Nikke Finke has a free site which I rather like, it’s where you go for the latest breaking news on the Hollywood front. It’s called DEADLINE HOLLYWOOD.
Today, she informed her readers that the managers were at it again, pleading their cause before a federal judge, but were thrown out. Here, she can speak for herself:
Personal managers took it on the chin Tuesday in U.S. District Court when Judge Dean Pregerson wouldn’t touch California’s Talent Agencies Act. Instead the judge threw out an outrageously broad lawsuit filed by the National Conference of Personal Managers seeking to overturn the state’s ban on managers “procuring” employment. That provision has effectively allowed clients to void their management contracts and not pay commissions even if the managers obtained a job for them. (Managers are unlicensed whereas talent agents must be licensed by the state to procure employment.) Pregerson rejected the managers’ claim that California has created “involuntary servitude” for them. “Not being compensated for work performed does not inevitably make that work involuntary servitude,” the judge ruled. “Plaintiff’s members have choices.” He also rejected claims that the Talent Agencies Act violated the Commerce Clause, the Contracts Clause and the First Amendment.
Well, that got my pulse going and my blood-pressure pointing north. A lot of managers made comments outlining ideas for future strategy, and I just HAD to chime in with my voice and MY comment:
John Clark says:
ACTOR HERE! Spoiler alert – rant ahead – listen up. We actors are entrepreneurs by instinct and training and dreaming. When we’re not working, we work out, honing our craft, and wait for the phone to ring. And wait and wait and wait. So, in frustration, we pick up the phone and call a casting director about a project we heard about, maybe from a writer friend, and a part we think we’re right for. She/he won’t take the call. We call the packager. Same thing. We call Breakdown Services to ask for a reasonably priced subscription to their researched data-base of parts, characters, and jobs available day by day. They won’t sell to us. We’re SHUT OUT of OUR industry!
Remove all of us actors? What will be left is NOTHING…NOTHING…NOTHING.
Remove all of these agents and managers, then what’s left? Why, the world of entertainment and fantasy fulfillment for paying audiences happily humming away.
I’m eighty years old. I’ve been a part of our industry since I was a famous child star in England before the end of World War 2, and quite famous since (for all the wrong reasons.) I won’t be around much longer. And I say F**K Y*U to agents and managers for preventing me from making direct contact with my goals. [I used the actual words, which Nikke allows and my webmaster doesn’t.]
I pass this advice to the next generation of actors. “Get in touch with your own self, and make sure there are no degrees of separation between you, your soul, your spirit, your sense of creativity, your business sense, and any roadblocks in and to your ability to GET WORK!
” Thank you judge, thank you SAG/AFTRA/EQUITY, and thank you Government for controlling the agencies by licensing them, and rejecting the “managers” of actors’ lives. If these “personal managers” really want to “represent” their clients, then they should marry them, and go all the way. And that is my rant for the day.”
There was an immediate response.
WTF are you talking about? Because CD’s won’t take your calls, Managers shouldn’t be paid for the work they do for you insecure, ranting, miserable actors?
Comment by Huh? — Thursday March 7, 2013 @ 2:22pm PST
To which I said
If you had half of a brain, you’d have made sure that the client’s checks, contractually, were made payable to you, subtract your commission, and then net it off to the client. But then you’d be a fiduciary, subject to the laws of fraud, and actors are smart enough to see that, and won’t let you do it. Which makes YOU an insecure, ranting miserable ex-hairdresser manager. Boo hoo.
- Comment by John Clark — Thursday March 7, 2013 @ 5:33pm PST
(Oh Lord, maybe I should not have said that. Now I’ll NEVER get a manager to represent me, nor an agent for that matter! Or maybe even a haircut .)