Author Topic: Should we move to L.A. with no jobs and low savings?  (Read 4337 times)

Paper Chaser

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Re: Should we move to L.A. with no jobs and low savings?
« Reply #50 on: February 25, 2020, 08:43:41 AM »

DH's goals really don't involve "making it big." They more involve growing the skills he's already been honing in Atlanta, using them to actually work on movie post-production, and climbing up the company ladder same as he would here--only you don't really get to edit significant feature films unless you work for a company in LA or maybe NYC. Also, making independent shorts with people he already knows in LA (many more than here in Atlanta; we just talked to one of them on the phone last night and got advice) and making connections while he's earning. He's still planning on earning, gaining experience, etc. A time at a professional post house, where he could realistically get credit on films, would still be an extremely valuable experience and would make LA worthwhile.

"Making it big"--in the sense of getting funding for making his feature film, I guess?--would be nice, but it is a secondary goal at the moment and wouldn't itself alone determine whether a stint in LA had been successful. His metric for success is not "becoming a famous director"...try and think of the film industry as you would any other. There are many levels of success, assuming you have the skills necessary to make it happen. Not everyone has to be a CEO to be satisfied.

Yeah, I chose poor wording there when I said "make it big". That implies ascending to the highest point in a field, or chasing fame in a way. What I should've said was "defy the odds" and land a decent gig in the field. The entertainment industry is WAY out of my wheelhouse, but it seems like the type of jobs your DH is chasing might not be super common. More common in LA than ATL for sure, but still not very common. I don't mean to come off as too negative here, and I may be completely wrong in my assumption about the number of jobs available. My main suggestion is to do your best to fully understand the odds of success or failure and (perhaps more importantly) the result of each. Then make the corresponding choice that you both can live with.

If we're approaching it like any other industry, we should consider supply and demand. How many potential jobs are there in DH's desired field, in LA and how many potential applicants? LA metro area has something like 13 million people vying for jobs. Atlanta has under 6 million. So it's likely to be a more competitive market, especially if these types of jobs only exist in that one place. Do the jobs pay enough to overcome the increased cost of living? Does that matter to you for quality of life, starting a family, FIRE, etc? The MIT living wage calculator is probably a helpful tool for comparing cost of living in two different regions. I'd say it could be worth a few minutes of your time: https://livingwage.mit.edu/

lv2glrfy

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Re: Should we move to L.A. with no jobs and low savings?
« Reply #51 on: February 25, 2020, 10:32:46 AM »
Awesome tips, thanks. I'm probably not much more well-versed in the job outlook than you, but this whole quest has led me to research more.

DH appears to be right: editing pulls from a larger pool of available jobs than his other main non-directing skill, camera operating. Sure, film editing may not be a common job, but...it's what he's educated in and has experience in. LA does seem to offer a much larger potential pool than Atlanta (https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes274032.htm) with editing, and even with camera operating (https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes274031.htm). Here's also an old article about it just for fun that says the increased COL is worth it: https://www.bizjournals.com/losangeles/news/2015/10/22/film-and-tv-jobs-are-migrating-to-new-york-and.html.

I'm going to continue doing scenarios based on that MIT calculator--it's been very helpful.
« Last Edit: February 25, 2020, 10:39:49 AM by lv2glrfy »

Paul der Krake

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Re: Should we move to L.A. with no jobs and low savings?
« Reply #52 on: February 25, 2020, 11:18:01 AM »
We're not talking about some starry-eyed high school senior hitch-hiking her way South to go study wild birds in the mountains of Bolivia.

We're talking about a young pair of articulate and flexible Americans, who have clearly put a good chunk of thought into this. What is this daring proposition they're pondering? Moving from one state full of Americans, to another state also full of Americans, where people speak the same language, eat the same food, and watch the same entertainment. Entertainment, an industry they are both gainfully employed in, and likely understand better than any of us here.

I honestly don't understand how we can read the same posts and come with such radically different perspectives on what's realistic or achievable for OP.

AnnaGrowsAMustache

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Re: Should we move to L.A. with no jobs and low savings?
« Reply #53 on: February 25, 2020, 02:22:26 PM »
We're not talking about some starry-eyed high school senior hitch-hiking her way South to go study wild birds in the mountains of Bolivia.

We're talking about a young pair of articulate and flexible Americans, who have clearly put a good chunk of thought into this. What is this daring proposition they're pondering? Moving from one state full of Americans, to another state also full of Americans, where people speak the same language, eat the same food, and watch the same entertainment. Entertainment, an industry they are both gainfully employed in, and likely understand better than any of us here.

I honestly don't understand how we can read the same posts and come with such radically different perspectives on what's realistic or achievable for OP.

More chance of said starry eyed senior making it as a world class ornithologist, imo. Unless the mountains of Bolivia are home to hundreds of thousands of other starry eyed seniors hoping to crack the ornithology market.......

pk_aeryn

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Re: Should we move to L.A. with no jobs and low savings?
« Reply #54 on: February 29, 2020, 03:49:21 PM »
I work in the entertainment industry in Los Angeles.  Im not technically in production per se, but I hire people that work on productions. I have many union people begging me for work I cannot give them, because most of my productions are filming in Atlanta, Canada or the UK.  LA is at capacity for filming due to lack of studio / soundstage space, and theres an over abundance of people who need work in LA. If these people moved to Atlanta, or even NYC actually, Id have work for them in a second.

If you lived anywhere other than Atlanta, Id tell you to move and take your chances if you really wanted to. But you already live where I tell my friends to move to to find work.

Happy to go into more detail if you PM.
« Last Edit: February 29, 2020, 03:52:48 PM by pk_aeryn »