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8:18 am - Sun 2/11/07


Well, happy financial news on two fronts...

On Wednesday, I had a callback for the Comcast "Channel One" promo (Which I found out was actually three promos).

(The spots all have the same basic action--Something strange happens during a tour of Comcast's new "Channel One" facilities.)

And on Friday, I got a call from JS telling me I'd booked the gig...but not as the "hero" (The "tour guide"); instead, I guess I'm one of the people on the tour (Though apparently, I'm in all three spots, which seems strange).

(JS didn't tell me that in the initial voicemail. I found out when I called him back confirming I'd gotten the message.)

That's part of why it's taken me a couple days to commit this to Diaryland--Frankly, I was pretty disappointed when I got the news, and I wanted to work on "getting my mind right" about things. As I've said before, I really want to be the "hero" (Particularly in spots like these, that would "show me off" comedically), because to me, that's where the fun is.

(I'm going to be a "principal" in the spot, but beyond money, that doesn't necessarily mean much in commercial terms; For example, all the people in the "Bahamavention" spot were "principals", even the ones you barely saw).

Another source of "disappointment"; union scale for "promos"--compared to regular commercials--is pretty meager. And you don't get "residuals", per se--You get, if I understood this correctly, the amount of the session fee for each 13 week network cycle the promo airs(And the amount of a session fee for each "new usage"--If they put it on the Internet, for example).

So it's not going to be a lot of performing satisfaction, I don't think, and it's not going to be a lot of dough (relatively speaking).

But to "turn that frown upside down"...

We're less than halfway into February and I've booked my second gig. I've got the "Bahamavention" commercial running, "Propel" hasn't started running yet, and now I've got this.

And "this"--"meager" as it may be, in commercial terms--is still pretty good money for hanging out on a set, eating good food, and getting to call myself "a working actor".

In short, things could definitely be worse.


After the "Propel" shoot, which left me feeling vaguely disappointed--there's that word again!--I did a lot of thinking about commercials.

I've said this before, but I think it bears repeating (To you, and to myself)--Commercials are a job. They're primarily about making money (And it can be pretty decent money at that). If you get a little fulfillment from them as an actor, if you do one that gets you noticed, that's basically "icing on the cake".

But expecting anything more than a paycheck, and maybe a nice day or two on the set, is a recipe for--here comes that word again--disappointment.

And I don't want to be disappointed with commercial success. I don't want to be disappointed because I want more out of something than is really there.

Instead, I'd rather appreciate the opportunity to make some money, to have some fun, and to have my time freed up for more enjoyable/meaningful activities (i.e. not having to "work for a living").


In other business news...

The California minimum wage recently went up (I believe to $7.50 an hour).

While ArcLight management made it clear that wages at ArcLight would not be going up across-the-board--since ArcLight, which starts $7.75 an hour, would still be above the minimum--they were going to move up the timetable for "merit increases". And those increases, on a case-by-case basis, might be more than the typical 25-cents an hour.

Anyway, one of the managers approached me Friday night, to let me know that my salary will be going up 75 cents starting with my next paycheck, to $9.00 an hour.

And here's something I think is interesting--While I struggled with "disappointment" over the fact that I'd only be making $314 a day to shoot these Comcast promos, I was tickled pink to get a 75-cent an hour raise at my crappy movie theater job.

I think it has to do with "relativity"; Comcast is paying less than I've made on other commercial jobs I've done, which is relatively disappointing.

While in the case of the ArcLight raise, I don't think I've ever gotten a 75-cent an hour raise in a lifetime of low-wage jobs, so that's relatively exciting (And I'm not stupid--I know they should have raised wages across-the-board, and they're getting off cheap by doing this instead--but knowing ArcLight never wants to "give up the money", I'm pleased they're making at least some effort to show their appreciation for my work).

And assuming they don't knock my hours down to nothing to make up the difference, I think another 75-cents an hour will have an actual impact on my paycheck.


Another example of "relativity"...

Jen C., a fellow ACG'er, was on "Close To Home" on Friday (If you watched the show, she was the attorney representing the kid who ended up dead later in the episode).

I have a serious "crush-on" for Jen, by the way (Which made her recent comment about my appearance--"You'd make a good serial killer or child molester"--all the more painful). She's attractive, talented, smart, funny--All the stuff I like, really.

But anyway...

She booked ten co-star gigs last year, and the ones I've seen (On Boston Legal, NCIS, and now this one) have kicked my co-star gigs's ass.

Money-wise, it's hard to say who's doing better (She's booked a lot more co-stars than me, but I have a national commercial, and one in the can), but she's definitely head-of-the-pack theatrically.

So I'm a bit jealous of her success in that area, because I want to be where she is right now (She'll probably book her first "guest-star" role this year).

But at the same time, I thought about it afterwards, and realized that if I were getting more co-star roles, and better ones, if I were getting to do the male, character-actor equivalent of what Jen's getting to do, I'd still be champing at the bit to do more.

Cause that's just how I roll...

(Speaking of "rolling", I'd better roll on down to the laundry room and get my laundry taken care of; I have an AMG meeting before work this evening, and I'm running out of valuable nap-time.)


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