healthy out there.
Brian Beckcom: You too, brother.
You've been listening to lessons from leaders with Brian Beckcom. If you've enjoyed this week's interview, be sure to subscribe, rate, and review this podcast and keep up with the latest episodes. You can also connect with Brian through his firm at www.vbattorneys.com.