Here it is, the most open, honest, and absolutely essential article we’ve ever seen about how Hollywood show business really works. Brace yourselves, gang!
Bullshit Lies My Film Professor Taught Me About Hollywood
by Michael Tapia
I had a professor who worked on the show Prison Break and I went to visit him on the set one year. I was on the call sheet! Intern. First day of the shoot, my professor, the director of the episode that week, asked for me to get him a “coffee.”
All right. Coffee. Um…I don’t drink coffee. Nor did I at the time. My past experience with coffee was nil. Perhaps if I had thrown it down my gullet in high school, I could have elevated to a loftier university than Arizona State, but I digress.
I went to craft services.
There were two coffee pots.
One had a black handle, regular, the other an orange one, decaf.
I knew what that meant from my waiter days, But I was no barista.
Cream? Sugar? People love cream and sugar. What kind of sugar?
What are these tubes full of honey? Do those go in coffee? They do now.
I brought this ‘Frankenstein-drink’ to my professor, proudly. One sip. “This sucks.”
My coffee concoction turned me from intern to irrelevant and I was sent to the trailer to unclog Wentworth Miller’s toilet. (Just kidding.)
But this incident led to a few revelations:
1) That coffee with cream and sugar totally sucks.
2) That my film professor — while teaching me amazing things about cinema and narrative — didn’t really prepare me for my first job in Hollywood.
Setting foot on a college campus as a starry-eyed freshman, one might expect to get a higher education from professors, faculty, and administrators that’ll prepare you for your first job in the real world. But what if, when you enter the workforce, you learn that all of those lessons on lighting design and Kurosawa are absolutely useless upon enter the ‘biz?’
Those omissions are bullshit lies.
What film school did was inform my taste. And, honestly, I think that’s worth it. I learned to love Jean-Luc Godard and appreciate independent cinema, etcetera….
Here’s the biggest lie that film school pushes:
You have to attend school to become successful in Hollywood.
I’ve often wondered how much further my career would be if I came here at 18, in lieu of attending college and taking on that cost.
But that’s not what this post is about. This post is about the things that my teachers knew that didn’t necessarily make the syllabus for my ‘higher education’ and left out….