Friday, June 01, 2007

Amateur Prima Donnas

As The Refreshments once put it so wisely: Everybody knows that the world is full of stupid people.

I show up on time. It's my thing. All of my friends know that if they ask me to do something, I will do it on time and in the way they needed it done. So when somebody needs a responsible person to handle a job, they turn to me.

It's got its disadvantages, that responsible thing. I have mini panic attacks when I'm late for things, especially if my tardiness is caused by my warped sense of direction piloting me into a freeway to Nowhere. Sometimes I cry when I'm lost because I'm so upset that I'm not going to make it on time. I have no patience with people who are even a tiny bit late. I know a date is doomed when he's not at my door the minute he said he'd be, and I can't blow things off if I don't want to do them because it would destroy my reputation as super responsible, which for some reason I obsess over maintaining.

Other people don't have that obsession. They don't call and don't show, often several times in a row. I've noticed this is a particularly common feature among actors, which is why so many of them are the aforesaid stupid people.

Don't get me wrong, I still love actors. But they can sabotage a career like nothing I've ever seen.

I'm producing a short film soon, and after that hope to pull in funding for a feature. I have plans to continue working, maybe in TV, maybe in features after that. But either way I will be in a position to make casting decisions in my life. Yet I have at least four actor friends who don't return my phone calls or show up at my gatherings. Morons.

I recently recommended a friend of mine for the lead in an independent feature being shot later this year. My friend never called the director to find out about the audition, which made me look like an ass. This was after he took a month to read the 12-page script for Game Night. By the time he got around to reading it I had already given the part to someone else. He whined about how unfair it was that I didn't wait for him.

I have another friend who seemed uninterested when I told her about a part in the script I wanted her to read for. She forgot to take it with her when she left my apartment.

Both of these people are unrepresented and are experiencing dry spells in acting roles. Maybe this is why.

Trainer always rehearses his audition piece for me when I'm doing crunches. He treats every part, no matter how small, like it's the lead in a feature. He never misses an audition and follows up leads on his own regardless of what his agent is up to. Every time I give him a script he reads it right away and gives me intelligent notes. And he's always on time for our sessions.

All three of these people are talented actors.

In the future I will need actors to fill certain roles. Guess which one I'm going to pick first.

There are just too many people in this town who are dying for a chance to work to bother with unreliable people. I think that probably applies to writers, too.


  1. Anonymous6:25 PM

    Left a message on myspace about my script

  2. Its not just the nature of this business - but of life as well. I am compulsively on time - and when you're on a set that is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars a day - you better be. But those habits start on the free shoots. A lot of people think that the film business is a great lark where they can smoke pot, show up when they want, and not be hassled.

    Those are the people that either don't make it... or are successful actors. No inbetweens...

    In all my years in the business - there have only been a handful of people that I've met that have the desire, ambition, and talent to actually make something of themselves. There are plenty hanger ons who will do good for a shoot or two. But its the hustlers who survive.

    Either that - or they're actors... :)

  3. You said it sister.

    As a producer, I can't tell you how many times I've hired one writer or director over another because they're a little more reliable, easy to work with -- even kinder.

    So many immature asses in this business. But so many good people, too. When you find them, you tend to hang onto them. Relationships matter.

  4. Damn, i hate flakey people. Hate 'em!

    I had to deal w/ flakey actors while directing theater scenes in college.

    When my husband was at UCSanta Cruz he showed up to help fellow students w/ their shorts, but they flaked on helping him w/ his. ARGH!

    So inconsiderate...

  5. You ever throw me a part in one of your projects, I'll be on time and I'll have come thousands of miles to do it too!


Please leave a name, even if it's a fake name. And try not to be an asshole.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.