Deciding that you want to be an Actor? The thought of transitioning to Hollywood can be over whelming for an aspiring actor. Especially with folks coming from abroad. Hollywood is a great place to try new things, meet inspiring people, and gain the kind of work one could only dream of.
However, the competition is extreme with very few making it. Many come to Hollywood thinking they will instantly be famous. Instead, they find themselves packing their bags flying back home within weeks or months. The cost of living is high and the job market is brutal. According to the Actors Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 13.6% are actually employed in the industry with an average wage of $29.14 per hour.
Like many industries, only the strong, persistent, and wise survive. Harrison Ford aka Han Solo of Star Wars said, "Breaking into Hollywood did not come easily or quickly at all, I had to learn carpentry just to make ends meet for some time." Whereas Vin Diesel "I struggled for five years in Hollywood and ended up moving back to New York. There were just no breaks. Even in New York I struggled for a while, so I took the experience and produced and acted in a short film, Multi-Facial where it was submitted to the Cannes Film Festival. It ended up getting the attention of Steven Spielberg leading to the role of Private Caparzo in Saving Private Ryan."
Eventually, an Actor will need to move to Hollywood or any other major entertainment hub such as Vancouver, London, and New York City. Industry professionals will want to see the actor before awarding a meaningful role.
As Actor, Dave Vij shared with us, "be mindful and avoid making impulsive decisions."
An aspiring actor should be thoughtful & pragmatic while transitioning. Do the homework, train and own the craft before jumping into a new city. Embrace technology and leverage it as much a possible by utilizing the internet to get coaching from the best, participate in on-line workshops and network with industry professionals to create a base before relocating. Most importantly, have the right mind set because when arriving in Hollywood one may have to take odd jobs just to make ends meet.
In closing, Dave Vij states, "the key is to be patient and know that most people that go into this field are doing it for the love of the journey that is filled with joy achieving artistic milestones, personal growth, and experiencing new things that is all worthwhile."