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misc Being autistic in the film industry...

Hello everyone, I recently joined this page not too long ago and I have some questions about the film industry that may be a little personal I suppose. I'm starting to go to college this spring after taking a year and a half off and going to get my degree in digital arts. I'm hoping that I will be able to graduate with my digital arts degree and do editing and maybe some writing for movies and television if I'm lucky. I do have some questions though. I've had a really difficult life thus far. Work has never really been my strong point and I struggled throughout my last couple years of high school. I barely graduated with my class but ended up making salutatorian somehow. I couldn't keep down my first job and since then, well, no ones wanted to hire me. I wasn't even fired I just don't really do well around people. I have autism, add, and a little social anxiety but I can talk to people when I have to. I know it's kind of "bad rep" to have autism in any industry. You're kind of seen as a freak who will make everything worse. I was just wondering if the filming industry is like that too and if it's bad when it comes to how it views people with autism. If I should even bother going to college for it and just accept that I'll never actually be able to do it.
 
I'm on the spectrum but I'm doing very well. And I have at least 3 friends that are also on the spectrum and make amazing movies. I don't know how bad your social anxiety is or the lvl of autism you have.... There are many successful artist and musicians that have it and use it to there advantage. Perhaps you can overcome your social anxiety. I think.......success depends on many things.
 
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If you don't do well around people you are going to want one of the "solitary" crafts. As an audio post type I spend most of my time in dim room with a computer, speakers and tens of thousands of audio files. I'm sure that many visual editors are the same with hours and hours video files. We analyze and agonize over minutiae. Writers are usually fairly solitary as well, although they get out into the "real" world a bit more so they can experience things to write about.

So maybe the "solitary" crafts are the ones you should be looking into. Otherwise your anxiety issues could work against you.
 
I know it's kind of "bad rep" to have autism in any industry. You're kind of seen as a freak who will make everything worse. I was just wondering if the filming industry is like that too and if it's bad when it comes to how it views people with autism. If I should even bother going to college for it and just accept that I'll never actually be able to do it.
Don't accept it. In the end, "social interaction" is just another set of rules that you can learn. I have one son on the spectrum, diagnosed relatively early in his life (at about age 7) so he's had time to be "trained" but only so that he could achieve his ambitions. Professionally, he's ended up in computer science (quelle surprise!) but socially - his own choice - he plays team sports, is in the army reserves and works as a barman at our local festival. In whatever situation he finds himself, he's figured out that he can be considered a great worker when he first joins the group by doing exactly what he's told until such time as he decides to move on or up. If he's staying around, he switches to focused ambition until he gets to be the manager, at which point he can make the rules to suit himself!

So yes - if you really want to work in the film industry, go to college, learn as much as you can about it, learn how to pass yourself off as (relatively) normal amongst strangers, and don't treat yourself as a freak.
 
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onebaldman

Pro Member
indiePRO
Everyone is giving great tips here. Hopefully you really listen to it. I also have a son who is autistic, and have social anxiety myself pretty heavy.

But just like everyone says, you will find a way if you REALLY work hard at it. It might be a sloppy, inconsistent, stressful mess. But it still gets the job done.
 
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