Summertime – Career Freeze…NOT!

Well, once again, we’re on the precipice of Summertime, as well as contract negotiations…or the “fear of a strike.” What a perfect time to “check out” right…NOT. At some point you guys, being an actor in this city, has to become something you’re not constantly looking to “put on the shelf.”  Again, if you treat something like a hobby…you will get hobby results, as well as be hobby proficient.  And I assure you that in LA, while there are a lot of bad actors, there are also a lot of good ones and having “hobby-level” skills…ain’t gonna get it done most of the time.

We are no longer in a typical production cycle.  Forget it, let it go, it is over. The structure that Hollywood was for some 50 years…is gone. For years out here I’ve been trying to get my fellow peers to stop “checking out” for some three months while TV was on “supposed hiatus.”  Then a few years back we got a new production schedule with shows like Nip/Tuck, The Sheild, Monk and many others.

So now we’re here, 2010, and it is total chaos right…NOT. All that has finally happened, due to economics, technology, and a global marketplace is Hollywood is now functioning like all other industries do…year round.  So. The reality is we’ve been ordering or buying or enjoying film/video entertainment for years…whenever we want to, but the production of it lived in this static annual schedule.

One of the reasons why we’re facing certain types of negotiations with the Studios and the Networks is because they’re also realizing that we’re now in a “constant state of production” to keep up with demand.  Is it going to take some years for all of this to settle, sure…just as it is taking time for technology to settle.  We’re still not at the place in a technology sense where everyone has the same “level” of computer, hard drive, processor, delivery speed etc etc much less video having a web standard or compression standard.  There are dozens of options to all of what I’ve listed here, but the reality is TV shows, films and web series all demand content faster and faster and faster.

It gets watched, it gets over and its time for new stuff.  At what point will the web and the TV become one?  We don’t know…we just know it is inevitable.  In the mean time we’re just in this huge era of discovery, evolution, revolution and reorganization.  This is going to affect how we make commercials, when and where they air, and so on and so on. The bottom line you guys is that there is a lot of money out there for performers…period. It is time to think different, be different, and start realizing that if you’re going to build a career and work you have to get into the mentality of an annual profession. This profession is more fragmented than ever before, there are more paths to the top than ever before and ways to meet people are more prevalent than ever before.

But at the same time, don’t be trapped by technology and apathy.  Yes the world wide web has made certain things more convenient but a smile and a chat will always be the strongest currency between people especially in a subjective profession such as ours.

The concept of their being a right time or a wrong time to seek representation or be busy is simply going away if not already gone.  The concept of there being this one “insane” time of the year versus all other months is going away…and evening out.  Do NOT perceive this as slow, understand that it is just a shift…and nothing more.

Don’t wait to adjust, adjust now, and stay ahead of the mental game called Hollywood. Do more research and work smarter.  Pay attention to what the leaders in Hollywood are up to, what the leading independent production companies are focusing on as opposed to just looking at roles.  The more you know what the “big boys” are doing the more you can see your horizon looking back at’cha.  There are four seasons in life, and for years there were 2 1/2 seasons in Hollywood…but now more than ever, it is just one season, called worldwide entertainment…and there is a paycheck waiting for you.  Wanna get it? Cheers,
Kevin E. West – Founder/Prez

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