How to be an officer

I had a whole 36 hour turn around between 1 film, a commercial, a convention, and the next film I’m on. After that its on to my dream project, that I’ve been waiting to do for 7 years.

And in that time, and on these jobs, my main complaint is the fact that I’m working with a bunch of immature kids.¬†

Silly right? We’re almost the same age but man it makes a difference when you’re acting like a solider, and acting like an officer.

My 1st AD doesn’t come to the after parties, the end of the week parties, the Kick off parties, or the wrap party. He’s the extreme side of acting like an officer. But he gets work, he stays the guy in charge, and he gets the job done. I dont want to be that far uninvolved. But I want to stay the guy in charge.

I’ve been working with a fair number of Key Grips, Gaffers and heads of departments that the first thing said is “How the fuck did that guy get the job?” Lazy, sloth like, poor spatial recognition. Never thinking ahead. First guy to follow orders, last one to give them. Now, we all can recognize when there’s too many chiefs and not enough¬†Indians, but when do you break out of the mold?

Look, you cant be fucking lazy. You cant. You answer calls, you respond to important questions. You stand the fuck up. DO you realize that when you ask the AD staff or Production Staff a question, you are 1 of 120 crew members. I have to schedule a time for you to show up, a time for you to eat, and if we go long, a time, place and amount of food for everyone to eat. I have to put it on a document, I have to submit it for revisions & review, I have to submit them for approval, I have to print them, I have to find someone to distribute them while I’m taking care of actors, getting out times for crew, contacting people for the next day, confirm equipment, see the last trucks out, get all paperwork to the office, and get home with some sort of turn around. This is my job, but there are small things you can do to make it easier, just like I can make sure the truck isn’t parked on an incline. Or I could if you decide not to pay attention.

Also, how you dress. Now I’m not one to really talk, because I was wearing button down shirts and slacks in my 20s. I worked in offices as my day job. I had to dress in all business. But I make sure to carry that into my production life. Because I can just as easily head to drinks with the producers, as I can be on set. Now you can tailor things a little more for production. Clean Carharts, cargo pants, button up short sleeves from REI, things that can survive damage. People dont get where they’re going by wearing the clothes they wore to their high school film club. Dress successful, be successful.


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