I'd like to build a pool of local talent that can read a telepromter, speak in a clear voice, and work infrequently for little pay. My hope is that I can identify potential talent for some upcoming projects before I need them - and then have several to call on.
I live in a fairly small town and would be shocked if anyone had a SAG card within miles (the guy 2 doors down has an emmy from the 70's - but that's a different story).
I'll be dealing with local talent so question is this:
(1) What's the best way to go about screening, and identifiying those who could work as Independent Contractors doing such work?
I do have access to a large conference room where I could setup and do "screen tests". I thought of advertising in the local paper with a link to my web site. There I'd give full disclosure of what the "work" entails, that the screen test is not an offer of contract for a IC, have a release for download, and a script that I'd like for them to read.
I know to avoid using the term employ or employee, as I only intent to use them as IC's, and infrequently at that. Any suggestions on questionaires or forms for them to fill out to establish that they are IC's, not employees, in case of a dispute?
(2) What would a fair rate be for reading the prompter? Hourly? By the Job? Of course I know it depends on the budget, what I can get them to work for etc.
The production target is the web, if you take a look at this you'll get an idea of what I have in mind (although my projects are not web-tech related). In fact I have those same ULTRA backgrounds (yikes!).
Kind of uncharted waters trying to find an Independent Contractors for this kind of work. Any advise or guidance would be very much welcome.
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01-15-2005 02:16 AM
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- Aug 2004
01-19-2005 01:38 PM
- Join Date
- Aug 2004
Nobody wants to take a shot at this? Please realize that my comments about "...read a telepromter, speak in a clear voice, and work infrequently for little pay..." are made in jest, well, everything except speak in a clear voice and read a prompter. My point is that I don't plan to entertain a SAG contract, it's just not in my budget or scope of work.
I would like to hear how others have built a pool of (homegrown) talent they can call on. An agency may be an option, but I'd like to explore the independant contrator route first.
anyone, anyone, Bueller?
Thanks - W
01-20-2005 03:17 AM
I was assuming you were talking about crew when you said independant contractor.
It really depends on your town, but the business is pretty much oriented around casting for specific projects. There is the "go see" meeting where an actor will meet a casting person or agent with the intention of introducing themselves, but often times that's more like an interview then a casting session. And also, that type of meeting is with a person who has access to a number of projects from a number of different sources.
Somewhat different from your situation, where you're likely to be casting quite infrequently.
My suggestion would be to wait until you have a specific project, then begin to call in casting sessions well in advance. You could put them all on tape and set a goal to see...15 people maybe.
Even if you only go with one person for this project, you've got 14 audition tapes in your closet that may apply to future projects.
As far as rates and IRS...no idea about your state. Look online at the rules for independant contractors, your state may have specific rules you need to follow in hiring, paying and reporting their earnings.
01-20-2005 05:49 AM
You can find the talent you need at local TV stations.
I'm thinking specifically of news people who better know how to speak clearly and read a teleprompter. They do so every day.
I would watch TV newscasts. Find somebody that appeals to you. Give them a call,---give two or three a call. Tell them what your up to and invite them to audition. In small markets like your community these folks are paid peanuts. Trust me, I've been there. They will be happy for the money, and the project they can add to their demo reel to get on to a bigger TV station.
Let me know how you make out.Sherman
01-20-2005 01:48 PM
- Join Date
- Aug 2004
Thanks Guys, I don't think I'll have too much trouble finding acceptable talent - my concern is the business end of the relationship. I do have a project, several in fact, on the horizon where I'll need some on screen talent. The projects have a finite duration, but if the talent works out, I'd like the option to use them again. My dilema is, how much can use someone as an IC before they could turn around an say that they were an employee? I'm a one man show for now - I'm growing, but I'm not ready to hire just yet.
Of course I know what you'll say..."talk to a lawyer" which is great advice. I was just hoping some had been down this path before and share experiences with me.
Cheers - W