How I lost a Million Dollars

November 10, 2016 Steve Hudson

I was living in Los Angeles when I received a call from my agent, Bob Lloyd.

Steve Hudson in Makeup HollywoodI had been cast as the on-camera presenter in four TV commercials for Gallo Wine. It was an important campaign because it was going national. I arrived at Paramount Studios at 07:30am for make-up and wardrobe and made my way to my first Hollywood soundstage. I was really excited.

By the third day we had shot three commercials which the producer and advertising agency were happy with. At the end of the day, I asked the Young & Rubicam producer how much I would earn in residuals.

He told me that  it was a national campaign, and in the first year I would earn about $250.000 for each commercial - that would make me a millionaire - I had never been one before!

Ernest and Julio Gallo were not the most popular clients in the advertising world and I soon found out why...

I arrived at the studio the next morning to shoot the fourth commercial and was told that Ernie and Jules had disagreed over something and cancelled the whole campaign...

Instead of a million dollars I was paid $1000 for a weeks work.

I sobbed uncontrollably for a number of years!