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Commercial Producer

By Topher Bordeau

Twentysomethings across the country are forging their own paths in the new world of work.

"The ability to be a chameleon without being two-faced is a great skill to have." -Alexander Moon
Working Model: Commercial Producer

Alexander Moon


Producer, Sinji Entertainment, Los Angeles

Bachelor's degree in visual anthropology and film/television production, University of Southern California; master of fine arts in film/television producing, the American Film Institute (AFI)

His Hollywood ending:
Someday, Moon would like to produce music videos. "Videos are the last bastion of all-out creativity," he says.

On the set  As a commercial producer, Moon takes concepts created by advertising agencies and puts them on film. He compares his role as a producer to that of a father: "The people on the crew are your children, and you learn how to relate to each member." Moon works with everyone from union members to studio directors to ensure that the final commercial, or "spot," meets everyone's expectations. People skills, he says, are a must. "You can't seem fake to anyone. The ability to be a chameleon without being two-faced is a great skill to have."

Action, reaction 
Filming is expensive, and the producer is expected to get the job done on time-no matter what. "Once we were shooting a scene with two people driving a convertible and it started pouring. But the scene called for sun, or at least no rain, so we held a plastic tarp over the convertible as we shot," remembers Moon. "It's constant action-reaction. When a problem comes up, you usually have to solve it quickly."

Risky business Creative license comes with a lot of risk. "The film industry is fickle. There is a lot of money thrown around, but that doesn't mean it's distributed evenly. Until you're established, it's feast or famine," he says. "You can have a month where you're working so hard you can't stop, followed by a month where you sit around waiting for the phone to ring."   

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