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The Film Industry

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Alright /adv/ I used to go to an arts boarding school and was a film major. I know a lot about the production side of the industry and wanted to know if anybody here either works in it and or knows somebody who does. I know it's difficult but I'd appreciate some firsthand experience. I also am moving to LA next summer.
Good luck, you're definitely gonna be a waiter until you realize how much it sucks and move back home.
I had a friend who worked in the industry for about six years or so, so this will all be second hand information. He was my roommate during the first few years when he was breaking into the industry. He was not a film major in college and he worked a lot on the technical side. I do believe that he had some training before hand, but not much formal stuff. He started out just doing the minor stuff, he was a grip for a while, did some casting, minor acting roles, editing, set design, writing, sound etc.

In the beginning he did a lot of shitty jobs. We were living in LA, so he worked a lot on USC film school productions at first. The pay was low, but he got a lot of experience. As time went on he was doing a lot of grip work and started getting hired to be the key grip in quite a few higher level productions. The connections he made through student films seemed to help out, it seems like personal connections are really important. You have to be good at meeting people/selling yourself no matter what you are doing. Don't be afraid to take on the lesser roles, they might help you get onto film sets, learn how things work, and meet people that can help you get jobs in the future.

Again this is all second hand, but he vented to me a lot and talked about it a lot to me. Additionally I lived in the LA area for a number of years, don't anymore. Any specific questions? I'll try to answer to the best of my ability.
Wow thanks anon this is great info. One question though, after what you said I'm assuming he was working on non-union shoots and from what my film teacher told me, non-union shoots can be pretty grueling considering the long hours. Did your roommate work long hours or was it fairly standard?
He was doing non union stuff at first. As far as I remember the hours were really terrible, but it really depended on the project. Some seemed to go well and it wasn't too bad; others were chaotic as fuck and he worked like a dog.

I am a teacher and was just starting out back then. For some shoots he worked a lot more than I did and I had a pretty hectic schedule as a first year teacher. Others were not as bad. The student films seemed to be the worst, most of the indie stuff he did which was semi-professional seemed to go better. At some point he did get into the union and starting doing union work, I know he was happier with that.

I think it's a matter of putting in the work and getting the experience early on. Times were tough at first, but they got better. He put in the work and it almost seems like it was a rite of passage. The people who are unsuccessful in the industry in LA are the delusional ones who think they will be discovered or wont consider anything outside of acting/directing/writing. You can be successful in the industry if you are ready to do some work, but it's not easy at first. A lot of nights he talked about reconsidering it, but he did stick with it.
Damn, thanks man, I really appreciate this information.
np let me know if you have any specific questions and I'll do my best to answer, I can also answer general questions about LA if you'd like. Do you know what part of LA you will be moving to?

I'll be moving back to my old house where my older brother currently lives in which is in Paramount/Compton I know it gets a bad rep sometimes but it really isnt that bad.
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