New York Okays $15 Minimum Wage for Fast Food Workers, Here's Why It's Great for Actors

Here's why New York's new $15 minimum wage for fast food workers will benefit aspiring actors.

Did you know actor, director, writer and producer James Franco worked at McDonald's before becoming an actor? In fact, the actor he argued it helped him become a better actor. He writes, “McDonald’s was there for me. When no one else was.” Franco says his late-night job at McDonald’s was the first job he’d ever had where he didn’t read at work, but he was able to train as an actor.
In high school, I was fired from a coffee shop for reading behind the counter and from a golf course for reading while driving the cart on the driving range…I refrained from reading on the job, but soon started putting on fake accents with the customers to practice for my scenes in acting class.
On Thursday, New York state governor Andrew Cuomo announced the formal approval of a $15-an-hour minimum wage for fast food workers across New York. The news comes after a panel tasked with evaluating fast food wages suggested the increase earlier this summer. McDonalds Andrey Armyagov / The news has many people upset, but supporters of the increase says it will raise the standard of living for thousands of fast food workers, who generally live below the poverty line. In fact, 60 percent of fast-food workers receive public assistance in some form. But, will this raise productivity? Possibly. The Washington Post reported on several happiness studies and found that in general, life satisfaction goes up as minimum wage increases. Therefore, happier workers creates better experiences for customers. mcdonalds-hug But, how will this impact actors? According to, the lowest 10 percent of actors made $8.79 an hour, therefore a pay increase for fast food workers can be an easy and profitable way for actors to make additional income on the side.