Mitchell Gossett works as agent specializing in youth actors and actresses. His previous clients include names such as Miley Cyrus (‘Hannah Montana’), Taylor Lautner (‘Twilight’), and Victoria Justice (‘Victorious’). Here he shares his story working as an agent for some of the most prominent stars of young Hollywood.
What are some of the pros and cons of working with young stars?
Some of the pros are that it’s really exciting. You get to discover somebody and break them in and start a career. And you know, to teach them about it as well. I have a Master’s degree in acting myself, so I enjoy teaching about acting. Some of the cons are that sometimes young actors get taken advantage of... you really have to protect them. A studio or producer would oftentimes think that a young actor really wants the job so much that they just won't walk away from it. While if a deal is for an adult, if a deal isn't good, oftentimes they’ll say, 'Forget it, we'll pass.' Usually with young people they just want the job.
Some people say that being in Hollywood so young negatively alters a child. Any thoughts on that?
Well it depends on the child of course. I think that that's a generalization. I think it can also enhance and really provide amazing lifetime experiences for a child that nothing else can.
What’s a typical day at work for you?
First you come in and you have meetings with the various departments around the agency. Whether it be a motion picture department, whether it be a television department, there are various departments and meetings where a huge amount of information is shared. Information is key. We have to be conscious of every movie and TV project in town, for actors of all ages. [Later] I get to my desk and I probably get around 350 to 400 emails a day that require me to act upon projects to help get actors work.
What's your favorite thing about your job?
My favorite thing about my job is working with the level of professionalism of my colleagues. At an agency like this, if you're talking about this job, you know it's like going to Harvard. You wanna be an agent, you wanna work at an agency like this. I feel like I'm at the height, and I'm so very proud of that. And all of the other colleagues that work here are in the same position. They’ve all worked very hard [to be at this agency]. So I think the thing I love most about my job is being with the other professionals around me. We all support each other very much.
Mitchell Gossett currently works as the Senior Vice President of Cunningham Escott Slevin & Doherty (CESD). His current clients include Danielle Campbell ('Prom') and Darren Criss ('Glee').