How A lot Do Extras Get Paid? Questions About Extras Answered

Most critical actors who’ve carried out extras work don’t like to attract consideration to that truth. After the joy and thrill of the extras work is gone—being on set, working round well-known actors— actuality units in. They understand there’s nothing glamorous about being an additional. 

But below the precise circumstances, being an additional is usually a good method to make cash. In at present’s put up, I’ll reply the commonest questions I hear from actors about extras work. 

 Film grew working on a western-themed film set



How A lot Do Extras Get Paid?


Extras work pay varies with the kind of manufacturing you might be part of. Most firms pay a day by day price as an alternative of an hourly price. Extras on TV and movie units pay $174/ day, whereas industrial extras receives a commission $338.40/ day.

Extras with particular talents, or those that might be choreographed doing sure actions like swimming or skating, receives a commission a bit extra. Extras who carry their very own wardrobe or props, do their very own make-up, or are driving of their half additionally get pay bumps. These charges, although removed from what a talking position pays, aren’t dangerous both.


Can I Be part of The Union With Extras Work?


Regardless of the pay, the one purpose you must wish to do extras work is to acquire the SAG vouchers it is advisable to develop into SAG eligible. Aside from that, there isn’t any different purpose you must concern your self with background work if you wish to be an actor. Chances are you’ll assume the pay is value it or that you would be able to be taught sufficient on set earlier than touchdown “critical” roles, however that’s not the fact.

When you get your union vouchers, end the job and do not look again. Alternatively, In the event you’re not a critical actor, otherwise you’re retired and simply wish to have enjoyable with the expertise, it’s undoubtedly not the worst gig. There’s loads of meals to eat (and it is often not that dangerous), the pay might be first rate and, since you are not critical about appearing, it may be one thing to brag about. 


“Chances are you’ll assume that the pay is value it or that you would be able to be taught sufficient on set earlier than attending to the intense stuff, however that’s not the fact.”


Can Doing Extras Work Harm My Profession?


In brief: sure, it may possibly.

Right here’s the reality: when a director sees somebody as an additional, they’re already trying down on them and don’t take them severely as an actor. In the event you act such as you’ve bought one thing to show and put your self on the market throughout work hours, folks could gravitate in direction of you. However there may be all the time a standing sport that individuals play when coping with extras.

The world has, fortunately, modified because the Me Too Motion. Studios have been adamant about distributing and following tips on sexual harassment— it’s a really delicate subject on movie units in comparison with even simply 10 years in the past. The times of going to someone’s trailer are over and persons are extra assured in reporting shady conduct.

As a supervisor who has actors enjoying collection common roles, I’ve been sending out a whole lot of paperwork containing tips about this matter. I’d advise you to not use background work to satisfy folks considering the networking will jumpstart your profession. None of that’s reasonable. The expertise is best than nothing, nevertheless it shouldn’t be an finish objective. 

There are different avenues you need to use after you get your SAG card to interrupt into the enterprise. My Mastering the Enterprise of Performing collection goes in-depth about these avenues and take full benefit of every potential path you select to go down.  


Cameraman filming a two men sitting at a bar.



Let me put this one other means: on set, extras are on the backside of the totem pole. A lot so, that individuals just like the assistant administrators who deal with extras will take out their dangerous days on them. There’s an outdated joke that exhibits how a lot extras are valued that goes, “What’s the distinction between a prop and an additional? You don’t need to feed an additional.”

Don’t get me flawed, there are good background jobs on the market. For instance, if you will get on a gradual present and also you’re one of many prospects that go right into a retailer commonly, that could possibly be a very good job. Typically you possibly can shine via together with your position and probably seize the eye of these in cost, which may result in one thing greater down the street. It has occurred.

But being an additional is a job that I can solely suggest for retirees. Though, I may by no means see why anybody who has retired would wish to put up with the BS that may occur on set. I undoubtedly can’t suggest youngsters do extras work, though there’ll all the time be a requirement for the demographic on particular initiatives.



As a working actor, who has carried out many productions in lead and supporting roles in main TV, I’ve by no means discovered happening set, if I am not in it, to be a pleasing expertise. I can solely keep in it for thus lengthy. After that, like many different actors, we really feel prefer it’s boring and query our presence there. I do know that many different managers and brokers prefer to go on set, however I do not look after it. I believe if it’s not your set, it’s not enjoyable irrespective of how huge the manufacturing is. The nice expertise solely lasts about an hour and may get outdated shortly.

I’ve very seldom ever heard an additional say that they get a pure excessive on set like how actors get. The job position loses the luster and one realizes that there isn’t as a lot glamour as one anticipated at first. So do background work in case you should, however provided that you could. 

There’s Extra to Performing Than “Performing”

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