Are you like me and are tired, tired, tired of creatives pretending to be better than the projects they are involved in. These are folks who are hired guns and work on projects for a paycheck, whether as a creator or part of the support.
Every project that isn’t creator made and then created solely by one person/team who is at the ground level, has ‘support’ people. It’s not an insult but a reality that you are getting paid for your service due to skills you have to add to this project in some way. You see the Well, I Did This For The Money sort of thing from actors and directors most but it hits every creative avenue, to be honest. People who feel like they are better than the work they are hired for.
And hey, maybe you are.
Maybe you crap out gold dust and you speak magic into existence with your words.
Or could be you just need to take a breath.
While you may wish you were working on ‘art’, well, someone might be wishing they could afford a better artist than you.
I absolutely appreciate the fact that most of us have to work gigs that we are not passionate about but which pays the bills. Welcome to reality! Even professional creatives will have to take gigs that don’t sing to them like other things may.
I get it.
What I also get though is that all of us creatives want to be making ‘art’, whatever that is, and think we are most times, from the highest brow project to the lowest brow. If you take what you do seriously and truly respect the ‘craft’ then that’s how you see it and how you approach it.
Alas, not so much.
So often you see folks, well after they have cashed their checks, remark that, well, I didn’t like this, and I didn’t like that, and I wish it was this or that, and I did it for the money.
All of that may be true.
But it’s convenient that these folks also see themselves often as better than so much of the work they do. Well, if that was the case, then why aren’t you offered more ‘art’ to do?
Sitting there and bemoaning how you took this gig or that because you needed money won’t win you more fans because most of us will never sniff that sort of money or opportunity. Most of us are toiling away at stuff that no one sees and which makes us next to nothing. But we do it because we love it.
So should you.
Don’t spit in the face of fans and other creatives.
Don’t act like that project, now that it’s in your rearview, was beneath you.
Be better than that.
I get that we looooove salacious details and the dirt behind the scenes but for all you know this was someone else’s favorite thing that they ever did, or ever will do. Or YOU were the reason the project didn’t reach the heights it may have.
It may well have been ‘beneath’ you but then maybe you should have helped to elevate the work.
Hey, maybe you did!
Then just keep your mouth shut.
It’s convenient and oh, so petty, to pick apart projects from afar when you were a spoke in a large wheel. We can all do that. We can all talk mess on people, on things, and on jobs. We can be ugly. I know I have been. I know I still do it with a job I was fired from.
I didn’t say I was above this, but you should at least recognize your pettiness and accept it.
There are so many horror films that fans adore but which actors later will decry as beneath them or as an embarrassment.
Love that you learned from it and don’t have to do it any longer.
You worked a gig that paid you – right? They paid you, didn’t they? – and which helped get your career going towards a place where you could afford to regret it.
Many creatives don’t reach that point in their careers. Most of us are just lucky to be creative, let alone get paid to be that way.
If you want to privately be shamed or roll your eyes then fine, but respect the other creatives, and the darned fans who may love that work deeply.
Even if it is corny.
This silly idea that ‘art’ is easily defined is a joke.
This hits everything but specifically movies, let’s be honest though, only CERTAIN types of music are art. The stuff that some critic deems terribly deep and moving and affecting. Harder music, or hip hop music, those are rarely seen as anything but crass and loud, but once in a while someone will break out and win an award or two, but not often been seen as more than they are.
I am tired of the old trope of blockbuster films and then the awards bait films.
While many blockbusters do focus on the explosions over the actors, that isn’t always the case. I have absolutely seen movies that were BLOCKBUSTERS or COMIC BOOK MOVIES that gave me more to care about, and better acting than some of the stupid award movies about sad people doing sad things or old people living their best lives or dying people learning to live or people overcoming some disability. On and on and on. And there are AMAZING films that represent all of those things, or represent the struggle of a person to overcome SOMETHING. There’s great stuff there. But that isn’t the ONLY great stuff.
Everything can be elevated or pulled down by the passion behind the scenes and passion put into it.
There are Stephen King books that are gut wrenching and brilliant but he still will always be a ‘horror author’ and never make it to the ‘fiction’ category. Sure, categories are silly, but they do matter to a degree.
As someone who writes stories about people just being people, there is a lot to dive into there, but just because there is a monster doesn’t mean suddenly that it’s trash.
I give you THE BABADOOK.
Oh, but that’s not horror, say some.
The way idiots and actors make themselves feel better for liking something in the horror category.
It drives me nuts.
I don’t care if Cary Grant didn’t do horror films.
I don’t care if John Wayne never made superhero films.
I don’t care if John Ford neveradapted a video game.
I don’t care.
They all worked for a paycheck like everyone else and while they got to pick the roles they wanted eventually, everyone does work for money. Listen to the old radio serials and you can find good old Cary in a horror tale or two.
You do the work that pays you and if you’re a professional you do the best you can with it because it matters.
It’s easy to pretend you don’t want to do some work because you don’t care for the genre, or some other aspect and if that’s the case, don’t do it.
Spare everyone and let a person who WANTS to do it do it.
There are far better talents working in genre work, in ‘blockbuster’ work, in horror, and in other avenues than ever gets appreciated but I see you.
I see you and I thank you because your passion and care for the work has made me fall in love with art that doesn’t feel the need to always follow the rules or play nice.
And that’s where the best art usually resides.