Apr 16, 2008

Jobs Come and Jobs Go

I had a two-day job scheduled for this week starting tomorrow. Anxious to get some good blog fodder and most importantly a paycheck...

I set out my wardrobe, (not that I’m a fashion diva, I like to sleep until the last possible minute)

Got my script book ready, and then…

The call…

“We’ve pushed back the job indefinitely”

Bummer.

Yes, it’s the life of a free-lancer one-minute you’re gainfully employed the next minute, hopelessly unemployed.

A sane person would have quit this gig a long time ago, but not me, I still get my hopes up that I’ll be steadily employed one day in film. (I know, keep laughing) But what’s the alternative? A “real” job? Working in film with crew pretty much makes me unemployable to the corporate world. I could no more play their game than they could ours. Ok, maybe they could play our game, but would end up crying after hour 10.

I could not imagine getting yearly “reviews” or doing “status meetings” with my superiors. Nor could I manage the office politics, the undermining, sneaky corporate climbing…

No, I’ll take intermittent jobs, and long hours any day, knowing that if they like me, I’ll get hired back, if they don’t I won’t. Pretty black and white.

So, back to the painting project I go…

For more ponderings about this issue in our industry read Michael Taylor’s blog. It’s a gut-wrenching tale of the roller coaster ride we endure in the land of film.

6 comments:

Devon Ellington said...

In spite of the roller coaster and frustrations, I'll take the freelance life, with all its frenzy, to corporate life any day.

I prefer to choose on which projects I work, to create my own work, and to work with people I like and respect.

There are very few in the corporate world that I either like or respect.

I'll take the uncertainty over being imprisoned in a cubicle any day.

Anonymous said...

Dont' forget that if you plan any vacation, party, or event...you are guaranteed to get a job and have to cancel said vacation, party, or event.

Anonymous said...

I was booked for a feature that was to shoot in Spring '07 - everything was seemingly ready to go; then the calls came, pushing back the start date a few weeks... it was August when the word finally came that the project was dead.

Plus, another feature that was going to shoot never pulled the trigger... that's still active, but who knows when it'll start.

Curious to know... in the lean times, do you take on temp jobs in the 'real world', or do you diversify your talents in the film world and work in other departments?

Scripty said...

Thanks for the comment guys! After that job went away, I got a job for Friday, then a three day shoot for next week, and then another three day....but it overlapped the first three day so I had to turn it down!!! Never fails...too much work=must turn some down...not enough work=begging for anything!

Devon: I agree cubicle prison would be bad!

Anonymous #1: ONE TIME I took a vacation instead of taking a job, and I lost TWO years of commercial work from that client!!! Lesson learned always take the job!

Anonymous #2: Great question! In the lean times, yes, I have taken "temp" jobs. I find them to be utterly fascinating seeing how the "real" world works. I have never dipped into another department on set, but I have a secret fantasy to work wardrobe! Imagine only having wardrobe to concentrate on instead of the billions of details I keep track of as the Scripty!

RJ said...

Ah, the freelance lifestyle. I gave up one night of work because my parents were here visiting and lost a year with that client.

But to quote a very sage Gaffer I worked with quite frequently, "It is what it is."

Scripty said...

You are right RJ "It is what it is."