Category Archives: How To Succeed In Hollywood

Making It in Hollywood


Suffragette, hollywood sentinel

Bruce Edwin is CEO of the A-list firm Starpower Management LLC, publisher of The Hollywood Sentinel, and also a film producer. His services, based on his years of expertise and success in the music and film industry are sought out and used by some of the most powerful companies and stars in entertainment. This ongoing article series, a precursor to his upcoming book, is his way of giving back to models, actors and bands, with free education- that in its totality and with its unabashed honesty- cannot not be found anywhere else. Free.

I have stated many of these items before, but I constantly experience these same mistakes being made by artists over and over again. And so until I no longer have artists doing them, I will keep repeating them, as it is vitally important to know.


1, Don’t send material that is unsolicited. That means, e-mail or call first and ask if it is OK to send the material. If I get material that is unsolicited, that is not quality work, it gets added to the spam folder, with no future chance with us ever again.

2, Ask, don’t tell. Ask people to hear, read, or see your work. Don’t order them to. If we get an ‘order’ to do something, again, unless it is really mind blowing, it goes to spam. Be polite. Ask for what you want, don’t give orders to someone you are not the boss of.

3, Don’t use people or screw people over, it will come back to haunt you, and it is no way to do business.

4, Don’t ask people to invest more time in to your career than you invest in yourself. If you want someone to work very hard for you, you had better be already working 10 times that hard for yourself.

5, Personalize all query letters. If I get an email asking me to read or look at something, that does not have my name on it, unless it is really amazing, it gets deleted or again, marked spam. Spell check and check all grammar before sending something out.


6, Stop smoking. Many people these days, including myself, hate cigarette smoke. As a former smoker, even the smell of the smoke on someone’s clothes disgusts me. Smoking is a sign of failure to control ones life, mind, and body. Smoking is a sign of weakness and being a loser over ones willpower. Being a smoker tells people, “I’m an addict, and a willing victim of a billion dollar industry that knowingly kills people.” Quit.

7, Eat healthy, get enough sleep, and work out regularly. When you work out, in whatever form, it feeds your body, mind and spirit and actually gives you more energy and ambition to do even more.

8, Surround yourself with people more successful than you are, and emulate what they are doing right, applying it to yourself, in your own unique way. Don’t hang around losers, failures, complainers, and whiners. You will become like the company you keep.

9, Get a great agent or manager. If you get rejected, don’t take it personally. Ask them what you would need to do or have for them to be willing to sign you. If it is something you want to and can do, do it.

10, Be a professional. Be on time, and do what you say you are going to do. Have accuracy and integrity with your word. A great book on this topic I recommend is titled ‘The Four Agreements’ by Don Miguel Ruiz.

I hope this has helped many of you. As always, if you have any questions, you are invited to contact me at the front page of this site.

This content is © 2016, The Hollywood Sentinel, Bruce Edwin, all rights reserved.


By Bruce Edwin

Film producer and screenwriter Bruce Edwin is CEO of the A-list firm Starpower Management LLC, publisher of The Hollywood Sentinel, and founder of Hollywood Sentinel Public Relations. His services, based on his years of expertise and success in the music and film industry are sought out and used by some of the most powerful companies and stars in entertainment. This ongoing article series, a precursor to his upcoming book, is his way of giving back to models, actors and bands, with free education– that in its totality and with its unabashed honesty, cannot not be found anywhere else, for free. This advice pertains to those in all areas of the arts; screenwriters, directors, actors, models, bands, dancers, and more.

Letters to the Editor:

Hello Mr. Edwin,

My name is A.C. I happened to stumble across your site while searching for agents and managers. I appreciate your straight forward and authentic approach. Being of like mind in that regard, my situation is as follows…

I’m an “aspiring” actor in my mid-thirties. I have few credits most of which are student films. I started in the industry in my early twenties and things progressed very quickly. I was connected with a manager who then connected me with a SAG franchised agent. I had gone on several auditions ranging from commercials, to leading roles in soaps and feature films. Literally within weeks of me taking my first acting class of many.

Needless to say I didn’t book very often, mostly modeling work. I was eventually dropped by my agent, soon followed by my manager due to lack of communication a immaturity on my part. I’ve been in and out of the industry over the years mostly out with the exception of this past year completing three shorts and a couple of minor auditions for pilots, which I got through a fitness client of mine who happens to be a television producer. I have maintained a commercial look and can probably play as young as 28 or 29.

My question to you, is with everything I’ve mentioned, in your opinion is there a manager and or agent who would be willing to take a chance on someone like me?

I will still pursue my renewed acting goals regardless of your response, but I would be greatly appreciative of any advice you would be willing to offer.

Thank you for your time.


P.S. I plan on implementing the Domino Technique in helping me achieve said goal, so I also thank you for sharing it.

(Note: The Domino Technique is a method of business applications developed by Bruce Edwin, as published in a former issue of The Hollywood Sentinel. The full name has been omitted by the editor out of respect for the actor).

Bruce Edwin Responds:


I am glad you appreciate the writing and find some use with it, as well as implementing the Domino Technique. You are on the right path with that. Also, be sure to read all of the other articles of “How to Succeed In Hollywood” in our archives section which can be found at: You stated why you got dropped, due to immaturity and lack of communication. That’s good that you realize this, because the first step to overcoming any problem is realizing that you were the creator of the problem. Now, you did not indicate that you are no longer going to keep creating this problem by behaving in this way, so it is important to do that. My feeling is that if you did know that you were valuable and professional and doing all you needed to do, you would not ask if there would be an agent or manager willing to take a chance on you–rather you would ‘know’ it.

Not knowing something is obviously simply a lack of knowledge in that area. Certainly there are agents and managers out there willing to take a chance on you. But the question should be what type of agent or manager can you get, and what do you have to be, do, or have to get them? Can you get a low level agent or manager that does nothing for you, or a top quality one that helps takes you to the place you want to be? To get the best, you need to be the best, and to be the best in your career, you need to eliminate all areas in yourself concerning your career that are not the best. That includes firstly, your self esteem. You need to get your self esteem up, which is directly connected to your knowledge of success that will lead to success. If you lack self esteem, which many aspiring actors do, then you may need more training. And even the greatest actor can get more training. Just don’t get one of those acting coaches that wants to keep you under their wing training forever, and never let you go off and audition or work. If you were the best trained actor you possibly could be, I doubt that you would be asking me if an agent or manager would ‘take a chance’ on you. When one is highly competent, one knows the heights that they can achieve are limited only by their own reach. Get more competent as an actor with more training, and then you will have no doubts about getting the representation you want.

You may often hear agents and managers telling talent how there is no shortage of actors on town, ready to take there place. That is true for the mediocre or low level actors–the ones who cannot really ‘act.’ But there ‘is’ a shortage of ‘great’ actors in Hollywood. When you become great, due to a high level of competency in top level training, then your esteem goes up, because you know that you are now a product in higher demand.

Also, as I have stated in a former edition of “How to Succeed In Hollywood,” stop referring to yourself as an ‘aspiring’ actor. An aspiring actor means that you are working on becoming an actor. If you are an aspiring actor, then you are not an actor. To state that you are an ‘aspriring A-List actor’ might be more accurate, or in some cases, ‘aspiring’ to be an actor, but one is not an aspiring actor. Either one is an actor, or they are not. There is no in between. Imagine a man wanting to play baseball, telling everyone that he is an aspiring baseball player. What does that mean? He is either hoping to be a Major League all star player, or he is hoping to learn how to play baseball. If he is hoping to learn how to play, then he should stop hoping, and just go pick up a bat, ball, and glove and go learn how to play. Stop aspiring, and just act. If you are aspiring to a certain level, then make a written plan of how you are going to get there, with your top goal written at the top of the page, and working backwards to where you are now.

Its fine you are SAG-AFTRA, yet being SAG does not mean that one knows how to act. In fact, most SAG players don’t. Lack of credits does not matter so much as does lack of talent. One can have a hundred credits and still be a lousy actor. Which is funny to me when some SAG actors get offended when I ask them if they have training, when they automatically expect me to consider them valid as a talent just because they have union status or a few credits. That is not the case.

So, focus more on training, and less on credits. Focus more on your craft, and less on who will ‘take a chance on you.’ Focus on being the best, and the representation will–if you get out there enough, come to you if you become truly ‘great.’ Become a great actor, get in a play, record it, and then send that to a hundred agents and managers. Then you will have arrived much closer to the level you may seek. I hope this is further value to you.

– Bruce Edwin

Audrey Hepburn’s Roman Holiday Screen Tests

This content is ©2016, Bruce Edwin / The Hollywood Sentinel. All rights reserved. Audrey Hepburn’s Screen Tests, ©2016, AMPAS, all rights reserved.

Top 10 Greatest Filmmakers of All Time: Jean Luc Godard

Godard-Godet-Hollywood Sentinel

One of the most important filmmakers of all time, Jean Luc Godard has made over 40 feature films, in addition to numerous film shorts, written screenplays, produced, and published his own and others film criticism world wide. He has had a wider influence on audiences and filmmaking than most any other living filmmaker of our time, despite most audiences not even knowing it. The reason for his profound, and often unknown influence, is that he has remained deliberately obscure, independent, and unique, for over 50 years as a filmmaker, yet cinefiles such as known influential directors including Quentin Tarantino, Martin Scorsese, Robert Altman, and many more have studied his work, citing him as a major influence.


One who knows Godard, could easily write a book on Godard, as many have done. I have seen only 30 of his motion pictures. Jean Luc Godard’s greatness is manifold. One of his most powerful contributions to cinema is his daring uses of sound as art, such as having sounds from former scenes cut and overlap into present scenes, having sounds blend together, or having sound disappear entirely for stronger cinematic effect. His infusion of politics and philosophy into cinema is also unique; often having characters discourse or debate politics or philosophy on screen, and at times even reading out of a book of poetry or philosophy right on camera, inter-weaving the message throughout the film. Godard’s reference to and use of fine art in his films are also unique, using artwork not only as a set design piece or a prop, but literally referencing painters within the duologue, or showing characters creating a painting, as they discuss the colors, hues, tones, or feelings that they evoke, blending this too within the film.

Godard’s occasional use of nudity is portrayed as a work of art itself, not gratuitous, but simply there, as a part of life as art for arts sake. Violence in his films are treated as a reality of life, but one that should be avoided yet not ignored. Beauty, art, life, philosophy, women, and love are revered in Godard’s work, while chaos, destruction, government, warfare, and politics are derided as evils to fight or shun. As a former film critic, films are referenced within many Godard films, either blatantly with a poster of a film on the wall or a mention of it, or as an homage to a scene re-created. Light and the camera lens are used artistically as a painting in a Godard film. He may have the cinematographer point the lens directly at the sky as some birds pass by, or simply gaze upon some clouds, trees, or rolling water. Godard puts the emphasis on the aesthetic beauty and power of the object in front of the camera, rather than subverting aesthetics to action or dialogue.

Katia Vaz-Hollywood Sentinel

Dialogue itself rolls out in a Godard film like a play, or often times like poetry, with stream of consciousness or nuanced fashion punctuated by a musical score or unique editing technique. Music in a Godard film often is classical; form Mozart to Beethoven or more, providing sweeping waves of emotion as a foreground or background to the scene or dialogue. Editing techniques by Godard are classic New Wave style, cutting long after the end of an action, a shot may linger on a subject no longer doing anything plot related, simply being or doing something ordinary, observing them as Andy Warhol may have done in one of his screen tests, simply letting the subject ‘be there’ and not imposing the time or space of a film on the subject with an ordinary edit. Godard popularized this technique, as well as the jump cut, cutting from one scene to an entirely different one, arguing that the viewer was smart enough to follow the change. This Godardian effect alone revolutionized cinema, with his landmark, groundbreaking debut feature film ‘Breathless,’ which also widely influenced the music video to come years later.

elite connections revised

Lastly, Godard revolutionized cinema further still by his use of camera technique. While Hollywood cinema follows a traditional ‘blocking’ technique of focusing on the primary character in either a long shot (LS), medium shot (MS), close up (CU), or extreme close up (ECU), normally at eye level and following the so called Golden Meane; at the upper middle left of the picture plane where the viewers eyesight allegedly first goes, Godard throws this out the window, and may mix up a variety of shots in blended, reverse, or broken sequence that deliberately shock the viewer, or may focus on a secondary character when the primary character is talking, or he may focus on another part of a persons body instead of their face when their mouth is moving, for example. In other words, Godard throws the so called rules of filmmaking away, often doing everything possible a different way, in order to shake up the medium, transgress the art, and enliven the viewer. Poetic, philosophical, and anarchistic with the creation of his motion pictures, Jean Luc Godard is, without debate, one of the most revered and important filmmakers of all time. The Hollywood Sentinel ranks him among the Top 10 Greatest Filmmakers of All Time.

Camellia Steele Final

Jean Luc Godard’s feature films include: 1960 Breathless, 1960 Le Petit soldat, 1961 A Woman Is a Woman, 1962 My Life to Live, 1963 Les Carabiniers, 1963 Contempt, 1964 Band of Outsiders, 1964 A Married Woman, 1964 Alphaville, 1965 Pierrot le fou, 1966 Masculin Féminin, 1966 Made in U.S.A., 1967 Two or Three Things I Know About Her, 1967 La Chinoise, 1967 Week End, 1968 Le Gai savoir, 1968 A Film Like the Others, 1968 One Plus One, 1969 Wind from the East, 1969 Struggles in Italy, 1971 Vladimir et Rosa, 1972 Tout va bien, 1974 Here and Elsewhere, 1975 Number Two, 1976 How’s It Going?, 1980 Every Man for Himself, 1982 Passion, 1983 First Name: Carmen, 1985 Hail Mary, 1985 Détective, 1987 King Lear, 1987 Keep Your Right Up, 1990 New Wave, 1991 Germany Year 90 Nine Zero, 1993 The Kids Play Russian, 1993 Oh Woe Is Me, 1994 JLG/JLG – Self-Portrait in December, 1996 For Ever Mozart, 2001 In Praise of Love, 2004 Notre musique, 2010 Film Socialisme, and 2014 Goodbye to Language, his first in 3D.

– Bruce Edwin

Goodbye to Language

Goodbye to Language is a deconstructed film. I have read the filmmaker’s comments about the plot (which were tweeted) and also some of the critical discussion, but I wanted to review the film before being contaminated by those influences in order to have a genuine experience and express it from a blank starting place, taking it on its own as best I could.

Goodbye to Language is the 21st century equivalent of what Guernica was to painting: a film created by a man who loves film so much he wants to destroy it. Vision competes with narrative. The luxury of seeing destroys meaning. It’s a 3-D movie made by an artist of the highest caliber; which is sort of like having a twinkie made by Gordon Ramsey. There was a particular moment of the interior of a room with a window overlooking a summer field that is one of the most singularly striking images I have ever seen in film and reminded me in its ethos of Marcel Duchamp’s enigmatic assemblage Étant donnés: 1. La chute d’eau, 2. Le gaz d’éclairage.

I concluded, sometime after the last credits had rolled, that this was the story of an adulterous couple and jealous murder told through the eyes of the couple’s adopted dog (the dog jumps into their car, they decide to keep him). The dog was played by Godard’s own dog. I believed the dog was the observer because of the non-chronology and the presentation of dialogue, as well as a reference to Jack London and Call of the Wild (which, coincidentally, I had just finished reading).

Godard’s own statements in this regard also include a subplot relating to a second couple, the relation of which to the main couple I don’t think anyone would have understood as fully as Godard’s description, but the film is so experimental that it doesn’t really matter what it is about, and each audience will make sense of it somewhat differently.

– Moira Cue

This content is ©2015, The Hollywood Sentinel.