What’s It Really Like Being an Extra in a Film or TV Show and How Do You Get the Gig? | Summary and Q&A

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April 23, 2019
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What’s It Really Like Being an Extra in a Film or TV Show and How Do You Get the Gig?

TL;DR

Becoming a background actor involves responding to ads and having the right look, but it can be boring and unglamorous.

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Questions & Answers

Q: How do you become a background actor?

Becoming a background actor is relatively simple, often requiring just a response to an ad. Some professionals may have agents who help them find gigs.

Q: How much do background actors get paid?

The pay for background actors can vary, but for professional extras who are members of SAG-AFTRA, it can be around $175 per work day. Additional pay can be earned for special skills and tasks.

Q: What is the food like on set for background actors?

The food provided on sets is generally excellent, but background actors often have access to a buffet table that is separate from the main talent. The best food is reserved for the main actors.

Q: Is it difficult to get a gig as a background actor?

Getting a gig as a background actor is not usually difficult if you are patient and have a flexible schedule. However, it can be challenging to find enough work to make a career out of it.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Becoming a background actor is a simple process that typically involves responding to ads on websites like Craigslist or dedicated casting websites.

  • Professional extras may have agents who help them book gigs and earn a higher wage, but for most, it is more of a hobby than a career.

  • Being a background actor can be boring and involves long hours of waiting around, but the food on set is usually excellent.

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