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Your Entertainment Assets

By Emma Beavers

Check out the following sources to jumpstart your entertainment career.

1. HollywoodReporter

Price: Most online content free; daily/weekly print edition and expanded online access $299/265, daily/weekly print edition $229/175.

What it is: The title says it all: the insider's guide to news and deals in the industry.

Where it's at: Find it at and in print.

Benefits: It's chock-full of information on a huge variety of topics, such as industry deals and events, recent cast additions, and weekly box office receipts. An extensive online job board lists positions in 12 areas.

Drawbacks: None. Knowledge is power, and this is where to learn.

2. How To Sell Yourself As An Actor

Price: $18.95

Publisher: The University of Chicago Press

What it is: A guide to navigating (and surviving) show business.

Where it's at: Bookstores and major online bookstores.

Benefits: This how-to book, penned by a veteran of the biz, addresses the major concerns of actors at any stage along the way. It also approaches the entertainment industry with the understanding that it's a business and that, dreams aside, you're a product to be sold.

Drawbacks: Julia Roberts won't need this book, but if you're an aspiring actor looking for some insight, you might.

3. Careers in Communications and Entertainment

Price: $20 or less at online bookstores.????

Publisher: Kaplan

What it is: Detailed profiles of job opportunities in the entertainment industry.

Where it's at: Available used at online bookstores; possibly at local used bookstores.

Benefits: 384 pages of comprehensive career options for anyone interested in communications or entertainment, from film to radio to publishing to special effects and new media. Insiders' tips, interviews with experts, and industry diagrams dissect the jobs out there and how to land them.??

Drawbacks: With its 2000 publication date, this Kaplan guide is going on seven years old, but it's still well worth the investment- especially if you can nab a $2 copy online.

4. Back Stage

Price:? Some info free online; various subscription fees include $12.95/month (, $8.95/month (, and $16.95/month (both).

What it is: A career bible for actors.

Where it's at: ; print edition available at select bookstores.

Benefits: A major trade publication replete with career advice, casting notices (including union, non-union, and student films), and entertainment news. The online version also offers the famous Ross Reports, an authoritative list of agents and casting directors.

Drawbacks: The subscription fee doesn't come cheap, but the inside scoop it buys is hard to pass up.

5. Screen Actors Guild(SAG)

Price: Website is free; work experience, fee, and dues prerequisite for membership into the organization.

What it is: The largest union in the entertainment industry.

Where it's at:

Benefits: This 120,000-strong actors' union has fought to protect the rights of performers in the entertainment industry. If you're seriously invested in pursuing a film career, chances are high that you'll someday become a member.

Drawbacks: Unless you qualify for membership, it doesn't provide any tangible benefits, but the website gives you a realistic taste of industry conditions.

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