The Big Smoke interviews Dan Ilic who is currently the Executive Producer of Satire for the Fusion Media Network.
The Big Smoke (TBS): What do you think is the key factor in you ending up where you are today?
Dan Ilic: Career-wise? Coffee. Mainly. Coffee keeps me in motion. That ability to be always in motion, like a gyroscope, keeps me upright and moving forward. The moment I stop, that’s when problems start. This year has been a very stop start year, but now I’m moving again. Having done lots of fun things in my career, I’ve had to keep multiple plates spinning at the same time. While I have a comedy plate spinning, I’ve needed to get a media plate in the air, while the media plate is spinning, how can I get a filmmaking plate spinning? But plate spinning is tiring. So, thankfully, I have a wonderful management team who can do some spinning on my behalf when it becomes all too much.
TBS: Who do you consider the most intriguing public figure to watch at the moment?
Ilic: The Trump kids. Eric, Ivanka, and Donald Trump Jr. When they’re in the same room together, I call them Trump-Tron: a monster so powerful they could only be destroyed by Voltron. This is Donald Trump’s inner, inner circle. They’re the closest people to him in his campaign. At first, Trump-Tron appear to act like normal kids of an oligarch, unburdened by the knowledge of their own privilege. However, after a while, you begin to realize that they’re actually running the show. Trump-Tron are in effect, pulling some kind of elaborate Weekend at Bernie’s style prank on us all. Pulling the puppet strings of a patriarch who is dead on the inside.
TBS: What is the worst way for a person to try and get your attention on social media?
Ilic: Don’t say anything. I’m fairly engaged on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. I’ll try to get back to most people. Even trolls. Say “hi,” I won’t bite.
TBS: If you could determine the exact influence you have on a young person, what do you hope she or he would gain from observing you?
Ilic: That there are opportunities in the strangest of places, you’ve just got to put yourself in those places. I’ve made a career of sneaking in the back door. In fact, I’m beginning to wonder whether all the doors are back doors. So I guess, keep going in back doors until they let you in the front.
TBS: What advice would you give a 15-year-old Dan Ilic?
Ilic: Work harder in English class, it’s going to be the basis for everything you do. And ask Katie Phillips out … she likes you.
TBS: What is your most annoying trait?
Ilic: I tend to mimic sounds without knowing. This is a problem when you’re working in an office. I tend to whistle production music or copy someone’s mannerisms without actually knowing it.
TBS: What is the one gift you will pretty much always re-gift?
Ilic: Land mines. When it comes to re-gifting, you can’t put a foot wrong … some people love land mines.
TBS: What is your favorite lame quote or cliché?
Ilic: “Everything happens for a reason.” This saying is helpful to no one. Sure, it’s true, but unhelpful, especially when the reason is your own fault.
TBS: And finally, you’ve been tweeting a fair bit about the U.S. Elections lately; what has been your favorite joke so far this campaign? Either a joke you’ve heard or one you’ve made?
Ilic: There is nothing funny about the U.S. elections. It is sheer terror every day. Why would you even ask this question?