In today’s episode, our guest is Chris Van Vliet. He is a 4-time Emmy award-winning TV Host, Entertainment Reporter, and YouTuber based in Miami, Florida. Christ has traveled the world reporting from events like the Oscars, Grammys, and the Cannes Film Festival. Chris’s broadcasting career began in 2005 after graduating from Wilfrid Laurier University with an honors degree in Communication Studies. His first on-air job was working as a news reporter and videographer for CHEX-TV in Peterborough, Ontario, before hosting the MTV-2 show “969” in Vancouver, BC, and then hosting “Inside Jam” on SUN TV in Toronto. And today, he is going to share with us how he built his company and becoming an award-winning personality.
[10:51] Why should we listen to you?
My podcast is all about figuring out what makes great people so great. And I’m just fascinated by deconstructing the things that make people get to rise to the top. It is a lot of tips and tactics to get there. And my interviews are all about having these conversations and figuring out what you do in your life that I can steal from and apply to my own life to make myself a better person. I’ve had the great fortune of having conversations with Tom Cruise, Denzel Washington, Steven Spielberg, Meryl Streep, Oprah Winfrey.
[12:13] What was the path you took to get here?
I had a fisher price tape recorder, like with cassette tapes, and I would pretend to be a radio host. And that’s where it began. I just loved mimicking the radio hosts that I heard on the radio. And when I got into high school, I took a communication studies class where we would go out and film like a TV episode. Even though you got to be behind the camera and edit, and you got to run the camera. I loved being in front of the camera. I love being able to elicit that response when you had a microphone in your hand.
[13:37] I reached out to every TV station in my college town. Every radio station in my college town just sent them a random email. It said, “I’m passionate about broadcasting and Communication Studies major, can I come in and volunteer?” and see how it’s done in the real world. They didn’t need to, but one radio station brought me on on their street team. I handed out stuff at different events.
[17:14] What do you think best prepared you to be able to take that floor?
I think I just ran with it. I was not ready. When I look back at those tapes from me being on the news for the first two years, it was not good at all. But I had the confidence that I knew that I put in the effort if I put in the time. Not unlike you and your football career 1% better, every single day is gonna make you that much better in the long run. I had a long-term vision of what I wanted to do. And I knew that I just stepped one or two right now. But I’d reverse-engineered where I wanted to be back to where I was now and when.
[18:18] Do you have that kind of confidence in yourself?
I think you got to know that if you’re down right now or things aren’t where you want them to be right now, that doesn’t mean that that’s how it’s going to be forever. I think you know the kind of going back to the other story, about sending out these random emails maybe not hearing back, or maybe hearing no some people I think we’ll hear one known.
[19:08] What are some of the behind-the-scenes stories, statements, comments that nobody would even know?
I’ve interviewed The Rock nine times. He promotes his films. I’ve interviewed him for you name any film he’s done in the last eight to 10 years. We’ve interviewed for it. The Rock was always at the top of my list, and they always say you shouldn’t meet your heroes button. But if your hero happens to be Dwayne Johnson, then you should meet your hero. We were backstage on Monday night Ross. So I got him in the setting that I was at. I got him in WWE. He has the star quality about him, where he is self-aware enough to know that he is the biggest star in the world and that this moment is important for you.
[21:55] How do you think they got their man their operating levels our brain can’t even comprehend?
The first time I interviewed the Rock was nine years ago. The Rock in 2012 is not the same Rock that we see now. And I read a fascinating article about him in The Hollywood Reporter, and you think about like in the late 2000s like he was doing the Race to Witch Mountain, Tooth Fairy. Gameplan.
These aren’t the movies we know the Rock for. And his career wasn’t going where the way he wanted it to. And he said he wanted to be Will Smith but bigger. His agent said, “No. You want to slim down. You want to be like you wanna be the Hollywood type.” Anyone that just doesn’t feel like me. He ends up switching agents. His new agent said, you’re the Rock, you’re this generation’s Arnold, be as big as you possibly can be. And you think about that shift that he made. He went from those roles to Fast and Furious Five GI Joe to Pain and Gain.
[24:33] What wakes you up when you get up in the morning right now?
My goal in life is to be pumped about what I’m going to do every single day and be able to go to sleep. I picked up my life in the middle of a pandemic and moved to Los Angeles last summer. I was hosting a great TV show in Miami called deco drive, and I was traveling the world interviewing a lot of the celebrities we listed. But I just knew I wanted more. I want more in every situation and one more from every single conversation. I want to be hosting a national TV show again. So, every single day, I’m putting in that work, and I love having these types of conversations.
[26:05] What promise did God make to the world when He created you?
I’ve had this insatiable drive. I’ve been all about goals and goal setting and like chasing after goals. I say vague goals get vague results.
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