Being an actor is an expensive hobby. IF you want it to be a hobby that is and not a lifelong career. It will cost you THOUSANDS of dollars in the beginning and with each new year, it will become less expensive. All those gigs that you or your agent booked you...WILL PAY OFF. And think about all the residuals you will get each time the show you're in is on TV. I just got my residuals for 2019's "Watchmen" and it's already mid-2022!
As someone who has a lot of fire inside her due to her Eastern-European heritage, I get very passionate/pissed/angry when I see casting calls that state "pay": copy, credit, meals. Now, hold on motherfucker...You're telling me that all those hours that I spent perfecting my craft, spending hundreds of dollars on headshots and demo reels, paying for my laptop...are wasted and all I'm getting is most-likely a shitty footage and a $10 burger?! How in the world is THAT fair? It's not and there should be something done about it.
Fortunately, there are many starting, aspiring and desperate actors who want to get their footage, who need to build their resume, who have to get their foot in the door. I was one of them. That changed when my agent told me "NO MORE UNPAID GIGS!". My agent Christopher is a tough, family man, but he is also very sweet and wants what's best for ME. As soon as he said that one phrase, that's when everything changed. I also began to respect myself more. If you can't respect and love yourself, then who the hell is gonna do that?
I'm not saying that the people who do unpaid gigs don't respect themselves, but time is money. You will never get that time back. Everyone's time is worth something.
If you're a director, producer, casting director who is reading this blog, you're either going to thank me or hate me for giving you this info. Here are the costs of being an actor, doesn't matter the experience. Those prices are average.
Rent: $1500+ Camera: $200+ Memory cards for auditions: $20+ Classes: $150+
Books: $25+ Internet: $50+
Electricity: $50+ Headshots: $200+ Laptop: $1000+ Website (Wix subscription): $120+ Actor's Access: $68 a year+ $5 per photo, etc IMDb Pro: $150+ per year or $20 a month 800 casting, Mandy, etc: $100+ Transportation: $60+ Lodging/ hotel/ AirBnB: $150+
Car: $3500+ Car insurance: $200+ Clothes for auditions: $20+ Backdrop: $50+ Lights: $60+
Cell phone: $300+
Cell service: $50+ Hair, nails & makeup: $20+ Editing services: $50+ Editing programs: $20+ a month
Obviously, those same factors come with any other business, but I tried to nail it down to every bit and pieces. I'm 100% sure I am missing MANY other factors. So please, pretty please PAY YOUR ACTORS. At LEAST $50 a day. Because copy, credit and food just won't do.