When It's Time To Quit Hollywood And Move Back Home – Rhomeyn Johnson



In this Film Courage video interview, Actor Rhomeyn Johnson reflects on when it’s time to consider quitting Hollywood and moving back home. MORE VIDEOS …

18 Comments

  1. Maybe it's different for actors than it is for other creatives, because they are coming in after the fact… after the war to get something seen by a studio, green lit and funded is over… and have a better chance of finding something to do on someone else's project. But I can tell you, from first hand experience, that Hollywood (in it's current form) does not want you or your ideas. Period. Full stop. There is a documentary called, "Tales From The Script". Watch it before you quit your job and leave your home and friends and family behind, especially if you are a writer. As someone in the documentary says, "you are not the lowest totem on the pole… you are the part of the pole that's in the ground". The ability to get your script or show idea made has nothing… zero… to do with talent or how good it is. Have you seen the garbage that gets made? It has to do with who is in charge of making the decisions about what gets made. Most of them are not creatives. They do not know their audience, many of them do not have any idea about storytelling or the art of film. They want guarantees that their decision to fund something makes them money, makes them look good and doesn't end up getting them fired. Except, in art, there are no guarantees. That is why everything is a remake, a reboot or based on an existing property, with an established fan base and calculable numbers behind it. They do not want to take risks and anything that isn't already established, including your talent (even if everyone else can see it), so there is nothing new and original being made anymore. I've shown the pilot I have around to dozens and dozens of creatives and they all love it, get it and want to work on it… but the studios I've had the chance to show it to don't want to take any chances, because they do not want to lose their jobs or spend the time getting behind the talent, trust them and cultivate them as an artist. Instead of doing my animated series that I've worked on and developed for well over a decade, I'm left doing animation for commercials and products, or helping other creators work on their character designs and pitches (all of whom have been shut down, as I have). I don't take any of the "rejection" (which is really isn't. It's fear) personally. I'm confident in myself and my ideas. Look at any movie, tv show or property. They have all fought the same battle to get their idea made. This is a war of attrition. My hope is that after Hollywood loses enough money on failed reboots, someday, one of them will actually listen to guys like me, take chances again and get behind the artist. To the execs out there… failing on something new and different is no better or worse than failing doing a reboot or remake. Except it looks like you took a chance, instead of playing it safe. Believe me, the audience notices stuff like that. Sorry, I've rattled on so long, but this video really hit home for me… pun intended.

  2. Even the nicest guy would turn NaziWood on his friends and family if NaziWood embraced him as one of their own, Its a part of the strategy, Where is your loyalty? Its easy to say Family are more important if you've fucked everything else up. (unrelated to Mr Johnson, just a broad point )

  3. I love it when you guys ask this question because the attrition rate in L.A. is crazy! I'd love to hear about actors who live in their cars out there. That tenacity intrigues me so much! Thanks Film Courage!

  4. This is speaking to me. I'm in Michigan right now and EVERYTHING I'm doing is focused on getting away from here to get into behind the scenes doing the different things I've studied for.

  5. I'm from Detroit and a aspiring filmmaker. This was very interesting. I hope he talks about alot more like money, screenwriting. How to get agents or managers, etc… Thank you Film Courage. You have helped tremendously!!!

  6. This is possibly one of THE most comprehensive and practical approaches to "when it's time to quit" that I've seen.

    There's so much out there (and NOT only on YT) about sticking to it, and see the project or job through, and driving yourself. Quitting has a terrible connotation about it. SURE, we all face those moments of self doubt, outright dread about getting up the next morning. Yet, there are those fleeting moments of doubt, and the growing despair around the job or position that (quite simply) YOU WERE NOT MEANT TO BE DOING… EVER.
    In some sense, every single one of us (humans) has some kind of little dream about getting rich and famous. We see the glitz and glamour of red-carpets, board-walks, clubs, fancy-assed dinners, and drinking, and rubbing elbows with the so-called "movers and shakers" of modern society… We aspire to call ourselves STARS. Then comes that golden opportunity to put ourselves out there, to step on the line, and go to L.A. or NYC, or where-ever else… AND we find ourselves up to our rosey colored glasses in predators, thieves, liars, and swindles… The BullShit runs like rivers and somehow everything still smells sweet! The dream is there, and it's less than an inch out of reach, so you can push yourself to the breaking point, just thinking, "I can get it tomorrow".
    Tomorrow turns into next week, next month, next season… next year…

    The fact is, that there's a VERY VERY BIG difference between living a dream, and waking up from the nightmare. Today, we have YouTube, Vimeo, and the internet's branching out for Netflix, Hulu, and others… EVERY single one of which has some form of "originals" being offered, and not enough professional crafts people to keep pushing the product…

    The fact is… Some of us are STILL just the kind of people who NEED to be making cabinets and spatulas. We need to be architects and engineers, instead of Starship Troopers or Juggernaut. For every Vinny Jones and Vin Diesel that blasts off, there's a thousand repetitious faces and voices that could do all the same things but didn't get noticed.

    There's a big difference between following your dreams and passions, and the part where you figure out the PERSON you really are. Some of us can be happy and proud enough pushing wrenches… swinging hammers… fitting rabbit-joints together. Some of us need to be selling things we couldn't hope to make. AND some of us need to wait tables and flip burgers… learn how to tell when a cake is done and why you can't store raw meat next to cured or cooked… and NEVER EVER in plastic.
    When you figure out that you ALREADY know the answers in your core, do it. When you're in doubt, it's okay to take the time occasionally and figure it out. Sticking to a job to deliver product as promised is great and all, but not at the expense of the person YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO BE… so go be THAT. ;o)

  7. He gave her the best advice. You can’t be emotionally unstable in LA and expect to make it out here. It’s bad enough that the industry has obstacles already in place to keep you out

  8. Nobody is willing to admit that making it will involve taking advantage of anyone you can, throwing everyone under the bus for any opportunity and throwing all your morals away.

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