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Old 11-17-2005, 12:49 PM   #1
Cesahr
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Default Question about SAG Ultra Low

What exactly has to fall under the 200k? Does everything up thru principle production count toward that 200k, but not the edit, publicity, contingency, fringes? We're pretty close for my project and I've talked to the SAG people here in Chi, but they weren't really specific. Any help is appreciated.
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Old 11-18-2005, 01:13 PM   #2
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Default Re: Question about SAG Ultra Low

For the Sag 200K budget they are going to include everything through post, fringes and all. However they are going off the budget you supply to them, so don't include publicity. But you should know if your budget comes in somewhere below the 200k number by 5-10k, they may bump you up anyway as they know every indie always goes over budget.

You might try raising a bit extra cash and get bumped up to the next category anyway. You will be amazed at the quality of known actors that will work on a film that they think is in the 500k to 750k range as opposed to the 200k range. Plus, instead of the actors making a 100 bucks a day, they can get 933 per week plus fringes - which is much better.

The only thing if you do this is that you will have to have extra money on hand for the Sag Bond required at this budget and you should spring spring for some Honey Wagons that will make your production more legit.

Best of luck!
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Old 11-18-2005, 01:43 PM   #3
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Default Re: Question about SAG Ultra Low

We are going to pay actually mod.low budget scale for the cast plus some points...we have a 500k and 750 k budget ready to go too because we're possibly getting matching/finishing funds from a company to be named later. I just wanted to be clear on what the specifics are at 200K. We've got the 10% contingency figured in already to get us close to 200k so hopefully that will alleviate the notion of bumping us up.Thanks for the suggestions
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Old 11-19-2005, 01:12 PM   #4
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Default Re: Question about SAG Ultra Low

Cesahr - when you hire a casting director and are prepared to make offers to actors - the information that you will really want to have ready and know are:

Billing Offered:

Pay (scale + deferment + points): - You should be able to tell them exactly how and when deferment and points are paid out. You should also be very clear on the definition of points. You should meet with your lawyer before making offers to have all of this information laid out.

Dressing Rooms: (I'd get at least a honey wagon.)

Guaranteed Weeks or Days:

Your casting director will help guide you through this as well. Also, the other thing I would say is just set a start date and you'll be amazed at how quickly things start to fall in place. Just don't fall into the trap of being locked in on an actor that isn't reasonably attainable or who spends too much time with an offer. Make your offers for a very limited amount of times. When you release a breakdown with a known casting director - your project will have legitamacy very quickly. I would also say regardless of whether or not you get the matching funds, just plan on going to the Sag Modified Low. The calibur of actors will astonish you.

I say all this from experience because we just finished a film doing much of what I've listed here. Of the 8 prinicipal cast members - all either have their own tv series or are known film actors. Most of which auditioned too. It's very surreal when you see someone who has their own show auditioning to be in your film.

Best of Luck!
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Old 11-19-2005, 01:24 PM   #5
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Default Re: Question about SAG Ultra Low

Awesome, thank you. We actually own a honey wagon...okay, just a huge RV...hub is coo-coo for cocoa puffs (in a good way) and he thought it would be a good fun thing to do with the kiddies on weekends in the summer. And, it is. It's an older model, mid 90's but its super nice, full service and everything. So it's nice not to have that cost.

Thanks for the info about casting. I've hired the two guys on a hand shake and they're both of the opinion: you take a job for one of two reasons: love or money. And my project ain't for the money I'm all about doing things by the book where casting is concerned for sure and SAG because, this is, afterall, Chicago.

I know what you mean about surreal. The other night my other two producers (both emmy winning..nnnniiice) were debating over some logistical issue during dinner and I just sat back and watched. It's neat and humbling too, watching people work on something that 18 months ago was a mustard seed of an idea.

Good luck with your project too!
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