Working in Hollywood


Much of my practice involves working with creative types and executives who work in the movie business, including directors, writers, producers-- as well as hair-and-make up artists. 

Part of the challenge involved in working in Hollywood is how one's creative vision must be preserved in light of all the constraints imposed by the demands of making art in collaboration with others who may have a different agenda. The director must become a type of "therapist" in a way, to balance all of the psychological material (often from childhood) the producers and actors are bringing to the set -- but what about the director's own vision? How can this be preserved when the "parents," who often hold the purse strings, may be more authoritarian -- or, worse, permissive!

How to help writers maintain their vision in the face of the demands of managers and agents -- the same with actors? How to find ways to introduce helpful concerns that are diplomatically poised (so one's voice gets heard) without disrupting the alliances that needs to be preserved? How to learn how to self-sooth? How to learn how to deal with micro-aggressions on the set related to race or gender or sexual orientation?

Sometimes, it is also good to do "deep work." Many of us who have an artistic and creative orientation also come from families that may not have honored this trait so we may have experienced an injury to our child's healthy narcissism. Some healing around an earlier wound can help separate the child-self from the adult-self. This can lead not only to greater productivity at work, but also more internal strength and openness of spirit. For creatives, blocking the doorway to earlier pain, grief, envy, and hurt is not ultimately in their favor.

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