December 2, 2022 | 5:57 am
You are here:  / Dope Interviews / Mack Wilds discusses Swagger, acting, making music and success in the industry

Mack Wilds discusses Swagger, acting, making music and success in the industry

Mack Wilds breaks down all his recent success as an actor and musician. From Broadway to Swagger on Apple TV to crooning out R&B songs, Wilds is having an amazing year in the entertainment space.

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Full show transcript is below. Please be advised the transcript is automated and will contain typos and errors.


Warren Shaw  00:10

What’s good everybody and welcome to another episode of dope interviews brought to you by 19 Media Group. I’m your host Warren Shaw and we are back all swagged out with actor, writer and musician and all around good, dude. Mack Wilds my dude, how you feeling? Family?


Mack Wilds  00:28

Feeling good man feeling great. You know, especially I just got out of the gym. So it’s like the after effects of the gym. I’m feeling it right now.


Warren Shaw  00:37

Those endorphins. Yeah. On a personal note, right things are really bubbling for you right now you’re on Broadway, you got music coming out. I mean, I even I even got a message from another. I guess one of your colleagues, Greg Caley about another project you were in as well, I’ll just do this everywhere. Just how you dealing with everything that’s happening and why I’m being just being so busy.


Mack Wilds  01:03

Man. You know, it’s just it just, we have an amazing team, first and foremost, that we are able to kind of map everything out the right way. And then you know, I always see this little quote that everybody kind of puts like, says all of that stuff, you know, you disappear for six months, do the hard work and watch six months later, everything that you want will start to happen. So literally the last during the quarantine is when we sat down, we buckled down. We started working on all of these different projects at the same time. And it’s weird, uncanny timing, but you know, the everything is just dropping perfectly at this at you know, it’s God’s timing, that a lot of this stuff we didn’t even plan I swear. Not that we there’s no way that we could have planned all of this at one time. But literally just back to back to back just from sitting back. You know, sharpening your tools getting ready making sure you’re doing the best work that you possibly can do. And just getting ready to show the world what you what power you possess


Warren Shaw  02:12

lessons, right. I mean, that’s what it’s all about, man. So congrats to you and on and all that. A few weeks ago, I spoke to you know, colleague of yours on the swagger show spoke to O’Shea. And one of my questions for him to God. Yeah, he’s, he’s an amazing dude. He’s an amazing dude, and always keeps it light and you know, super humble all night. And I asked him, and he kind of tripped me out as well, too, because he’s a big Lakers fan. I’m a Celtics fan. So we kind of got off to a rocky start. But we get money now. So don’t Don’t stress it. I asked him, What was a swaggins thing he’s ever done, like in his life. So I’m going to ask you the same question. In your time, like, what do you think has been one was Mac was the most swagged? Out?


Mack Wilds  02:53

Man? Uh, the most swagged out? I think, man, I it had it had to have been just something something regarding my daughter, man, like, I fit that’s to me. For me. That’s when I felt like the most swag. Yes. Besides, you know, all of this stuff that I did when I was a kid is there’s no greater feeling than, you know, being able to you know, my little one goes into a bookstore. She loves books, loves books. So she’ll go into the bookstore, run around, and she’ll grab 2345 things. And it’s like, Dad, I want all these things. You know, she doesn’t really say but you can tell that’s what she that’s what she wants. And just being able to be like, if they just put it up on the table, and you got it. And just the feeling that she gets from her, her mom being like, she’s gonna be so quiet for a couple minutes. Oh, my God think it’s just the overall an amazing feeling like,


Warren Shaw  03:55

that’s what parenthood is. It is an amazing thing. And it’s something that we’re currently going to touch on here a little bit too when it comes to the swagger show specifically. So let’s transition there. You know, number one, you’re certainly not an actor who’s typecasted right? You played all kinds of different roles. You know, I mean, even laughing I saw Greg Reese I was like, Yo my man’s hairs color different. I was doing the most and in a good way was to just roll with swagger on Apple TV fam.


Mack Wilds  04:24

I’m one of the main things were just the dynamic of the character, you know, being you being a young black man in a battle with himself, you know, you’re battling with your he’s battling with himself versus his own self interests. So seeing somebody with that fire with that with that fight constantly against themselves and kind of makes him the villain of the story. It was very interesting. Then on you add on top of that, it is Kevin Durant who’s one of my homeboys. It is Reggie rock by the wood who is my mentor? My Big homie who would then you got, you know, Brian Grazer and the whole imagine team and then CBS jumps on board and then Apple TV plus jumps aboard. It’s like, I’d be crazy to say no, you know, I’m saying. So yeah,


Warren Shaw  05:16

you slide on me right there a little bit. But it’s good. It’s good. It’s good. It’s cool. Oh, it’s a role as a sneaker executive. Right. So like, you know, I mean, I know a lot of people are like method actors and like that. Did you talk to any rep from? Well, this is Katie. So we’ll keep it. Did you talk to a rep from Nike? Yeah. And I mean, and what it’s like to kind of be an executive in that space.


Mack Wilds  05:38

Not necessarily Nike. Yeah, not necessarily. Nike, I did a lot of research on on different sneaker executives. One, one main one being like Sonny Vaccaro, the guy who kind of facilitated the sneaker deal with Jordan, with Nike, with Adidas with Kobe, etc, etc. He was like that guy who was able to really spark what is now the sneaker Fandom of it all creating these sneaker brands for basketball players, before they even had. So seeing him seeing his story that how a lot of the how a lot of the conversations aren’t held in boardrooms that they’re held behind closed doors, you know, it’s different. It’s a different type of vibe that you get from these guys, who are the ones that are creating the brands that we all know and love today. So, seeing, reading, seeing, reading all of that stuff, and then talking to just different executives who I felt have, are in great places are in very high places that, you know, just asking them the battles that they had to deal with, with their, their their morals versus their self-interests, trying to figure out where that battle happens, and how does it feel so that I’m getting into their, into the skin the correct way? So that was that was what I did, mostly.


Warren Shaw  07:12

Yeah, I mean, it’s, it’s a complex, complex situation. And swagger obviously touches on a lot of different topics throughout the course of the series. But as a sneaker executive, and I liken it maybe even to being like an agent as well to like, you just, there’s just a lot of stuff. You know, like you have to swallow, you know, for the sake of your company. But then that moral aspect is like you’re always kind of toeing that line, and kind of what’s right and what’s wrong, especially when you deal with kids. Like that’s like even Yep, a layer to it as well, too. Like, it’s one thing you do have grown adults in the eye. If you excuse my French cheese if somebody over basically is cool, but yeah.


Mack Wilds  07:50

Yeah, that was a that was the biggest. That was one of the biggest things for me just to kind of just just to be able to play around listen and see where, where this where does he often you know, I think every episode is different, right? I think every episode, you kind of get a chance to see where he lands, and then his excuse for it. No, I’m saying.


Warren Shaw  08:17

Yeah, I think that’s perfectly said. Ironically, I mean, everybody justifies things kind of in their own head, if you will to so again, it’s like, oh, one person say Well, that’s my reason and another like Nah, bro, that’s your excuse. And again, those are not the same. I want to talk about like, again, like this kind of football world if you were all you know, gladiators. Right, so it’s a wild It’s a wild thing. So are you a sneakerhead in some aspects and you know, when can I get a pair of those limited editions?


Mack Wilds  08:53

Man? Um, yes, I first question I am absolutely a sneakerhead minute sneaker head since I was a kid started my collection when I was about 13 14, 15 And it started just trying to collect all of the different Air Force ones I was I loved. I think at that time, it was like 2000 like the heyday of AF ones was really like between 2005 For me 2005 To like 2008 or nine that and that’s when I started branching out into other sneakers and stuff of course, you know, the retro Jordans were always staples but the things that I was like always looking for were the different types of AF ones you know the the black history months, the the Tokyo Special Edition joints like all of these different that was my that was my thing, man. Um, but it but it’s it’s funny now because even now there’s a lot of sneakers that I see game is so different now, man, you know, it’s not, it’s no longer waiting in line or you know, the guy at the sneaker store or something like that. It’s really like it. It’s a lot. It’s different. So there’ll be times where I want to press the button on sneakers on the sneakers app and be like, I’m gonna get these anyway. I don’t mean make sense. Doesn’t make sense.


Warren Shaw  10:19

The discipline.


Mack Wilds  10:23

I try to I try to just justify it in my head. Like, you know, Tristan is gonna need something. Yeah, there’s no point in spending 150 $200 on a shoe, you know, just I’m gonna need something. Yeah, yeah. Yeah.


Warren Shaw  10:35

See? Those priorities fam. I’m rocking with you. That’s what’s up. That’s what’s up, man. Listen, it is an everyday battle. day battle. Trust me. We’re chatting with Mack Wilds here on dope interviews. Make sure you’re following him on social at Mack Wilds. Let’s take a quick break, and we’ll be right back. What’s good everybody, it’s your boy Warren Shaw here and when I bet I bet my bookie go to my bookie, and they will double your first deposit. use my promo code at my bookie and my promo code is dope. That’s D O P E dope for dope interviews, of course. And you can claim that deposit bonus here today. A lot of people think about my bookie and think it’s only about sports. And let me tell you, it is not to have profits that you can utilize for movies, politics, and even current events. If you have a friend even better, you can use your referral link after you use my promo code of course, and use that referral link to send to your friends and you can receive up to 250% additional bonus dollars from my bookie. That’s my bookie using my promo code, do PE dope. And you claim your deposit bonus here today, anywhere at any time, but all the time at my bookie using my promo code dope. And we’re back here on dope interviews brought to you by 19 Media Group picking up a conversation with my guy Mack. While it’s been a great, great time so far. So I want to ask this question, you know, so talking about swagger and the series that you’re in as well, too. Did you who did you hoop growing up?


Mack Wilds  12:05

Man I didn’t. I definitely did. It’s so funny, right? Even right now on the play that I’m doing thoughts of a colored man, the character that I’m playing was in an old basketball player. And I started to ask my team like, Yo, is this something about me that makes y’all feel like I could play ball because I really can’t like it’s not my thing. It’s I’ve managed I love love the gasket ball. Yeah. Oh my god. And I think the reason why I love it the way that I do and the reason I didn’t play it are one in the same my older brother, who I idolized growing up, he played ball. I played every other sport besides ball just because he was the ballplayer played football, played baseball, soccer, wrestling, boxing, lacrosse. I did hot like field hockey every now Yo, I played every other sport, besides basketball just because my older brother was doing. Alright, that’s why


Warren Shaw  13:07

that’s actually really, really wild. So I mean, let me just branch off really quick. So all of those other sports, what was your favorite sport that you played?


Mack Wilds  13:15

Who it would have to be between football and, and boxing? I think there’s like a there’s a certain there’s a certain science to boxing that a lot of people in the bay call it the sweet science, but there’s like, it’s like playing chess, you know, it’s not just knock somebody’s head off what you can do if that’s, you know, that’s could be your strategy. But you get winded really fast. Somebody tag you up a couple times. You always get knocked down with the points that you don’t see. So it’s a it’s a beautiful, it’s a beautiful, like, if done, right. Yeah, boxing is like a dance. It’s man. Yeah, boxing was always and football, you know, football, of course, because it’s not just about how fast you are. There are there’s a lot of guys that I know that are really really fast that don’t know how to stop on a dime and Juke. There’s just so much there’s so much that goes into, into football as well that, uh, it just, those two, those two always stand out to me.


Warren Shaw  14:20

For sure. I mean, in all those sports, they said like there’s a cerebral aspect elsewhere. So say your last week that you have to regularly, you know, to kind of be the best you can be even taking it back to the series itself to I think the people, the writers of this, they were very cerebral in their approach to this too. And I want to ask you kind of what did you learn about the basketball community more importantly, the youth basketball community through your role and playing in this series because there’s some Sadie’s shady is going on down when it comes to this you know meeting coaches and you know poaching players and the whole situation just kind of what was your your your knowledge base when it came to this to the series?


Mack Wilds  14:57

Yeah, I mean, I guess I knew I knew like surface level stuff about the entire grassroots program had a few friends who played in AAU and things of that nature. But it wasn’t. It wasn’t until we did the show that I really start to grasp, especially nowadays, you know, with with the boom of social media and things, the pressures that we put on these kids at such a young age, the a lot of these kids are 1415 years old, first year of high school, or maybe not even in high school yet. And we are placing pressure upon them, especially like I said, now with the social media, boom, the Mikey’s, the brani. James’s design hears, like, all of these young cats that we see will be you know, if they have a bad game, just like the you know, the they’re the older guys that are in the NBA will be in their comments talk about you suck. You’re a bum. But Papa Papa, whatever, whatever. And they have to deal with that. And they haven’t even gone through calculus, yet. They haven’t gone through their first like, they haven’t gone on their first dates and all that. Like it’s just, it’s a lot to put on the mind of a kid that still trying to navigate through high school. And then on top of it, trying to navigate being a young black man, it’s it’s, it’s a lot. And I think it wasn’t until I did the show that I’ve started to realize that that pressure, I was one of those guys, I was definitely one of those guys online that was like, man, come on, you got to do better than that. But not realizing like maybe he had a maybe had a bad game because he had a bad test score. And he was mad about like, there’s so many different things. And and these kids aren’t getting paid for this, you know, these kids aren’t getting they just started the NFL rule for kids like, and then that’s for college kids. It’s It’s tricky, man.


Warren Shaw  16:56

No, I mean, you touched on something really poignant there, at least in my opinion. You know, my wife always says, hey, they’re just, they’re just babies. I mean, they’re still learning how to grow up themselves. And faced with all of these very tough, tough challenges. You know, I don’t want to give you any spoilers. But obviously, there’s an episode in which, you know, you’re pretty involved. People go through some things that you weren’t aware of your character wasn’t aware of. And that’s kind of exactly what to what you’re speaking to kind of like right now. Like, you just don’t get caught up in like, Hey, I see them, they’re here. Now they’re playing this game, but not understanding that there’s life off of the court and real life, real things real, real life, real things with for sure. One of the things in this area that that strikes me is kind of the parental influence. And we’ve talked a little bit about that as, as we go through this interview. And like your dad in real life, I mean, that’s, that’s, that’s probably your pride, probably the most positive thing right now. Right? Yeah. And as I’m watching this series, I see the parental influence as something that is, sometimes you see very much like, hey, as a parent, this is my influence on my child. And then there’s also like, the subconscious, subconscious influence that you don’t realize you have sometimes, as a parent, you don’t realize that you’re maybe projecting on them in some aspects as well, too. So I think that’s portrayed very, very well in the series, if you’re paying attention, just what do you think, you know, as as a dad, I mean, obviously, your child is younger, and stuff like that as well, too. But just in general, what do you think parents can do to kind of get their message across them to be more in touch with what their what their children are going through. And in a time like this, especially when it comes to us basketball, or whatever it is that they may be most invested in?


Mack Wilds  18:46

Biggest thing that any honestly any of us can do, all of us can do. We ask questions, and then we listen, you know, I think the biggest part of communication that a lot of people miss out on is, is the listening part, we often just get angry and frustrated about what we feel needs to happen or how we think things need to go. And we especially for kids, we start to start to dictate to them versus treating them or giving them the space and the grace to be human and be like, Yo, just let me What are you feeling right now? What’s going on? Like, where are you so that I can meet you there and then we could figure we can go from there. I I know I know, as a child growing up. I didn’t get it often. And I know, generations before me didn’t get it off. And so it’s it’s one of those things that I think now, now that we have the know how to do so it’s time to do that. Like if if if you do see a kid not doing as well or whatever it is instead of beating them down which doesn’t help I’d figure out what the problem is and work on that problem. Like, that’s what I feel like that should be the solution.


Warren Shaw  20:07

I love it. I love it. I mean, we’re definitely in a space where we need to be more in touch and in top with what people are feeling and obviously our kids our own flesh and blood. But even if you adopted or kiss me for taking care of young you tap in, like truly tap in and don’t just dictate. I think it’s weird, because like, maybe in some ways Gone are the days and some ask people Hey, do it because I told you. So. Here’s why. I mean, and they don’t want to know the why behind things. And I think maybe as a parent we have we have to do duty and due diligence to kind of give them that why in a lot of ways as well, too. I’m good, favorite character on the show, outside of your


Mack Wilds  20:44

favorite character on the show? Uh, I’d say Jase. I mean, I actually know. It’s um, it’s, it’s Jason’s mom, yo. Chanel brings brings a certain an energy and energy to that character. When I tell you, she is like every strip moms I ever met in my life. Like, I think I think I think it was last episode. Jason, you know, he looks into the crowd. And she’s like, everybody’s telling him you know, you got to play with a with a with a teammates mindset. You got to be passing the ball and all of that. And he looks at his mom and she looks at him with that straight look. And she’s like, take over you better do what I said. Oh, yeah, yeah. Carson Yeah, no,


Warren Shaw  21:42

he’s though. She’s dope. She acts, though amazingly, in that and she’s a flawed character on top of it as well, too. So you’re not afraid to kind of bring that out as well, too. I love it as well. What does the future hold for your character? Um, you know, in this areas, bro. What would you like, you know, what’s the arc? Like? What’s the arc for Lonzo?


Mack Wilds  22:01

I think, I think there’s going to be a time where he realizes the error of his ways and tries to make up for some of his wrongdoing. But I think ultimately we’ll see at the end if it’s too little too late.


Warren Shaw  22:24

All right. Well, I haven’t finished it just yet. I was telling the full house like I’m at the very very tail end like I’m on episode nine. So I’m anxious to see how it works out. But man that’s all the time we have today. My guy Mack Wilds you’ve been amazing please please please check out swagger on Apple TV don’t be you know borrowing your friends password go ahead and watch that joint for my guy Mack Wilds new music coming out as well too Right?


Mack Wilds  22:55

I mean yeah, yeah. Today whenever this drops the song will hopefully be out by then and that may end if this you hear this the new song that means the album is on the way


Warren Shaw  23:07

so yeah swagged up that said my guy Mac while it’s make sure you follow him on all social media outlets. Please rate review subscribe the whole nine to dope interviews. I’m your host Warren Shaw and this has been another dope interview we thank you so much and we’ll catch you next time


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