Gabriel Gomez: “Balance is everything!”

Balance is everything! If you’re going to prioritize one stakeholder over the other, you’re going to disappoint someone or fail at something. Balance is the most important part of this business. Pick your battles, stay true to yourself, recognize what you’re willing to sacrifice, and trust your gut. As a part of our series called “5 […]

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Balance is everything! If you’re going to prioritize one stakeholder over the other, you’re going to disappoint someone or fail at something. Balance is the most important part of this business. Pick your battles, stay true to yourself, recognize what you’re willing to sacrifice, and trust your gut.


As a part of our series called “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me When I First Became A Filmmaker”, I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Gabriel Gomez.

Gabriel Gomez is a Clio award-winning director, producer, & entrepreneur born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. He was a prestigious member of Brooklyn Magazine’s “30 Under 30” Class of 2018.

Specializing in commercial & documentary, his work focuses on raw character, compelling compositions, and dynamic stories. He’s directed projects for H&M, CNN, Discovery Network, Columbia Records, 300 Entertainment, Mom+Pop Records, TNT, The Guardian, Refinery29, Bon Appetít, and many more. Gabriel is also the founder/ creative director of Crooked Letter, an entertainment company specializing in film production & the visual branding, curation, and crafting of their roster of talent’s brands & careers. His leading talent Caleb Eberhardt AKA Rosehardt made his debut in 2019 starring in Tarrell Alvin McCranney’s Tony-nominated play Choir Boy, Crystal Moselle / HBO’s Betty, and the upcoming Ryan Coogler-produced “Judas & The Black Messiah.

In July of 2020, Gabriel launched The Crooked Letter Radio Hour, a weekly “quarantine-inspired” radio show with a variety of guests such as Zazie Beetz (Atlanta, Joker), Jeremy Allen White (Shameless, The Rental), DeVonn Francis (Yardy NYC), and more.

In October of 2020, Gabriel was selected by Dr. Martens as their “Filmmaker of the Year”, partnering with him for a global digital documentary film campaign featuring some of his favorite musicians in New York City.


Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Our readers would love to get to know you a bit better. Can you tell us a bit of the ‘backstory’ of how you grew up?

I grew up in Brooklyn, NY. The city informed everything I did, saw, felt, and considered. I grew up in the arts & knew they would be my guiding compass. I was a skateboarding actor tyke who went to LaGuardia High School (in class with Zazie Beetz, Azealia Banks, and more) and fell in love with film on the side throughout my years there.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

In Junior year, I went to Sundance film festival and it changed my life — the community, the stories, the feelings! As soon as I returned, my best friend and I made a feature film throughout the year & premiered it to an audience of 400…it was a transformative moment & made me realize I wanted to tell stories for the rest of my life.

Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your filmmaking career?

I doubt myself every single day — it never goes away. I just turned 30 and I keep waiting for that feeling to dissipate and it never does. I don’t know how funny or interesting that is but it feels important to say and it’s real so…

Who are some of the most interesting people you have interacted with? What was that like? Do you have any stories?

Growing up in New York City, in my circles & communities & networks, everyone’s “interesting”. Yes, some are more famous than others…I rub shoulders with all the “cool kids”. But I try and focus on their hearts, not their Instagram follower number. Everyone’s human…it’s important to find the ones that are genuine. I like the real deal.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

My mother. My friends. My city. I’m the luckiest boy in the world.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

I am very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

Without diversity, we’re living in ancient, racist bias. Enough is enough. The entire landscape needs to shift. We need more authentic stories. We need smarter stories. We need diverse stories. Mainstream culture has been profiting off of numbing audiences for far too long.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

Crooked Letter just acquired the loft next to our office in North Williamsburg, so we’re turning that into a full-fledged production studio — we’ll be calling it Northpoint Studios. Come shoot here, we’d love to have you! That will be taking a lot of my time over the next few months — it’s hard to find a balance between my entrepreneurial endeavors and storytelling. However, Rosehardt’s second album is coming…and it’s incredible. We’re currently in post production for the documentary I’m directing on his last year of success & tension.

Which aspect of your work makes you most proud? Can you explain or give a story? Truth. Soul. Sophistication. Experimentation. Fun.

Ok super. Here is the main question of our interview. What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Please share a story or example for each.

Breathe more.

Always take the coffee with someone.

Enjoy the process.

Tell the stories that matter to you.

Be nice to people.

When you create a film, which stakeholders have the greatest impact on the artistic and cinematic choices you make? Is it the viewers, the critics, the financiers, or your own personal artistic vision? Can you share a story with us or give an example about what you mean?

Balance is everything! If you’re going to prioritize one stakeholder over the other, you’re going to disappoint someone or fail at something. Balance is the most important part of this business. Pick your battles, stay true to yourself, recognize what you’re willing to sacrifice, and trust your gut.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

Vote. Hold yourself accountable. Feed the homeless. Check in on your loved ones.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might see this. 🙂

I would give my pinky to have a round table with Spike Jonze, FKA Twigs, Barry Jenkins, Frank Ocean, and Michaela Coel.

How can our readers further follow you online?

@gabrielgomez on Instagram, or check out Crooked Letter’s website at www.crookedcrooked.com

This was very meaningful, thank you so much! We wish you continued success!

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