I’m a year out of school for production of audio and video. I worked my ass off, I learned what I could, and I applied what I could. My schooling put me in the hole in the 10s of thousands of dollars which I pay back a bit at a time by working a part-time job currently. I love the job, don’t get me wrong. The people are great, I’m learning a bit every day, I’m working in a team more than I have since the end of college. There’s still the lingering fact that the job I’m working isn’t what I’ve trained for, and even as I tend to enjoy the work, I have this nagging feeling sitting in the back of my head that this isn’t where I want to be. I want to be working in the entertainment industry. I want to be a writer or an editor.
I’m still practicing my skills in both when I can, though that time isn’t long with being back in a job and dealing with a lot that’s been going on at home. There’s also something else that’s held me back from being able to really join the entertainment industry.
I never took an internship in college.
There were multiple reasons that this was the case. For one, I was genuinely too busy to do so. In order to hold a job every semester, I couldn’t take the full bank of classes at the same time (18 credit hours at once seemed to be the max most could stand). I ran 15 hours a semester when my required classes aligned to let me (though I worked MUCH more than those 15 hours for those classes). This gave me very little time to actually move into an internship in my junior year without pushing my classes into a SIXTH year. Second, I just flat out could not afford to go out and work an unpaid internship in LA or Burbank. I might have been able to take out more student loans to do so, but that would’ve just been even more crushing now because I would’ve had that much more debt looming over my head. No matter which way I looked, this seemed to be a no-win situation.
What is it that’s brought this to a head for me to the point where I decided I needed to write about it?
Fox’s Entire Internship Program Now Under Legal Attack – The Hollywood Reporter
The story of the lawsuit brought by two interns on Black Swan has been common knowledge for quite some time, but now their entire internship program has been brought into question for the fact that a lot of internships seem to be jobs on paper internally, but externally treated as unpaid interns:
The plaintiffs point to 20th Century Fox, among other FEG business units, saying that until July 2010, interns hired to work there were not paid, even though they were required to fill out I-9 forms, sign confidentiality agreements and were deemed “employees” covered under workers’ compensation laws.
There were thankfully some changes made on Fox’s end:
According to the legal documents, FEG changed its policy in July 2010 to require all interns to be paid about $8 per hour.
That’s an absolutely great place to start. In California, it’s not really a living wage, but it’s still better than completely unpaid like they were before. Still, interns need to be able to afford a place to live while they’re interning and honestly, they shouldn’t be working a job that normally would be entry level at at studio and would be paid more than the interns are being paid.
Somehow though, this is just idiotic ranting of a spoiled bratty kid who doesn’t want to work for what they want to reach. The comments in the article make this clear.
And you wonder why people say kids don’t work as hard as they used to… and are looking for entitlement. What do you expect kids? To be an Executive Producer right out of College? I would only hope not to ever hire an ungrateful in-turd like these morons. Um, “Black Swan,” credit on your resume? I know hard working inturds that would have killed and been grateful to have that opportunity.
I don’t think that would be unfortunate. These 2 truly deserve never to work in Hollywood again for 1) being more interested in immediate gratification than long-term opportunity, and 2) messing up a great opportunity for all of the kids that would have been interns in the years to come since no one in Hollywood will ever want to hire an intern again.
Of the people that I know that want to work in the industry, we just want a fair shake at making it. A lot study this and work hard and don’t get a chance because there isn’t an internship on our resume and automatically discounts us greatly. We don’t want to become an Executive Producer on day one. Hell, a lot of us don’t even want that. Some of us just want to work in the background and not be seen or heard from, but make something that really brings a bit of magic into the lives of the people seeing it. I guess maybe that and being paid decently is just a bit too much to ask.