Pollyanna (alicenwndrln) wrote,

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I was asked to stand in for the little boy on "America Dreams." I saw on the callsheet that he was only in ONE scene, & it was early in the day, & my call time was 10AM. So I assumed I would be done early, early enough to even get a nap before I met a guy from the net, as I had planned!! :-)

So I get there, & no one is there. Turns out, my call time had been pushed to 12:30PM, but no one had called to tell me. Not only that, but the little boy I was standing in for was sick & didn't come in at all. I figured I could just go home. Even the young star, Will Estes, tried to get them to let me go. Then I looked on the call sheet again, & saw that they had me down to be the stand-in for ANOTHER character---the younger daughter, Patty---as well as the
little boy, & she was in several scenes, & could work until 9PM (minors can only work around 8 hours, but her call time was late). So she got dismissed at 9PM...and so did I. I never DREAMED that I would be there that long. They didn't communicate anything to me. This is how it goes when you are a peon in the acting world.

So poor Jack thinks I totally dogged him. We just talked last night about meeting for dinner & bowling at Jerry's Deli. I was supposed to call him, & we'd set a time. He probably sat around all night waiting for my call. *sigh* I didn't take his number, because like I said, I had no idea I'd be there that long. Had they COMMUNICATED with me, I wouldn't have made any plans. So I couldn't even call him to tell him what was going on. I feel horrible. I called & left a message, & emailed him explaining things. Either he's cool about it or he isn't. There was nothing I could do.

I also missed "Dawson's Creek," "Ed," & "Birds of Prey." Not happy about that. "DC" was gonna be good this week. My TV shows are important to me. I didn't set the timers, again thinking I would be home way early.

The worst part? They only paid me from 12:30PM, even though I was there at 10AM & this was THEIR fault. Does it matter? Yes. I would have gotten 2 hours of overtime, & that's a lot of money at this pay rate. When you are as broke as me, every dime matters.

So why are they screwing me? I told the 2nd 2nd that I had been called in at 10, & saw that the call sheet said 12:30, but no one called me to tell me that. When she signed me out, she said she spoke with Chad at Central, & he said it was MY fault, cause my phone numbers weren't updated & they couldn't get in touch with me.

Ummmm....let me explain how gigantic THAT pile of bullshit is. First of all, Extras Management, my casting agency, called me on Monday to tell me I was booked on "AD" for Tuesday, & my call time was 8:30AM. Later that night, Central Casting (the people who BOOK all the shows/movies) called to tell me that my call time had been pushed to 10:30AM. "Great," I said, "I can sleep in!" The girl laughed & we got off the phone. I have this phone called saved in my caller ID.

So...what Chad is telling me, is that they didn't have my numbers to call me LAST night, but somehow, magically, they were able to reach me Monday night. They had my number Monday night, but somehow lost it between then & Tuesday night. Utter bullshit. My home phone number has NOT changed in THREE years!!!!! They didn't even TRY to call my home number, because I was awake til 2AM, & no phone call! Yes, my cellphone number is new. BUT....(1) they should have called my home number first, they should call EVERY number listed, & (2) I still HAVE my old cellphone. I checked it when I got home. There were 4 missed calls from Central last night, after midnight. Here's the kicker. Not only did they NOT leave me a message on my voice mail (a standard thing to do if you are trying to change someone's call time & they don't answer), but my VOICE MAIL message on my OLD cellphone gives out my NEW cellphone number! It picks up & says, "Hi, you have reached my old cellphone. Don't leave me a message here, I probably won't check it. The new number is......." HELLLLLOOOOOOO!?!?!?!?!?!?

It's not about the 2 hour overtime pay to me. It's about this Chad guy making me sound like an idiot, like I'm unprofessional for not updating my numbers (yes, I should have updated my cellphone #, but my home # was still valid, so that argument is void), like I am a liar by saying they didn't call me. ARGH. What idiot calls someone who is working for them to change their call time, & doesn't leave a message? And if they sat through the voice mail to leave a message, they would have heard the new number. AND they are supposed to try EVERY contact number, & they never called me at home!!!! The proof that they have my home number is sitting on my caller ID!

The other stand-ins, who have worked the entire season, say I should fight for that overtime pay, & if they balk, take it up with SAG (my union). As they pointed out, that's why we HAVE a union, so we can't get screwed like this. But my concern is this....if I make a stink with the production company to have them pay me that 2 hours overtime, will they think I am a trouble maker & not ever use me again? And if I make an issue with Chad/Central (which of course I would do politely), will THEY not cast me again? Some people hate being proved wrong. I don't know if it's worth it to ruffle feathers for 2 hours overtime. But they think I'm crazy for letting it go. I don't know what to do.

At this point, I am considering two actions. One, calling a SAG rep. I met him on the set on Tuesday, & he gave me his card & told me to call him anytime, with questions or problems. I might call & ask his advice, off the record. He was a nice guy. The other thing is, I might try to speak with some sort of supervisor at Central. Here's the reason....TWICE before, they have screwed me. TWICE they have called me, two different casting directors, & have told me, "You have been requested by the production company of such & such movie to be a stand-in. We don't have all the details yet, but we just wanted to see if you would be interested or available. We'll call you tomorrow/in two days, & let you know all the details." BOTH times, they never called me back. TWICE, getting my hopes up, when I am broke & would dream of a steady gig, to let me down. They could have called to say, "We're sorry, but the production company went a different way, so it didn't work out, but we hope to find something for you in the future. Sorry." That would take all of 60 seconds. TWICE they have done this to me. Made the gig seem certainly mine....promise to call me with the details...and then never called me back. Sheesh. No excuses. So I would like to meet with whomever is in charge, & politely explain that they can't treat people like this. Yes, we are peons....but films & TV shows cannot operate without stand-ins & extras, so we are actually pretty important. And beyond that, we are human beings with hopes & emotions, who don't deserve to be jerked around like this.

Again, it's not so much about the overtime pay...it's the fact that they said it was MY fault, when it obviously wasn't....AND I could use & am entitled to the overtime. And it's not so much about them dissing me twice, as much as their treatment of us, to do such things (I hear it's sadly frequent).

I don't know what to do. *sigh*


Should I.......?

....call SAG & make a formal complaint?
....run it by the SAG rep, off the record, & see what he suggests?
.....try to meet with a Central manager, or whoever is in charge?
.....just shut up & let it go?

If "other," what do you suggest?


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