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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Casting Brief Q7: Contract?


For the entire List of casting questions go back to
Casting Brief





Question 7: Contract?

A contract is made between either the producer (production house) and the actor or sometimes directly with the brand, like in the case of commercials.

In features a contract is usually made for almost everyone working on it. In the case of actors, all the cast who have to give more than a few days to the film have to sign contracts. Some of the basic things that a contract usually contains are,
a) The total amount that the producer and the actor agrees to for that particular project.
b) Time required from the actor.. i.e. no of day's or months or sometimes even the exact dates that are required, not just for shoot but for dubs as well.
c) The time lines and distribution to when this would be paid,
(eg- 10% advance on signing + 50% on completion of shoot + 40% on completion of dubs is one version, other is a fixed sum at the end of every month. The break is what is best suited to both parties)
d) Participation of the actor in promotional activities before the release, this also could be in terms of no of days of appearance or get even more specific like 10 tv shows 3 radio etc..

In most cases there are no contracts made for actors who are casted for a day's shoot and for background artists, however a there could be a one page agrement with these actors and for background artists the contract is usually made with the coordinator.

In case of commercials the actor has to reveal at the time of casting if they are or have been part of competitive brands irrespective of contracts. Usually if the actor has had a lead role and face has clearly been seen on a major brand like a cola drink the actor cannot act for its competition for around 2 years (even if no contract is made as competition wont touch the actor), it is therefore also necessary for the casting director to make sure that this is followed as this could land up everyone in a soup. Even when the contract is over it is best to mention at the the time of audition that the actor had a contract with a particular brand which ended on so and so date. Contracts in commercials range from
a) A simple agreement to endorse the brand and not participate in competition for 'X' time period. to
b) A contract that signs the person as a brand ambassador which goes beyond just shooting a commercial but print, radio and presence at live event's etc..



TIP to all:
a) Before signing any contract it is best to read all the fine print on it as that might just lead to bigger problems later.
b) Be aware of all that is required from your end to fulfill the contract
c) Also the keep a eye of clauses that can stop your payment or working on other similar material.
d) If your confused about some clause get clarification not only from the concerned party but also from a lawyer if need be. OR look up online to hunt for similar agreements and see what they contain.




For answer to the previous question see
Q6 - Casting Requirements?

Read on for the next question
Question 8: Which competitive brands worked on by the actor are to be kept in mind?

or go back to Casting Brief page to read the other questions.


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