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Non-Union Grip & Electric Chandler Forbes

In Los Angeles, the various departments are very distinct. In smaller markets, the lines can be a lot fuzzier.

That’s why we’re speaking today with Chandler Forbes, a grip and electrician from Grand Rapids, MI– the home town of the only unelected US president.1

Despite the relatively small number of productions, Chandler has worked on many films and commercials in his career so far. He’ll tell us about expressing an interest the job you want, “manual labor with style,” and the value of apple boxes.

The producer of today’s episode was Chris Henry, who also wrote the theme.

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Footnotes    (↩ returns to text)

  1. This has nothing to do with the rest of the episode. I just thought it was interesting.
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2 Responses

  1. The crafts are strictly defined in the union world, but things are much looser when working non-union gigs here in LA. That’s where many of us got our start. It was (and I suspect remains) very common for non-union technicians to work grip on one job and electric on another, which is why they’re considered “grip-tricians.” Such flexibility makes for a more useful, well-rounded technician who can get more work. And on set, a juicer who can deploy and use a C-stand and grips who know how to hook up and operate a lamp — even on union shoots — are good to have around.

    This also holds for union gigs in smaller markets (such as San Francisco), which typically have one IATSE local that represents all the crafts. Unless and until you get good enough to be a first-call grip or juicer in such a market, being able to do both jobs helps make ends meet.

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