The S&M Industry

I feel like people who go to film school have to be enlightened before they go out there and see that production isn’t all its cut out to be. In school they feed you these ideas that you will graduate and become a producer or director from the get go, and it is not the case at all, unless you have the means to fund your own stuff.

Everyone, at least people with zero connections, like my self, has to start from the bottom slaving around and working for free.I hate the fact that they sell you the idea that you work for free in exchange for credits, experience, and connections. What connections can I possibly make if all I’m doing is standing on a corner telling people to not walk onto a set, or making coffee runs, and bullshit tasks!?

The production world is very tough, and unless you have mommy and daddy working in the industry, who will place you above a p.a. ,you are going to pay some ridiculous dues!

I interned on many productions in NYC. I worked long hours, and it took a toll on my health. The fact that getting a stable (staff) position is nearly impossible was very discouraging for me.

I worked as a freelancer for 5 years in NYC, (did commercials, scripted and non scripted tv series, films, music videos, worked for MTV) and I got to the point where I’ve had it.

Not having a set schedule and not being able to plan ahead because I don’t know what offers will come and when, got to me. It’s too much hard work, and too much sucking up, for the low pay, and the lack of consideration. It’s just not for me anymore.

I got sick and tired of jumping around, while all my friends and family my age have stable careers and a life going for them.

Currently I’m back to point zero, I have nothing to my name, and a long road ahead, since I decided to go back to school and go into healthcare.

So for all those of you in school who have all these wild dreams and aspirations: Just know its is not easy, you will kiss a lot of ass, you have to do your best and beyond to be acknowledged, and you will never have a stable job. I wish someone would’ve told me. Good Luck!

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One thought on “The S&M Industry

  1. The film and television industry is not for anyone whose goal is having a stable career and life — above-the-line or below, stability just isn’t part of the deal in Hollywood, New York, or any other place in the industry. It’s good that you figured that out, but a real shame it took so long. I’m surprised that your teachers in film school didn’t make that clear — and shame on them for not doing so. It’s particularly difficult to get going above-the-line, where becoming a working director, producer, or writer is a lot like becoming a successful musician — it can be done, but for every person who succeeds, countless others fail.

    I’m now in the final stages of a nearly four decade career working below-the-line, and although the last couple of years have been solid, there were many times over the previous 36 years when I considered leaving the industry due to lack of work… but something always came along to keep my on the hook. I don’t regret any of it, but looking back, I’m not sure I’d recommend a career in film and TV to any young person today. It can be done — there are careers to be built and money to be made there — but getting started can be absurdly difficult. It’s easier to get started working below-the-line, but that’s a life of heavy lifting. It’s not for everyone.

    Good luck in healthcare — at least there you’ll be doing some real good for people.

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