Have you ever wondered why you aren’t getting as many calls as you would like? Have you wondered if people are talking about you behind your back? It’s something you may or may not think about often when working in the film industry and as unimportant as it may seem it really does matter what people are saying about you when you’re not around.
One of the biggest things you will struggle with starting off in the film industry is attitude & etiquette. You will either have trouble keeping yourself in check or meet dozens of people who have terrible attitudes, seem disgruntled or have no regard for set etiquette. Don’t let that discourage you! This industry brings out the best and worst in people and you never know how you or someone else will react when the pressure is on or when facing an impossible task.
5 Reasons Why You’re Not Getting Hired:
Do people like you?
Does it matter? Sadly, YES!
You’re work should speak for itself, but that isn’t the truth for the most part. You could be an expert at your job, but treat EVERYONE around you like garbage and because of that you won’t be the first call for most people. The way you behave NOW can have lasting effects on your career for years to come. If you’re still learning, but have a fantastic attitude and treat everyone nicely you will go farther and be given more chances.
Do you behave the right way around your boss?
A deal breaker for me is etiquette. Someone can be an amazing technician, hard-working and a good person, but if they don’t behave correctly, they speak out of turn or show other signs of bad etiquette they automatically get bumped down on the list. Why you ask? Well, because they make you and your crew look bad. No one wants a 3rd that chirps in about lighting and gives the cinematographer unwanted suggestions. They slow down the rest of the crew and end up annoying people.
Do you party too much or do drugs on set?
No one wants to hire someone who shows up on set stinking of alcohol or marijuana. Would you trust someone that is high, drunk or hung over rigging a light over your head or setting a flag? Do what ever you want on your own time, but keep it to yourself and don’t let it interfere with your work. Signs of drug or alcohol abuse don’t go unnoticed and often times producers, cinematographers or keys will ask that you not get hired again. Everyone ends up going to work hung over every so often, but working in film is unlike any other job you’ve had and requires your full attention. There are days when you are responsible for people’s lives and being alert and aware is key to the job.
Do you talk too much and work too little?
We all love to have a good time on set and catch up with people we haven’t seen in a long time; there is a time and a place though. No one needs to know about how many people you’ve slept with or how crazy it was at the bar last night. If you have the need to share your stories do it at lunch or far away from the set. Do you really want the director, talent or producer overhearing you? Not only that, but all that chit chat takes away from what you are ultimately there for. Work hard and keep your mouth shut, but don’t be afraid to have a friendly conversation at the appropriate times.
Do you sleep around within your film community?
This is a touchy one, but I’ve seen it hurt careers and give people bad reputations. It’s perfectly fine to get in to a relationship with someone you work with or met on set, but don’t go around breaking hearts! You will develop a bad reputation and everyone will hate you. It is completely understandable for a relationship to fall apart eventually, but don’t get into anything you know won’t work out or for selfish reasons. Treat people with respect.
How to ensure you get the call:
- Work hard, be nice and be helpful without stepping on toes
- Know your job responsibilities and what you can and can’t do. DO NOT speak on behalf of anyone or over anyone.
- DO NOT consume drugs or alcohol on set! Know your limits and try not to go out and party when you have to work the next day.
- Keep your mouth shut and your head down. That doesn’t mean be silent, keep conversation topics and settings appropriate.
Now, it isn’t just about how you treat people and your etiquette, but also about the air about you. If you are a cocky, pretentious, douche bag people will notice! People talk, that’s a fact. Your local film community is far smaller than you think and everyone knows everyone else.