Gary writes in:
I’ve been a PA for over a year and thankfully have had some long runs on shows. I recently started a show for a 3 month run, but I was just offered a position on a feature film in another state that I have been trying extremely hard to get on. My question is, in your opinion how bad does it look to leave a show early?
Is there a graceful way to leave and still leave a semi good impression? I’m prepared to stick with the show just because my morals know that I should always stick out a show but this is also a once in a lifetime opportunity Id like to take. What do you think?
You leave a show mid-season for a another production, that bridge is well and truly burned.
You’ll never work for that AD or coordinator ever again. You’ll be on the shit list for the 2nd AD or APOC, too. If you made any kind of impression on anyone else, they’ll ask where you went; when they hear you quit for another show, they’ll probably not recommend you the next time an opening comes up on another show.
So, the reason you’re leaving better be a darn good one. For instance, if it’s a big promotion. If you don’t want to be in production, and you landed a gig as a costumer or assistant editor or whatever, great! You weren’t planning on going back over that bridge anyway.
But don’t make a lateral move because you think the other show is “cooler” for some reason. Remember, as a PA, you have no real effect on the show, anyway. A shitty show is still a job, and no one think less of you by association.
And, honestly, don’t work on a show you like. It never ends well. Just enjoy watching it after working on your crappy show all day.