Monday, June 28, 2010
What is the difference between union acting and non -union acting?
The acting unions, SAG (movies, and some TV ), AFTRA (radio and some TV) and EQUITY(stage) set the minimal working conditions and a salary schedule for actors. Productions that are supervised by these unions are required to see that the actors are paid a reasonable amount for their work, are not overworked without additional compensation, and they must provide reasonable working conditions. Non union productions do not have to meet these minimal conditions and salaries, Thus, union acting is better paid and the actors are better cared for. Non union acting can be semiprofessional, which pays the actors something but not up to union standards or it can be amateur in which there is no pay whatsoever. Which do you think is better? Which would you rather work for? You do have to earn union membership and pay a substantial initiation fee and quarterly dues. AFTRA is an open union and anyone can join just by paying the fees. Being a union member does not guarantee you work, but you are eligible to atttend auditions for roles that suit your age and type. These auditions are usually made available to the actors by their agents.