U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > California > Los Angeles
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 10-31-2013, 08:08 PM
 
158 posts, read 225,193 times
Reputation: 102

Advertisements

I'm not an actress nor do I have an intention of becoming one. I've never even been to L.A. However, whenever talking or reading about this profession, everyone keeps saying that if you choose to become an actor that you'll be living in poverty, supplementing your meager acting income with other low-paying jobs, and eventually leave the industry altogether. They say that whether you're in Hollywood, Bollywood, or other places in the world where there are well-developed movie, TV, and theatre industries, that your chances of even making a middle/lower-middle class income from acting are slim. Sorry if this sounds naÔve, but why is that?

Again, I'm not talking about becoming a famous actor. I know that there's a hierarchy in Hollywood even among A-listers. By famous I mean actors - whether A, B, or C list - whose names you know. However, there also actors whose faces you know but whose names you don't always remember. You regularly see them in minor and supporting parts in films and on TV, occasionally as leads in TV movies or independent films. I imagine they also do theatre, voice-over, commercials, music videos, etc. I think they're called working actors or character actors, and make at least a middle-class living from acting.

So, is becoming such an actor very difficult? I mean there are hundreds if not thousands of a variety of productions (like the ones I mentioned above) every year. Again, sorry if this question seems very naÔve. Thank you in advance.
P.S. Someone created a similar post on Yahoo Answers a while back but didn't get a lot of responses.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-31-2013, 08:26 PM
 
1,317 posts, read 1,676,525 times
Reputation: 645
There is plenty of competition out there. Go to a casting call and see the countless people that show up. Many can get work, but not consistently. Many of the jobs are also union (SAG) jobs. You have to find the right person to get you in. It is also not cheap to join SAG.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-31-2013, 09:59 PM
 
Location: TOVCCA
8,271 posts, read 10,510,884 times
Reputation: 11848
Friends who have done it for years earn anywhere from $15K to $50K a year, as it varies wildly. Their income is supplemented by going on and off unemployment.
Best to join something like this:

Central Casting
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 10-31-2013, 11:06 PM
 
4,028 posts, read 8,299,064 times
Reputation: 2871
This would be the guy you are describing:

Glenn Morshower - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Took him until he was in his 40's to start getting decent speaking roles in any sort of quantity. I'm sure he does ok now, but 20 years of sluggin it out first.........And he actually is good at acting.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-01-2013, 12:53 AM
 
Location: California
29,580 posts, read 31,907,081 times
Reputation: 24725
Someone I know has been in LA for 6 years. She has been in a few commercials that have paid the bills but she has worked as a waitress a lot as well. She's branching out into some other creative areas now because she's knows she can't count on acting for $. Most people get to a certain point and fall into something more routine then just get on with other things in life.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-01-2013, 07:20 AM
 
377 posts, read 407,618 times
Reputation: 417
well, there's always porn
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-01-2013, 10:18 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles (Native)
24,151 posts, read 13,675,815 times
Reputation: 11364
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marissa23 View Post
I'm not an actress nor do I have an intention of becoming one. I've never even been to L.A. However, whenever talking or reading about this profession, everyone keeps saying that if you choose to become an actor that you'll be living in poverty, supplementing your meager acting income with other low-paying jobs, and eventually leave the industry altogether. They say that whether you're in Hollywood, Bollywood, or other places in the world where there are well-developed movie, TV, and theatre industries, that your chances of even making a middle/lower-middle class income from acting are slim. Sorry if this sounds naÔve, but why is that?

Again, I'm not talking about becoming a famous actor. I know that there's a hierarchy in Hollywood even among A-listers. By famous I mean actors - whether A, B, or C list - whose names you know. However, there also actors whose faces you know but whose names you don't always remember. You regularly see them in minor and supporting parts in films and on TV, occasionally as leads in TV movies or independent films. I imagine they also do theatre, voice-over, commercials, music videos, etc. I think they're called working actors or character actors, and make at least a middle-class living from acting.

So, is becoming such an actor very difficult? I mean there are hundreds if not thousands of a variety of productions (like the ones I mentioned above) every year. Again, sorry if this question seems very naÔve. Thank you in advance.
P.S. Someone created a similar post on Yahoo Answers a while back but didn't get a lot of responses.
I feel that this advice from Woody Allen is pretty relevant to the film industry especially.

"I made the statement years ago which is often quoted that 80 percent of life is showing up. People used to always say to me that they wanted to write a play, they wanted to write a movie, they wanted to write a novel, and the couple of people that did it were 80 percent of the way to having something happen. All the other people struck out without ever getting that pack. They couldnít do it, thatís why they donít accomplish a thing, they donít do the thing, so once you do it, if you actually write your film script, or write your novel, you are more than half way towards something good happening. So that I was say my biggest life lesson that has worked. All others have failed me. "

Being in the film industry you have to show up all the time.

I think that's cool if someone can make a living at acting or some other thing especially if one enjoys it.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-01-2013, 10:21 AM
 
4,212 posts, read 6,362,844 times
Reputation: 2630
It's possible... and still very difficult to obtain, but as with anything in the entertainment industry, gigs can be scarce. You'll probably need to supplement your income some other way.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-01-2013, 10:27 AM
PDF
 
11,386 posts, read 9,852,085 times
Reputation: 6580
Extremely difficult. You could move to LA and not get anything going for 5-10 years. Do you want it that bad to make that sacrifice?
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-01-2013, 10:30 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles (Native)
24,151 posts, read 13,675,815 times
Reputation: 11364
It seems you gotta be a hustler really to be in the 'biz . Almost like you own a small business with the product being yourself and you have to dedicate that time to promoting yourself.

With a regular job you are promoting yourself to get hired, but then people usually 'settle in' until they are looking for the next job since you have a steady paycheck coming in. Although it's probably best to always be looking for the next opportunity even in a normal 9 -5 type of job, I don't think most people do that.

In the entertainment business you are pretty much FORCED to do this.
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > California > Los Angeles
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top