Every actor and model in Hollywood will run across this scheme at some point, early in their career. Let me set up a scenario; You’re new in town or just making the rounds at auditions for a modeling or acting role. You get lucky and appear in a commercial or runway event. Later, you’re approached by an industry insider, usually, they are a casting director or associate producer lurking around the set, and they’ll ask you if you’d like to go to a party.
Now, this is not going to be any ordinary party, they are inviting you to an “industry party” and in most cases, this is a big deal with a lot of promise. You are getting a golden pass to be seen by industry insiders in a more comfortable setting. Agents, working actors, producers, and casting directors are usually present.
The reason why someone will give you such an opportunity is that they see potential in you. Also, it makes them look good to be associated with new and upcoming talent. They usually contact talent agents ahead of time to announce that they are bringing new talent to the party to allow them to be seen in a social environment instead of a stale studio audition.
The downside to being invited to these parties is that some of these industry insiders are not interested in your talent as an actor or model, they are “soft grooming” you so they can introduce you to the “Party for Role” scheme. This scheme is as old as Hollywood itself, and it relies on introducing you to levels of initiation. First, you are invited to an “industry party,” but this party may seem a little off. Yes, there’s a producer or a mid-level actor present, but the majority of the party seems to be small-time film investors and industry floaters. At this party, you’re approached by a casting director or producer that tells you if you are particularly nice to a certain individual, you could be considered for a particular cinematic role. This is part of the grooming process.
If you are “nice” to that particular person, you may be thrown a bone and get a role as an extra in a big-budget movie. The thing is, these roles as extras are easier to get than being tricked into sleeping with someone if you apply yourself or hire a reputable agent.
Dillon Jordan recently admitted in court that he ran a high-end prostitution service for seven years. He said that he sold women to wealthy clients for up to $15,000 and put on sex parties in the U.S. and other countries. The Californian film producer was sentenced to a maximum of five years in prison in New York City.
Jordan’s sentence sends a strong message to actors and models who want to advance their careers but may get caught in a vicious circle of providing sex in exchange for acting roles. His sentence of five years in prison shows how seriously the law takes these matters and will hopefully deter others from engaging in similar illegal activities. It is only right that Jordan faces the full extent of the law and takes responsibility for the harm he caused to so many victims.
A crooked road is paved with a series of straight lines. You may feel the temptation to go along with one party favor, but that one mistake can easily be manipulated to get you to go along with other “dates” to secure more roles as an actor or runway shows for models.
Industry parties are a necessity in Hollywood, New York, and other hot locations around the world. Most of these parties are great for networking and getting to know the industry’s movers and shakers, but keep in mind that there are some unscrupulous players in the game looking to take advantage of the inexperienced talent.
There are only 3 things to keep in mind to stay safe
- Have fun, but never leave with a stranger you have been introduced to at a party. Exchange numbers if it’s about business and take an Uber or Lyft home.
- Bring a friend if it’s allowed but let your friend know that you are only leaving with them. If you split up at the party, do not linger away too far from each other.
- Leave the party before it winds down. Always have a place you need to go after the party as an excuse for why you have to leave.
- Don’t be nervous, just be aware. Have fun, mingle and network. In most cases, you are there to further your contacts and career. When predators realize you are aware of the game, they usually stay far away from you to make sure you do not expose them.