In connection with our 5th Annual LUNAFEST Film Festival event, which took place earlier this month, the Junior League of Long Beach (JLLB) has created the LUNAFEST Women in Entertainment Q & A Interview Series. It features interviews pairing JLLB members making a difference in the Long Beach community with women making a difference in the entertainment industry.
Follow updates to the Q & A Interview Series campaign and find out about new JLLB activities at twitter.com/JL_LongBeach. For more information about the traveling LUNAFEST Film Festival, which highlights women filmmakers and their short films, visithttps://www.jllb.org/support/lunafest/.
For our seventh and last interview in the series, JLLB President Elizabeth McCann will be interviewing Jacqueline Carroll, who is the Head of Sales at Thunder Studios here in Long Beach.
Elizabeth, who is a second generation native of Long Beach, joined the Junior League of Long Beach in 2009 to reengage in community involvement after years of leadership in other service organizations in Long Beach. One of a number of highlights in Elizabeth’s league career has been her Advocacy work on JLLB’s Public Affairs Committee — specifically, serving as both Junior and Senior Delegates for the Junior League of California’s State Public Affairs Committee (CalSPAC). Her other key roles in JLLB have included working in the Fund Development areas for the league and holding the Board of Directors position of Treasurer in a prior year to her current position as President.
Outside of the league, Elizabeth is a Nonprofit Fundraising Leader who works with organizations in the Southern California area. She received her Bachelor of Arts in English and American Studies and her Master of Public Administration degrees from the University of Southern California.
Photo caption, from left: Elizabeth and Jacqueline both participated in a video shoot to discuss these questions on camera last month at Thunder Studios.
Elizabeth McCann (EM): What was your first job in the entertainment industry?
Jacqueline Carroll (JC): My first job in the industry was at Creative Artists Agency (CAA). I worked there for about five years and I decided to take a different route. I realized that I wasn’t going to be an agent – I just didn’t have it in me – so I started looking around and a friend told me about Thunder Studios.
EM: What does your typical day look like?
JC: A typical day for me here starts off with lots of emails, which are mostly inquires from clients who are looking for production space, or from clients who are already in on a project. It’s not just sales – I do a lot of operations as well. We’re kind of a small team here at Thunder and we all wear many hats.
EM: What are some of your favorite projects here at the Studios?
JC: I would say Nine Eleven is a favorite project that we just started filming last month. It’s our first co-production as a studio and it stars Charlie Sheen, Whoopi Goldberg, Luis Guzman, Wood Harris, and Olga Fonda. We have branched out to do our own thing, and to take control of our destiny, as the CEO says.
EM: How has the studio grown over the years?
JC: It became Thunder Studios in 2013. Previously, it was a third-party rental company and we were only renting out to production companies that had jobs. When Rodric David took over, he decided to branch off in a couple of different directions. We started our own production company in-house to take advantage of the fact that we have this huge studio and now we are also bidding jobs to clients and creative agencies.
In addition, we launched a digital media platform and are getting more involved in digital content, with two stages that are dedicated to YouTube creators. So if you sign up with our multi-channel network (MCN), then you’re able to come in and take advantage of all of the resources that our facility has to offer.
EM: What are the key aspects of your job that you enjoy the most?
JC: I just love working with different people, whether they’re with our own in-house production company or with a third party. It’s also that I like being part of something major. I didn’t really have an appreciation for commercials until I started working here and didn’t see all of the work that went into them before they were made: You have about seven days to make 30 seconds of television and a brand has probably given you $1 million to $2 million for it, so it has to be great.
EM: What qualities do you attribute to your success?
JC: I would say that I’m diligent and relentless. And I’m also a master networker – I can’t stress that enough. It’s getting out there and meeting people, and always being gracious and cordial and keeping those opportunities open. I think that’s very important for anything you’re going to do, especially in entertainment. I think this is one of the key components that makes me good at what I do.
EM: Who would you say has inspired you the most?
JC: My grandmother, who was a professor at USC for four years, was a huge inspiration to me. In entertainment though, it’s really anybody who goes after what they want. And if they don’t give up, and they do it in a positive way, then that’s an inspiration to me.
EM: What words of advice would you give to women who want to work in the industry or do what you do?
JC: We’re at this threshold where we’re about to enter into a different way of life, so for women, there is still a bit of a battle. But it’s being relentless. You have to believe in yourself, and rely on yourself, and know that the things that you have to offer up are worthy and valuable. If you believe in what you’re doing, then I don’t think anything can stop you – I think it’s mostly relying on who you are and not giving up.
Find out more about Jacqueline Carroll below.
This interview was edited by Lynda Miller, Public Relations Chair of the Junior League of Long Beach. She transferred from the Los Angeles league to Long Beach in 2012 to continue working in the community after a career change. When she’s not doing JLLB activities, Lynda is a PR, Sales & Fundraising Consultant who specializes in helping companies gain a competitive advantage in the marketplace.https://www.linkedin.com/in/lyndamiller1