How to Dress for a Studio or Network

Evelyn has found herself in a fortunate position:

A family contact has arranged for my son to have lunch with a VP of Production at a major studio.  This may not lead to a job, but hopefully he will end up having a valuable contact.

Lunch will be in the studio cafeteria, with a tour to follow.  How should he dress?

Evelyn’s son is already approaching this the right way. He’s just having lunch, not begging for a job or presuming that he’s even ready for a particular position. Making connections, that’s all.

The thing to remember is, being at a studio or a network is not like working on a show. They are much more corporate; the sound stage is like the factory floor.

He is not as excited as I would be, standing next to a Tesla.
My second career.
Not this.

One of the great things about being a PA is that you can wear (pretty much) whatever you want. Comfort and practicality take precedence over dressing fancy. But if you want to get behind a desk and tell the crew what’s what, you’ll need to dress the part.

If you’re having lunch with one of the suits, and later applying to be one of those suits, you should  wear what we from the Midwest call “church clothes.” Slacks, button up shirt, nice shoes (not tennis shoes/sneakers). A tie, if it matches the outfit. A literal suit wouldn’t be amiss, unless you’re meeting at Radford in August. Fuck that.

On that subject, definitely wear deodorant. Shave, comb your hair, brush your teeth.

Women have a lot more options,1 which can therefore be a lot more confusing: anything from a pantsuit to a nice dress and flats or heels.

It might be easier to tell you what not to wear: jeans; anything that can be construed as slutty;2 uncomfortable shoes (because you’ll look silly); too comfortable shoes like sneakers or flip flops; a shitload of accessories (they’re distracting). Hair should be neat, whatever that means for your hair texture.

And don’t do your eyebrows like this…

Seriously. Nope.

Lastly, don’t listen to me. Talk to one of the costumers on whatever show you’re on. They’ll have a much better idea of what looks good.

Footnotes    (↩ returns to text)

  1. One of many reasons I enjoy being on set.
  2. I understand that that’s a problematic word, but listen, shut up. You understand what I mean, and we don’t need to get into a debate on the semiotics of the patriarchy. If you’re applying for a real job, that means you’re not in your Womyn’s Stydies class anymore.
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2 Responses

  1. I’d take Mr. Factory floor any day over sound stage factory floor. Mr. Factory probably EASILY makes six figures. The myth of the trade jobs paying less is funny, though, when a lot of them make just as much (if not more) than doctors. 🙂

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