[ 3 min read ]
Diary of an artist, Thursday, September 12, 2019
Woke up 5:05 am.
I start this new day job mainly because I wanted more control over how much money I make. The thing about being a movie extra is that you don’t have such control. You check each day what they have, you apply here and there but you’re never certain if they’ll invite you to the set. Plus, once they said they’ll take you you can never be certain that the thing will actually happen, because they are free to cancel it anytime, so it may happen that you’ll be left with nothing.
The other thing about movie sets is that you never know how long the thing will be. Will it be 3 hours, or 5, or 7, or 10, or 12, or 14? Each scenario is possible. They usually want people for the whole day (12 hours, and if it’s longer they’ll pay you a little bit more). So it often so happens that you don’t really know what your day will look like, how long it will be, where you’ll spend it, will you have somewhere to sit and wait (or will you be kept standing next to the movie trailers for hours on end before anyone will realise that you might need some chairs or a bench). And you can stand next to those trailers regardless of the weather. That’s why a movie extra must be always prepared for various weather scenarios.
If you got even a small role your situation will be much better, as you’ll be required to appear on the movie set only when they actually need you, you’ll have a place where you can sit and wait, you’ll be invited to eat and drink anything you want (unlike movie extras who are told precisely what they can and what they can’t eat and drink — there are far more things which you can’t eat and drink).
But the least convenient thing of all about being a movie extra or amateur actor (only for small roles, where you can’t ruin much) is that you never know what you’ll make per week. Until the week is over that’s always a mystery. I mean you can hope that at least (if nothing better comes your way) you should be able to make x. But, all unexpected events in your life aside, that’s not guaranteed either. It could happen that you will end up having less sets that you assumed. Especially when you don’t take every set (some sets can be so exhausting that you will not be able to take another one the next day so the rationale of appearing on such sets is questionable to say the least, unless they’re very well paid that is).
Reading (since my last diary entry):
Voices From Chernobyl: The Oral History of a Nuclear Disaster by Svetlana Alexievich (15 min, on Internet Archive).
YouTube videos and movies (since my last diary entry):
The Crown S.1 E.2 Hyde Park Corner (on Netflix) Finished it.
JUDGMENT: #1 Reason You’re Not Doing What You Really Want To
NEW UNLOCK: How to Smell the Roses Without Stopping | Seize the Yay Podcast
Music for this writing session: Frédéric Chopin (on spotify)