How To Make It In Hollywood
Hello there, my name is Charles S. Frank and I am an actor and a producer. I am also the owner of the company, Lucky Frank Demo Reels, also known as Lucky Frank Studios. You have never heard of me, so you must be asking, why am I listening to this guy? Well this is why. Because I am not done yet. You will hear of me. In fact, you’re hearing of me right now. I have only done two episodes of Criminal Minds and a grip of non union projects on your cable tv, but I am just getting started.
You see, aside from being obsessed with acting, I am an absolute obsessive when it comes to everything else. I am obsessed with learning everything I can and despite only learning about acting and movies for the first four years of my career, the amount that I learned this last year, (year 5) has by far been the most valuable.
If you are reading this and you have the dream of becoming an actor, I have to warn you up front. You will get upset by this article. HOWEVER, not upset in the way that you think, because throughout this soul crushing explanation, I do assure you, that you CAN in fact become an actor. Not by luck, but by strategy and work.
Let’s start out with what acting is. And no I don’t want an explanation of Meisner vs. Adler. I’m talking about in the real world. And yes, by “real world” I mean the world of business.
The great philosopher, “Method Man” once said this, “Cash rules everything around me, C.R.E.A.M get the money, Dolla, Dolla, Bills ya’ll”
In my opinion, that is absolute fact. Now we could go down the politically correct path and say, “money is not everything”.
I call BS. Money is everything. There is nothing else. Money is everything.
You could say, what about the art? What about your family? What about God?
First of all, I love art, family and God with all my heart. However, all three of those things are much better off when you have a pocket full of cash to support them. And when you don’t, your art suffers because you’re too busy looking for food. You’re family leaves you for someone who actually has money. And God says, “stop praying to me and start getting your act together man!”
So now that you understand where I am coming from, I will say this. Building your acting career is the same as you starting a business. It’s just like starting a burger joint, or becoming a real estate investor, or becoming a lawyer. Hell, with all the business doctors have to go through these days, it’s like becoming a doctor.
So let me ask you. Do you know how your business works? Do you know how to make money off of making movies? TV shows? Netflix?! How do you justify spending 250 million dollars to make a film and then another 250 marketing it. Where does the profit exactly come from.
It’s starting to hurt isn’t it. I can hear you saying it now, “I’m not a businessman or woman, I’m an actor!”
You are a businessman/woman. I’ve been on many sets and honestly the acting comes second. I know you don’t want to hear that either. But every actor I have seen work in person, and it is a lot, (2 years of background work) is not there to show the crew his or her amazing acting skills. They are there to make a movie with the director. The actors are involved in making the product just as much as everyone else.
Now, I am not saying to not work on your craft, but after 5 years of studying acting, I know more or less what I have to do. I in fact love acting more than ever since I’ve come to my final conclusion. You will hear it from me and you will hear it from every acting teacher in the world. Acting is not acting, acting is doing. Work on your craft and realize that and practice it and truly become these characters in these imaginary circumstances. Make a small choice here or there after you connect your character with your heart and you will be great. You do need to train to learn how to listen and how to get an inner life in you and stay present, but once your trained, it’s like playing guitar. Eventually, and it took me 5 years, you will just start having fun with it.
Now that we have gotten that out of the way lets sum up what I’m ultimately saying. Business is the bottom line. Period.
Now on to the fun part. How do you become an actor?
You have two choices. The first one is to get lucky.
Getting lucky in Hollywood is pretty much putting all your eggs in one basket. This basket consists of the idea, that you are so much more talented and beautiful than everyone else in town, that you will be given a career. It’s the hope that you can make it into a small audition and the casting director will see you as the next big thing and you become a star over night. It happens, but it happens as much as someone winning the lottery. (and they are a lot prettier than you and me).
If you’re not beautiful and not connected like me, then you will have to go with option number 2.
Business my friends.
Right now, here is what I want you to do. I want you to get a credit card, buy some film equipment, some sound equipment and start a production company. I want you to do what I did and try to sell actors demo reels while trying to make your production quality good enough to handle larger projects and try to get rich and out of debt through your new company. I promise you. You will be more capable of not only becoming an actor quicker then the next Johnny Depp, you will also be akin to taking over the world.
All the relevant actor’s today are not getting their roles because the world keeps wanting to see them. Who the Hell wanted Ben Affleck as Batman? … Nobody. (Even though I thought he did very well).
Ben Affleck is a very affluent director and producer, just like Jeff Bezos is a master at online ecommerce, just like Bill Gates still runs the computer world. They know the ins and outs of the business. They make deals. They are smarter than the handsome newbies that try to take over with their pure talent.
Start to become smart. Not more talented. Find connections in the movie making business and one day, pull out a big loan. Make your big film. Market it very cleverly (just like A24 did with their $11,000 film Paranormal Activity.) and attach you as the lead. (Just like Sylvestor Stallone did with Rocky).
Learn how to become an investor. How distribution works. How money is made. Real quick… Movie theaters sell movie tickets and take half of the profit and give half of the profit to the studios (studios = producers = you). Netflix has 130 million subscribers and make 12 bucks per subscriber per month. That’s 1.5 billion every month. TV Shows make all their money off of advertisers and Cable Networks like Comcast or Direct TV. All of the above makes a grip of their money off the merchandising from their content.
There is a lot of money in those Hollywood Hills, and this is where it comes from.
So why waste another minute playing the lottery with your future? Learn how to become a business mogul in Show Business. It’s not hard to get started.
First thing you need to do is start driving for Uber. Get some Apple Airpod headphones and start listening to YouTube videos on all these subject while you drive for 9 hours a day. Everyone needs a survival job and that is what I did for years. I learned more from YouTube video lessons then anyone could have learned with a Harvard Degree. And I was applying these lessons every night when I got home at night.
Today, I have a new manager that is helping me to push one of my productions from Lucky Frank Studios. The project is called “Reaper” and we are looking to turn it into a television show.
My future is much more in my hands, and no matter what happens in this town, at least I know that I will always have my business.
I guess that is all I can offer you in this article. However, if you do want me to write another one for ya, then just comment below and tell me what you need.
Contact me for any questions through my website at www.luckyfrankdemoreels.com
Till you see me on the big screen or on your computer, you can see me at the site.
See you soon.
Charles S. Frank
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