ENTERTAINMENT CONNECTION STUDENT JAY WILLIAM BRUCE WORKS WITH WILL FARRELL AND ED HARRIS
Budding playwright Jay William Bruce ran across an ad for Entertainment Connection on the Web, and was intrigued.
“Even though I was working in the theater business, I didn’t know how to cross over to the film industry,” he explains. “Entertainment Connection seemed like a terrific way to do it.”
Jay met with their Entertainment Connection mentor, and entered the program. While most students like to jump right into film projects, Jay pictured a different path for himself. Fascinated by the movie Moulin Rouge, he was endeavoring to write a similar film of his own.
“Jay would bring the screenplay in for me to review and comment on,” his mentor recalls, “and then start a re-write. Unfortunately, the re-write was taking longer than he expected, and he realized that the other students were progressing faster than he was.”
Rather than get his foot in the door through the first available projects, Jay was waiting for the big punch. “It doesn’t always work like that!” says the mentor. “You have to go through the process.”
Finally, an opening came up with the film “Winter Passing,” starring Will Ferrell, Ed Harris, Zooey Deschanel, Amy Madigan and other stars.
“I called Jay up and talked to him for quite a while,” the mentor remembers. “I said ‘I don’t want to tell you what to do, but this is a good opportunity.’ The next day Jay told me he quit his steady job at a theater ticket office, and was ready to go. Then he hit the ground running!”
Not only did Jay work from beginning to end on the production of Winter Passing, but he was hired on for that company’s next project, and he started his own independent production company with one of the staffers!
“When I started in this business, I had to fight just to get on the set. No one opened any door for me the way I’m able to do for my students. That’s what makes the Entertainment Connection program so effective: I’m not just a mentor, I’m an agent, too.”