Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Submit to Everything

Last week I felt like my job search was grinding to a halt and it was getting me down, so I decided to renew my efforts and take a slightly different approach to things. Basically, the I'm a Nice Guy From the Midwest thing doesn't get you very far out here. I really don't want to turn into a Hollywood asshole, but there is something to be said about putting up a good front, at least intially. This includes dress, talk, jewelry, etc. Lisa, who has never worked a day of PR in her life, has parlayed the strategy of positive self-promotion into a very lucrative position doing PR for a local arts organization. She's completely capable of doing the work, but if she'd approached these people saying "Gee I think I can do it but I don't really know. I've never done this before" they never would have hired her. So last week I sent out several applications for jobs and on all of them I adopted a pithy, don't-give-a-fuck attitude. This seemed to work as I had three interviews this week and actually landed a job as a PA working on an independent film last weekend. The PA work was hard--moving sets, helping to set up the camera, going on coffee runs, and a lot, a lot of standing around and waiting. But I got $350 for the weekend so that was good, plus I got to see how a low-budget independent film was made, what with the lighting, the director of photography, the sound and the director working in tandem. It's going to look very good - shot on HD, with some really nice dolly shots. My first day in film school. Yesterday I interviewed for a digitizer position for The Amazing Race and for a field clearance coordinator for what I think was The Apprentice. Today I had another interview over at World of Wonder for an assistant editor position, which went well because Skylar gave me a strong recommendation. All of these jobs are perfect for a 23 year-old, but I've come to realize that I will have to work beneath what I believe is my current station in life in order to eventually work at what I feel is my current station in life. Kind of sucks, it's kind of humiliating, but I knew all of this going in. Last week Charlie quoted Kerouac: "Submit yourself to everything." That's a good philosophy, get rid of the ego and experience a lot of different things. Who knows where I'll end up? If I get the WOW assistant editor job, I'll be working at night and getting paid like $700 a week, which is considered chicken scratch out here. But I'll take it as a place to start. Plus I can write during the day, which is when I write best.

On the way home from the set on Friday night I got into my first LA auto accident. I was driving along Ventura Blvd. when this Oldsmobile pulled out of the Ralph's parking lot right in front of me. I know that anti-lock brakes are better and help you stop faster, but they do take some of the drama out of screeching to a halt. So I slammed on the brakes and decelerated and T-boned the Olds at about 5 miles an hour. I was oddly calm in the wake of the collision. The person I hit was a 72 year-old Armenia man named Bedros, and he was noticably freaked out. We pulled over the side of the road, and after I helped him pry his door open he placed my palm on his chest to illustrate how hard his heart was beating. I kept asking him if he was okay and telling him everything was going to be alright. He seemed to appreciate this, but not enough to prevent him from asking me for $500 on the spot to pay for his car. I tried to explain to him that it was his fault, and that Hazel, the woman who stopped to volunteer to serve as a witness, would attest to this. This caused him to launch into a diatribe about discrimination against immigrants, a real issue to be sure, but one that was not germaine to the situation at hand. My bumper was slightly dented, so we exchanged insurance info and got on our way. Hopefully this won't turn into a big hassle but I figured better to get the bumper fixed and do things on the up and up. I'm just glad he was okay and didn't have a heart attack.

Tonight is my last voice over class. Will I be able to start making money at this? Who knows. I've been told I have a lot of potential, and that I should definitely pursue it, so I'm going to. This means making a professional-sounding demo from the recordings I made during the class and then sending it to agencies. I don't really have the money to take more classes right now, but hopefully I'll start working soon and then I can take more V.O. and Groundlings classes. The Rescue Me script is 80% done. Almost time to start showing my writing to LA.

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