Morgan Fallon — 10 Years on the Road with Anthony Bourdain, 9 Emmy Nominations, Lessons from Michael Mann, Adventures with Steven Rinella, High Standards, Wisdom from West Virginia, and More | Brought to you by Gravity weighted blankets (http://gravityblankets.com/tim), Athletic Greens all-in-one nutritional supplement (http://athleticgreens.com/tim), and Helix Sleep premium mattresses (http://helixsleep.com/tim).
00:00:15 How has Morgan’s decision to take up endurance mountain biking in his mid-40s been going so far? As someone who’s still recovering from injuries sustained years ago, am I one to make a judgment call?
00:07:09 After being on track to further develop his talent in ceramics, what compelled Morgan to study film at Emerson College, and how did he get in after his application was initially rejected? What did he take away from his time there?
00:13:27 Who is Michael Mann, and how did Morgan come to work with him? What made him such a rare cinematic force in the early 2000s when they met?
00:27:11 How did Morgan go from dining with the rich and famous at Nelson Mandela’s house in Mozambique to living in his parents’ New Hampshire basement, and what did he do to regroup after this detour and find his niche?
00:32:08 How did Morgan connect with Chris and Lydia at ZPZ, and what did he do to make himself indispensable to the projects he was lucky enough to land during this time?
00:37:00 As someone who worked with and knew the late Anthony Bourdain fairly well, what did Morgan think of Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain? Is there anything about it he wishes had been handled differently?
00:41:33 On going into the wild with conservationist, hunter, writer, living encyclopedia, and former guest on this show Steven Rinella, what it means to get “cliff hung,” and the transferable skills Morgan picked up from documenting their wilderness treks for television.
00:59:05 How did Morgan get the call to first work with Anthony Bordain in Egypt, and what moderately reckless stunt endeared him to Tony and secured a place for him on future runs?
01:04:06 Morgan talks about the time he traveled to Ethiopia with Anthony Bordain and Marcus Samuelson to direct an episode of Parts Unknown during a tuberculosis outbreak. How did he prepare for it, what did he do to manage the anxiety disorders he experienced while there, and why will he probably never watch a John Wick movie?
01:15:09 What are the responsibilities of a director of photography (DP), and why does Morgan tend to drive them crazy?
01:16:39 On Tony’s high standards, why Morgan appreciated them, and the different types of standards one might expect to encounter over the course of a career in Hollywood — or fine dining — depending on the caliber of the people in charge.
01:27:54 What Morgan knows about that time Tony went snorkeling with dead cephalopods in Sicily and how it was made into a hilarious scene for the viewing audience while simultaneously bringing the man himself to the brink of a nervous breakdown.
01:33:02 Why Morgan’s house is filled with memorable detritus.
01:36:42 What tools has Morgan found to be most effective for dealing with the symptoms of his own bipolar disorder? Are people in his line of work prone to coping with similar struggles, and might the condition carry certain benefits for the creatively inclined?
01:42:05 Why did Morgan stop drinking when Tony died, and what’s been his most effective therapy for staying on the wagon?
01:48:58 Morgan explains how he and another cinematographer used two cameras to “dance with geometry” and make scenes more dynamic for The Tim Ferriss Experiment.
02:04:37 What advice would Morgan give his younger self regarding the journey from DP to director to showrunner and transitioning from a narrowly creative role to a broader creative role with more managing responsibilities? What has he learned about delegating constructively — rather than destructively — during his time in this field?
02:10:53 Why was the West Virginia episode of Parts Unknown so special to Morgan?
02:18:44 How does Morgan choose the projects he works on now? What prompted his involvement with United Shades of America?
02:25:38 What’s next for Morgan?
02:26:22 How has Morgan successfully navigated working with his wife?
02:32:53 The best day of Morgan’s career, appreciation for being able to do the work that keeps him constantly in awe of the world, and other parting thoughts.
Connect with Tim Ferriss:
Sign up for “5-Bullet Friday” (Tim’s free weekly email newsletter): https://go.tim.blog/5-bullet-friday-yt/
Visit the Tim Ferriss PODCAST: https://tim.blog/podcast/
Visit the Tim Ferriss BLOG: https://tim.blog/
Follow Tim Ferriss on TWITTER: https://twitter.com/tferriss/
Follow Tim Ferriss on INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/timferriss/
Like Tim Ferriss on FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/TimFerriss/