Hawaii 2007:08

Hawaii 2007:08

SCREEN ACTORS GUILD ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING

When: Monday, September 24, 2007
6:30 to 9 p.m.

Where: Ward Warehouse
Kaka'ako Conference Room
2nd floor, 1050 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu

7 p.m.
Business Meeting/Installation of council member

7:45 p.m.

Guest Speaker - SAG National President

Light Pupus and Refreshments

Only Screen Actors Guild members in good standing will be permitted to attend the meeting. Be sure to have your paid up SAG card for entry.

RSVP at (808) 596-0388 (press 1#) or email bching@sag.org


HAWAII PRESIDENT'S REPORT

By Glenn Cannon

David Farmer, actor and director, was appointed by the board on July 16 to fill the vacancy created by the early departure of Tony Natoli. David will serve in this position until the September '09 elections, and can then seek re-election if he wishes to do so. I am personally very pleased to have him as part of the Hawaii board. He will, I'm certain, prove to be a very valued member.

I thought you'd like to see his bio, which is actually far more extensive than what we are printing here.

A SAG member since 1987, David Farmer studied with Sanford Meisner at the Neighborhood Playhouse, at Carnegie-Mellon, and most recently with Iris Kline, André Gregory and Alan Arkin.

He has performed with most of Honolulu's theatre groups since 1976 and has directed for Kumu Kahua, MVT, TAG and Solange & Associates.

Favorite roles include Clov in Solange & Associates' Endgame, Tom in ASATAD's Glass Menagerie, the actor in MVT's Woman in Black, John in Earle Ernst Lab Theatre's Oleanna, Gloucester in Shakespearience's King Lear, and Eddie Lawrence in MVT's Shear Madness, for which he received a Po`okela nomination. He was a cast member of Kumu Kahua's International Tour of Ka'iulani: A Cantata for the Theatre, which traveled to the 1990 Edinburgh Fringe Festival, Washington, D.C., and the Los Angeles Festival. He is currently working on the Joe Moore Hawaii Theatre production of Prophecy & Honor, directed by Glenn Cannon and featuring Richard Dreyfuss and George Segal.

His national television credits include appearances on Mister Roger's Neighborhood, Hawaii Five-0 and two epiosodes of the A&E Biography about his aunt Frances and Jessica Lange (who played the Group Theatre and film actress in the 1982 Brooksfilms production Frances.) He can occasionally be seen as "The Searcher" in local Cutter Ford television commercials, for which he was nominated for a Best Actor Association of Independent Commercial Producers Mea No`eau Award. The back of his head is briefly visible in the opening wedding sequences of Universal Pictures' You, Me and Dupree.

In other branch news, Katherine Cleveland has officially been re-elected as a three-year Council member. Her term will expire in 2010. We are hopeful that more and more of us will be employed by the burgeoning film industry in Hawaii.


NATIONAL BOARD MEMBER REPORT

By Jim Hutchison

If you have tried the SAG website lately only to post your resume and headshot on iActor, then you haven't realized all there is to be gained by visiting the site for other news and information. Also, you'll be glad to hear that the site is being redesigned to be even more member friendly.

You should have received a questionnaire a few weeks ago asking for your input, such as what you would like made available to make the site easier for you to retrieve the information you need. Well, the staff has taken all the responses and is currently trying to work all of our desires into the new design. In the future, we will most likely be able to reach a page dedicated to stunt actors, disabled actors, etc ... and these would be available nationally and locally. Of course, the Guild has to deal with the hundreds of members who don't currently have computers, so information will still be available by "snail mail" as well.

As for signing up for with iActor -- we can help! We are fortunate to have Chase Webb working in our office (part-time) and if you call him and ask (nicely), he will assist you with this task. So, do it!

iActor can be and is becoming THE site for producers to visit when they want professional actors. You can sign up for iActor, and become a more knowledgeable member, by using www.sag.org.


ACTOR TO ACTOR

By Becky Maltby

Our tax credits are in place. Lost is revving up its engines for another season. Major films are currently shooting on the neighbor islands. Things are looking up.

At least we can hope. But the old warning about "no guarantees" is, unfortunately, too accurate in our business. Our spirits are easily pumped up, only to be deflated when we don't get a callback, or even an audition. A tsunami of negativity starts to grow and can wipe us out if we let it.

I try not to go there. I, undoubtedly like many of you, have had minimal on-set experience in the past year. I've worked as a background actor, done theater, gone to auditions, taken a conservatory class. I've studied my respected peers on television and film. Although as a board member I'm kept fairly up to date on the issues that affect us, the work is what really keeps me current. And happy. As long as I'm playing on a set, even if the set is in my occasionally-analytical mind, I'm cool and confident that whatever lucrative opportunities I seek are just around the corner. We all need to believe this and stay positive.

Why the pep talk?

Because negativity tends to be contagious. When losing roles to mainland actors I've heard the frustration in myself. I've listened to actors grumble--or worse, brag about nothing--on the set or in a chance meeting. Then there are the rumors, which spread and get exaggerated...backstabbing runs rampant. I've even been witness to some truly embarrassing on-set behavior from a (very) select few in our membership.

It can get to be a drag. But we can't change human nature, we can only try to control it a little. Thanks to Act 88, the future of the industry here looks good. So let's keep in mind that one voice can speak for all of us, and that this can work for or against us. What voice do we want representing our union as we continue to evolve? And what attitude do we want to bring along?


SAG CONSERVATORY REPORT

By Scott Rogers, Chair

SAG Conservatory has busy times ahead. With major feature films and TV shows shooting here and a possible record amount of production this year, training has never been more important. I just got back from New York where the SAG Conservatory hosts regular weekly, ongoing classes for members--and they're all full, demonstrating the value constant training.

While we aren't able to offer regular weekly classes yet, our almost monthly workshops are becoming quite popular. Last month, Los Angeles acting teacher Stuart Rogers taught an informative and very well received class on auditioning and text. Next month, as Lost gears up to start filming (and casting), the Conservatory will host another on-camera auditioning workshop so you can perfect your auditioning technique--before a job is on the line!

Answer this one question: If a big break (audition for a good speaking role) came your way today, would you really be ready? To NAIL it?

If you are not a member of the conservatory yet, what are you waiting for?!

Contact Brenda Ching at the SAG Hawaii office and sign up now.


New and rejoin members, and transfers into the Hawaii Branch should contact the office to schedule an Orientation Meeting with Brenda Ching, Executive Director.

You will learn what it means to be a SAG member, hear about the benefits of membership and also get information about what's going on in the Hawaii's film industry.

Call the office at 596-0388 or email her at bching@sag.org to schedule an appointment.


HELPFUL HINTS FROM THE MEMBERSHIP DEPARTMENT

When mailing in dues payments, documents to the agency department, contact information updates, or other items to Screen Actors Guild, it speeds up the process if you remember to include an attention line when addressing the envelope. By doing this, the mail item will get to the department faster, allowing the Guild to service you with greater efficiency.

  • If you have an address change, name change, phone number or email change, use Attention: Data Processing.
  • If mailing in a dues payment, use Attention: Cashier.
  • If sending a document to Agency, use Attention: Agency.

As always, it is important to keep your contact information current with the Guild so you don't miss important notices and news. To update your information, please login to www.sag.org and click on "edit profile." You may also mail your changes to Attention: Data Processing as previously noted or fax them to (323) 549-6775.

The Guild's Web site offers other convenient services to registered members such as residuals tracker, dues payment online and of course, access to iActor. If you are not registered with the SAG Web site, simply go to www.sag.org and click on the "Register" link on the upper right hand corner of the home page.


NEW WEB SITE DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT PROJECT UNDERWAY

Screen Actors Guild has launched a Web site design and development project inspired by members' requests for increased Web functionality and a more useful and usable Web site. Funded in part by the recent dues increase, the project is the fulfillment of a commitment by elected and executive leadership to improve member services and communications across the Guild. The effort is just getting underway and is overseen by National Executive Director Doug Allen with the assistance of the Web site subcommittee and staff.

Project planning is in the early stages, but the new design is expected to include significant modifications and upgrades in content, usability, search performance and capability. The new site plan also calls for functional enhancements that will make it easier and faster to conduct business with Screen Actors Guild online. The new design will retain all of the current functionality like iActor, dues online and residuals tracker, but for many users--members, employers and industry representatives--the Web experience will include expanded functionality and tools like online form submission, podcasting and streaming video.

The effort is on a "fast track" despite its challenging and complex project plan. The new site will "go online" in stages over the next year with the first evolution "live" by the end of the year. Additional functional enhancements and design upgrades will phase in throughout 2008.

The team is hard at work on research and discovery, but to build an effective, member-focused, user-friendly Web site, they need to hear from Screen Actors Guild members and other sag.org Web site users. The project team has launched a nationwide survey to determine members' Web communications needs. To take the survey and provide input on design and development of a new Web site, click here.

If you're not online, call (323) 549-6698 for a paper survey.

IMPORTANT NOTES: Because the surveys are anonymous and confidential, we will be unable to acknowledge suggestions or survey responses in any way. Please be aware that not every idea or suggestion will be implemented, but all suggestions will be considered.

CONGRATULATIONS! YOU WILL HAVE A STAR ON THE HOLLYWOOOD WALK OF FAME

Screen Actors Guild is the first labor union to receive an Award of Excellence Star and is only the fifth organization ever to receive a star. The SAG Foundation will be honoring the Screen Actors Guild's 75th anniversary by supporting the Award of Excellence Star. The SAG Foundation is accepting donations to raise funds for the Foundation and its programs, as well as the installation and maintenance of the star. Contributions in excess of the amount expended to cover the cost of the star will be used to fund other SAG Foundation programs, including those that assist performers in need.

Please consider making a generous tax-deductible donation in support of your star and the SAG Foundation by going to www.sagfoundation.org or by mailing a check to: SAG Foundation, Award of Excellence, 5757 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036.

FI-CORE PERMANENT RESIGNATION

On June 13, the SAG National Board approved the new policy toward reinstatement of those members who choose to resign from the union--making that choice a permanent one. In accordance with Article IV of the Screen Actors Guild Constitution, members who resign are not eligible for reinstatement to the Guild. However, such persons may petition for a waiver of this policy.

The reinstatement candidate seeking a waiver of this policy is required to schedule an appearance before the Disciplinary Review Committee and present a petition for reinstatement that includes a list of all non-union work done during the period of time between resignation and reinstatement. A petition for reinstatement does not guarantee reinstatement.

"Individuals who make the choice to quit their union cannot expect to be allowed back in without the union asking some questions about why they quit and what sort of work they were doing," Screen Actors Guild Director of Organizing Todd Amorde said.

"Union membership is between the members and their union, not their agents, not casting directors and certainly not employers. Screen Actors Guild membership offers opportunities and resources that many members are not aware of, so we urge anyone considering resignation, for whatever reasons, to call the union first. We're here to give you straight answers and discuss your options."

This change will apply only to those individuals who have resigned from the union, not to those whose membership was terminated because of failure to pay dues. It also does not apply to members on honorable withdrawal or suspended payment status.

SAG AWARDS TO HONOR STUNT PERFORMANCE EXCELLENCE

The Screen Actors Guild Awards Committee recently announced that SAG will honor this year's outstanding performances by film and television stunt ensembles. Honorees will be announced on Sunday, Jan. 27, 2008, prior to the televised 14th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards ceremonies.

Nominees for Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture and Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Television Series will be chosen by their respective SAG Awards film and television nominating committees, each comprised of 2,100 SAG members from across the United States, randomly selected on April 25, 2007.

Stunt ensemble performances for 2007 may be submitted for consideration from Monday, July 16 through Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2007. Nominations to honor stunt ensembles will be announced concurrently with the nominations for the 14th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards on Thursday, Dec. 20, 2007 in Los Angeles.

IMPORTANT PHONE NUMBERS AND WEBSITES

Pension & Health: 800-777-4013; www.sagph.org

SAG 24/7: 800-724-0767; www.sag.org

SAG/AFTRA Federal Credit Union: 800-826-6946, www.aftrasagfcu.org

SAG Foundation: 323-549-6649; www.sagfoundation.org

Hawaii Branch Office: 808-596-0388; bching@sag.org