Queensland has legitimately become the Hollywood of Australia, or more specifically Village Roadshow Studios on the Gold Coast. It’s one of the largest film studio lots in the Southern Hemisphere and responsible for major blockbusters like Disney’s Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Thor: Ragnarok and San Andreas, to name a few.
The place that’s home to Surfer’s Paradise? I know, I too cast my mind back to Schoolies 2008 and felt confused that home to many a hookups, somehow became a stomping ground for the world’s biggest actors and blockbusters. But look, it is what it is, and what it is, is creating a plethora of jobs for anyone wanting to be involved in bloody ‘uge films.
Disney’s Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is the largest ever feature film shot in Oz, projected to inject $100 million into the local economy when it started filming back in 2015. To put that into perspective, during the 2015-16 financial year alone, $207 million was spent from direct investments by domestic and international productions. 3154 jobs were created as a result.
That’s pretty major, and you could have a piece of the action. Take notes from those who have lived and breathed in below, and go ahead an have a piece of the pie.
GET SOME PROFESH TRAINING
Josh Beacham, Head Mould Maker of Props Manufacturing (yes, that’s as dope as it sounds) has been working on major production on the GC for the past eight years. He’s 27 and just finished working on Thor: Ragnorak. His sound advice? Doing a class at Sydney’s NIDA is a solid bet to crack into the scene.
“Every department is always looking for juniors that are at least a little bit knowledgeable and will recruit from there,” he told PEDESTRIAN.TV.
You can check out a course that suits you HERE. It’ll set you back but the ROI is high. Promise.
VOLUNTEER YO’ SERVICES
Like all hard-to-crack industries, you’re going to need to work your butt off, sometimes for free. Beacham said:
“Another good way to get your foot in the door is to just do a bit of volunteer work and show that you are keen and a good worker, and work your way up from there.”
How do you become a volunteer? Come on, something tells me you’ve been here before. Do your research, find out your prime contacts and shine like one of RiRi‘s diamonds. HERE is Village Roadshow Studio’s info on how to get yourself a gig, which is a nice start.
YOU’RE GONNA HAVE TO NETWORK
Sorry, but it’s like, the rules of media.
Stephen Jackson, who has been working as a Set Painter and Brush Hand for the past three-and-half years on films like Disney’s Pirates Of The Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Gods Of Egypt, Alien: Covenant and more, told P.TV:
“The hardest part of getting a job in the movie industry, is getting a job in the movie industry.” He was working at Grill’d before this, but his housemate knew someone who knew someone. You know how it goes.
“The most important part of getting a job in the biz is to have someone vouch for you that you can do the job and not be a pain in the arse. When one job is ending you start to put your feelers out so that you aren’t unemployed for too long. The more time you spend in the biz, the more points of contact you naturally acquire, making it easier to get work.”
GET YO’SELF ON DATABASES
Heard of StarNow?
I know, social suicide. But who will be laughing when you’re an extra in a major film? Feel the sweet satisfaction every time those credits roll or, you know, revel in your celeb stories. Casting agents can’t find you if you’re nowhere to be found, you know?
Priorities. Have them. Otherwise, you know, pay for the services of an agent. Actor Simon Page told us:
“I have representation (an agent) that lands me work in QLD-filmed movies. I’ve been fortunate as an actor to be cast as an extra on major film and mini-series projects, providing great insight and opportunity to learn how established actors go through their process, as well as gain insight into the complexities surrounding a production of that magnitude.”
While Jackson doesn’t recommend trying to become an actor, he does think it’s a good way to crack in. “If i was desperate for a job [in the industry] and had no contacts but skills, I would get as much extra work as possible and talk to people on set and possibly around the studios.” Wanna skip that part? You can try and register yourself on Screen Queensland’s crew registry HERE.
Look, whether or not you can get a gig (you can) out of QLD’s new booming identity as a filming hotspot, having esteemed actors and actresses in town for extended periods of time can only be a good thing. The promotion alone. Remember when Bieber went to Chargrill Charlie’s? Roxy Jacenko for-sure had a non-chicken-related culinary over it.
Brenton Thwaites, the Aussie babe who plays Henry Turner in the new Pirates instalment told PEDESTRIAN.TV:
“Javier [Bardem] was heading down to Byron Bay and Johnny [Depp] was checking out the local sights, and sometimes these guys would come back with stories and I was like, ‘Where was that? Have I seen that place? No, I haven’t.’”
Oh QLD Tourism, you loving dis aren’t ya.