Thursday, May 5, 2011

Actor as Manager? Not a smart role to play.

When should actors team up to "manage" each other? Never!

My thanks to Jackie Apodaca for including me in her column in this week's Back Stage in answer to an inquiry she received from an actor on the question of whether actor friends acting as manager for each other was a good idea.

The New Business of Acting addresses this issue throughout the book -- and Jackie has nicely condensed this perspective into her response.

In short, it's not (just) about the submissions you make; it's (also) about the relationships you build and the choices you make, not just in the beginning, but throughout your career journey.

One of the mistakes many actors make is in believing that they are just one submission away from a career. This could not be further from the truth. It's about process, it's about commitment, it's about passion -- and it's about earning the opportunities you seek. Making business-smart decisions along the way is priority one.

Jackie's column is well worth the read.


Monday, May 2, 2011

"Do you SAG take AFTRA to love, honor and cherish ... ?"

Chapter 7 in The New Business of Acting discusses the current state of AFTRA and SAG which has steadily moved forward together to shore up both the ability and the opportunity to jointly represent actors and broadcasters in this new landscape.

More good news from the union front was released on Friday and, as reported in the Los Angeles Times, spells out the very real possibility that both entities will soon merge to do the job better together than they can do apart or against each other.

Bravo to the leadership of both unions with this move and the public announcement of what appears to be an engagement; wedding date to be announced.

For those SAG actors who have voiced opposition and concern about the ability of a merged union to represent both actors and broadcasters under one banner, I say relax. This can easily be accomplished by establishing divisions within a new union with each division dedicated and devoted to representing the members who fall within those divisions. Don't forget, many actors/broadcasters are also members of both unions.

The biggest hurdle to be tackled is to figure out how a new, single union will approach membership matters. Currently, with SAG membership earned and AFTRA membership paid for, a system for how to fairly deal with the requirements of union membership should be top priority in the strategic plan to move forward.

Perhaps a variable membership plan is in order, whereby the division to which a new union member would belong would dictate the requirements of initiation and membership.

Let's hope the devil isn't in the details. All in all, this a great move.

Your thoughts?