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September 26, 2002

There's Got To Be a Way To Make Money off of This

As readers of the late, great DeadLaszlo.com may recall, I live on the street that leads to the Hollywood sign. Every day, tourists stop right in front of my front door, hop out of their cars, and snap photos of the sign from the street. Ours really is the best view of the sign, and I giggle every time I see people excitedly glimpsing the sign I live beneath.

Keith and I were driving down the Sunset Strip recently and he spied one of those Star Maps salesmen on the side of the road. These kids set up little stations every few hundred feet or so along the strip and sell photocopied maps of the area, with certain celebrities' homes highlighted. They sell these maps for $5 apiece. I figure that's a HUGE mark-up over the cost of copies and the highlighter they use. As for research on whether these homes really are the stars' they purport to be... I have my doubts on whether that aspect even really matters all that much.

Keith asks me how on earth these folks make any kind of money. Puh-lease! That's simple! Tourists will pay for anything like that! So, that brings me back to our little place in front of the Hollywood sign. How could we make money off of the tourists who stop on our street every day? Easy... let's sell maps to the sign itself. If we set up a little stand right in front of our door, I KNOW that at least one tourist a day would stop and shell out the bucks for a map that leads all the way up to the sign itself.

But, much more interesting--to me, anyway--is the idea of a cool little web-based financial venture. Considering the fact that most tourists find out about our street (not the most main of drags) by doing an online search of "best view of Hollywood sign," I figure it's only poetic justice to make a buck off the web for all of the traffic it sends our way.

Here's what I propose: each time a tourist stops in front of my door, I want a camera set up to take a photograph of that tourist and his car. This would be like a side-angle view of the photographer as subject. Okay, next, I would put these photos up on a website. The coolest underground thing would be to find yourself on that site. We'd do a "search by date," "search by car," and "search by goofy tourist outfit" version. Finding yourself on the site would be like a Where's Waldo for Hollywood looky-loos. Can't you see the potential for greatness here?

But is there potential for cash? Can't see it yet... so perhaps this brilliant concept will be back-burnered for a while.

Posted by bonnie at 1:36 PM

September 24, 2002

ask the industry «

Submit a question for an industry pro to answer.

Question: How do I find the agent representing a particular actor? --Bill

Answer: There are a few ways. Sometimes, actors will list that information in their IMDB.com entry. A good website to check is WhoRepresents.com. That's their specialty: who represents whom. After you've checked those sources and come up empty-handed on an actor or two, try calling SAG's actor locator line. That's 323.549.6737. During normal office hours (on the west coast), you can call and ask for up to three SAG actors' representation information. They can provide mailing address and phone number for each agency as well.

Happy hunting!


Casting QsBonnie Gillespie is a Los Angeles casting columnist, the owner of Cricket Feet Management, and the author of Casting Qs: A Collection of Casting Director Interviews.

Posted by bonnie at 5:01 PM | Comments (0)

September 20, 2002

Back Again

New quiz! Super cool!


what movie symbolism are you? find out!

Posted by bonnie at 1:06 PM

Once More

Duh... why do I always think of things to say AFTER I "post and publish" my Blog??

Spied Mila Kunis and Wilmer Valderrama of "That '70s Show" during breakfast with Judy and Keith Monday morning. I have now seen, in person, all but ONE of the kids from that show. Once I get a Hyde under my belt, I'll have the whole set!

That didn't read right. Tee hee.

Posted by bonnie at 2:22 AM

I have

absolutely NO idea why the font goes wonky after my first link in my earlier Blog. Weird.

Posted by bonnie at 2:14 AM

Blogging While Watching Family Ties...

Today was the day that summer officially ended in the Gillespie-Johnson Household. Here's how we decided that. When it got too hot to move (which Siouxsie Sioux said was over 92 Degrees), we moved the big TV and the DirecTV receiver into the bedroom and ran a network cable from the big blue box so that we would work and live in the only room with a window AC unit. Well, tonight, when Keith needed to go to sleep (and, since I don't sleep at night, we've been compromising by me working with one little light on and him trying to sleep through it... some compromise!) we decided to call summer officially over and put the house back the way it was meant to be. I swear, coming back to my little living room setup was such a delight. I had organized the living room prior to doing the BIG work on my book so that I would write the dang thing from the POWER source of the room (according to the Feng Shui octagon). I am happily back in a nice little comfort zone. I've never been a big fan of TV or work in the bedroom. Turns out that's a fundamental principle to Feng Shui! Who knew?!?

I've just pulled up a bowl of carrot and celery sticks, a little ranch dip, and some ice water... ah, such a good midnight snack. Yeah, I'll probably have Oreos after this. Tee hee.

Okay, so, here's what's up in my world: scanned a whole bunch of pictures of Keith's son, Quinn. Here's the most precious.


He'll be four in December and should be allowed to come visit us next summer. Hopefully, we'll be in a house by then. Man, some things are going to have to move quickly in order to see that happen. Fingers crossed!

The book is in galley copy form now. The FINISHED cover is up at my designer's site and I'm just thrilled! It's really gorgeous. We met with the author of the book to which I'll be contributing earlier this week. She's a delight and a great source of information. Keith will meet with her distributor tomorrow to see if he wants to distribute our book. Meanwhile, I'm trying not to strangle the author of the book I'm editing and most likely publishing. I say most likely because the money behind this guy keeps changing its mind. Whatever. I'll start editing (resume, really, since I already began) when I get a check.

Anyway, ten galley copies will go out this weekend for advance reviews and such. Still waiting on our Library of Congress number. Very exciting (to me, anyway)!

Keith's TV show on The Learning Channel wrapped. The wrap party is October 4th, and that's when they'll give out the episode schedule for the airdates. I'll keep you posted so that you can get a load of my fiancé playing a Texas cop. With an accent. And a moustache. Should be a real hoot! Keith's play opens tomorrow night--and this one he's actually going to let me see! So, I gotta figure out what to wear tomorrow. I have like one outfit. Grr.

I have five active complaints registered with the Better Business Bureau right now. Effin' Equifax! They've so screwed with my credit rating and they acted illegally to do so. I have proof, so it should be a pretty "easy" win, but dear GAWD, how do you begin to challenge the powers that hold the keys to your credit rating?!? I'm being vewy careful, to say the least. Mercury is in Retrograde for another two weeks, so I'm double and triple checking everything!

Now on to the Blogs!

Trevor: We had Earthlink issues when we switched from dial-up to DSL. Not to discourage you while working on it, but it took months to straighten out the mess. Of course, we did end up with something like five free months of service for the trouble. Woo hoo!

Bryan: What is Amazon's Gold Box thingy? I saw it up there the last time I shopped, but was afraid to click on it, after reading your post. Is it scary?

Chip: There's more than ONE Avril song? Hmm. Think I'll have to go take that quiz. Yes you DO know what those letters mean and where they are! Quit teasing me!! You stop that!!

Courtney: Sounds like you're working with a good author. I totally agree that grad school is a magnet for the crazies. That's where I met Psycho Boy (the one and only character in my life to ever have a restraining order placed on him by me). Actually, I met him at the Engine Room... so, nevermind.

The Boy Spoke Ton thing is on the FIRST page I go to, but the page I'm talking about with the frickin' letters is the one with all our names on the list (with Trevor now on top). I think I'm about to give up and just say it's Esperanto for "Chip loves Alf" or something. *sigh*

You don't see the Dave Foley attraction thing? I guess it's the "funny smart guy" thing. Not sure. Maybe it's b/c he's Canadian. Hmm.

I hope Hank is 100% now! Have fun on your trip!

David: Thank you for giving me the origin of "feh," at least for you. I think it's kind of like "eh," but with more disdain. Perhaps? When did I last see you socially? Um... have we met? At the Academy, maybe? And why were you going to address the Blogs, "especially Bonnie's?" I'm so intrigued! You liked The Rock baby doll photo, right? ;)

Jane: You must be REALLY busy with your boyf!

Shelley: Yay! Yay! Shelley! Yay! I love the idea for a new Blog to go with your new house. That's awesome! I wish I could make a slipcover myself. I bought one from Surefit.com and let me just say... "sure don't!" Bleh. I finally took it off and stuffed it under the sofa. The kitties sleep in it now.

Make sure you take a look at California's renter laws. They are VERY pro-renter. I think you should have NO problem getting your money back, once the landlord knows you're not just going to shrug and roll over. Also, according to California law, you are entitled to the interest the landlord collected on your deposit for the ENTIRE time you rented! Make sure you get that too, if they're going to be a pain! Let me know if you need me to look up links for you.

Kahuna Roll sounds delish!! Yum!

Oh, here's the punchline on Keith's bike wreck from March: we got the settlement check today. Nothing major. It was for $9500. So much less than we'd been told to expect, by attorneys... but also enough for us not to bother pushing the issue by getting a lawyer at this point. I'm sure the insurance company KNOWS that, and that's why this was the dollar amount offered (actually, the offer was for $1000 less, but Keith got them to bump it up). His hospital and medical expenses were $6200, so that's a nice $3300 for pain and suffering. Considering he lost work, had to ride the bus, had to fix up his bike, and basically be in pain for a month and a half, I guess that's about right. *shrug* Who knows?!? Anyway, wanted to let you know, since you were SO awesome in helping us start the whole process, back in March!

Stephanie H.: School is good! Talk to us about school! That lets me live vicariously. I would ALWAYS be in school if I could afford it.

Stephanie W.: I guess new Buffy=back to Blogging, eh? And not just for you, it seems. Too bad I've never seen the show, or I'd have more to talk about.

Tina: Hello Kitty SLIPPERS?!? You must post a photo of them! My friend Faith (who Chip will recall as the chick who starred on two episodes of Star Trek: Voyager, has the Hello Kitty boombox and she loves it! I only have little kitschy Hello Kitty things. No major appliances.

Now... has anyone noticed that Sweet Little Sara is busy posting away down under the "Used to Write" heading? That makes me SO sad! Chip... you bump her up, right now! She even knows the theme song to Felicity. You MUST reward that!

Results of recent quizzes:

Which Rejected Character Are You?

Which Avril Lavigne Song Are You?

Ooh. Charles in Charge is on! G'nite, Bloggers! XXOO

Back at Somesuch-Whatnot: "Ewwwwwww... I'm out on that, but I'd trade my roommate for a pig and a John Deere tire." - Jamie, 24 May 2002

Posted by bonnie at 2:08 AM

September 17, 2002

ask the industry «

Submit a question for an industry pro to answer.

Question: What do you think about headshots that show several different shots of the actor in different clothes and different poses on one 8x10 vs. traditional headshots with one shot on the 8x10? --Fernando

Answer: Hi Fernando,

The only market in which I've heard of those composite (or picture within a picture) headshots working is in San Francisco, and specifically for children. There is a talent agency there that likes their kids to have at least two different looks on a headshot, and that seems to be the accepted norm by casting directors in northern California.

In Los Angeles and New York--and from what I can tell about other markets such as Chicago, Atlanta, Orlando, and Canada--the best bet is a straight-forward headshot, face forward, smiling, no hands in the shot, no extraneous "information" about where you are or what is around you, visually.

Now, if you are a model, you must have a comp card. However, that's generally smaller than an 8X10, and it has a headshot on one side and three or four smaller "character" photos on the other side.

Hope this helps!


Casting QsBonnie Gillespie is a Los Angeles casting columnist, the owner of Cricket Feet Management, and the author of Casting Qs: A Collection of Casting Director Interviews.

Posted by bonnie at 5:00 PM | Comments (0)

September 11, 2002

Oh, and I wanted to share this too:


It's a wrestler kid. For sale. In the TV Guide.

God bless America.

Posted by bonnie at 3:29 PM

Ack! How could I forget?

All that Blogging and I forgot to add my quiz results!

What revolution are You?
Made by altern_active

Posted by bonnie at 3:27 PM

Time to Blog!

Hi Gang!

The big news here is that Judy Kerr, author of "Acting is Everything," has asked that I contribute to the new 10th edition of her book. Woo hoo!

I've been pet-sitting, but I'm back home now... thank goodness! Animals were great, though. Still... better to be home.

Trevor: Nice job jockeying for position. Color me impressed! Let's go by middle name (Athene) or height (5'7"). I like my odds either way.

Can YOU tell me what TQZOPUFCPPL means? I'm convinced Chip has decided to torment me by not answering. Do you know? Will you tell?

I agree that we need to instill nerd culture very early. Our kids will be at a disadvantage otherwise. Oh, and I'm TOTALLY stealing your quote for my sig file: "The next thing you know, they're wearing tin foil hats and teaching their tadpoles the French national anthem in Esperanto." Just effin' genius!

Congrats on the new house. No TiVo? I can't imagine going back. I don't have it yet, so it's not like I know (other than in theory) what it is that I'm missing. That would make me sad.

Big Mike: I now have iPod envy. I didn't before, but I sure do now. Sounds GREAT.

Is Eric Bravo coming back to Hollywood? I like Eddie Blaze-o for a comic book character too. Officer Blades... is she built like Edward Scissorhands? Can she frisk perps?

Hmm... OmniWeb, eh? I'm loving Netscape 7.0 on my Mac. I may have to check out OminWeb, but for now I'm pretty pleased (except with its ability to import... which is NO ability... address book and email files from Outlook or anything other than an old Netscape or a text-only format). So, I'm now making a deal with several devils, using Outlook Express and Netscape 7.0. Thinking of going to Microsoft Entourage for mail. We'll see.

Is it true that version 6 of anything sucks?

Chip: No more Gini Eldridge's dad in the government?

Windows security update sounds about right.

McDougald family AND Tetris... are you TRYING to make me jealous?

Don't use Front Page. Tell the dink who's using it to stop. Then flick him.

Jane's link doesn't stay blue in Netscape, only in IE. WHAT DO THE LETTERS MEAN, CHIP?

Time for a new "Written Since" date thingy. Yes?

Courtney: I'm sorry your cat is sick. One of the animals we've been babysitting this past week is old and sick. Reminded me of Muffy (my cat who lived to be 18). Uncle Bill (this cat we babysat) gets subcutaneous fluids every other day. It's hard when animals are sick. I hope your baby is okay.

I can see an affair with Dave from NewsRadio. Yum. I love watching that show on A&E. So good.

The jellies you bought sound yummy! I wish I had a sense of adventure for foods like that.

I wish I had the fundage to steal some ideas from Trading Spaces for my bedroom. We need a new space before we try to decorate though. Next place. Where ever and when ever that may be... it shall be good. Hoping for Santa Monica and an actual HOUSE. We'll see.

Yay for being off caffeine! How'd you do it? I take Excedrin which has caffeine in it, and then there's chocolate and such. I never drink soda or coffee, so that part is easy, but there's other caffeine I guess I can really avoid. Any tips would be appreciated.

Your brother's football writing was GREAT. Damn Good Dawg! Flagpole should snap it up, easy! If they don't, maybe the Red and Black? Good stuff, there!

Thank you SO much for the editing rate info. It was VERY helpful. I set a rate and gave a quote to the casting director who wants us to publish his book. He's probably going to hire me to edit it, even if he self-publishes (which, at this point, I'm kind of hoping he will... he's already driving me nuts and we haven't even made a deal yet). I'll keep you posted. But, BIG thanks for the info!

David: Yep, the "too busy to hate" slogan is from way back. Kickin' it old school with that one.

I guess no programming is as cool or as free as WUOG. They're having their 30th reunion next month. I won't be able to return for it, but man that sounds like fun. Guest DJ shifts and all sorts of nostalgia. I can't believe my first airshift there was 14 years ago! Wow. Midnight to 4am Sundays. I walked over from my dorm room in Reed Hall with mace and a lit cigarette (to burn the guy who attacked me... so I could ID him easier later) and a stack of albums. Ah... the good ol' days.

Hey, what's "feh" from? I've seen it used in a few posts and emails. I get the meaning, but where is it from? When I used "dur" for a while, everyone knew I'd just read "Bridget Jones' Diary," so I'm wondering if "feh" came about from some Brit read or something.

I liked your Little Shop reference with regard to your dentist visit. I was listening to the soundtrack just the other day. Greatness. Oh, and my dentist sent me porn in the mail, so I'm not going back to him.

Dera: Yay! You're back! We missed you!

You should've bought Hello Kitty-related action figures in New York! I hear Sanrio items are quite hard to come by on the east coast. Here, they're everywhere. Love me some Hello Kitty goodies!

I'm glad you're carpooling with Chip. Definitely sounds like a good way to save money and improve your Academy-related mental health.

Happy belated birthday! I ALWAYS order something I really want from a catalog or online store and make sure that it'll be delivered on (or as close to as possible) my birthday. That way, when I arrive home from wherever, I ALWAYS have a box waiting for me at my door. Makes me feel so happy! Amazon works. eBay is less likely to time out as well. Body Shop is also a good one for me. Gap too. All great. Try that next year. I ALWAYS do it!

Tina: My mom made the Kraft Marshmallow Fluff fudge too. It was GREATNESS. She loved pecans, so she would always add pecans to ONE PART of the fudge (for her) and leave the rest plain and smooth for me. Guaranteed holiday weight gain... and I didn't mind one bit! I liked to freeze a beer mug and then fill it with milk, and the icy milk would be the perfect mate for still-warm fudge. YUM. I miss my mom.

Apple crisp! Yes! Peach cobbler! Yes! Very very very good list!!!!!!!!

Oh, y'all should've bid on the Land Speeder. It's parked (or was, before it sold, anyway) right up the street from us on the Cahuenga Pass. They have a film car lot and it has that one plus a couple from Tron and Star Trek too. It's way cool to drive past. Not at all touristy. Just some little used car looking lot, gated and dirty, with these amazing film cars in the back of the lot (you can see them from the street). Anyway, I'm guessing yours wasn't the winning bid for that?

Okay, that's it for responses to the Blogs. Life is generally good here. I spent two days working in the office of the paper, where I had a freak psycho guy call in and yell at me and the girl who was assisting me. She started crying. I just laughed at the guy. He was SO mentally unstable. He told me that he's worked with drug dealers who are more professional than I am. This is because I told him not to use such language with me when he told me that I should suck his cock so I'd know what it felt like to have something where my brain should be. I said, "Goodness gracious!" and he said, "Oh, fuck you, you whore! You Charlie Brown loving cunt!" I just had to correct him. "No, sir. That's Good GRIEF Charlie Brown, not goodness gracious. I'm afraid you're mistaken." That's when he lost it. All this over having called him to get a little more information (items he had left blank on his casting form). He said that he shouldn't have to give more info... that it was our fault for having a web-form that actually can go through without complete information.

Whatever. It was a fun little drama and a nice big reminder of why I do not like office work. I so prefer working from home.

Which reminds me... I need to get back to work!

Bye, y'all!

"Hey... ignorance is blistered." [Katy, on The Psycho Ward, 13 April 2001]

Posted by bonnie at 3:19 PM

September 10, 2002

ask the industry «

Submit a question for an industry pro to answer.

Question: Do agents look for minimum heights when it comes to signing male actors?

Answer: Hi Adam,

Some certainly do. Of course, the limits are imposed less by performing arts agencies than by modeling agencies. Modeling agencies will have height minimums (usually 5'8" for women, 6' for men) for print ads, runway modeling, and other non-acting appearances.

For acting, most agencies are much less concerned with height than they are "total marketability." Are you someone whose talent they feel they can get behind and market to casting directors? If so, that's really key.

That said, there ARE agencies that specialize in commercial acting, and there are some restrictions on height in that market (though not nearly as many as there are in straight-out modeling agencies). A friend of mine is 6', but his agent told him to put 5'11" on his resumé because--get this--Japanese car companies will not consider men over 5'11" for their auto ads that will run internationally. A man of that height is considered too tall to sell their product.

So, don't try to be any height other than the height you are. If there's a market for your talent, you'll find the right agent to represent you, at whatever height!


Casting QsBonnie Gillespie is a Los Angeles casting columnist, the owner of Cricket Feet Management, and the author of Casting Qs: A Collection of Casting Director Interviews.

Posted by bonnie at 4:58 PM | Comments (0)

September 3, 2002

ask the industry «

Submit a question for an industry pro to answer.

Question: I am doing a project for my school. I was wondering if you had any way of telling me how many people consider their profession acting? or related to acting? Do you know where i could find demographics like that? Any help would be deeply appreciated. --Amanda

Answer: Hi Amanda,

I would start with SAG. That's the Screen Actors' Guild. Their website is http://www.sag.org. A little research with SAG can give you an indication of how many professional actors are registered members of SAG, the professional actors' union. I believe the number is over 100,000. Of course, a very small percentage of those actors actually earn even poverty-level income as working actors. So, as for how many people ARE professional actors and how many CONSIDER themselves professional actors...well, those numbers vary greatly.

You should also check with AFTRA. That's the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. That includes newscasters, sportscasters, radio DJs, talk show hosts, and other non-acting performers of TV and radio.. Their numbers are lower than those at SAG, but there is some overlap, as many members belong to both unions.

And then there's AEA, Actors' Equity Association (also known as Equity). That's for professional theatre actors, for all those folks on Broadway, Off-Broadway, in touring companies, and working in theatres all over the place.

There are unions for variety performers, unions in other countries for performers, so many groups in support of the acting professions. I honestly believe that these unions would be the first places to start with your research. It's not going to account for all of the people who do local community theatre, or perhaps those working actors who do non-union work in industrials, videos, and feature films that do not operate under union contracts. Plenty of performers earn a good living doing that, and are not going to show up in the numbers the unions provide. Still, you'll get a good ball-park idea from their numbers.

As for those whose careers "relate to acting," that's going to include agents, managers, assistants, directors, casting directors, writers, crew members of all kinds...and there you're getting into very high numbers. Perhaps a visit to the websites of the ATA (agencies), TMA and COPM (managers), DGA (directors), CSA and CCDA (casting directors), WGA (writers), and IATSE (other crew members) would get you a few numbers there too.

Good luck with your project! I'd love to know what you learn!


Casting QsBonnie Gillespie is a Los Angeles casting columnist, the owner of Cricket Feet Management, and the author of Casting Qs: A Collection of Casting Director Interviews.

Posted by bonnie at 4:57 PM | Comments (0)