By Deb Silverthorn
Zach Prengler’s podcast, “The Come Up,” features discussions of friendship and teamwork from all areas of the entertainment industry between Prengler and some of the celebrity world’s most illustrious and successful agents, producers, managers and others from behind the scenes. The first episode debuted on social media platforms July 11 with new podcasts aired every two weeks on Tuesdays.
“‘The Come Up’ is an opportunity; it’s fuel for me to listen, to learn and to tell stories. That’s the magic of the people I’m talking to; they are an eclectic group with a rich history. I’m speaking to the entertainment industry’s leading architects,” said Prengler. “We all have a ‘come up’ story, every one of us.”
The son of Tami and Craig Prengler and brother of Grant and Kyle, Prengler was raised at Congregation Shearith Israel. He is an alumnus of Levine Academy, Akiba Yavneh Academy and Richardson High School’s Communications Magnet, where he first began making short films and music videos and produced the school’s weekly video update.
Prengler, a graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design, where he studied film and television and acting for the camera, has been creative his whole life. His first recollections of storytelling resulted in home movies he made with his friends when he was only 8 years old.
He worked on the television production team of “American Idol” and feature films including “Baywatch,” “Boss Level,” “Deepwater Horizon,” “Jurassic World,” “SpongeBob SquarePants” and “The Do Over.”
Watching Hollywood in action, Prengler couldn’t help but notice the support teams in the background. Beyond the up-front celebrities and the production teams, it was the managers, agents and representatives who brought the actors, athletes and other celebs to the forefront.
“Those are the people I wanted to hear from, to know more about,” he said. “I was working on my company’s first feature film documentary when I met ‘Miami Mike,’ Michael Sykes, who represents many artists including Soulja Boy,” said Prengler. “He was one of the most genuine people I’ve ever met and has become a champion of whatever I want to do. Meeting him was my ‘Almost Famous’ moment. It helped me realize what I could do.”
In addition to Miami Mike, Prengler has also interviewed Henry Penzi, manager of Vernon Davis, Carmen Electra, Rob Gronkowski, among many; and Blair Taylor, the agent of Robert Herjavec, Kendall Jenner and Kevin O’Leary.
Talking for a living, and making his dreams happen, isn’t a surprise to Prengler’s family and friends.
“He wants to shine a light on people’s lives and their stories. He brings out the dynamic. Zach gives the people he talks to their time to shine. It’s so much fun to watch his excitement, enthusiasm and absolute passion for what he does,” said his mother.
His grandparents, Hannah and Dr. Harlan Pollock and Jackie and Aaron Prengler, the latter three of blessed memory, are always on Prengler’s mind. He remembers their support throughout his childhood and his production company, Wooded Gate Pictures, is a nod to the Prengler grandparents’ former Dallas home address where they fostered much of his creativity.
Hannah Pollock, or as her grandchildren call her, “Hanne,” added that regardless of the endeavor, Zach is fearless. “He can do anything he puts his mind to. I don’t know how but he just does it.”
Prengler is crisscrossing the United States to make his mark. “There’s so much value in the face-to-face. I jump from Savannah to Los Angeles to Chicago and back,” he said.
His hard work is starting to pay off. “I’ve gotten a few sponsors — Comisario Tequila is the first — and I’m out there hustling for more. I know this can be as big, and meaningful, as I envision it,” he added.
Episodes of “The Come Up” can be found at @welcometothecomeup on Instagram and @zachprengler on YouTube.