In fact, the Weinsteins think an internship at their company is worth an “estimated value” of $US50,000. That estimated value is not the starting salary for the position, but what they expect the future intern to pay for such a golden opportunity.
The bidding is currently at $US13,000.
Hollywood internships are certainly hard to come by, but this opportunity is not meant to help the average, Ramen-eating college student.
This cash-grab is aimed solely at those with deep pockets who prefer to fast-track their way up the Hollywood food chain rather than actually earn it. The proceeds support the American Repertory Theatre, but that doesn’t change the fact that this bizarre stunt favours silver spoons over quality workmanship.
A current TWC assistant, which is the position ideally next in line for an intern, told The Daily Dot that the starting salary at the company was only $US31,000 — making the “estimated value” appear even more trivial.
According to a 2013 study conducted by the National Association of College and Employers, only 37% of unpaid interns actually wind up working for their employer, and these numbers are certainly lower within the bizarro world of Hollywood. Compare that with the 35.2% who receive job offers without any internship whatsoever and it’s near impossible to defend the unpaid internship infrastructure.
The now infamous “Black Swan” lawsuit was originally thought to be gamechanger for the industry, but nothing has changed.
Most production companies are still using this system, and the real victims are the overworked and (severely) underpaid interns themselves. For those with the “thick skin” required for the job, bidding is still live for a few more hours.