The day we were sitting together at lunch, was one of my most vulnerable moments ever.
After more than 20 years of working as a more or less (he said, she said :-) leading talent agent x manager in the entertainment and film industry,
I had only two thoughts in my mind:
1. Leaving this industry forever
2. Changing old patterns x mindsets and start from the beginning
In this industry, people like me grew up with phrases like „To fail is not an option!”, „No excuses, just results!”, “The sky is the limit!”. Well, what can I say… The world has changed radically since the late 90’s. That was the time when we threw money after problems and film projects. These days are definitely over now. We're dominated by the client and money. To find your own creative voice became challenging.
Truth be told, the management system has never changed. The rules remained since the golden 80’s and 90’s. How comes that managers or talent agents still tell their clients (talents) that they just need to be creative, and they’ll do the rest? The rest means, amongst other things, to deal with money decisions, contracts which the client has to comply with etc.
That's simply bullshit. Was and always will be.
The talents need to understand that their career has to be controlled by themselves with the support of their agent x manager. They need to understand that there won't be any creativity and strength to fight for their vision if they have no financial freedom, or not even the option to say no to a project, which will not lead them to their dream to entertain the audience! „Whatever happens after the art is complete are marketing conditions. They have little to do with the work itself„ (Rick Rubin)
An honest talent agent x manager will treat his talent equally and vice versa. It's about human and work ethics, the talent and the room to share what excites them. The film industry is still one of the most attractive business sectors in this world, but how is it possible, that so many young people are still telling me they are clueless how to enter our business? They ask me if all their efforts will be paid off.
Having no access to what you love and what drove you through your childhood is completely wrong. How comes that people my age, people with experience and knowledge, get overheard and sorted out by the system?
All these questions need an answer from people like us. Our industry created an environment, of burned out or mentally and financially unhealthy filmmakers, which is not attractive anymore. You don't need to be broke to be a good filmmaker. You should not suffer to make a movie. You should not work 24/7 to have a safe place in this industry.
In my opinion (again a quote of Rick Rubin) "Something less perfect may seem more human, more real ultimately, more desirable."
We're here and we start from the beginning. We re-start with our knowledge and experience on various levels. We're not here to write your scripts, to shoot your films or to pay your rent. We're here to build a more human, satisfying and sustainable environment with the access to learn constantly from each other. Sounds big – well it´s not.