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Filmmaking Essentials: How to Succeed in Hollywood, Accountability in Hollywood

Want to know how to succeed in Hollywood?
You are not the only one. The truth is, you have to learn to be less dependent on others,
and stand firmly on your own two feet. The thing is, what many people don’t know
outside of the Hollywood trenches, deep in the trenches, for many, accountability in
Hollywood seems to be difficult to find. Many go out of their way to not be accountable
for their own actions, and lack of actions for that matter. I’m going to tell you how through planning
before heading to Los Angeles helped me be less reliant on others, how to succeed in
Hollywood, having a willingness to be flexible as opportunities arose, and how owning my
own accountability in Hollywood helped me become one of the most prolific artisans in
my end of the industry. All of that and how it all applies to The New Hollywood Generation,
coming up. Welcome to ‘Hollywood, Unapologetic!’
My name is Orlando Delbert. I wanted to speak a little bit about Filmmaking
Essentials: how to succeed in Hollywood, Accountability in Hollywood, and how it applies to The New
Hollywood Generation. I should mention before we get into it, I
first wrote about some of what we’re about to touch upon, success in filmmaking, in life,
and how it applies as part of the New Hollywood Generation when I was writing, Pollyanna’s
Tear Soaked Battlefields of Hollywood: A Survival Guide Against the Cynicism and the Hypocritical. We want to know your questions, comments,
and suggestions you may have. Please write them below. Leave a “thumbs up” if you
like what you see. Make sure to click on the subscribe button.
Click that bell so that you don’t miss anything. Be sure to check out the videos in the playlist,
“New to Film Production? Start Here!” Be sure to watch all of the way through. We’re
going to speak about a lot of things as part of being best prepared. Remember, preparation
is the key to you and your project’s success. Ready? All my years in the entertainment industry,
I’ve seen a lot of the same patterns with people. Far too many people rely largely if
not entirely on someone else, or for the right circumstance to show up. This has been true
when I was a studio musician and worked with live sound reinforcement and rigging. This
was true when I was in theater and focused and ran lights and soundboards. This was certainly
true when I worked in all the facets of television and motion pictures. Yes, succeeding in Hollywood is difficult
to accomplish, but not impossible. But you have to learn before showing up in the City
of Angels, to be able to make a plan, be willing to being flexible to opportunities as they
arise, and be able to not rely on others for your success. Better said, in a town where so many refuse
to be accountable for their own actions, you have to be reliant on yourself first and foremost.
What that means is you need to be willing to be responsible for the success of your
own career. I’ve met thousands of individuals in the
various ends of the entertainment business that all they did was complain about not getting
a break. Regardless of the validity, the common element for a large majority of them was relying
on someone else. You will always run into someone who has a
project in the works. It’s always the world’s greatest thing, and it is always in the future.
They’re raising money… They’re talking to this or that producer… It will be a great
opportunity for you… But… more times than not, it’s not a reality. Other times your
talents are taken to help the principals’ involved get their project done, get paid,
and nothing is reciprocated back to you. Even if you have others close to you that
have their own projects in the works or in motion, have a manager or agent, or an attorney
or a mentor, it still comes down to you being there for yourself. No matter how much any
of these individuals, or close friends or family members contributes towards you and
your dreams, it still comes down to you. I’ve heard countless times, “If only I
had an agent? If only I had a manager? If only I had someone who can walk my script
in here? If only I had someone to represent me there?” I’ve heard similar things from friends who
did have representation, but they just weren’t booking. The question that always came to mind was,
“are you working as hard at being, a writer, a director, an actor, a whatever as you can?” If you have good representation, they are
going to be asking the same questions? And you should be asking the same from them.
“Is your manager or agent representing you the best that he or she can?” If everyone is giving it their all, their
100%, than it doubles, triples the amount of effort to you and your success. And that’s
great! But, if you are not giving it your all, it’s not going to work. Think about it. What do you think attracts
people to you or your project? It’s your personality. It’s your charisma. It’s
your belief in yourself and what you are doing. It’s your belief in your project, your script,
and your own talent that people gravitate towards. Because even with the best representation,
it still comes to how people connect with you and what you are offering for others to
see and hear. It comes down to you walking through the door
your agent has opened for you, and sells yourself and your talents. It’s a game of seduction
if you will; where your energy, charisma, along with your talent is on the line to get
you work. You goal should be to entice others to help you make your dreams come true. All of this is true and has to be considered
early on before you begin any game plan to breaking into Hollywood. But it all begins
with you believing in yourself and relying on yourself. Does my speaking about being accountable and
how you see yourself breaking in, make sense? If it does, write hash tag New Hollywood Generation
( #NHG ) in the comments below. That’s #NewHollywoodGeneration. The thing I kept seeing over and over again
was so many people show up in L.A. with no plan whatsoever. Many had little training,
if any. Others were unwilling to be flexible for opportunities working in a different end
of entertainment or doing a different job you were hoping to get. This is self-defeating
and cuts off any possible connections you may have made. When I first came to L.A., I was told over
and over again I was an old man at 29. I wasn’t getting into any post-production houses or
television stations or networks. My very first paying job was running lights at a men’s
nightclub on Santa Monica. I did that, while running lights at a black-box theater in Hollywood,
while still working on independent film projects to make some connections. I had contact lists
I developed years before moving here, where over the course of I don’t know how many
years, I sent out over ten thousand resumes. Yes, you heard that right. One roommate I had would send out no more
than a dozen a week, while I would send out around 100 a day. She couldn’t wrap her
head around why I was able to get freelance gigs, all the while she was getting next to
nothing. And it paid off. I built a relationship with
a recruiter a year and a half before moving to L.A. at one of the networks. I kept in
contact with her, which worked out very well. So well, she hired me when a position opened
up and I was part of an Emmy® Award winning team we won three years in a row with four
nominations. That first one was after being in town just 2 ½ years and my first year
with them. SUCK IT, ten-year formula! And that’s just one example. The point is it all still comes down to you.
Having an agent or manager can help you get into some doors, but many doors you can open
yourself once you realize it still comes down to you. One of the things you’ll learn rather quickly
dealing with just about anyone in any type of power position here is people’s inability
to be direct, or more accurately, the unwillingness to be direct. I can’t tell you the countless
times I’d walk out of meanings scratching my head in bewilderment because I couldn’t
get a direct answer from anyone. And in an industry where EVERYTHING is about
making money, it doesn’t make a lot of sense. Building solid relationships with the people
you work with and do business with is a necessity. This may sound like something obvious and
it should be, but in actual practice it is easier said than done, but to do that, you
have to have a back and forth of useful communication. And for any kind of relationship to flourish,
there must be communication. Loyalty and the desire to play well with others is a rare
and precious commodity in this business. Selfish agendas are very costly in many ways and will
eventually blow up. And many people are content with doing as little as possible to skate
by. Ultimately, there will be some blowback. Once you begin interacting with anyone who
has been in “the business” for some time, especially in Los Angeles, you may notice
many people don’t like to tell you “no”. Or let me put it a better way. If you ask
someone a question, the default answer usually is not saying “yes”. This is often true
when asking someone to join you for lunch, having a follow-up meeting, and just about
anything else that requires some kind of future interaction with one another. I get more into this is another episode, but
is relative here. Many people in L.A. don’t want to be accountable for their actions,
inactions or their words. Many Angelinos take directness as being rude or confrontational,
and oftentimes reflect directness or just never answer back to you at all. For many,
it is easier to just not respond in any way and that is their simplest, “no” response. This line of thought is counterintuitive and
counterproductive. I’ve always thought, “How can business be conducted when you
can’t get a straight answer from anyone?” I learned that answering with either a yes
or no to any question has consequences. That makes sense. But not giving a definitive answer
on anything leaves things open-ended for all eternity. This has to do a lot with having a fear of
being accountable of one’s words and actions, and a fear of commitment to those words and
actions. In the workplace, it can mean committing to your word can cost you your job quite quickly. When you’re working on your own projects
or freelancing on someone else’s projects and the responsibilities and monies involved
are much greater, being committed to your word has much greater consequences; larger
amounts of money may be potentially lost. I mention this because regardless of this
type of behavior, or even having good people in your corner to help get you in the door
on a project or with a studio, it still comes down to you. It is imperative that you own
your own accountability. Because accountability in Hollywood, many people don’t seem to
have, and it’s something you will need to succeed here. And this is true to succeed
in life as well. Something else I speak about in another episode
is how succeeding in any area of the entertainment industry most often depends on your perseverance,
flexibility, endurance, and will. You can have all of the talent in the world and not
get ahead because you lack consistency in these four strengths. Whether you are working with a tight deadline,
new technology, a weak manager, a hangover, or any of the countless possible things Murphy’s
Law can shovel at you, how you adapt and overcome can either make you or break you. Having a good attitude, and a willingness
to be flexible and to let go of things that don’t matter will help you to recover from
any blows you may get from the negativity mongers out there. And in L.A., there sure
are many soul suckers. No matter what, you have to take it in stride
and believe in yourself. Yes, believe in yourself! Stand steadfast in your own self-reliance
and kick down the doors you need to. True opportunity only knocks repeatedly for those
who can stand on their own. One more thing, as part of the New Hollywood
Generation, others just like you are asking the same questions of themselves. You are
not alone. We’re all in it together. If you enjoyed the content, please SUBSCRIBE
and click on the bell to know when we have more for you. And more episodes are coming.
Please share with someone you know who may find what we spoke about today beneficial.
LIKE if you like what you see? DISLIKE if you don’t. And let us hear from you. Are you going to
use what we discussed today? YES or NO? Let us know in the comments below. Please consider what I offered you today,
and consider what your role is as a new generation of content creators. And feel free to take
advantage of other members in the New Hollywood Generation community. We are all here to grow
together and to help one another. We have a strong group on Twitter. Come join
the New Hollywood Generation, and meet some fellow filmmakers and content creators. As members of the New Hollywood Generation,
take the time to assess what your short-term and long-term goals are. Create a timeline
of where you are today, and where you would like to see yourself in a year, two years,
five years, ten, professionally, financially, and personally. Do your research and learn what you can about
technology, distribution outlets, contracts, and of course set etiquette and protocols.
All of these things are important and help to make you of value to others in our industry,
and to yourself. The lessons learned as a content creator can
help build leadership qualities and an entrepreneurial approach to life. The process will help you
build structure and the discipline needed to truly be a success. Use this information
as a tool, so that you can protect your integrity, and yourself better. And don’t forget to
have fun with it. Making a film takes a lot of effort to see
it all of the way through, but definitely can be worth it. Your experiences stay with
you for the rest of your life. Make your plan. Take a breath. Go for it! You can do it once
you believe you can. Are you ready for the challenge? If you’re looking for filmmaking for beginners,
filmmaking 101, and for some filmmaking tips on how to want to be a filmmaker, make sure
to click on the subscribe button. Click that bell so that you don’t miss anything. Looking for how to filmmaking essentials?
Be sure to check out the videos in the playlist, “New to Film Production? Start Here!” Think of this channel as a film crash course,
or filmmaking crash course, and an introduction to filmmaking entrepreneurship, to build the
skills needed well beyond just how to succeed Hollywood, and beyond whatever discussion
other how to film school, how to indie filmmaking, in general how to film industry channels don’t
talk about. The “why’s” you truly need to know,
to help you grow as a thought leader in life, the entertainment industry, and how it applies
as part of the New Hollywood Generation is in this video series and in the Pollyanna’s
Tear Soaked Battlefields of Hollywood: A Survival Guide Against the Cynicism and the Hypocritical,
series of books. Links below. Remember, preparation is the key to you and
your project’s success. Ready?


  1. HOLLYWOOD UNAPOLOGETIC! - Filmmaking Essentials Author

    Please leave YOUR THOUGHTS, QUESTIONS, and COMMENTS below about filmmaking and The #NewHollywoodGeneration. Please give us a "THUMBS UP!" Don't forget to SUBSCRIBE and CLICK ON THE BELL to get our updates! And don't forget to WATCH the episodes in the playlist, NEW TO FILM PRODUCTION, START HERE!: See you soon! Thanks!

  2. eh Joe Author

    I enjoy watching every one of your videos I always find you have a good positive message and it's always informative I really appreciate listening to you and picking up tips even though I don't really plan to go to Hollywood I still found this very good

  3. Tom Nash Author

    Hey Orlando great video, I found you via Nick Nimmins channel. Love the art work and production quality. This is top notch. I have been a youtube creator for a while and I always tried to support my fellow creators with great content but not enough exposure and you definitely have a great channel so you just earned yourself a new sub!


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