Saturday, November 21, 2009
Signs Your Shoot Is Going To Be A Bad One.
• You get e-mails from a production that don't contain the name of the show. This means the people in charge work on shoots once in a blue moon. They don't need to use titles in correspondence because it's the only project they've had all year. In other words, they don't work on films for a living and will probably expect you do put in 18 hour days, eat pizza for lunch, etc, because they're doing it for "fun" and so should you.
• When they e-mail you about your availability, they don't include a job title. It's most likely a copy-and-paste form letter and they're too lazy to throw in "grip" or "electric". If they can't even do that, imagine how they handle the really important stuff.
• They expect you to pick up the truck and gear the day before for free. Because, you know, load in and prep doesn't take a whole day, so they shouldn't have to pay you for it.
• They ask if you have any gear they can use. Notice I said "use" and not "rent".
• They insist on having a pre-production meeting and/or tech scout, but when you get there, everyone else shows up late. They don't know what kind of shots they want or where the camera's going, and when you ask them a simple question, the answer is always "We don't know yet."
• The location is on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere and they don't include a map. It's either because the thought didn't even cross their minds, they're lazy, or they assume that just because they managed to find it, 50 other people should be able to find it too. All bad signs.
• The location is on a busy street downtown and the call sheet says "Street parking only." Not only will you spend half an hour hunting for a spot, but you'll have to park half a mile away and then move your car every two hours.
• There's three company moves in one day. They're all more than ten miles apart. They don't give you a map. Four pages are scheduled for each location. And no, they're not reimbursing you for gas. Oh yeah, and it's street parking.
• If they use the words "passion project." Run away. Far, far away.