Pilot season can be tough for any actor waiting to have his or her show picked up, but Busy Philipps might have just found a way to survive it.
The 37-year-old actor wasn’t kidding when she said she made more money on sponsored Instagram posts than she did acting — though lately, her financial gains has been thanks to some very loving fans and not to some new brand partnerships.
On Friday, Philipps revealed that she’s made over $500 in less than 24 hours — all via $1 donations sent to her by her Instagram followers on Venmo.
It all started when Philipps posted a tearful video to her Instagram Story Thursday night, lamenting the fact her new pilot — the Tina Fey-produced Sackett Sisters — might not get picked up by NBC.
“I’ve been doing this since I was 19 years old and it never gets easier,” the Dawson’s Creek alum said. “And it sucks. It’s really hard because part of the whole thing is rejection. It’s what the whole thing is based on, right? It’s somebody else telling you yes or no.”
Philipps, who is currently vacationing with her extended family on a Disney cruise, choked up while explaining how grateful she felt to be able to speak with he fans.
“The amazing thing about the Internet is that before I didn’t have a feeling of any voice or any ability,” she said, a tear rolling down her face. “The thing is, I know that you like watching these things because you feel like I’m so real. But I am f—ing real. I’m a real f—ing person. And this is what I do for a job.”
“The problem is I have to rely on other people to allow me to do it,” she continued. “This has been great — it’s great. I love that you can watch these Instagram stories. But I want to tell other stories. It’s like a momentary setback or whatever. But it also is you have to understand something I have dealt with for almost 20 years, this same thing.”
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While a pickup order for The Sackett Sisters has yet to come through — and therefore still could be possible — Philipps still took the time to thank costars Casey Wilson and Bradley Cooper, as well as series creator Luke Del Tredici.
“I wish you guys could see it,” she told her followers before poking fun at herself for possibly overreacting while sitting on a Disney cruise, wearing a Dolce and Gabbana gown she previously wore to the Golden Globes with pal Michelle Williams.
That’s when her fans started doing what they could to support her.
“Shout out to the random person I don’t know who just paid me a dollar on Venmo for my Instagram Stories,” Philipps said. “So if you guys want to find me on Venmo and start paying me, that’d be chill.”
She was joking, of course, but the money kept coming in.
“Okay guys I love you, but you don’t have to pay me on Venmo,’ Philipps said in another video. “So many people have started paying me a dollar on Venmo. It’s really awesome and so sweet, but you really don’t. Don’t. Save your dollars for someone else.”
They didn’t. And by Friday afternoon, Philipps said she had earned $500.
Guys you don’t have to keep Venmo-ing me a dollar, although I greatly appreciate it,” she said in another post that she shot while lounging on the beach and captioned “I’ve made 500 bucks!”
“It’s really funny because I’m just flooded with these notifications that I’m getting a dollar from strangers,” she added.
Late Friday afternoon, Philipps revealed that she would be donating the money received to a charity.
“Guys, you’re still Venmoing me. Stop. But just so you know, obviously, I’m going to donate the money to Baby2Baby. Hooray,” said Philipps. “So your money is going to a good cause.”