Meet Successful Filmmaker Jason Perlman

Meet Jason Perlman: an incredible talent, and advice-giving extraordinaire. Jason is one of the hardest working people in Hollywood, and it clearly pays off. When I grow up, I want to be like Jason Perlman.

A little Bio: Jason Perlman is a freelance director/producer/writer/editor who specializes in content creation for the web and TV. He’s been in LA for six years and loves it a little more each year.

The outer bread

NAME: Jason Perlman
AGE: 29
FROM: Atlanta, Ga
COLLEGE: Emerson College
CURRENT JOB: Independent Director, Producer, Writer for TV & the web
DREAM JOB: What I’m doing with bigger budgets. Working on it.
FAVE THING ABOUT LA: There’s space and never a shortage of anything to do.
LEAST FAVE THING ABOUT LA: Traffic… all the time… obviously.

Peanut Butter Jelly Time

How soon did you move to LA after graduation?

I came to LA in my college’s (Emerson College) amazing “study abroad” in LA program when I was 22 years-old. So technically I was in LA for three months before graduating school. It was a perfect introduction to the town. After completing my internship in the LA program I walked in my school’s graduation, took the summer to earn a little money, and immediately moved to LA.

Did you know anyone in LA?

Yes. I was very fortunate in that a large percentage of my graduating class moved out to LA. Also, several of my hometown friends came out to pursue similar interests. It made for a great support system that I still lean on today.

Where did you first stay? How long?

I crashed on a good friend’s fold-out couch for 4 weeks before moving into my own place. In my experience this tends to be par for the course.

Where did you first live?

Close to West Hollywood near the intersection of Sunset & N. Alta Vista. Walking distance to the best damn Ralph’s in LA.

What types of jobs did you initially take when you first moved to LA?

Anything that allowed me to be creative and utilize some filmmaking skill. These jobs were basically video editing jobs, copywriting jobs, and small producing jobs as I could find them through friends and the internet.

How do you feel about internships (free, paid, etc)?

They’re great experience, but expect to be slave labor. Even if you’re getting paid it’s not enough and you’ll be asked to do things that have zero educational value. Do as much as you can with a smile on your face. Prove you’re willing to work hard and learn as much as you can. Then take this knowledge and do anything you can to parlay it into an actual job.

Did you ever intern in LA? Do you feel interning helped you secure a job?

Yes. Not in the slightest. If anything it was and continues to be a source of great stories, but resulted in no paying jobs… yet.

What led to your current job?

Two and a half years of busting my ass freelancing unsuccessfully, blind luck, and being overly prepared when the hint of an opportunity came within near reach. Since receiving a “break” I’ve made sure to always be working two jobs: the one I currently have and the one I’m trying to get.

How did you meet people/make friends?

I was very fortunate in that a large percentage of my graduating class moved out to LA. Also, several of my hometown friends came out to pursue similar interests. It made for a great support system that I still lean on today. Everyone since has been in some way an offshoot of those communities.

What advice would you give to someone moving to LA?

Everyone deserves your respect until they give you a reason to no longer respect them. This isn’t necessarily exclusive to LA, but it’s been very helpful to me since I’ve been here.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to work in your industry?

Work harder than anyone else, do favors for everyone, and know when to cash in on favors of your own. Also, if you have nothing to say, get off the stage.