Morality aside, the main reason most people don’t break rules is because they don’t want to get busted. This plays to the point that the strength of a rule lies squarely on the rules ability to be enforced.
Thankfully Hollywood is not a place that has a too many rules and the enforcement of the rules that do exist is the equivalent of a narcoleptic mall cop on a night shift.
Personally, when it comes to Hollywood I’m a fan of breaking rules from time-to-time. More often than not, great things can arise from going against the grain.
My only rule for breaking rules … Don’t do anything illegal or potentially harmful to yourself or someone else.
So what are some ‘Hollywood Rules’ you ask?:
>> An actor should never walk into a talent agency to drop off a headshot .
>> You should never hang out on a location shoot and bother the crew
>> Never crash an industry party in hopes to rub elbows.
Those who can’t take advantage of nepotism, Ivy League Alumni status or dumb luck have to get scrappy. And by scrappy I mean creative and by creative I mean sneaking past security … segue to Sara Holden.
Sara, who moved to Hollywood from Detroit, couldn’t get hired as a stunt woman. She followed all the steps, but just couldn’t get a break. Then she read about an invite only Stuntman Association Christmas party. Of course, she didn’t have an invite, but she did have a dress! So she did what any wantabe stunt woman with no credits to her name would do, she crashed the party.
Once inside, she made a point to shake hands with everyone she could and one of those hands belonged to stunt legend Bob Yerkes, who owns an invitation-only stunt person training facility called Bob’s Backyard. Story short, she got an invite, started training, met all the right people and has become a heavily sought after stuntwoman with credits like: "Iron Man," "Halloween," "Piranha 3D" and the yet-to-be-released, "Man of Steel."
Want another? I got more.
Sam Trammell, star of HBO’s "True Blood," walked into a talent agency with flip-flops on his feet and headshots in his hand. While he was trying to convince the receptionist to take his headshot an agent happened to walk by and took notice. Sam was invited to read a monologue for the agent, and was subsequently signed.
Weeks later, Sam found himself reading opposite Al Pacino for the lead in “Scent of a Woman.” The part didn’t pan out, but Sam’s career certainly did.
As for me, I like to think I’ve built a career off of being non-PC and bending -- to the point of breaking -- more than a few rules. Has it paid off? Well let’s just say that I’m 17 years in, gainfully employed and not writing this blog from jail!