HUSSLUP, LinkedIn for entertainment biz, launches web app in beta

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HUSSLUP, currently in invite-only beta, is a job search and networking app for creative professionals in the media and entertainment industry to connect with studios and production companies looking to hire talent.

Today, the company announced the web version of its mobile application. It will be broadcast widely next week.

Like LinkedIn, HUSSLUP allows users to write posts, network with others, and search for gigs.

However, rather than targeting the general public, the app aims to be a central hub for creative professionals in the entertainment industry, above or below the line, to collaborate on a project, promote an upcoming movie/TV show, invite others. Discover an event, new talent and more.

Other community tools include creating groups, sharing encrypted creative samples, chatting via in-app messenger, and the ability to create detailed contact lists for each project, movie or show.

Along with the web launch, the company introduced new web-based features called “Pro Search,” a proprietary feature that allows for more in-depth searches, and “Serendipity Mode,” a Tinder-like feature on the user platform. You can quickly connect with other members.

Image Credits: HUSSLUP

The new ProSearch tools give employees a way to search for talent based on specific criteria such as credit rating, representation, genre/project types, availability, locations they are willing to work in, professional affiliations and more.

Users can also add potential employees to a list, then add comments, which person they hired and share it with others.

Specifically, the tool allows users to filter search results to find different recruiters. HUSSLUP claims that 65% of its current membership self-identifies in at least one of the following categories: gender, race, and LGBTQ+.

The industry continues to be criticized for underrepresentation, so HUSLUP’s new feature is a significant addition to the toolbox.

In the year Among the 200 highest-grossing theatrical releases in North America in 2022, people of color (POC) make up 22% of lead actors, 17% of directors and 12% of writers, according to UCLA’s 2023 Hollywood Diversity Report.

Web users are getting “Serendipity Mode,” a feature that lets them “swipe” or, in this case, right- or left-click on tiles featuring profiles of members, companies, and communities. The cards are randomized so that users have access to more people.

In the future, the company plans to launch more web-based features, HUSSLUP founder H Schuster told TechCrunch. This includes “Project Rosters,” a feature that allows users to take job listings and generate call sheets, anonymous tax incentive reports, and more.

HUSSLUP intends to create a text, image and video search tool as well as AI-powered recommendations.

Image Credits: HUSSLUP

Unlike most professions, there is no rulebook on how to get a job in entertainment. Most of the time, you either have a connection in the right place, luck is on your side that week or – if you’re lucky – you’re Nepo’s kid.

Hence HUSLUP’s tagline, “Transforming Hollywood from click to click.

Schuster founded HUSSLUP as a potential solution to this persistent click problem – “the old game of telephone,” as she and her team like to call it.

Schuster, an executive with 20 years of experience in Hollywood, has worked on reality shows like “MasterChef” and “The Biggest Loser,” and knows all too well how frustrating it can be to find new talent.

“When I sit behind the recruiting desk, you know, I make literally five or ten phone calls to colleagues, friends, manager, agent, and five or ten names,” Schuster told TechCrunch. “You don’t know these people, so you’re trying to find their credits on IMDb and samples of their creations on YouTube. them”

“Creative skills should be a more effective and, in fact, a more fun way for them to build a profile that includes all of their professional information in the first place and allows them to tell their own story. Present themselves to the industry the way they want to be seen,” she added.

H. Schuster, Founder and CEO of HUSLUP. Image Credits: HUSSLUP

All profiles on HUSSLUP have verified credits to ensure that everyone on the app has worked in the industry at some point. About 75% of HUSLUP users are at least mid-career, ranging from directors, writers, producers, editors, animators, composers, music supervisors, art directors and more, Schuster claims.

However, once the app is out of beta, the company still wants to invite students and recent graduates who want to enter the industry. HUSSLUP is currently working with several universities.

The company partners with many production companies, studios and organizations, including Universal Studios Group, Universal Pictures, Blumhouse, Will Smith-based Westbrook, Russo Brothers’ AGBO, Tyra Banks’ Bankable Productions, Don Cheadle’s This Radicle Act and Women in Film. , among others.

In December 2022, HUSSLUP raised a $2.5 million seed round led by f7 Ventures and Fuel Capital with additional funding from Ulu Ventures, Gingles and 360 Venture Collective.

Previously, HUSSLUP raised pre-seed investment in 2021 from the Comcast NBCUniversal LIFT Labs accelerator powered by Techstars.

To date, HUSSLUP has 6,000 members, according to the company.

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