Interview : Phillip E. Walker about getting paid in the US

Updated: Mar 8



Originating from the United States, Phillip E. Walker is an independent filmmaker who has

gained worldwide recognition by many of his super creative works. He is a person who quotes

“Performances can be powerful”. Being a believer of the art of performance, somehow his

interest is centered in the worker class and the ones who are the root of the hierarchy. Mr. Walker

has directed several plays which have gathered wide range applause. Having directed more than

100 plays, Phillip E Walker has made his debut through his film GettingPaid.us where he directly hits the exploitation of the state / authority and how the employee level is being used for achieving the goal of their profit scale.


This is essentially not a film but an instructional video that reveals the truth of institutional

hierarchy. It directly hits the Hollywood industry exploitation by the producers where the

employees are left with no escape than resigning. Bagging 34 accolades from 67 screenings in 15 different countries and 7 United States, this informational and instructional video clip has

exposed the gloomy side of the Hollywood industry overall.


Today we have the debut director Mr. Phillip E. Walker with us. We are very grateful to you for

joining us and having you here for an interactive session. In my first question now, I will ask you

to kindly explain your feeling on being featured here with your debut film!



Phillip : I feel honored that “GettingPaid.us” fits into the Beyond the Curve International Film Festival’s inaugural season. With this being my Short’s first article ever, I am also impressed that this Publication comes out of Gay Paree, no less!


Sir, you have started your career by directing plays overall, what makes you switch to

making such an instructional video?


Phillip : Upon my wife Dr. Ethel Pitts Walker’s Professor Emeritus San Jose State University (USA) Department of Television - Radio - Film - Theatre Chairwoman retirement, we moved to Rancho Cucamonga, Southern California to personally witness the growth of our only grandchild - Aliah Janae Walker, lone child born of the Travis Donnell and Angel DePiano Walker marriage. Being so close therein to Los Angeles but expecting little to come from it, I went into La La Land to audition. Right away my performer career exploded into what at the end of my sixth year totaled 1168 California based gigs and/or Worldwide short film video appearances! Working so often in The Industry continued to leave me unavailable to the extremely time consuming art form that is live theatre. So when it was time to use my performance craft to help expose Hollywood’s employee payment malpractice, there was no other way to go except through video.


If you have any particular individual experience of your own in this context, would you

like to share it with us?


Phillip : All of the cases listed in this “GettingPaid.us” Instructional Video are my own personal cases in which I am claiming to have been paid late as a performer.



You talk about the Hollywood industry’s hierarchy and the payment related exploitation

in your video. What brings you to this?


Phillip : I am elated to report that my initial fear of Hollywood producers not paying for my labor at the rate agreed was unfounded. That is to say that among the many gigs that I have secured in the

City of Angels, only a small few have not paid me. However, in response to my first job that

refused to pay me for my day’s shooting, I visited California’s Labor Commission for remedy

from breach of labor contract by John Reed & Janet Arlotte’s Tutta Productions “Save a Life a

Day - SALAD” with Gar Schwartz as Commercial Client. During the submitting of that initial

claim creation process I discovered the State labor law which leves upon employers hefty

penalties for late payment of their employee’s wages. Although that initial Waiting Time

Penalties “SALAD” claim has yet to be paid (it has now become a California Supreme Court

judgment that bars this Producer and its Client from doing business in our State until it pays to

me my $21,950.93 claim and soon their assets will be attacked by the State), discovering this

labor law encouraged me to file claims against my many employers who had previously plus

going forward pay me late. I now annually gain more income from the payment of these claims

than I am initially paid on all of my performance gigs combined in any given year. Plus I am not

bothered by late paying jobs like the Mrk1.NI co-produced Matt Alonzo directed 2016 Armin

Van Buuren “I Need You” official music video featuring Olaf Blackwell, where Colab Studios,

LLC Producer JJ Englert illegally stated in writing that “my claim against them will result in me

never being hired by them again” because I do not want to work again for an employer who has

proven that it pays its workers late.



After the video ends, we can see the list of proof that you have gathered. How much

cooperation did you receive during collection of these data?


Phillip : To write this Video’s closing long list of claims I had to keep track of all employment data relating to my own more than five hundred performance gigs. Even before building the Movie’s list, I used this data to submit my claims to the State of California’s Labor Commission.


Would you like to share some negative experiences while conducting the data collection?


Phillip: All of my late paying producers/employers continue to be negative towards me for pointing out that they are breaking the law and because I require them to pay to me the large penalties connected to employers taking such illegal action. Even some of my friends and colleagues are

angry about me doing what the late USA Representative John Lewis would call “making good trouble” in The Industry. However, the way I see it, since I did not create the law, nor did I break the law, I should not be the one upon whom ire is targeted. I think everyone should be mad at the bosses because they are the ones who persist in illegally paying their employees late.


Having received this much appreciation and awards from so many different countries, to

what extent do you think you have successfully reached your message to the world?


Phillip : Following its July 2019 FourWalled WORLD PREMIERE Academy Award® No