Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Brett Newton, Founder and Owner of Newton Entertainment Inc., located in Atlanta, GA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I'm a SAG actor, and I operate under the loan-out company called Newton Entertainment Incorporated. I am also the proud owner of LA REELS, a production company. Our customers are Production Companies, Casting Directors, and Actors. Newton Entertainment Inc. loans my services as a professional actor for SAG On-Camera Principle TV/Film contracts, including network television, national commercials, and feature films. LA REELS is a production company primarily focused on producing short-form narrative scenes. LAR has produced over 4000 original Demo Reel Scenes for Actors. LAR also produces commercials, long-form features, award-winning shorts, and educational courses. We also provide original TV/Film scene books for actors looking to shoot their own content! We recently released 20 original scenes in "The Scriptbook Volume #1 | For Teens and Young Adults".
Tell us about yourself
This is funny. I was first interested in musical theatre when I saw my sister performing on stage in the show "Dracula Spectacula" at Centenary Young Performers Workshop in Hackettstown, New Jersey. I was 8, and she was 10 years old. I remember how old she was because we were born on the exact same day, 2 years apart. I said to my parents, "I want to do that," and so they enrolled me in the summer session. My first role was in the straight play "Sorry Wrong Number," where I played a police officer delivering French crawlers to the chief while a woman was being murdered on the other end of the phone. I was also in "A Chorus Line" as a chorus member and in an original musical called "Count to 10". I was 8 years old. After that summer, I was hooked. From 8-19, I performed in live stage productions all over the tri-state area in and out of NJ and NY. My sister went to NYU, but I didn't want to go to NYC. I wanted to act in TV and Film in LA. So, I used college as an excuse to get to LA. I enrolled in a state school called California State University Los Angeles (CSULA).
I graduated with a BA in Telecommunications and Film while I was also working as a PA and trying to figure out how to be an actor in LA. I joined SAG in 2010 and started LA REELS with a partner in 2012. I have literally worked in every position on set in front and behind the camera since my journey started. I am 100% engrained in the entertainment industry, and every day I'm striving to be on set or I'm on set. I am motivated because everyday I work as an Actor or Filmmaker, I learn something new about the entertainment industry and my craft. Every professional job gets me to the next level of work. I really just want to see what comes next.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I have filmed over 4000 original acting scenes for over 8000 actors and have created jobs and opportunities for many artists. I am also a working actor and able to share my experiences, pitfalls, and successes and give valuable insight to guide many others. I have a recognizable production company, and I'm becoming a recognized actor.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
Organization. I find that every day I have more and more responsibilities and tasks on my plate. There is less and less time, so learning to say "no" is a skill I have not yet mastered. This also comes with a benefit. The more work I'm willing to turn down, the more I'm willing to raise the prices of my services. An additional hurdle in being a business owner is finding reliable and consistent people I can depend on. Keep good people around & trust them to perform.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- If you're an actor and move past the stage of being a "Sole Proprietor," set up an S-Corporation. Production companies and payroll services prefer to hire S-Corp over LLC.
- Take the path of least resistance when it comes to getting things done. My last business partner and I used to have a saying, "The best project is a finished project."
- Know your product in and out, love the services you offer, and talk loudly and proudly about them.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.