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Say you are a film producer, and you have a project that gets a green-light. There’s a dance sequence in the script and you need to hire a choreographer. Using the prime professional database of the film and television industry, IMDB Pro, you will be hard pressed to find one. Naturally, there’s hundreds of ‘em working in Hollywood. But they are relegated, shall we say, marginal status. I have listed below the major categorizations by which IMDB Pro groups the functional specialists of Hollywood. Guess who is missing?
|Animation Department||Miscellaneous Crew|
|Art Department||Music Department|
|Assistant Directors||Production Designer|
That’s right, the “transportation department” has more clout than choreographers if you judge by the major category list on IMDB Pro.
Choreographers have no guild or union in this town. You knew that, right? I didn’t. I just learned it. That’s why I’m in shock. Yes, some choreographers belong to the Director’s Guild of America (DGA), but they joined as directors. e.g., Kenny Ortega, Debbie Allen, Adam Shankman.
Choreographers were part of the DGA until 1939. Remember, 1939, film’s greatest-ever year? Something happened. If you know what it was, please contact me.
credits, photo montage, above
- “Cheek-to Cheek,” Top Hat, director, Mark Sandrich, choreographer, Fred Astaire/Hermes Pan
- “By A Waterfall,” Footlight Parade, director, Lloyd Bacon, choregrapher, Busby Berkeley
- “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend,” Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, director, Howard Hawks, choreographer, Jack Cole
- Pose from disco scene, Saturday Night Fever, director John Badham, choreographer Lester Wilson