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Secret Agent Man

Secret Agent Man on Hollywood's Borders

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Secret Agent Man on Hollywood's Borders
As Secret Agent Man, I pride myself on being brutally honest with the thousands of actors who read this column. Like it or hate it, none of you can accuse me of not being truthful in the way I dispense career advice on a weekly basis. But I have a confession to make: I've been withholding information from you for the last few months. In my defense, the city government forced me to sign a confidentiality agreement, so I had no choice. The term of that agreement will expire by the time this column's published, so my attorney has given me the green light to open up about what I know. And what I know will affect every actor on the face of this planet.
Starting next month, the city of Los Angeles will close its borders to any and all actors wishing to move here in pursuit of a better life.

Yes, you read that correctly. A recent census determined the city can no longer hold any more actors. As far as I can tell, this all started when the Housing Department was tipped off by local landlords about the way actors are living. It seems that two actors will sign a lease and move into a two-bedroom apartment; then under the cover of darkness, an additional 18 will slip in, creating unsanitary living conditions and unacceptable levels of desperation.
I've seen the census, and the numbers are staggering. There are literally thousands of undocumented actors living in this city! That would explain the increase in traffic and the overcrowded conditions in our coffee shops.

So starting next week, Homeland Security will set in motion a new set of protocols that will be strictly enforced at all points of entry, including but not limited to LAX, Burbank airport, and Union Station. High-tech X-ray machines will search luggage for hidden headshots, résumés, and demo reels. Anyone with an inflated sense of ego will be forced to undergo a full body scan. Actors caught attempting to enter this city illegally will be detained for an indefinite period of time.

Due to my Navy background, I've been assigned shore patrol every other weekend. My unit will use Vietnam-era Swift Boats to protect our beautiful ocean border from any actors-especially Canadians-who might try to slip in like trash riding the surf. Our coverage grid will be from Malibu down to the South Bay beaches where "Baywatch" was filmed.   
Unfortunately, these new immigration laws will also affect the actors already living here. These people will have to document their earnings, union status, and representation. The guidelines clearly state that any nonunion performer who has established a residence here for more than five years will be deported. This will create openings for New York stage actors who wish to relocate so they can earn a real living. A lottery system will be used to fill those slots.

I want all of you to understand that Secret Agent Man does not agree with this new law. Our borders should be open to every actor who wishes to dive in and join the fray. But there is a point to be made here. Agents like me have trouble finding talented actors because there are so many untalented ones standing in the way. I'm talking about all those people who refuse to give up, the ones who spend more money on workshops than they do on food. Yes, closing our borders is extreme, but it might just thin the herd, creating opportunities for those who work hard and are serious about their craft.

So if you happen to be reading this column as you drive cross-country with a hope and a prayer, I suggest you put the pedal to the metal, because your window to get in officially closes April 1.

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