“Be careful who you trust, the devil was once an angel.” ~Unknown
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, the direction of this article is resoundingly similar to those past, however I’ve recently observed this insanity and it’s absolutely appalling.
Those to which this should be an important read will most likely ignore it, but for what it’s worth…
When a person, typically a man (sorry men), and someone whom you do not know personally, approaches you via social media in regards to an “upcoming project” i.e., feature film, television series or anything of the sort that he would like you to “star” in… umm, well, this is not a good sign.
Lunches, dinners, drinks to discuss a “film” that has yet to go into production and which has no financing — no way.
Using you as “arm candy” at Hollywood parties in which to discuss upcoming projects is not a compliment; it is in fact, humiliating — for you.
Countless photos with scantily dressed aspiring models and actresses on the red carpet and at Hollywood events all over social media and on the internet might be an indication that something just isn’t right. I mean, how many roles has this dude promised to how many different women? “SLEAZE ALERT!”
Name dropping celebrities and influential Hollywood names without any evidence of an actual relationship with that person… hmmm… stop right there.
A major lack of IMDB (Internet Movie Data Base, an online source for information regarding industry professionals) credits in the appropriate category in which the person is selling himself – this is a RED FLAG. Meaning, as an example, the person tells you they are a “producer”, yet they really only have credits as a “sound mixer” or even worse, they have no credits at all.
As an actress, the number of times that I have been approached via social media with offers to “act” in an upcoming movie or web series… etc. are countless.
My response is always the same. “Great. Please contact my manager to discuss.” This statement is followed by my manager’s contact information.
The number of times the “said” person has followed up with a phone call or email to my manager to discuss “said project” is ZERO.
Thorough research on any person who is feeding you lines about making you a star or putting you in their upcoming “project” is essential and we are fortunate in this day and age that there are plenty of ways via the internet to discover just who in fact we are dealing with.
For young women that are new to the business and without representation, this is especially important, as you are susceptible to predators who will use you and lie to you for their own personal gain.
There is no TV show — there is no movie. Legitimate producers are generally NOT casting via Facebook or Instagram.
As an example, there are Hollywood predators out there who have been at this for years. Men who notoriously approach women via social media about a potential “movie” that has yet to be produced. Before the era of social media, they would place bogus ads in casting newspapers.
Google searches on this behavior yields literally thousands of complaints and lurid stories of disgusting lies about what is “going to be done for the girl’s career”.
“Sleazy Hollywood con-artist.”
“False promises of fame and fortune.”
“Destroyer of dreams.”
“Forcing women into the sex industry.” This is so strange. How could anyone believe that in order to make it in show business, it is “essential to perform as a sex worker and turn your earnings over to him”??? But, it’s true. And young, impressionable women fall for it.
Disappointingly, women who should be more savvy, already in their 30’s and older, who even have some real acting credits, will venture into a man’s home and have sexual relations with these scumbags. Then feeling their only recourse is to voice their complaints online about the obvious scam after realizing that there was indeed NO MOVIE.
The fact that this bogus hustle continues is a sad testament to the desperation of young women vying to make it in the entertainment industry.
The scam gets older, the girls get younger, but the swindle remains the same.
There is a lesson here — do your research. Follow your gut instinct. Believe that anyone legitimate in the industry will happily reach out to your representation and/or (if you don’t have representation) family member or trusted friend if they truly want to work with you.
In almost every circumstance, your big break is not going to be handed to you by some random stranger online or otherwise. Big breaks are earned through years of hard work and dedication.
Open your eyes, do your research and be safe out there ladies.