I have experience PAing on two indie short films and a few student films. I was fortunate enough to get into the Directors Guild of Canada’s trainee program which states I must work 150 days on set in a year to be eligible to apply to the guild.
(The Directors’ Guild of America has similar requirements.)
Recently, I sent out my resume to a few productions. Within a few days, I received a call from a major television show asking me to do a day call. It turns out that it was the same day I had to work at my other job (which I work at 2 days a week). In the heat of the moment, I said I was sorry and that I would like to PA another time if that’s possible.
I now realize that I should have called in sick (to my other job I hate) and not have missed this opportunity. The fellow on the phone said that I was “on top of the list”, but I’m worried that they arn’t going to call back. How often should I send in my resume again? Will they call back? How many times do you need to refuse before they just stop calling? Should I completely quit my other job to pursue PAing? I think that I may have had an edge with this production because I PA’d on one of their crew members indie films before.
First off, the fact that you recognize your mistake is a step in the right direction.
It’s impossible to say if they’ll call you back. They might not need anyone. And maybe the kid they hired instead of you did a great job, and now she’s at the top of their list. Or they could just forget about you.
Keep in mind, PAs are interchangeable. From the production’s stand point, it’ much better to stick with a day player they’ve used before than to try out a new (to them) guy, just because he has a better resume.
It probably wouldn’t hurt to call back, in a week or so. Mention that you were called this week, but were unavailable; you’re available (and eager) to work now, if needed. I wouldn’t bother actually sending in your resume, unless it changes.
As far as quitting? Don’t.
You have no idea when the next opportunity will come along. If you don’t care about your current job, except insofar as it makes you money, then stick with it for the money. Just be prepared to drop it if another show calls you up.