It's A Curious Mind by Brian Grazer and Charles Fishman. Grazer is a famous Hollywood producer, best known for teaming with Ron Howard, and for producing A Beautiful Mind, Splash, Apollo 13 and other blockbusters.
The thesis to A Curious Mind (2015) is that it is curiosity that has helped Grazer grow, and that has been the secret to his success. He has engaged in countless "curiosity conversations" with a veritable who's who of power in the Hollywood scene and outside of it.
I typically won't be too picayune with flaws of the books on this list, but for this one, I want to make a disclaimer that 1) the book repeated its thesis so much that it became annoying, and 2) I believe there should be more to the thesis.
While I absolutely love the message on curiosity and that's a major reason why it is a quality book, it is Grazer's boldness and audacity that may impress me more than his curiosity. When he was a mere messenger starting out in the business, he would insist on having his curiosity conversations with extremely powerful Hollywood people. Guts!
I have always known that the entertainment industry is one of the most difficult, dog-eat-dog industries in the world. As soon as I arrived in L.A., a friend said, "Remember. L.A. is a city of vacuous pursuits."
I couldn't agree more. For who I am, I'm not sure I could handle a career in the entertainment industry. I couldn't deal with the politics, the difficulties, the obstacles. And for what? To write a killer script, only to have it never sold or finally sold and reworked beyond my control.
So I had my own curious mind, when reading Grazer's "Curious Mind," and I realized that he defied major odds to become such a major producer and figure. He started by, boom, walking into big-time producer Lew Wasserman's office and picking his brain with how to be a producer. Wasserman called him out on being full of it, and Grazer figured out he'd have to come up with his own film — "Splash" — to break into the world of producing.
If anything, I like that Grazer's book isn't a narrative on his odds-beating success. Rather, it focuses on the secret to his success — curiosity.