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Whenever you have a day in your production that involves Background Actors or “BG” one of the things the AD staff may handle is giving a speech to this group of people. Typically this speech is given by a 2nd 2nd AD or Background PA and is helpful so that things run smoothly and the BG know what to expect and where to go.
Below I have listed 10 things to include in your speech to Background Actors:
The 2nd 2nd AD (sometimes called 3rd AD outside the US) is primarily responsible for being the extension to the 1st AD on set. In general a 2nd 2nd AD works with background actors, supervises production assistants and sometimes wrangles talent.
The thing I love about a good 2nd 2nd AD is that they can really help the 1st AD with very complicated scenes that involve stunts, mass amounts of extras or scenes that take place in difficult shooting conditions.
Below are 5 things to consider when working as a 2nd 2nd AD:
Managing extras can be one of the most challenging things for any production. Its one thing to deal with a few extras on an occasional basis, however when you are on a show that is having to manage hundreds or in some cases thousands of extras…you want a system that can run smoothly and effectively. For decades productions have relied on antiquated technology using carbon copy skins that really make the process all the more challenging. Having to track paperwork, props and dealing with out times has been a source of pain and frustration for both extras and production.
Current problems of the typical paper system:
*Extends Late Nights
*Slows Call Times
*Long Check-Out Lines
*Missing, Incomplete, Sloppy Documents
*Invalid Tax Incentive Info
*Messy for Payroll and Accounting
*P.A. and A.D. Time, Effort Wasted
*Limiting Legal & Payroll Compliance
RABS is the only app to manage extras from Skin to Wrap.
*You can onboard extras in seconds.
*You can wrap instantly, all documents completed, costumes and props returned with an automatic breakdown
*Hot-cost savings, vouchers, docs, tax incentives, digitally delivered to accounting.
*Cost $600 per week and $3 per extra.
Schedule a Demo: runabetterset.com/demo
I often get asked to create schedules and budgets for films in development and one of the questions I will often ask the producer(s) is what unions they want to budget for. Many times SAG is a no brainer no matter the budget but often times convincing producers to budget for IATSE, DGA, TEAMSTERS and WGA can be a challenge. Many times the reasons producers don’t want to join these unions is because of paperwork, limited finances and having to be under the scrutiny of a union. I put together a list of reasons why producers might want to reconsider….
7 reasons why your Low Budget Film show should go DGA Signatory:
1. Choosing to make your project DGA signatory will allow your Director the ability to Join the DGA if they are not currently a member.
2. Your film will be eligible to be entered into the DGA Awards.
3. You will be required to hire DGA UPMs and ADs (1st, 2nd and 2nd 2nd) thus ensuring an experienced AD staff. Now yes you can (might be able to) find experienced Non-Union ADs and UPMs however it is possible that they may or may not be as experienced as someone in the union and this could potentially lead to problems.
Example: You hire a Non-Union 1st AD who has only done one or two features and they may or may not not know how to keep your set safe or on schedule and you end up needing to shoot more days thus causing you to spend thousands of dollars.
4. If a movie is over a million dollars, some financiers will prefer that your movie is bonded. Some bond companies will require that your film join certain unions such as IATSE and DGA to limit the risk involved in making the picture.
5. You have access to a vast network of possible DGA Directors, ADs and UPMS around the United States to employ. Check out the list(s) HERE.
6. It may not be as expensive as you thought. For films under $500K the rates are negotiable. Essentially you would be paying the fringes (pension and health etc) on 3-4 crew members in addition to your cast. Check out the rates HERE.
7. It may not be as difficult as you thought. Yes you have to fill out an application and submit information about the film…but you are most likely doing this for SAG etc. What’s one more application?
Curious about making your project DGA Signatory? Follow these simple steps…
Visit the Employers section of the DGA website.
There is a section on the DGA Application where you will list the Director, UPM and ADs. Its important to note that for most applications you will need to hire members in good standing who are listed on the perspective Qualification List. There are some project types where you may be eligible to hire someone who is not listed in a certain category etc. You can always fill out the crew you know for now ie… (Director and UPM) and then submit the AD names at a later time once it gets closer to filming. If you have any questions about the application don’t be afraid to call the DGA and ask.
Email the packet to email@example.com.
Once your signatory application has been received, a signatory rep will be able to review and let you know what additional items are needed for the signatory process. Should you have questions about the signatory application’s status once sent, contact a Signatories Assistant, at (310) 289-2094.
Upon return of the completed and signed signatory application and forms, the Guild will determine if the producer company presented is the appropriate signatory entity, based on the information provided. Further information may be required.
Signatory status will be given to the Producer at the time the Guild is confident that the necessary signatory and financial assurances’ documents have been provided. The signatory and financial assurances documents will be circulated to the appropriate parties, signed by the authorized representative of the signatory Producer, and delivered to the Guild prior to the commencement of Principal Photography. A payroll deposit is required. It is important to discuss the delivery of the payroll deposit with the Signatory Representative early in the signatory process.
When working on a film set and working with actors using a SAG agreement you will be required to fill out an Exhibit G each day of filming. This form can be intimidating if you have never filled out one before but once you get the hang of it, its not that difficult. Follow this is easy-to-use guide below.
Steps to filling out the “G”:
3. Fill in what the actor is doing in the Status section
Status – This is the column where you indicate what the actors are doing.
R = Rehearsal / FT = Fitting / TR = Travel Day / H = Hold / T = Test / SW = Start Work / W = Work / WF = Work Finish / SWF = Start Work Finish
4. Fill in the times, allowances and penalties for each actor / stunt person
****All times can be inputted using regular time or military time.****
Report Makeup Wardrobe – This is the time the actor arrived for HMU & wardrobe. If the actor arrived earlier than their call time you would simply list their call time from the call sheet, however if they arrived later than their call time this is important to note.
Report on Set – This is the time the actor arrived on set.
Dismiss on Set – This is the time the actor was wrapped on set.
Dismiss Make Up Wardrobe – This is typically 15 minutes after the actor has wrapped on set. If for some reason the actor takes longer to get out of HMU and Wardrobe you can adjust this time, however 15 minutes is always given.
ND Meal – This is an abbreviation for Non Deductible and it means that the actor will not receive a meal penalty if they take a breakfast when called in before the main call time.
ND meal in – The time the actor begin their ND Meal
ND meal out – The time the actor finished their ND Meal
1st meal – This refers to Lunch and is due six hours after the general call time.
1st meal In – The official time lunch was called
1st meal out – Typically 30 minutes after “last man” was called
2nd meal In – The official time 2nd meal was called
2nd meal out – Typically 30 minutes after “last man” was called
*Note 2nd meal is typically something that only happens a few times on a project and not every day.
Travel time – This is the section that is primarily used if the shooting location is outside the studio zone or if you have flown an actor from out of state. You do NOT need to fill this section out if the actors are local and shooting within the Zone you are allotted.
Leave for location – The time the actor left their house or hotel to the location.
Arrive at location – The time the actor got to location that day.
Leave location – The time the actor left the location that day.
Arrive at studio – The time the actor arrived at their house or hotel.
Stunt Adj. – This section is primarily used for stunt performers, however it can be used for actors as well. The rates are variable depending the contract.
Minors tutoring time – This is the total number of hours a Minor spent in school. This may not be necessary if filming during the summer etc.
No. Outfits Provided – Did the actor provide any wardrobe and bring them to set? Use a number value in this column.1, 2 etc
Forced Call -This is a very expensive column so beware. Checking this box means that you violated an Actor’s turnaround time. Make sure to consult the Jefford Rules or Sag’s website for proper turnaround times.
MPVs – Was the lunch or 2nd meal late or non-existent. Refer to the SAG contract to see how to rate this. Use a number value in this column 1, 2, etc
Performers signature – At the end of the day you will collect the Actor’s signature. This is the hardest part of filling out the G. Make sure actors (especially beginning actors) know to find you before leaving so they can sign out with you.
Download this handy XLS editable Exhibit G.