Q: What are the Do's and Dont's for background performers?

A:  Below are the DO’S

  • DO BE ON TIME - Being late will disrupt the shooting schedule and can cause for a last minute replacement to be called in, thus loosing your spot. 
  • DO REPORT TO EXTRAS HOLDING - Once we book you, we will give you a contact person. When you arrive on set check in with this person. This is where you will be given papers to get signed in ( Your Name and SIN #, AGENCIES ADDRESS and PHONE # ).
  • DO BE RESPONSIBLE - Once you have committed to being on set you must go , this is a job, treat it with respect and responsibility.
  • DO SIGN IN WITH AGENCY ADDRESS AND YOUR SIN # - Be professional, memorize or bring your agency contact information and your sin #. Never give out your personal information.
  • DO PARK IN CREW PARKING - Follow the arrows or signs to crew parking.
  • DO KEEP ALL YOUR VOUCHERS - After completion of filming you will sign out, your pay will arrive at the office approximately 30 days after filming.
  • DO BE PREPARED FOR A LONG DAY - We never know how long filming will run. You must be available the entire day and possibly into the night. Filming can go very long, sometimes between 12 and 18 hours! You are paid for the entire time you are on set, even if you only actually film for 10 minutes so be respectful. You CANNOT leave the set early, you must remain until the filming is complete, so please don’t ask to leave early!
  • DO BRING YOUR THREE CHANGES OF CLOTHES WITH YOU - Please bring anything that your agent has requested ( as well as the items in your survival kit ). You should always bring at least 3 different outfits with you. ( No obvious logos or words on the clothes).
  • DO CLEAN UP YOUR MESS - If you make a mess, clean it up. Don’t leave food items, wardrobe or garbage behind.
  • DO LISTEN - Even when you are in extras holding you are still working. Always be listening for calls to film, wardrobe etc.
  • DO BE POSITIVE AND PROFESSIONAL - Always be ready to work and be happy to be there! You are also representing Artisys Elite Management Inc.
  • DO CHECK YOUR EMAILS - You MUST check your emails the night before filming for call time and location details ( these usually come between 10 pm and midnight ) Also you MUST check your emails before you go to set in case anything has changed.

A:  Below are the DONT'S 

  • DON’T LEAVE EXTRAS HOLDING - You must ask someone if you need to leave holding ( washroom etc. ) so if they need you for filming they know where to find you.
  • DON’T TALK TO THE ACTORS - Don’t make a nuisance out of yourself, the actors have a job to do. The best way to be asked back to set is by being easy to work with. Never ASK for a photo or autograph.
  • DON’T CHANGE OR ALTER YOUR WARDROBE, HAIRSTYLE, OR MAKE-UP - Once wardrobe has been established DO NOT change ANYTHING.
  • DON’T BRING CAMERAS OR RECORDING DEVICES - Set is closed and secure, you will be removed if you bring these articles on set.
  • DON’T BOTHER THE CASTING DIRECTORS OR CREW - Everyone on set has a job to do, if you have any questions please call your agent @ 403 452-2552.
  • DON’T BE LOUD OR DISRUPTIVE - When the camera is rolling there can be NO talking, laughing or noise.
  • DON’T KEEP CALLING YOUR AGENT FOR CALL TIME! - Casting will not give us the call time and location for the following day until filming for the current day has wrapped, this can be as late as midnight. We will email you your call time and location as soon as we get it! If you are filming on Friday we will call you Thursday some time before midnight to tell you exactly where to go and when to be there.
  • DON’T ASK TO BE DISMISSED - A lot of time and money has gone into getting you onto set and in establishing the scenes you are in. You MUST stay until filming is done, be assured that everyone else is just as tired, keep your mind on the finished product - A GREAT MOVIE!


Q: What should background performers consider bringning?

A: Below is a survival kit list. Some or all may apply. These are only                                         suggestions. 

  1. Photo ID and ACTRA card, if applicable
  2. Social Insurance Number
  3. Agency’s name, address and phone number
  4. Medical Alert Tag (if applicable)
  5. Prescription medication (if applicable)
  6. First Aid (i.e. Band-Aids, pain killers, antihistamines, etc)
  7. Personal Hygiene Supplies
  8. Sunscreen, lip balm, tooth brush, etc.
  9. Substantial food items to last a long day 
  10. Water Bottle
  11. Thermos or personal beverage container
  12. Special dietary food
  13. Back pack or bag, clearly labeled, with your name, phone number, and agent.
  14. Good reading material
  15. Games, cards, knitting, crosswords, etc.
  16. Blanket
  17. Cell phone on silent
  18. And your……SMILE and GOOD ATTITUDE
  • A minimum of 3 complete wardrobe choices are required. Appropriate undergarments and all-weather gear. Spare socks, gloves and scarves, hats, belts, etc.
  • For the safety, security and comfort of othersbvand yourself we advise to NOT bring the following:  Valuables such as credit cards, large amounts of cash or expensive jewellery, iPods, laptops, portable stereos, pets (unless required) No drugs, alcohol, weapons, pornographic reading material, foul languages or bad attitudes.

Q: Can you give me some tips and Info For Background Performers?

A: Below are some important tips for background performers

  • The evening before the shoot, you will get an e-mail or phone call from us telling you the time and location and all info needed for that day. Do not give the location information to anyone. This is given to you in the strictest of confidence as the production people do not need unnecessary crowds and "paparazzi".
  • If you are supposed to be at the location for 7:00am, please be there by 6:45! We will provide you with directions to BACKGROUND HOLDING. Please report to the person in charge, this person's name will be in your email.
  • When signing in, put your name at the top of the form and use C/O: ARTISTS ELITE MANAGEMENT INC. ADDRESS instead of your own.
  • Be sure to bring your Survival Pack containing everything you will need for the day. Our suggested list is provided to you on our website.
  • DO NOT BRING VALUABLES to the set. Either leave them at home or lock them in your car.
  • Listen to the AD's. There are several around the set and will relay messages to and from the director. Keep your speech volume low at all times.
  • Catering Services normally provide an array of snacks and meals for Background.
  • You may encounter a CRAFT SERVICES TABLE. This is designated for the ACTRA members and Production Crew only. It will have several choices of fancy eats, coffees, snacks, candy, gum etc. DO NOT EAT HERE as this is to fulfill a union commitment and is not intended for use by the Background folks. If you are provided with a hot meal, consider yourself very fortunate. Calgary is the only city in moviedom that actually provides a hot meal to their Background Actors....and the movie producers provide this meal under duress! You really should bring a lunch just in case. There may also be an EXTRAS craft service table.
  • If you are to break for a meal, there is a pecking order. Stars, executives, film crew then ACTRA actors followed by Background Performers. Depending upon the budget, you may eat at the same location as the stars, in a segregated area or from a different food wagon all together. Don't take this personally, it's just the way the system is set up.
  • Don't approach the stars or principal actors on or off the set, they may be trying to remember lines without any additional distractions. If they approach you, that's fine.
  • Don't bring a camera or cell phone on set. An unexpected flash in the middle of a scene will cause absolute havoc with the Director. If you want a picture of yourself on set do it only if seems appropriate and can be done discreetly. Do not take pictures of the stars.
  • Remember, following these rules can make or break your return on set and your future in this business.

Q: What are the Do's and Dont's for Brand Ambassadors and Event Hosts/ Hostesses?

A: Below are the DO’S

  • Do prepare for Success
  • Do anticipate questions and your responses
  • Do know you role and responsibilities
  • Do show up on time ( 10-15 minutes early, allowing for traffic, parking and weather)
  • Do be assertive, not aggressive
  • Do convey confidence and conviction
  • Do maintain open body posture and good eye contact
  • Do wear your badge on your right lapel if asked to wear one
  • Do familiarize yourself with all aspects of your product and role
  • Be professional at ALL times, even during breaks

Below are the DONT’S

  • Don't smoke, eat or drink or text, unless on a scheduled break
  • Don't talk to you associates, talk to your prospects
  • Don't use inappropriate language or argue with anyone
  • Don't complain about time going slow, your feet hurting or be uncomfortable
  • Don't wear uncomfortable clothes or footwear
  • Don't wear chipped nail polish or dark colors. Clear or French only
  • Don't bad mouth your competitors or have a bad attitude- verbally or in body language
  • Don't assume anything, ask questions
  • Don't give up