Loading images...

What if everyone had to hustle like a stunt guy? – Part 1

Do you think finding a job is hard? What if you had to spend countless hours, hundreds of miles away from home, waiting around to speak to someone for one minute?  And then maybe, just maybe, they might remember you down the road when there is a job available.

This is the life of a stuntman. Job to job, day to day, year to year…the “hustle,” as it is called in the biz, never gets easier.


The Hustle

Being a stuntman can be a super lucrative career. We are talking about an industry where one working day on a film set can bring you in over $800. That’s more than most people make in a week! However, these guys work harder than anyone I have ever met to get a job. And, if that is not enough, just because you get one day on a film shoot doesn’t mean that you are going to get another day. It doesn’t even mean that it will be easier to get the next job! These guys have to continually “hustle,” or as one stuntman I know put it, “network.” But, this is no ordinary networking. This is networking on steroids…wait…more aptly, all the steroids Lance Armstrong, Barry Bonds, and Derek Jeter ever took all in one!

It’s About Who You Know

The stunt business is all about who you know. If a stunt coordinator (the guy who chooses all the stunt guys on a film) doesn’t know who you are, then you are not getting hired. And guess what, these are not the type of guys that use LinkedIn, Facebook, or post jobs on the internet. In fact, even auditions are a scarcity in the stunt industry. The stunt coordinators are the types of guys that want to see you face to face…even if you live 500 miles away. One stuntman put it, “It’s very much ‘out of sight, out of mind’ for coordinators.”

Networking on Steroids

So what exactly does this extreme networking entail? Well a little bit of “fine line” walking of the law, lots of time, patience, and an extreme braveness! Stuntmen have to find out where TV shows and movies are filming (this is not published), sneak onto the set, avoid security, find the stunt coordinator, and then at an appropriate time (side note: there is never an appropriate time) hand off their resume and introduce themselves.

My natural questions to this were:

“Really?  And this is a normal thing?” Their answer: “Absolutely.”

“Is this legal? This has got to be trespassing.” Their answer: “Ehh…yeah, you could call it that.”

“What if you don’t get to see the coordinator?” Their answer: “It happens, it’s part of the game.”

Hustling is expected in this industry. Every stunt coordinator had to do the same thing when they were coming up through the ranks. If you want to work, you have to get out there and go get it!

To Be Continued…

By Zachary Miller

Stay Connected! Facebook | Google+ | Twitter | LinkedIN


DO YOU HAVE 20 SECONDS?    Want to receive the latest casting calls and audtions?    Sign Up Now!

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required Email Address * Email Format html text