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Act Like You’ve Been There Before

This week, our #2 actor started, so we sent him a bouquet of flowers to congratulate him. (It wasn’t until I typed that last sentence that I realized how stupid of a Hollywood tradition it is to congratulate an actor for starting a show. The only thing they’ve done up to that point is sign a contract.)

His assistant took a picture of the flowers and posted them on Facebook, along with the title of our show and our location that day, with absolutely no regard for the fact that our lead actor is a heavily papparazzi’d star. The #2 actor is a TV guy, so maybe his assistant isn’t familiar with the protocol. Or maybe she’s just that dumb. But either way…

Act like you’ve been there before.

49ers for LIFE!
Jerry Rice. Touchdowns: 197. Touchdown dances: 0.

I’ve been lucky enough to work with four Oscar winners and a handful of other bona fide celebrities. (“Work with” applies loosely, since I was copying scripts and handing them contracts and they were… you know… acting and/or directing.) Regardless, I’m proud to say that I’ve never lost my mind over it. I’ve never posted it on Facebook or Twitter. I’ve never made the unthinkable request for a picture or an autograph.1 But I know people who do that kind of stuff ALL THE TIME.

Get a grip, people.

Keep your cool. You work in Hollywood, now.

Footnotes    (↩ returns to text)

  1. I once asked George Lucas if I could shake his hand. In my defense, I was still at the OFS, and there was literally no one else around.
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4 Responses

  1. Recently, on a major network reality show that travels around the world, about 50 local PAs were recruited to do everything from driving people around to operating as drastically underpaid set dressers, production coordinators, and so on.

    In addition to the false name of the production company clearly indicating a need for secrecy, every single person was told that they could not tell anybody what they were working on until the show had aired, and everybody signed an NDA.

    Within hours, an eager young PA tweeted and facebooked the name of the show, and way too specifically the location of the production office.

    She was fired and possibly sued.

    Best bet, yeah, you can tell your boyfriend or girlfriend what you’re doing… but for the most part, all people need to know is that you have a job on a show. The details can wait – in most cases there are things that are not supposed to be leaked about whatever the production is.

  2. What TAPA said.

    The only caveat is that you’re allowed to fawn over bona fide legends who won’t be around much longer. Kirk Douglas comes to mind and, with Abe Vigoda, you never know. People who are famous for something other than movies and TV are also fair game. You’re damn right, I got a picture of me with Larry Bird and Magic Johnson!

  3. I’m totally with you on this one. I work on a major studio lot (we’ve been in the same location for 90 years) and I meet people all the time. Only once in my four years here have I asked for a photo with someone (he’s the lead of a broadcast network show), and it’s only because we’ve built a relationship over the years and are now friend beyond just the circumstance of working on projects that film on the same lot.

    And even then, that photo is not on Facebook or Twitter. I think I did send it to my mom, but only because she’s such a big fan.

    For me, it’s all about respect. Everybody should be shown some grace.

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