TV extras and movie extras jobs are a risky type of living. You may be fortunate enough to be employed for an entire movie or perhaps the entire schedule of a brand new Television series, but generally, you’ll be lined up for individual scenes, perhaps across the course of a full day or perhaps a couple of days. Not many individuals create a regular living through movie extras or TV extras employment and you will frequently find yourself performing alongside university students, self-employed or retired persons, who can arrange their workload to accommodate the occasional additional work. Even though practically anyone can be employed in the TV extras and movie extras sector, it’s not a regular occupation which will offer you a steady salary.
The particular wages for extras jobs will vary. There are established Equity rates of pay applied by the likes of the BBC, ITV as well as independent film companies, which will differ quite significantly, concerning the kind of work you need to do. Payments can vary from as low as £67 to as much as around £135 and higher, (these numbers are according to Equity rates established in August 2007). More current details can be found on the Equity web site.
Filming sites for TV extras or movie extras may include traveling lengthy distances
Just like the job itself is often unpredictable, so can the location! Film companies hardly ever pay traveling costs except in cases where they’re filming in a remote area in which it is difficult to obtain local extras. The majority of the main film studios are located around the London region, but when they are not filming inside the studio they may be filming any place in the country and will almost certainly be searching for movie extras or TV extras from the nearby catchment area, suited to their location. Nevertheless, it does not matter very much where you reside if you are ready to travel an acceptable distance.
Are you going to need to interview or audition for any role?
The simple answer is – very unlikely! Out of the numerous extras roles I’ve performed, I’m able to only recall auditioning for just two roles- one of them was to get a talking part in Crimewatch (which I got!), additionally the other concerned a designed for TV movie regarding Princess Diana.
Must you be a minimum age to operate in the TV extras or movie extras business?
Age isn’t technically a problem, as all sorts of individuals are required for background work which involves as young as a baby as well as old maybe! Anybody who’s below 16 needs to possess a license from their local council, although stage schools are frequently used as a ‘stepping stone’ for this, by providing their pupils on an open license. Once you attain the upper age limits, a common aspect to consider is whether or not you will find the staying power to handle what might be a lengthy and demanding day.
Taking everything into account, is it truly worth it?
Whether it’s worthwhile for you is determined by whatever you expect you’ll get out of it. If you are searching for the excitement of performing on a large movie or next to a well-known actor, then yes, it is worthwhile. If you are searching for some work experience, to enhance your specialist theatre training, then again yes, it is worthwhile.
Nevertheless, if you are seeking to develop a consistent living from doing work in the extras business, then in my view, no it is not worthwhile! The cash could be great, particularly if you are fortunate enough being scheduled for the series, or perhaps the entire length of production and you also obtain night time filming, direction, walk-ons, etc. However, that is not typical in the profession and it would be stupid to depend on it!
Ben Jones has spent many years working in the TV Extras and Movie Extras industry, before joining StarsInMyEyes.TV.