Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
JOB SEARCH / MAR. 19, 2015
version 8, draft 8

Hollywood's Working Class: The Worst Jobs in Hollywood

We all know about the glamour and glitz of Hollywood. Exotic clothes draped starlets eating the most exotic of meals, drinking the most exotic alcoholic beverage and driving the most exotic of cars, sometimes all at once. Unfortunately, the glamorous tabloid-fodder is a very small and elite sect of Hollywood professionals. This article will take a look at some of the less sparkly professions of the Movie making machine.

See also: Expert’s Advice: Breaking into Hollywood


Sure writers get a little bit of glory as their guts are grinded in the monstrous spinning gears of Hollywood, but their dynamic within the film industry is a little more wham bam thank ya’ ma’am than a lifelong partnership based on respect and mutual understanding. It’s a little more like drunken sexual congress at 3 a.m. than a love affair that stories should be written about. It’s more like a mistaken inebriated post-club booty call than a mutually beneficial give and take. It’s more like…O.K. I’m out of metaphors and I’m sure you get the point. Most writers work on a single project and once that’s done they have to wait, pray and pitch their next screenplay. If their previous endeavour wasn’t as profitable as the big wigs would like? They could be left high, dry and unemployed in one of the most expensive places in the world.         


Apparently, this is one of the worse jobs in Hollywood.  They are concierges, secretaries, go-to-guys and emotional dumping grounds for the people they are assisting. The reason personal assistants are treated like the scum of the earth is because P.A.s are the first tier to a Hollywood job. So there is a huge, abyss-like applicant pool making P.A.s more disposable than a facial tissue at a Kleenex factory. They are berated, insulted and sent on menial tasks, while also holding immense responsibility and being in touch with people in high positions in the film industry. Put all those elements in a blender and you have a stress smoothie that would give a life-long marathon runner an anxiety induced heart-attack.


Although you could make a significant $102 thousand dollars a year for being a grip, it involves long, laborious, physically tasking days. If you’re unfamiliar with what a grip is, it’s basically an all-around laborer, used for both skilled and unskilled task. They get very little to no credit, but at the same time are essential for the movie making process. Unfortunately, they are also treated in a pretty crummy way, by directors, actors and assistance due to their service like responsibilities. Oh, did I also mention that they are exposed to various dangers, risks and even death. In a hundred years the film industry has upwards of 52 production related deaths.


The poster child of Hollywood vamp and pageant, the actor can have a significant role in the success of a film. At the same time they are regularly exposed to danger, physical and mental abuse, for that Oscar winning scene and that’s the ones that make it. Out of work actors need to schmooze, ceaselessly self-promote, chase auditions and still hold jobs which take care of their day to day finances. Most work as labourers, are in the service industry, customer service or even work as impersonators outside the famous Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.  

Do you have any experience in the film industry? Let us know (anonymously… we don’t want you to hear the ‘you’ll never work in this town again!’ line of rejection) in the comment section below.

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