2016 JLLB LUNAFEST® Women in Entertainment Q & A Interview Series – Noela Hueso Interviewed by Paula Barrow
In connection with our 5th Annual LUNAFEST Film Festival event, which took place over the weekend, 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 the Q & A Interview Series at twitter.com/JL_LongBeach to find out when the next interviews will be posted. For more information about the traveling LUNAFEST Film Festival, which highlights women filmmakers and their short films, visitwww.jllb.org/lunafest.
For our fifth interview in the series, JLLB Advocacy Chair Paula Barrow will be talking with Noela Hueso, who is the author of theThe Art of The Croods, a beautiful hardcover book which showcases the conceptual art from the 2013 DreamWorks Animation filmThe Croods. She is also the Media Relations Manager for the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television.
As Chair of the Advocacy Committee, Paula works to inform, educate and motivate the league on advocacy and public policy issues in the Long Beach community. Her JLLB work extends to engaging with Long Beach city officials to inform and grow their connections with the league. She also interacts with the delegates of JLLB’s California State of Public Affairs Committee (CalSPAC) to connect their advocacy work at the state level to the organization’s issue-based work at the local level. Paula joined the league in 2003 to learn more about her community and make friends with other women who shared the same goal of making positive changes in their communities. In June she will take on the role of Community Vice President as a member of the JLLB Board of Directors for the 2016 – 2017 year.
In the spirit of the league as a training organization, Paula has taken the skills that she’s learned here to benefit other community organizations and efforts, including positions as the Chair of the Homeless Services Advisory Committee, Board of Directors for the Long Beach Continuum of Care, and Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee for the Young Women’s Empowerment Conference hosted by U.S. Congressman Alan Lowenthal (47th District).
It turns out that Paula and Noela went to school together at San Diego High, also known as the Old Grey Castle. Go Cavers!
Paula Barrow (PB): What is your current job/title and what was your first job in the entertainment industry?
Noela Hueso (NH): My current title is Media Relations Manager at the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. I’ve been there for almost three years. My previous permanent position was as a senior editor at The Hollywood Reporter, where I worked for 16 years. In between those two jobs, I wrote a book for DreamWorks Animation, The Art of The Croods, which showcased the fabulous conceptual art that the talented artists at DreamWorks Animation created when they brainstormed what their 2013 film, The Croods, would ultimately look like. The book also delved into the process of how the film was made.
My first entertainment industry job was as a junior publicist for a boutique public relations agency but it was at The Hollywood Reporter, the job that followed, where I learned the ins and outs of the business. I started as an editorial assistant and worked my way up the ranks, assuming various titles through the years including copy editor, research editor, associate editor and finally senior editor.
PB: What is your favorite part of the job?
NH: When I was at The Hollywood Reporter, I dealt with people who were already successful in their careers, whether they were actors, directors, producers or cinematographers, just to name a few. My favorite part of my current job is seeing and working with Hollywood’s future trailblazers today, at the start of their careers.
PB: What are the key aspects of your job and the qualities that are key to being successful in it?
NH: I straddle two worlds in my current job: Editing and publicity. On the one hand, I write articles and newsletters and on the other, I facilitate interviews and get press for our school, faculty and students who are doing amazing things. Both jobs require an attention to detail as well as an ability to think creatively and to produce results. Great writing and communication skills are a must, too!
PB: What advice would you give to women who want to work in the entertainment industry or do what you do?
NH: Don’t get too comfortable in one place. You can grow much more as a person and in your career by being flexible and willing to take on new challenges in different environments. Go do the thing you think you cannot do. We limit ourselves because of fear — of the unknown, of financial instability, whatever. Get rid of those fears! Take a leap of faith. You will rise to the occasion; you will succeed.
For years, I had wanted to write a book but always said, “Someday.” I was really good at procrastinating. With two children at home and a full-time job, I rationalized that there wasn’t enough time but I think, deep down, there was a fear of failure. Then, when I was laid off from The Hollywood Reporter after 16 years, the opportunity to write The Art of the Croods landed in my lap, for which I will be forever grateful. It came at an opportune time but also fulfilled a longtime creative goal. I could have said no to the project — it was detailed and involved — but instead I embraced the challenge and it ended up being a great success. Now I plan on writing another book!
PB: Who or what inspires you creatively?
NH: Not surprisingly, I am inspired by people who are adventurous, whether physically or mentally. They’re not afraid to go out on a limb to accomplish great things. They’re not afraid of failure. They know that there is no such thing as failure, really, just lessons learned.
Find out more about Noela Hueso below.
This interview was edited by Lynda Miller, Public Relations Chair of the Junior League of Long Beach, who also had the pleasure of working with Noela for many years at The Hollywood Reporter. She transferred from the Los Angeles league to Long Beach in 2012 to continue doing community work after a career change. https://www.jllb.org/ama/orig/News/JLLB-LBHTTF_Guide_Press_Release1.pdf
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.jllb.org/?nd=February_2016