Kevin Price, Host of the Price of Business on Business Talk 1110 AM KTEK (on Bloomberg’s home in Houston) recently interviewed Joseph Neibich. Here’s that interview
About the interviewee
Joseph has a diverse background on both the creative and business side of Hollywood. Joseph moved to Los Angeles in 1997 and worked in the marketing department of Paramount Pictures and as a creative executive at Landmark Entertainment initially under James Cameron on his film, Terminator 2 3-D:Battle Across Time, and later under Michael Jackson when he bought the company.
Joseph left in 1998 to pursue his dream of acting when he booked a small role in the film “Jerry Maguire”. Joseph went on to book over 20 national commercials and work on a variety of film and television projects. Later that year, Joseph also began performing stand up comedy and what began simply as a collection of random musings about his interaction with celebrities while tending bar at the Polo Lounge of the Beverly Hills Hotel developed into a finely tuned, laugh out loud, intelligent comedy routine that he went on to perform at clubs and colleges all over the country. Recently, Joseph wrote, directed, and starred in his first feature, “Ocean Front Property” and has already financed his second feature.
Tell me about your firm (number of employees, location, type of companies you work with, etc.).
2 employees. Entertainment firm. However, I mostly work as a writer. I do a lot of punch up work (making other person’s scripts funnier) and a lot of rewrites and ghost writing for more famous writers.
What type and size of companies do you have as clients?
I pitch high level studio executives, actors, and producers all day long.
What comes to mind when you see this topic?
Breaking into the industry and being smart enough to reach people my fellow artists couldn’t.
What are the best practices when it comes to this issue?
My best trick was calling before 8am and after 530pm. We all know successful people are workaholics who work all day every day. However, a lot of them are also very cheap and don’t want to pay over time to their assistant more or less hire two. And in Hollywood everyone is always expecting an important call. So I’d call after hours and they always pick up their line in that situation and at the very least I would always get a little phone time with an industry exec, who in most situations was more than willing to chat me up.
My other two best pieces of advice are 1) always associate with the most talented and hard working people you can find. Even if their not to the next level yet, it makes you look like you have something in common with other talented hard working people and by helping them and working hard yourself, one of you is bound to get promoted, hired, or put in a position to hook the other up. It’s the best form of networking. And 2) Always be where you need to be so you can get to where you want to go. When I started in Hollywood I bartended like everyone else, but i chose to work at the Beverly Hills Hotel where I could network with producers and writers when their guard was down. It also came with the added benefit of showing up to auditions and having producers think they had seen me before. When they’d say, where have I seen you, I’d always say a show i had previously booked, like 3rd Rock or Sweet Valley High, even though I knew I’d served them a martini a month and a half earlier.