Once You’ve Booked
Once you have been booked for a job, your wardrobe, shoot and possible travel dates will be relayed down to you. If it is a film or MOW (Movie of the Week) – Production may contact you directly, hence the importance of filing out casting forms properly and with the most current information you have. Production will give Shine or you directly information for your wardrobe, (time, place, what you may need to bring) and call times (where and when you need to be on set). This can sometimes be the night before you are working, as late as 10pm. If you have not heard by this time, please call your agent so we can get you any more information you need.
What You Need To Know On Set:
- Be Early!!! Show up at least 10 minutes early for EVERYTHING – auditions and for bookings on set. Once you are on set, scripts can change and they may need you to be aware of the changes, better safe than sorry!
- Know Your Lines — This seems obvious enough but please be sure you know your lines before you show up to the set.
- Zero Tolerance – No Talking On Set… If you are close enough to see ANY camera OR lights you are close enough to be picked up on the sound equipment. If you meet a friend on set, hold back the urge to chat until you break for lunch. If you must pass along information keep your mouth shut tight while the cast & crew are shooting and whisper during the break in between. Know your onset lingo – ROLLING means camera and sound are on and ready for example. This may sound simple but many people forget. Remember that a five minute delay costs thousands of dollars – every person on set is getting paid a minimum of fifty dollars an hour, that’s about a dollar a minute. Do the math – an average of a hundred people delayed for five minutes is a wasted shot of over four hundred dollars that it just cost production in wages only. Add in rental cost of equipment & location and you have wasted $3000 conservatively. So, to reiterate speak quietly at all times and be silent and aware during points when film is rolling.
- Know Your Place — There is an unofficial but definite structure and hierarchy on set. Generally, you do not approach the producers/directors/DOP (Director of Photography) unless they approach you first. It is a real temptation to do so in order to promote yourself, but it will give you a bad reputation which translates into not being booked again Try smiling, staying positive and doing a great job of doing what you are there to do, act. That is the BEST way of being noticed. Be professional and respectful, it will pay off tenfold! Parents – Be aware of this in particular, there is a reason “Stage Parent” has a negative connotation. Your job is to be there for your child and be as inconspicuous as possible. You need to be able to see and hear your child on set. Perhaps try and find a place to stand behind the TV screens or beside one of the lights – you will be less in the way then if you try and squeeze on a teeny set crowded by equipment, crew and actors. You need to be aware of your child’s needs and bring them up politely if need be. The crew all have other jobs and they may miss the bare necessities. For example, ensure your child gets to use the washroom before heading to set as some children are afraid to admit they have to “go” once they are on set since there are a lot of people stranding around looking at them. You may need to check with them quietly if they have been on set for a while.
- Be Aware & Prepared — The production will provide you with a breakdown of what shots they are doing that day and a copy of the scenes. Take the time in the trailer or while in makeup to familiarize yourself with the shot sequences and lines so that you have an idea of when you will shooting that day.
- Be Cheerful — Sets can be anywhere and conditions aren’t always optimal. The production does its best, but cramped/cold/hot/mucky is often the norm. If you wanted predictability and comfort you should be in an office! Smile!
The 3rd A.D. (Third Assistant Director) is very important to the actors as they are in charge of the area where the trailers and trucks are parked off of the set – generally; this is the wardrobe truck, makeup trailer, and the actor’s trailers. They are also the people managing the transport and are the people you should go to if you need anything or if you’re running into a problem on set. If you don’t receive a helpful response from the 3rd A.D. you should call your agent. They will be able to sort of what is going on and mediate the issue. In the meantime, keep a smile on.
Payment — You will be paid when the agency receives payment, this can vary on a per job basis. Please be sure to keep receipts issued to you each job as you will need this for your income taxes at the end of the year. We will not be providing T4’s (unless we are forwarding them from production) or a list of your commissions. It is your responsibility to keep your own records.