July 18, 2011

Book Review: MAKING IT IN HOLLYWOOD: WHAT TO DO AND HOW TO DO IT by Bryan Hidalgo and Gail O'Donnell

BOOK DESCRIPTION:  Learn the secrets of how to become a successful actor, screenwriter, director, or producer from the people who've made it—and are continuing to make it! Authors Bryan Hidalgo and Gail O'Donnell have interviewed more than 100 of today's top actors, screenwriters, directors, and producers—including Oscar and Emmy winners—who reveal, in their own words, how they started, how they work, how they got where they are today, and how you can get there too. The result is a truly inspirational compilation of interviews, with answers, encouragement and guidance straight from the horse's mouth. Discover where to start, what training to pursue, when to get an agent, how to be your best at auditions, and much more, from interviews with stars, creators, writers, directors, or producers of such hit TV shows as LOST, 24, HOUSE, THE SHIELD, SEX AND THE CITY, BREAKING BAD, DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES, HAWAII FIVE-O, HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER, GREY'S ANATOMY, CRIMINAL MINDS, SOUTHLAND, LAW AND ORDER: SVU, MEDIUM, CASTLE, ONE TREE HILL, BOSTON LEGAL, WITHOUT A TRACE, SONS OF ANARCHY, DEXTER, NIP/TUCK, MOONLIGHTING, X-FILES, and OZ, and motion pictures such as TWILIGHT, MARLEY & ME, HAIRSPRAY, PULP FICTION, WHEN HARRY MET SALLY, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE, STAR TREK, X-MEN, SERPICO, BACK TO THE FUTURE, SPIDER-MAN, JURASSIC PARK, MRS. DOUBTFIRE, CATCH ME IF YOU CAN, THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA, FORREST GUMP, TERMINATOR 2: JUDGMENT DAY, TRUE LIES, THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, HAROLD & KUMAR, AUSTIN POWERS, EAT PRAY LOVE, AMERICAN BEAUTY, THE PROPOSAL, and FACE/OFF, among many others. Sit down with Hollywood's finest and let them help you start "Making It In Hollywood"! For each book sold, a portion of the authors' royalties is donated to Save The Children. Save the Children is the leading independent organization creating lasting change for children in need in the United States and around the world. For more than 75 years, Save the Children has been helping children survive and thrive by improving their health, education and economic opportunities and, in times of acute crisis, mobilizing rapid lifesaving assistance to help children recover from the effects of war, conflict and natural disasters. For more information or to make a donation, visit savethechildren.org.

Making It In Hollywood is a must-have bible for the aspiring actor, screenwriter , director and/or producer.  If you have ever wondered how your favorite (or not so favorite) stars made it and what their thoughts are on auditioning, New York versus L.A., and the most challenging part of their career, authors Bryan Hidalgo and Gail O'Donnell have assembled a 624 page manual of success tips for you.

The book is assembled in sections for actors, screenwriters, directors and producers, with persons listed in alphabetical order.  The actors are asked the same group of questions geared specifically toward the acting field; the screenwriters posed questions directed toward writing, etc.  Their answers are varied and interesting.

I found that, in reading Making It In Hollywood,  I gained new respect for actors I had previously not thought much of.  Those I particularly enjoyed reading about, based on their answers, were Victor Garber, Tony Goldwyn, Sarah Jessica Parker and Chris Meloni, to name but a few.  It was gratifying to read of how these successful actors suffer self esteem issues and fears of rejection, just like the rest of us.  I also appreciate the honesty of those who claim simple luck for their success, and that, plain and simple, the money for what they do is fantastic. 

I was also pleased that Leslie Dixon and Nora Ephron were included, as they are two writers that I greatly admire and whose work I enjoy (and in the case of Nora Ephron, a talented director as well).

For anyone who looks to make a career in the entertainment industry, or who merely enjoys reading about it, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Making It In Hollywood.   

Making It In Hollywood is available for purchase now at major booksellers, including Amazon. I am an Amazon affiliate. If you make a purchase through my link, I will receive a small commission.  For each book sold, a portion of the authors' royalties will be donated to Save The Children. 

For information on authors Bryan Hidalgo and Gail O'Donnell, please visit this website.

Review copy of this book provided by the authors in exchange for a fair and honest review. In no way did the provision of the book affect the outcome of my review.

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