Life in Hollywood, below-the-line

Life in Hollywood, below-the-line
Work gloves at the end of the 2006/2007 television season (photo by Richard Blair)

Monday, April 27, 2015

Crew Call, Season Two

The Anonymous Production Assistant is gearing up to produce a second season of Crew Call, a series of interviews with a wide variety of working professionals in Hollywood, and to fund the effort, TAPA has launched another Kickstarter campaign.

Yeah, I know -- Kickstarter is yesterday's flavor du jour, no longer the bright new bauble on our collective cultural radar screens.  But that doesn't mean it's a bad idea.  Quite the opposite. Season One of Crew Call featured interviews with -- among many others -- an editor, production designer, prop master, animator, Line Producer, Second A.D., stuntwoman, casting director, transportation coordinator, a veteran dolly grip, a very experienced location manager, a smart young camera assistant, and a certain juicer. There's also a fascinating interview with Steve Cardellini -- and if you don't know who he is, or what a Cardellini Clamp is, then you're probably a film student who has yet to learn anything truly useful about the down-and-dirty business of film and television production.

But hey, ignorance is not only forgivable (so long as unaccompanied by the fatal sin of arrogance), it's curable -- and curing ignorance is what Crew Call is all about.

I pledged my fifty bucks (and it's been two months since I've seen a paycheck, kiddos), because I think what TAPA is doing here is worthwhile. Most kids coming out of film schools or otherwise drawn like moths to Hollywood's bright and alluring flame have no idea what they're getting into.They think they do -- after all, four years of college ought to teach you something -- but most of that very expensive education will prove utterly useless in the real world of film and television production. In discussing the craft with TAPA, these professionals provide an up-close and personal window on what it takes to work in one of the myriad fields required to make any film production.

That's a good thing, because while they're in the warm, nurturing womb of school, film students tend to assume they'll somehow end up as successful writers, producers, directors or cinematographers -- and for most of them, that's not gonna happen. As even a cursory glance at a call sheet will reveal, there are very few slots for those high-end jobs, and only the most talented, driven, determined -- and lucky -- will make it.

The rest will have to find something else to do, and if they decide to stick with the film industry (rather than go to MBA school to become Wall Street Scum), listening to those Crew Call podcasts might help clue them in to them in to all the other options -- Plans B, C, and X.

And let's face it -- we've all been in dire need of a Plan B at one time or another.

There are only ten days left for TAPA to meet the Kickstarter goal, and the last I checked, it wasn't even close, so if you can help out at all, please click on over and give what you can.  Five bucks here and five bucks there just might make a difference.

And thanks...

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