I received this question in my inbox this morning:
I was reading your website and you have a lot of resourceful things/advice. Thank you for helping those, like me, who are clueless out here. I’m aiming to move out to LA by May and trying to apply to places. Anywhere I can get a foot in. I’m interested in film/sports, Don’t have a specific specialty though. My interests are broad including production, talent management, PR, broadcasting, and performing. I’ve looked into applying to Entertainment/Sports firms because I have a Sport/Business Administration degree and was an athlete and it seems like it’ll be my best bet. I’ve been told Agent Trainee Programs are your best bet to network. But other places I’ve read tat if you don’t want to be an actual agent, don’t waste your time. I’m moving out there relatively soon so I’m trying to commit and have an attack plan. Any advice?
Also, I’d like to receive the UTA Joblist. I’ve read that there are tons of assistant jobs, which I don’t mind at all. But are these jobs enough to live off of or do you usually need outside financial help? Another job?
Any help or advice you can provide would be greatly appreciated!
Well first things first you really should decide what it is that you want to end up doing.¬† There are so many different jobs in our industry and hundreds of different paths to get there.¬† Say for instance that your goal is to eventually become a director.¬† Well then I would suggest working on as many production sets as you can.¬† Start out as a production assistant and learn all the ins of outs on set.¬† From there you can start to move up into different things but I think the most important thing to learn is how the production set functions and how it runs.¬† If you want to be a producer try working as an assistant to one.¬† If you want to edit start working at a post production house as a runner or a production assistant.¬† My point is figure out what it truly is that you want to end up doing and then find the best path that will eventually lead you to that goal.
If you are interested in sports that is a completely different field than production and entertainment in general.¬† I honestly know nothing about that field, so you may want to look into that on your own and decide what is the best path for that field.
With the Agent Trainee programs, they are a lot of pros and cons.¬† They are great if you want to be an agent, because you learn first hand what it takes to be one.¬† I have to warn you though that I have heard some bad things about the program including EXTREMLY long hours and a unhealthy connection to your blackberry.
If you are just looking for networking oportunities there a millions of different ways to accomplish that.¬† The best way to look at networking is to really see it as making friends, rather than making contacts.¬† Your friends will be more than happy to put their neck out there for you to get a job, while a random phone number will not.
On to the UTA job list.¬† This joblist is a highly sought after list in Hollywood that has all of the new assistant jobs.¬† This list is great, however, you have to realize that thousands of people get this list, and even more apply to these positions.¬† Also Hollywood tends to hire from within so most of those jobs are already filled by their friends cousins sister-in-law.
You can make a living off an assistant job just know that it will not be a lavish one.¬† Same goes for any entry level job in this industry.¬† My biggest suggestion is to save as much as you can before you come out to LA, that way you will have something to fall back on when you only make $500 per week.
I hope this helps!¬† Please keep the questions coming.