Employment Structure in Film and Movie Industry

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The skill sets, organizational hierarchies, reward systems and employment structures pertinent to the film industry, fashion industry or repertory theatre are often as different as all cultural industries are to the manufacturing sector. (Thompson et al, 2007: 638) Explain and Discuss

Cultural Industries (sometimes also known as "creative industries") combine the creation, production, and distribution of goods and services that are cultural in nature and usually protected by intellectual property rights (GATT 2005). In recent years the creative industry has become an obsession with journalists therefore gaining a lot of attention. Workers and more over ‘creative workers' are searching for autonomy and this has seen the minimal use or the abandonment of traditional skill sets, organizational hierarchies, reward systems and employment structures. Pink (2001) points out that workers in the 20th century were ‘employees' and those in the 21st century are a mixture of ‘employees' and ‘free agents.'

Scholars recently have identified this increase and have attempted to put together approaches that help organize and distinguish the creative industries from the non creative industries. Hawkins (2001) utilizes the ‘sector approach' this consists of 15 sectors such as Research and Development, software, film, video games and architecture. Hawkins simply adds up what percentage each sector takes up of the market and argues that if these core industries are taking up a high percentage of market share then cultural industries must be on the up. However this tells us nothing about the actual work going on in these industries, the bulk of the jobs in each industry are simply routine. Take for example the cinema which is considered when working out the film industry but in a cinemas building what creativity is actually taking place? Surely selling tickets, handing out pop corn or showing people to their seats can be considered as creative. Florida (2002) has done similar studies to Hawkins and defines the creative economy through occupations – people add economic value through creativity. He has the ‘super creative' core such as scientists, engineers, poets and writers this approach also have its critics. How can poets and scientists be compared? They have nothing in terms of employment relations or HR polices.

As you can see neither of these approaches really hold up and there is little truth in them. They both identify that there are a number of creative industries but they fail to divide them up effectively and they also tell us little about the skills sets, organizational hierarchies, reward systems and employment structures pertinent to the cultural industries. However the ‘creative distinctiveness' approach seems to have more in it, it emphasis's there is something different to the work and management involved between manufacturing sectors and creative industries but also within the creative industries themselves. The differences between creative industries and other industries can be emphasized when looking at JK Rowling who gets paid millions of pounds for writing Harry Potter book whereas a writer trying to break into the industry wring their first book will receive no where near this kind of pay. Other sectors are a lot more stable if you look at a lecturer whom is head of a department in a university and a lecturer who has come in at the bottom of the hierarchy, yes the head of department will receive a larger salary than the new employee but at a percentage much smaller then that of someone in the cultural industry. There are indeed some similarities between cultural and other industries take for example the current writers strike in America they are unhappy with their current payments they are receiving for their work. This is similar to any industry that goes on strike such as postal strikes or the fire service strikes over pay.

The traditional (old) economy has a recognizable and set rationale...
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