Following the merger of the two film and tv actors’ unions into SAG-AFTRA, the leaders and members of the organization set about the arduous task of figuring out the next ‘edition’ of their standard film, television, new media, and non-broadcast (industrial etc.) contracts.
They have now published the new rates for their low budget film agreements. Here they are, rounded UP to the nearest dollar:
|Agreement||Day Rate||Weekly Rate||Ceiling||‘Real’
|Ultra Low Budget (ULB)||$125||N/A||$250,000||$241||N/A||Can mix SAG and non-SAG actors.|
|Modified Low Budget (MLB)||$335||$1,166||$700,000||$645||$1,982|
|MLB Diversity Incentive||1,050,000||See below for qualifications|
|MLB Background Incentive||$812,000||Average of 3 background actors per shoot day have to be in SAG.|
|Low Budget Diversity Incentive||$3,750,000|
|Stunt Coordinators||$906||$3,378||$1,586||$5,912||Stunt coordinators always get the basic rate|
|Stunt Coordinator – Flat Deal||$1,409||$5,555||$1,409||$5,555||“Flat deal” gives you an overtime break, but there is no short day|
|Union Background Actors||$157||N/A||$295||Overtime is 1.5x for 9-10 hours, 2x for 11-12 hours.|
The Real Daily rate assumes a 12 hour day, and a 10% agency fee.
12 hours = 8 hours of straight time and 4 hours of overtime = (8 + (1.5*4) = 14 ‘pay hours’ = (dayrate/8) * 14 * 1.1 (agency)
The Real Weekly rate assumes a 5 day, 60 hour week, and a 10% agency fee.
60 hours = 44 hours of straight time, 16 hours of OT = (44 + (1.5*16) = 68 ‘pay hours’ = (weekrate/44) * 68 * 1.1 (agency)
You get an overtime break on weekly contracts (basically, you get an extra 4 hours of ‘straight’ time)
Stunt Coordinator rates assume no 10% agency fee.
Diversity Incentive raises the ceiling, but to qualify you have to have:
A) A minimum of 50% of the total speaking roles and 50% of the total days of employment are cast with performers who are members of the following four groups:
2. Senior performers (sixty years (60) or older),
3. Performers with disabilities, or
4. People of color (Black/African American, Asian/Pacific Islander and South Asian, Latino/Hispanic, Arab/Middle Eastern and Native American Indian)
you can’t ‘double count’ someone.
B) A minimum of 20% of the total days of employment is cast with performers who are people of color
Background Incentive raises the ceiling, but to qualify you have to have an average of 3 SAG background actors per day. So on a 10 day shoot, you can either have 3 SAG extras per day, or one day where you have 30, or some combination that adds up to 30 total SAG extras.
Note also that as a producer, you’re responsible for employer fringes, above and beyond the salary:
17.3% goes to SAG-AFTRA’s health, pension and welfare fund (HPW).
20-22% goes to payroll fringes – FICA, federal and state unemployment, disability, medicare, etc.
2-5% goes to the payroll company you’re going to hire to deal with all this.
In the coming weeks, we’ll be updating our sample budgets with the latest SAG-AFTRA rates.
Many thanks to Darrien Michelle Gipson and Colin McCormack at SAGIndie for double-checking these figures.