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Synopsis

“How I Broke into the Movies – and How You Can Too!” is a must-read for anyone who wants to act in film, as well as for fans of the silver screen who want to know what goes on behind the scenes.

This straight-from-the-shoulder account written by an eighteen year veteran of the business, pulls no punches.  Entertaining and informative, “How I Broke into the Movies – and How You Can Too!” is an easy-going, tell-it-like-it-is book that takes the reader along on the movie adventure Leona Toppel has been experiencing since 1983 (and she doesn’t live anywhere near Hollywood).

Aspiring actors will find tips about how to register with agents, what kind of pictures they’ll need, wardrobe, safety (yes safety), what to do on the set – and what not to do, auditions, résumés and a myriad of other information.

Cameos about some of filmdom’s brightest stars as told by those who were there are included.  There’s a “Who’s Who and What’s What” section which explains many of the terms used in the movie business.  Readers can’t help but smile at, and have compassion for, the ups and downs of the background actors who give movies that real look.  

Each chapter has its specific purpose:

1. Sex and Debauchery or Now That I Have Your Attention, Here’s How I Fell in Love with the Movies

(O.K., so there’s not one bit of sex and debauchery anywhere in this book but this chapter will give you an idea of why movies have been important to me for as long as I can remember.)

2. How Would You Like to Be a Mother?  The Day Fate Became My Agent.

(You just never know when or how an important aspect of your life may change.)

3. A “Typical Day “ on the Set?  FUHGEDABOUDIT!

(Actually, there is no such thing as a typical day – and that’s just one of the aspects I love about the business.  In this chapter you’ll find out how “exciting” a day can be.)

4. I Was Told to Pat Paul Newman on the Shoulder:  Little Pleasures, Big Breaks.and Bad Hair Days

(Here are some experiences movie fans dream about – with a few nightmares thrown in.)

5. Short Takes on Big Stars

(You may be surprised when you read first-hand accounts about some of your favorite stars.)

6. You Meet Some of the Nicest People - and Some Others Who Are – Don’t Ask – I’ll Tell You

(You’re sure to recognize some of these characters – whether you work in the movies or in an office.)

7. Did I Get It or Did She Get It?

(Auditions are part of the movie/TV business, so deal with it.)

8. Safety First!  (You’ve Got to Watch Out for Lots of Dangerous Things in This Business)

(Try not to trip over your own feet – or put your foot in your mouth.)

9. Sparky and Friends

(The best picture of an extra’s life can be gleaned through sharing their ups and downs.)

10. Show Biz Kidz

(Got youngsters you’d like to get into the business?  Think long and hard before you take that first step.)

11. A Wrap? No! Just the Beginning!

(Here are detailed instructions for getting started in the business.)

Each chapter adds another piece to the puzzle which, when completed, gives the reader the BIG PICTURE.

Aspiring actor or movie fan, this is the book for you.  After reading “How I Broke into the Movies – and How You Can Too!” you may find yourself on the way to a new career – or just on the way to see the latest flick.  Either way, you’ll never look at movies the same way again.

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