Creating Pathways to Entertainment Industry Careers
Hollywood Cinema Production Resources (Hollywood CPR) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to advancing equity in the entertainment industry by connecting students from underrepresented and diverse communities with entry-level careers in union-represented crafts and trades. These students often have faced financial, educational, or social barriers to a traditional film school path and Hollywood CPR increases their access to well-paying jobs ranging from set dressers and camera loaders to grips and set lighting technicians.
What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?
Access to Creative Industry Employment (sponsored by Snap Foundation)
In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?
San Gabriel Valley
San Fernando Valley
County of Los Angeles
City of Los Angeles
In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?
Expand existing project, program, or initiative
What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?
The entertainment industry has been motivated by the current cultural landscape to make diverse and inclusive sets a priority. This means there is a higher demand than ever before from studios and producers for well-trained, diverse candidates. LA is a major hub for film, TV, and live event production, yet there is a huge diverse, local population that isn’t aware of the increased career opportunities available in this field. Film school can be expensive and exclusive; not everyone with the passion and work ethic required for the entertainment industry is able to attend a typical 4-year university film program. Many of these individuals don’t know that there are so many more careers available to them in the behind-the-scenes world of Hollywood than just screenwriter, director, and producer, and could benefit from training in the “below-the-line” crafts of the industry such as stagehand, set dresser, grip, camera loader, costume finisher, set lighting technician, or set painter.
Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.
Hollywood CPR is a ground-breaking, first-of-its-kind program comprising education and training in the high-demand, high-paying trade skills needed for jobs in the “below-the-line” portion of the entertainment industry. Classes are led by active union professionals who offer rigorous hands-on training in the crafts; and through our program, students can also receive actual on-set experience through traineeships on productions at major studios. Hollywood CPR is unique in that it is the only training organization with an agreement with both the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE) – the union that represents the technicians and tradespeople within the entertainment industry; and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) – the employers within the entertainment industry. Because of these partnerships, students in the Hollywood CPR program not only gain the technical skills required for these crew jobs but Hollywood CPR also gives them a clear pathway to union membership. The program addresses the industry-identified problem of assuring a supply of diverse, union-trained craft workers to fill new openings via our outreach efforts to historically underrepresented groups. Hollywood CPR recruits from LAUSD high schools, community organizations, and entities such as LA’s foster care system, the Anti-Recidivism Coalition, and others to ensure that those with an interest in entertainment aren’t overlooked no matter where they come from.
Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.
LA is synonymous with the entertainment industry, but the entertainment industry doesn’t yet reflect the diversity of people and cultures that exist in Los Angeles County. If Hollywood CPR is successful at growing our student body and producing more diverse, well-trained graduates, LA will see more of its own local talent breaking into the industry and the entertainment community will look more like our actual community. Hollywood CPR has been diversifying the entertainment industry since its earliest days. Our founder, Kevin Considine was inspired by his personal experience with the arts as a form of empowerment when traditional school did not lend itself to his form of learning. He created Hollywood CPR to help those like himself – individuals who might have been overlooked by the mainstream but had the talent to succeed in the artistic, hands-on world of Hollywood. With funding from LA 2050, Hollywood CPR can train more students like these for creative career opportunities.
What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?
We currently measure our impact in four areas: Student enrollment In 2021, 350 students took film production classes through our program, including 180 who took our intro-level class, the pre-requisite for all other courses. Even with these numbers of students served, there is high demand for our intro course and we often have a waitlist of 15 to 20 students. Students selected for union traineeships In 2021, we had 28 students selected for traineeships on union productions. Already in 2022, we’ve had 24 students go onto traineeships with an estimated 10 more to be requested this summer alone. Graduates with active union membership We have 378 graduates with active union status, with 18 of that from the first six months of this year alone. Alumni testimonials We have a very strong alumni network, and our graduates often return to be guest speakers in our classes to share their experiences which provides us with valuable qualitative evidence to the success of our program.
Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?
Direct Impact: 450
Indirect Impact: 100,000