Thursday, July 14, 2011
Getting Jobs in Entertainment question 866:How can I make my career transition without reverting back to entry-level wages?
Unfortunately, when you are changing classification, it may be necessary to start at an entry level job. Let's say you are an editor who has worked your way up after being an assistant editor and now you're interested in getting into development. Yes, as an editor you have to have an eye for creating story, BUT, in the studio world that probably won't transfer. You will have to start as an intern or an assistant to learn the skills of doing coverage, giving script notes, observing how your bosses interact with writers, agents, and executives.
Just because you've worked as a production designer on big budget union films doesn't mean you can easily transition into being a post production supervisor. Different classifications have different skills that you learn as you move up the ranks. You don't always have to move up the ranks, plenty of film students come right out of school as directors of photography without starting as a loader.
It's up to the "industry standards" and it's also up to you. Do you feel you'd be a better director if you understood what all the other departments heads that you hire (DP, editor, prod designer, script supervisor, etc) do? Do you think you'd be a better department head if you'd already done the jobs of the people you're managing?
There are no right and wrongs, just choices for you to make.
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