Saturday, March 24, 2012
Residuals...an actor's rainy-day funds! 45 cents for a repeat of "In Living Color"!
For actors, it's a little perk in life.
Every time a TV Show or commercial is re-broadcast on a network - or a film is screened for viewers in the comfort of their cozy homes - the producers cough up a residual check for the performers who acted on the project.
The fee is determined by the actor's pay scale and the venue on which it aired.
A major network repeat will generate a higher residual than a lowly cable outlet in the U.S. market.
Actors usually rely on the "surprise" revenue to get through lean times when out-of-work or - God forbid - they have unexpectedly come down with an ailment that prevents them from attending auditions or contracting for assignments.
Whenever I spy an envelope in the mailbox with the Union's logo on its face, I get excited.
Unfortunately, the residuals have been few-and-far between lately, and tend to for paltry sums when they do arrive out-of-the-blue by U.S. Post.
After all, every time a program airs, the residual decreases in size (and number).
Last week, I received a check for approximately $1.00 from the producers of "How I Got into College" (Fox Films) for playing a "Harvard Recruiter" years ago.
I got a whoppiing 47 cents for a repeat of a brief performance on "In Living Color" (I was lucky to land a bit part in a "Brothers / Brothers sketch which starred talented actor Jim Carrey).
Oh well, it's better than a kick in the butt, eh?