Tuesday, 27 May 2014

The Book Report: Amazon Wants To Put The Hatchet To Hachette.

The odds are pretty good that you're not all hep to what's going on in the book world and that in the hills of Seattle and the concrete valleys of Manhattan there's a feud a transpiring.

That feud is between online mega-retailer Amazon and international mega-publisher Hachette. Basically Amazon wants Hachette to give them deeper discounts so they can slash prices to levels no independent retailer can possibly compete with.

Hachette balked, so Amazon started making it harder and harder to get titles from Hachette's many imprints, including the latest JK Rowling mega-seller.

Amazon Corporate Executives getting ready for a meeting with Hachette's representatives.

Now normally I'd be giggling like a naughty schoolboy over two big corporate giants fighting, but this is a serious business. Livelihoods, mostly of authors is being threatened here, and it all comes down to margins.

The Wall Street Journal asked an official at the sister-company publisher Harper-Collins and he said that the profit margins on a book are usually around 75% for an ebook, 60% for a paperback, and about 40% for a hardcover.

Now those sound like huge margins, and the one on ebooks is particularly sweet since the only costs are hard-drives for storage and bandwidth for delivery which adds up to fractions of a penny per copy. So you might think that the publishers can afford to be a little more generous in the discount department.

Hmmm… It's probably a bit more complicated than that.

Remember publishers have to pay a chunk of their margin to the AUTHORS who actually write the damn books. Then comes the expenses producing hardcovers and paperbacks, returns of unsold books, the fact that a lot of books don't sell as much as they should to cover those costs, and let's not forget the millions spent each year on book deals to celebrities, politicians, and flash-in-the-pan news or scandal makers. Every deal seems made as if it's going to be the biggest bestseller in the world, and the majority of them fail to crack the bestseller lists or make back their advances and production costs.

That means that Hachette may not have the flexibility that Amazon is looking for.

Now I'm pretty sure that somebody at Amazon must know this, so why are they engaging in a territorial pissing match when some negotiation could have avoided all the hassle?

Well, the only reason I can think of is that Amazon sees itself as the BSD* of the book world. Everyone should just take its shit and call it ice cream.

That's bad, not just for publishers, authors, and readers, but for Amazon.

Arrogance is not a business plan, because what comes up must always come down.

There are alternative routes for ebooks, and thanks to technology both production and distribution of physical books can be done with one machine.

If all the big publishers got together and made sure those machines were in every bookstore, convenience store, Target, or Wal-Mart in the world next to a sign that says "IF IT'S NOT ON OUR SHELVES THEN IT'S IN THIS MACHINE" they could create some serious competition with Amazon.

Amazon has forgotten that one of the keys to its near monopoly of the book market is that it's always presented itself as the convenient choice. When it starts being the inconvenient choice for both suppliers and customers they will find someplace else.

It's the first rule of economics, if everyone doesn't walk away happy from a deal, that deal is bad, and isn't going to work for very long.

Time for Amazon to stop acting like it's a kingdom and start acting like a real business.

Monday, 26 May 2014

Santa Barbara: Causes & Excuses

Normally this is a frivolous blog about frivolous subjects, but today I think I have to be serious for a moment.

A 22 year old named Elliot Rodger murdered four men and two women, and injured 13 more in a stabbing and shooting spree across a student enclave called Isla Vista in the California City of Santa Barbara.

As usual people are trying to find the "causes" for his killing spree. They're blaming it on sexual frustration, misogyny, violent video games, mental illness, the National Rifle Association, etc…, etc…, but I think those are all just excuses, which are different than causes.

I've done some research about mass killings in recent years, and separating causes from excuses are hard, because most are not captured alive, and what evidence they leave behind concerning motives either only make sense to their twisted minds, or are self-serving and downright dishonest.

In my research, which is small, but unburdened by some preset agenda, I've determined that the overwhelming cause is narcissism.

Mass killers, from America's biggest Andrew Kehoe who slaughtered 43 (38 children) and wounded 58 with homemade bombs in the Bath Township massacre of 1927 to the recent events in Santa Barbara, all have one thing in common. All mass killers, to varying degrees of delusionality, believe that they're better than everyone else, but feel unfairly denied the power and fame that they think they deserve.

How can they get that power and fame?

Die while committing a terrible atrocity.

If they go down killing as many people as they can their picture will be plastered all over every media outlet, their every brain-fart will be pored over and studied word-for-word by experts, pundits, and know it alls, and laws will be written in their name that will most likely only succeed in punishing the law abiding while doing next to nothing to stop the next sociopathic piece of shit.

Why would these shitbags continue living as nobodies when they can become nightmarish bogeymen, burnt into the national psyche by the 24/7 media cycle. That same news cycle feeds into this cancerous narcissism by plastering their names and pictures everywhere, while trying to place the blame for their atrocities on everyone and everything else but the asshole pulling the trigger. Then come in the politicians and pundits on both sides, trying to use the crime to fit their own agendas, accomplishing nothing that might keep the next agent of chaos from thinking he can become their post-mortem puppet master.

What's also lost in all the breathless hype and blame-gaming is the fact that all violent crimes, including mass shootings are on the decline. All violent crime, murders, rapes, assaults, and even shootings, are down about 47% from where they were in 1990s, and they continue to decline.


What we really need to do is find a way to cut off the real cause of such crimes at the root. These maniacs demand attention, infamy, and power, if we find a way to see past our own petty agendas and figure out a way to deny them what they really want, no matter their crime, they may just skip the middleman and kill themselves first, saving the world a lot of grief.

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Hollywood Babble On & On #1150: Fall TV Preview FOX!

2014-15 Fox Schedule
(New programs in UPPER CASE & BOLD; all times ET/PT)


8-9 PM – GOTHAM - A show about DC's most infamous fictional city during Batman's adolescence. All I can say is that Ben MacKenzie who stars as the young detective Jim Gordon better start rocking the stache, and soon.

9-10 PM – Sleepy Hollow


8-9 PM – UTOPIA - Some sort of reality show about people trying to create a utopia. Like all other utopias it will fail miserably, but provide lots of cheap melodrama for television.

9-9:30 PM – New Girl

9:30-10 PM – The Mindy Project


8-9 PM – Hell’s Kitchen

9-10 PM – RED BAND SOCIETY - New drama about a bunch of good looking teens bonded by terminal illness. Expect them to start dropping like flies when it comes time to renegotiate their contracts.


8-9 PM – Bones

9-10 PM – GRACEPOINT - An American adaptation of the British smash Broadchurch about a seaside town rocked by the murder of a young boy that promises to go in new directions from the original. It stars David Tennant, who starred in the British original which is also getting a second season. That means that he's playing the same character on two shows in two countries more or less simultaneously. That's some serious time-lord shit.


8-9 PM – Masterchef Junior

9-10 PM – UTOPIA - More Utopia falling apart.


7-10:30 PM – Fox Sports Saturday


7-7:30 PM – NFL Game

7-8 PM – Bob’s Burgers

8-8:30 PM – The Simpsons

8:30-9 PM – Brooklyn Nine-Nine

9-9:30 PM – Family Guy

9:30-10 PM – MULANEY - A sitcom about a comedian's off stage life. It's like the 90s have returned!


BACKSTROM - Americanization of a Swedish book series about a hard living overweight and "politically incorrect" detective named Everett Backstrom. Not sure how "politically incorrect" he will be.

EMPIRE - Drama about the music industry, because network television wants the world to know about an industry more dysfunctional than their own. Much is being made about how Lee Daniels, who made The Butler, was behind its creation, but I don't really see him giving up his movie career to become a showrunner.

HIEROGLYPH - Sexy show about sexy ancient Egyptians doing sexy things. A big sexy Feh from me.

WAYWARD PINES - A Twin Peaks rip-off tribute from M. Night Shyamalan starring Matt Dillon. Expect a really lame, heavily telegraphed twist for the ending, and that twist will be early cancellation.

THE LAST MAN ON EARTH - Will Forte is the only star as the only person left alive on Earth. Everybody else is dead and he will die alone, slowly, and in agony when a small cut turns septic. It's a sitcom.

WEIRD LONERS - A bunch of modern misanthropes are forced to socialize, hilarity ensues.

Monday, 19 May 2014

Hollywood Babble On & On #1149: Fall TV Preview NBC!

2014-15 NBC Schedule
(New programs in UPPER CASE & BOLD; all times ET)


8-10 PM – The Voice

10-11 PM - The Blacklist / STATE OF AFFAIRS (beginning Nov. 17) State of Affairs stars ex-Grey's Anatomy co-star and failed movie star Katherine Heigl as the president's top CIA analyst. Premise sounds ripe for lots of self-important speeches being made by a star that's more well known for making lots of flops, and for being hard to work with than for appealing to the audience.


8-9 PM - The Voice

9-9:30 PM - MARRY ME - From what I've been able to gather, the premise is about an overly cutesy couple constantly looking for the right moment for a marriage proposal, and having that moment ruined. They should just break up.

9:30-10 PM - About a Boy

10-11 PM - Chicago Fire


8-9 PM - THE MYSTERIES OF LAURA - Debra Messing's a divorced mom who has to balance her job as a detective, under her ex-husband, and her annoying children. The writing better snap-crackle-and-pop if this is going to stand out among all the other procedurals.

9-10 PM - Law & Order: SVU

10-11 PM - Chicago P.D.


8-9 PM - The Biggest Loser

9-9:30 PM - BAD JUDGE  A sitcom about a hard-living, opinionated judge who ends up taking care of an 8 year old whose parents she imprisoned. Pack your insulin because it's gonna get sweet.

9:30-10 PM - A TO Z - Another cutesy relationship comedy about mismatched lovebirds. Feh.

10-11 PM - Parenthood / ALLEGIANCE - A bright young CIA analyst learns that his parents are Russian sleep agents that the Putin regime has reactivated. If they don't have some sort of narrative master plan this premise could easily become a repetitive mess. 


8-9 PM - Dateline NBC

9-10 PM - Grimm

10-11 PM - CONSTANTINE - Based on the DC/Vertigo comic book about John Constantine, a sorcerer and con-artist battling demons and trying to avoid damnation. The trailer looks good, which means there's a chance the show could be good, and NBC will cancel it quickly.


8-11 PM - Encore programming


7-8:20 PM - Football Night in America

8:20-11:30 PM – NBC Sunday Night Football


MISSION CONTROL - It's basically Anchorman set during the time of Mad Men at the location of The Right Stuff. Feh.

MR. ROBINSON - Comedian Craig Robinson plays a hip musician who takes a job as a hip music teacher. If the show fails to capitalize on Robinson's charm and style it will flop.

ONE BIG HAPPY - A guy gets engaged to another woman after artificially inseminating his lesbian best friend. Hilarity ensues.

UNBREAKABLE KIMMY SCHMIDT - A girl raised by an isolated cult heads to make her name in the big city of New York. Lotta fish out of water gags.

A.D. - The sequel to The History Channel's miniseries of The Bible. Because we all know Hollywood handles religion so well.

EMERALD CITY - A modern dress retelling of the Wizard of Oz. Feh.


ODYSSEY - A lot of characters, a lot of plot twists, and somewhere around the middle of the season the plot will start flailing because they don't know what to do next.

Personally, I'm not exactly thrilled by these new shows. With the cancellation of Community the only show I watch on NBC is Hannibal, and I'm not expecting that to change any time soon.

Friday, 16 May 2014

Hollywood Babble On & On #1148: Fall TV Preview: ABC!

2014-15 ABC Schedule
(New programs in UPPER CASE & BOLD)


8 PM – Dancing With The Stars

10 PM – Castle


8 PM – SELFIE - Karen Gillan plays a vacuous web-famous single gal who decides to pursue real life.

While I'm a big fan of Karen Gillan in particular, and long legged redheads in general, I just can't get myself into this premise. I think she needs a better vehicle.

8:30 PM – MANHATTAN LOVE STORY - Oh boy, New Yorkers, romance, I'll be seeing what else is on.

9 PM – Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. - I just realized that this is the only ABC series I currently watch with any consistency. Had a weak beginning, but definitely improved, and hopefully they keep to the lessons learned for season 2.

10 PM – FOREVER - Ioan Gruffud (pronounced "Throatwobbler Mangrove") plays a crime solving medical examiner with a secret, he's at least a couple of centuries old and cannot die.

Liked it when it was called New Amsterdam, but I'm uncertain on how it's going to be done this time around.


8 PM – The Middle

8:30 PM – The Goldbergs

9 PM – Modern Family

9:30 PM – BLACK-ISH - A sitcom about a successful upper class black man seeking some sort of black identity. I'm expecting lots of stereotype humour. Not a fan of stereotype humour.

10 PM – Nashville


8 PM – Grey’s Anatomy

9 PM – Scandal

10 PM – HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER - A sexy suspense thriller about sexy students in a sexy law class run by a sexy teacher getting involved in sexy situations with other sexy people in sexy places.

Sorry, it's just that the blurb describing the show made so much about the "sexy" my parody isn't that far off. I think they're trying too hard with their pitch and it's a bit of a turn off.


8 PM – Last Man Standing

8:30 PM – CRISTELA - An old fashioned ethnic sitcom about a Mexican American girl beginning a career as a lawyer and her whacky traditional family.

Didn't I see this in the 1970s?

9 PM – Shark Tank

10 PM – 20/20


8 PM – Saturday Night Football


7 PM – America’s Funniest Home Videos

8 PM – Once Upon A Time

9 PM – Resurrection

10 PM – Revenge


SECRETS AND LIES - One of those "mystery box" series based around a central crime that has to be solved. I hope they're selling it as a miniseries, because the moment they're tempted to do a Season 2 you can forget getting it solved ever.

AMERICAN CRIME - Another central-mystery show, but with an added taste of racial tension in the plot-line. Might be too grim to catch on.

THE WHISPERS - Aliens are invading, using Earth's children as their weapon. I guess they hope to annoy Earth into submission.

MARVEL’S AGENT CARTER - Agent Peggy Carter, played by Hayley Atwell, faces post-war ennui, the loss of her true love Captain America, while doing missions in the early days of SSR/SHIELD.

I will be interesting to see if Marvel manages to build successful TV franchises around non-superhero characters.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Hollywood Babble On & On #1147: Fall TV Sneak Peak! CBS!


(New programs in BOLD and UPPER CASE with some added snark, all times ET/PT)

8 PM – The Big Bang Theory/2 Broke Girls

8:30 PM – Mom

9 PM – SCORPION - Premise: A gang of misfit geniuses work with a grizzled FBI agent to solve the nation's crises. 

I'm a tad uncertain of this, since handling crisis events like international terrorism or espionage could potentially offend someone whose opinion matters to CBS management, so it has the potential to become a "domestic militia or Christian religious nut of the week" show very quickly. Then it will slip into the Offend/Bore matrix, and could be canned by mid-season.

10 PM – NCIS: Los Angeles


9 PM – NCIS: NEW ORLEANS According to CBS the US Navy is a hotbed of homicide. On the upside it ensures that Scott Bakula will be on television somewhere, which is an FCC licensing requirement.

10 PM – Person Of Interest

8 PM – Survivor

9 PM – Criminal Minds

10 PM – STALKER - 2 sexy cops handle cases of sex-obsessed stalkers who are stalking sexy people. Feh.

8-11 PM ET – NFL THURSDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL (Sept 11-Oct 23) - "Are you ready for some football!?!" 

Beginning Oct 30:

8 PM – The Big Bang Theory

8:30 PM – The Millers

9 PM – Two And A Half Men - Is starting its 12th and final season. While the show was crap, it was nice to see Jon Cryer make some decent money.

9:30 PM – THE MCCARTHYSPremise  They're Irish, they're loud, they're sports obsessed. I can't bring myself to care.

10 PM – Elementary

8 PM – The Amazing Race

9 PM – Hawaii Five-0

10 PM – Blue Bloods

8 PM – Crimetime Saturday - reruns.

9:00 PM – Crimetime Saturday - reruns.

10 PM – 48 Hours

7 PM – 60 Minutes - Yes, it's still on.

8 PM – MADAM SECRETARY Premise- A feisty, sexy female secretary of state solves the world's problems on a weekly basis.

Conservatives will shit on it as an overly-idealized campaign ad for Hillary Clinton, and liberals will be bored out of their skulls. Good shot of cancellation by mid-season.

9 PM – The Good Wife

10 PM – CSI/CSI: CYBER - Premise: Patricia Arquette plays the head of an elite team of cyber-crime busters chasing pornographers, identity thieves, and bloggers who say nasty things about the CBS network.


MID-SEASON: BATTLE CREEK - Premise: A rough cop in the woe-fully underfunded, under appreciated police department of Battle Creek Michigan is partnered with a slick agent from the well-funded FBI.

The biggest problem I can identify with this show is that it's Vince Gilligan's follow-up to Breaking Bad, and that is an extremely tough act to follow.

Let me know what you folks think in the comments.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Hollywood Babble On & On #1146: In At The Deep End

"But what I really want to do is direct."

That's an old cliche in Hollywood, mostly because it's true. Lots of people who work in the movie business from writers, to producers, to executives would love to become directors. It has the image of the take-charge auteur who takes words on paper, actors, props, and other things, and magically brings them all together to make a film.

It's a very tempting prospect.

Roberto Orci made his name as a screenwriter specializing, with his scribbling partner Alex Kurtzman, in big action and explosion heavy blockbusters for major studios. Now he's getting out from in front of the computer to behind the camera having just landed the job of directing the next Star Trek movie.

Now I'm not going to talk specifics about Mr. Orci, because I don't know the man personally other than a brief jokey exchange like two years ago on Twitter, nor am I a fan of the new Star Trek franchise, but I think I can speak in broad generalities and be extremely judgemental in a broad general way.

My concern is that Orci, while experienced in writing and producing, has only 1 directing credit to his name, and that's the upcoming Star Trek 3.

That's a very precarious position to be in, and I'll tell you why.

Paramount doesn't have much in the blockbuster movie franchise department. They have to share Transformers with Hasbro, they sold back the Marvel movies to Marvel/Disney, and the Mission: Impossible series is pretty much dependent on the whims of star Tom Cruise.

That leaves Star Trek as the studio's flagship movie franchise.

That means that Orci will be carrying a lot of the studio's proverbial eggs in his proverbial basket with a $150-$200+ million budget with his very first directing gig.

Those things mean that every studio suit will feel compelled to put their 2 cents in every decision. That's going to be tricky for Orci since making an effects-heavy mega-budget blockbuster requires literally tens-of-thousands of decisions both large and small.

And it's not like Orci can use years of experience as a director in his own defence, he has none, and none of his time as a writer and producer in film and television counts in the eyes of the powers that be.

If the whole situation hadn't been so badly rushed by the sudden defection of original director JJ Abrams to Star Wars at Disney, he might have directed a couple of smaller features, or even some episodes of television to prove his abilities as a director. Then he might have some defences against the monstrous regiment of meddlers and self-justifiers.

Right now, where things stand, he's pretty naked.

I wish him luck, he's going to need it.

Monday, 12 May 2014


Reader Nate Winchester had a question…
So reading how you point out ideas are an endangered species in Hollywood: 
Police Composite Sketch of Nate Winchester
Then I was watching SF Debris' video of Transformers when he mentioned what I always thought: Micheal Bay's films can be too complicated. 
So all this led to a revelation: Nowadays the remakes and sequels, the "dumb" flicks all have one thing in common- They're overcomplicated.  The arthouse/brainy fare right now are films that take a really simple concept (like Man falls in love with AI) and examine it in minute detail over the runtime. 
Why is this so?  When hollywood remakes a movie, why do they make it more complicated than the original?  Why do sequels intended for mass production have more storylines in them than game of thrones? 
To quote Ken Begg of Jabootu:
And the storytelling is refreshing clean and straightforward. Again, these are traditional strengths of B-movies.
Has this flipped with the "A-movies" now being clean and straightforward?  Or am I just going mad? (well, more so than usual)
I think the key here is word choice, you said COMPLICATED, and not COMPLEX, and that says a lot.

Now these definitions are mine, and probably mine alone, but they make sense to me and I hope they make sense to you.

COMPLEX, as I define it when it comes to narratives, is when the plot and characters work together to create a story with lots of interesting twists and turns that serve to create a cohesive whole.

Being complex is a good thing.

COMPLICATED is a very different situation. Complexity is born from creativity, Complication is born from insecurity. It occurs when someone takes a story that they're uncertain about, and think they can take it to the "next level" by layering unnecessary twists, character business, distractions, and other nonsense. These complications do not come together to form a cohesive whole.

Complications can often happen in big budget studio movies since you not only have the writer, director and producers involved in the creative process, you also have every studio executive tossing in their two cents to justify their continued employment.

Now you may not notice complexity, because of its inevitable coherence and cohesiveness, but you will notice complications. 

The problem is that not enough people truly understand the difference between complexity and complications and don't understand where and when simplicity is best.

So you might think that a story might appear to be simple, in that it follows minutiae while following a premise that can be explained in a tweet, but it could be more complex than you think, especially if the film manages to keep you interested all the way through.

So things may not have flipped, it's probably not much more than just a matter of storytelling mechanics.

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Hollywood Babble On & On #1145: Shocking Showrunner Shortage

The networks and cable channels are putting together their new shows for the upcoming TV season and there's a scramble for the shrinking supply of show runners.

"What's a showrunner?" you ask furrowing your brow in a feeble attempt to understand.

Don't worry, I'll explain.

A showrunner is a chimeric creature that can be found in writer's rooms and production offices all over the world of television, it's part writer, part producer, and survives by consuming a steady stream of caffeine, greasy foods, and the tears of younger writers.

That make it any clearer?

Okay, I'll go into a bit more detail.

A showrunner, who usually has the title of Executive Producer, is the person in charge of getting the show written and getting it made. A sort of Chief Creative and Executive Officer for the show.

The showrunner is firstly a writer, and their duties begin in the writer's room. The writer's room is a long room with a long conference table that smells like coffee, junk food, and yeti sweat.

In this room the showrunner and the writers flesh out their ideas for characters and the season in general, pitch their ideas for episodes, then the episode ideas that are accepted are broken down into "acts" and "scenes" and writing assignments are handed out.

The showrunner then makes sure that the scripts are finished on time, handles or oversees rewrites, and then oversees the shooting of the episodes.

The shooting of the episodes involves budgeting, scheduling, hiring, casting, and the hundreds of other little jobs that need to be done when putting together a professional grade television show.

Now the showrunner will have deputies to assist with a lot of their duties, but when it comes to important decisions the buck, and the blame, stops at the showrunner's heavily laden desk.

So why is there currently a shortage of showrunners?

Four reasons.

1. APPRENTICESHIP: Showrunner is not a job that can be taught in school. It is a job that has to be learned through experience. To become a showrunner you must begin at the very bottom, working on different shows and under different showrunners, and hopefully you will learn the best writing and management techniques from them for when the time comes for you to run your own show. But they can't get people to come in to learn after the...

2. STAFF WRITERS SLASHING: About 10 years ago the studios slashed the number of "staff writers" that could be hired for each writer's rooms. 

Staff Writers are literally 1 step above assistant and are the lowest figures in the writer's room totem pole, but unlike assistants actually have a very slim chance at possibly writing, or at least contributing to an episode. The position is usually not paid for by the show, but by the studio, and has a small weekly pittance to keep them fed and sheltered as opposed to being paid by the episode. The purpose of the job was to foster talent by getting their foot in the door at an age when they can learn the business from the bottom and work their way up.

When those posts were slashed the few remaining staff writer jobs were used to fulfill diversity hiring rules, or passed on to friends of friends, or giving a boost to an assistant. Otherwise it turned down the faucet that kept the pool of talent full, something that's essential when it's being drained by…

3. CABLE TV: If a cable channel wants to find an audience it must do more than run cheap reruns and reality shows. It must produce its own dramas and comedies and they really have to bring their "A-Game" if they're going to be seen above the herd. All those shows on all those channels all require showrunners. It used to be that you'd just pass those duties on to the creator of the show, but there's a bit of a complication these days that I call the…

4. FEATURE FILM TO TV MIGRATION: A lot of  people who, ten years ago, would have spent their careers completely in feature films are now getting into television. 

If you're a feature person who creates a premise, writes and/or directs a pilot and that show sells and has a good run, you not only get a credit, but a paycheque for as long as that show is being watched by someone somewhere in almost any fashion.

That's a pretty sweet deal, and offers a level of creative freedom and financial security you're not going to get in feature films.

But there's a catch.

Most of the feature film people don't want to give up their feature film careers to become full time showrunners of a TV series. They need experienced and skilled TV people to do that job for them.

So, what can Hollywood do to solve this problem?

First bring back more staff writers, start training and apprentice programs for promising young people to learn the ins and outs of show running, and stop treating everything like a closed shop where you have to be almost born into the industry to get a job.

Then you might be able to start filling the empty slots. It'll take time, and until the market balances itself out Hollywood will have to pay through the nose for the top tier people, but it's their own fault.