So you want to work in Hollywood? Get ready to fight for your right to life.
The pandemic changed all of Hollywood, and nothing can ever come back to what it was before. One of the things that really succeeded during this time was #PayUpHollywood, a campaign that aimed to pay a living wage to support staff in Hollywood. People were getting on less than $ 18 an hour and struggling to keep up with rising rents in Los Angeles. Even assistants in TV shows, in studios and in agencies have no clear way of making more money.
Hollywood has never had a “career ladder” or a set way to move forward. It seems like all you have to do is do a lot of free work outside of the system and be very lucky. That happiness can manifest itself in opportunities that will bring you many better paying jobs. But that’s not a guarantee for everyone. And for people whose happiness takes a while to work, they are left out of business.
The struggle for living wages took off on social media, and people took advantage of it the hashtag #IALivingWage to share their struggles within the system. The Hollywood Reporter delved into these stories publish an article where people could repeat these main problems.
One of the most amazing things people have shared is how long they hold out on such pathetic wages trying to make their dreams come true. This puts undue pressure on people who do not come to town with rich families who can support them or supplement their income. It also allows people with connections to level up because they can afford to get a better job ahead of time or have the connections to beat other people who have been there for a long time.
How can the problem be fixed?
Right now, people are pushing showrunners to advocate higher wages, but the real pressure is on them Alliance of film and television producers who need to approve the raise for these workers.
IATSE Local 871, the Script Supervisors / Continuity, Coordinators, Accountants & Allied Production Specialists Guild, has said that AMPTP needs to raise the minimum wage people can get in their union. We don’t know the exact raise they want, though. Allegedly, members are asking for an increase to $ 25 an hour instead of $ 18, and then they want a guaranteed 60-hour workweek.
The average rental in Los Angeles for an IATSE Local 871 member is around $ 1,770 a month. As things stand, the minimum salary that is not considered “rent-debited” is just over $ 70,000 a year. So you can see the big gap between where they are now and where they need to be.
We can only wait and see where these negotiations lead, but something needs to be changed. Otherwise hardly anyone will be able to afford to work their way up.
Let us know what you think in the comments.