There are many misconceptions about the entertainment industry. This page is to clear up some of those items and tell what goes into performing.

Myth: Performing is easy work.
Fact: It takes a lot of hard work, dedication and patience to go into the field of entertainment.

Myth: It is easy to get a part.
Fact:While there is no exact average (despite what is stated on some websites and books), it is not unusual to go to at least 100 to 300 auditions before landing a part.

Myth: It does not take very long to film.
Fact: Without any special effects or outttakes, it takes at least three hours to shoot only five minutes of film. For every special effect or mistake, it takes longer. That is not counting the time it takes from getting the script, learning the lines, and rehearsing before the filming even starts.

Myth: Performers are rich.
Fact: While the media does tend to make a big deal about how much a performer gets paid for a particular role, what they neglect to tell you is all the expenses performers have in order to stay in the business. The following are some of the expenses.
  1. A performer must join a union if they have a role which is more than three lines. Sag-Aftra is the main union of performing. The prices listed here are what was found on the Sag-Aftra website in April of 2019 so it is possible the prices might have gone up since then.
    Sag-Aftra has an initiation fee of $3,000 when a member first joins. Along with the initiation fee, their are semi-annual dues of $109.30 every plus 1.575% of all earnings of up to $500,000 of the previous year. These dues must be paid every six months.
  2. A performer generally has an agent. An agent can cost up to 10% of the performer's paycheck, but only on roles that the agent helped them get.
  3. Many performers also have managers which can receive up to 15% of the performer's paycheck.
  4. A performer is required to get headshots done every 1 to 3 years or whenever their look changes. The average cost of a headshot is between $100 and $250 per hour so you can expect be spending at least $400 every time headshots need to get done.
  5. Agents usually like their clients to keep a cell phone on them in order to contact the client if a role comes up.
  6. Many performers take classes to keep their craft up to date.
  7. Since performing is known and a feast or famine industry, many performers have jobs or businesses outside of the entertainment industry for income during their famine periods.

Myth: It is easy to join SAG-Aftra.
Fact: It is not easy to join SAG. Along with the initiation fees and the annual dues, there are other requirements to joining SAG-Aftra which you can find on the SAG-Aftra Website. The reason I am not posting the exact requirements here is because the fact that it is from the SAG website.

Myth: Celebrities are only there for money when they charge fans for signing at conventions.
Fact: When celebrities are signing at conventions, they are there on business, not on their own time. They are given quotas (I'm not sure if the quota is given agent, manager, convention staff, or somebody else, but the quota is still there) that they have to try to meet so they do have to charge for their stuff. Like any other profession, there are some people who are just there for one reason only (depending the job, it might be because of the so-called money associated with it, it might be to please somebody in their family, or it might be some other reason), the majority of them are there because they enjoy it and want to meet their fans. If you saw them on the street or something on their own time, many celebrities would be more than happy to sign something for no charge.