"Momma: Feeling different again?
Navin: It's like I don't fit in. It's like I don't belong here.
Momma: It's your birthday, and it's time you knew. Navin, you're not our natural born child.
Navin: I'm not?
Momma: You were left on our doorstop...but we raised you like you were one of us!
Navin: You mean, I'm going to stay this color??
Momma: Navin, I'd love you if you were the color of a baboon's ass."
Okay, so this is a scene from Steve Martin’s "The Jerk." It’s not Jo's story (as her friends call her), though she loves to reference it...cuz why not use irony and comedy as a way to illuminate cultural issues and create smart discourse? Make the belly laugh while making the brain work; move the barometer and expose societal issues!
Without jest, Johanna was born a poor Latina in the barrios of Honduras. As an adopted child, her destiny was re-routed to live with tender-hearted "gringos" in Winter Park, Florida. Instead of banana trees and dirt roads, she was among strong oak trees and brick streets.
Those were the days of the 1980s. She recalls BMX riding, watermelon spitting, tropical storms a-brewin and lake side activities. Along with the traditional studies, as an only child, Johanna found herself dedicated to:
It was at the University of Florida that Johanna realized she could layer her love for music, art and story into one bundle in the visual medium of TV and film. Once the degrees were in hand, Johanna trekked to New York City to pursue big dreams in show biz. Once there, Johanna started to make a variety of TV episodes, specials, docs, short films, commercials, et al.
In 2005, Johanna Vanderspool created Rolling Ball Productions as a venue to produce…well…everything in the visual realm…ok, ok, she excludes pornography and reality TV where people beat up their loved ones. RBP is continuing to grow and expand, so be sure to ask her what’s going on.
BASED IN LA
After years of NYC sun deprivation, Johanna moved to Los Angeles in 2007 to be among another mob of talented artists and entertainers.
Johanna seems to wear many hats (aka showrunner, director, producer, writer, host, painter, photographer). Yet, she refutes labels and tries not to contain anyone into categorical senseless boxes, nor herself. Some may call Johanna a “Renaissance woman” or even cynically doubt a woman of “too” many interests, but that’s simply who she is…perhaps short in physical stature but never in heart, curiosity and energy. If given a heavy tranquilizer, Johanna perhaps may be that gal that juggles one and only one hacky sack, but you should definitely doubt this. (So you know, as a motto, she refuses tranquilizers).
I'M ALL ABOUT...
One last thing you should know about Johanna? She lives for and seeks out Beauty…and enjoys giving it as a gift to others. She's a champion of women, fights for progressive | democratic values and equalities in race, gender, religion and sexual orientation...because? That's what she calls - LOVE.
Hey, what about that enigmatic future, Jo? Hmmm, (shake shake shake) the magic 8 ball reads “Outlook good." It’s a biography worth having. She wishes you and yours the same.