San Diego 2008:04

San Diego 2008:04
April 22, 2008

OFFICIAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING NOTICE

Come spend a cordial evening with fellow SAG members and find out what’s going on locally and nationally in the Guild.

What: Membership meeting
When: Tuesday, May 20
7–7:30 p.m. (meet and greet);
7:30-9:30 p.m. (membership meeting)
Where: IBEW Hall
4545 Viewridge Avenue
San Diego, CA 92123
(702) 739-2222

The venue is located one block west of the I-15 off of Balboa Avenue to the north.

Refreshments and light faire will be provided during the “meet and greet.”

All paid-up, active” SAG members will be permitted to attend. A parent may accompany a child member. In order to gain entrance to the membership meeting, you must present your SAG membership card.

If you have any questions, please contact Hrair Messerlian at (800) SAG-0767, prompt 7, or e-mail him at hmesserlian@sag.org.

SAVE THE DATE


The San Diego Branch will join the nationwide celebration of Screen Actors Guild’s 75th anniversary. Please keep June 20 open to join your fellow members and industry professionals to commemorate this special moment in Guild history. More information will follow soon, but be sure to mark your calendar!

SAN DIEGO VICE PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE

By Don Ahles
San Diego Vice President

The first quarter of this year has flown by. At our last meeting we were introduced to iActor, the latest tool for online casting. I hope you found our seminar helpful in establishing your own profile on the site. Remember, a lot of time, effort and cost has been spent developing the site. This will be the standard that agents use now and in the future. And, did I mention it's free to all paid-up SAG members? So check it out here.

The Writers strike is behind us, thank goodness. The 100 days was a difficult time for everyone. Our thanks go out to all members who supported the WGA as they negotiated their contract. As you know, our own SAG TV/Theatrical Contract expires on June 30. Many have asked to start negotiations early. SAG has done exactly that. Screen Actors Guild began bargaining negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers on April 15. I look forward to our President Alan Rosenberg's lead in working for fairness for all actors.

Finally, if you listen to the news of doom and gloom, it's easy to fall into the trap of belief. We as actors have always been resilient to the ups and downs. We can ride out any turbulence, and when the sun shines, we soak it up. I look forward to seeing you at our next meeting.

THE SAN DIEGO SCENE

By Selena Parker
San Diego SAG Women’s Committee Chair

Special thanks to Ultra Star Cinema for gifts for our SAG meeting.

Sarah Jessica Parker
(Sex and the City) has her collection “Bitten” at Horton Plaza. She is expected to come to town this summer to promote her very “reasonable” fashions.

Stephen J. Cannell was in San Diego recently promoting his latest book, Three Shirt Deal, and the release of the DVDs of his successful series Rockford Files, featuring James Garner.

Bill Cosby is expected to perform at Valley View Casino in September.

Scott Bakula (Quantum Leap and Star Trek) performed here in the play Dancing in the Dark in March and April.

The film festivals are once again coming to San Diego. The Black Film Festival celebrated its fifth year with many TV and film stars. The annual Jewish Film Festival was also very successful this year.

The popular Latino Film Festival celebrated its 15th Anniversary at Ultra Star Mission Valley Cinemas at the Hazard center. Cheech Marin, who teamed with Tommy Chong in such films as Up in Smoke and Things are Tough All Over was honored at the festival.

America Ferrera, of Ugly Betty, attended past festivals and is very “supportive” of the festival.

San Diego native Mario Lopez (Dancing with the Stars) was in town for the grand re-opening of the beautiful Balboa Theatre downtown.

Recently Jay Leno has been hosting several major benefits in San Diego. Maybe he’ll broadcast the Tonight Show with Jay Leno from here.

Finally, a fond farewell to Hollywood icon Charlton Heston. We will miss you.

Send any interesting items about celebs and events to Selena Parker care of San Diego Executive Director Hrair Messerlian at hmesserlian@sag.org.

SAN DIEGO EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR'S REPORT

By Hrair Messerlian
San Diego Executive Director

Let’s be prepared for the new challenges of each new day. The dust is settling with the writers and directors negotiations and SAG, AFTRA and IATSE are up next negotiating with producers through the AMPTP. It is no secret that these will be challenging times, with everyone’s future at stake.

Our performers in San Diego are used to the cyclical trends of production. This past year has been tough on a lot of you. While occasional commercials role in and out and major motion pictures choose our sunny climate for location shoots, good fortune with a television series has been elusive. But there is hope on the horizon. Stu Segall Studios is currently the sight for a TV pilot called Mythological X.

So how do you stay prepared? Practice your craft, take classes, attend the SAG Conservatory, and keep your headshots, resumes and contact information current with your agent and the casting directors.

The San Diego SAG Branch has well over 1,000 members. Yet, too few of you have uploaded your information into iActor, SAG’s online casting directory and work clearance center. If you are reading this, and you care about your acting career, you really don’t have any excuse to not invest the time to market yourself in this 21st century way.

Not only are your local casting directors using the service, but many casting directors in Los Angeles and across the country are using it as well. You can be seen by them, even if you don’t have an agent. So what are you waiting for? Be prepared!

We will be having two major events in the coming two months. Please mark your calendars. There is the membership meeting, which will take place on May 20, and in June we will be hosting a 75th anniversary celebration in honor of the founding of Screen Actors Guild. (You’ll be getting more details on these events soon.) Both will be great opportunities to come and mingle with your peers. I hope to see all of you at the two events.

WHAT CASTING DIRECTORS WANT YOU TO KNOW ABOUT iActor

 

Casting directors are on iActor daily, digitally sourcing and then clearing talented Screen Actors Guild members for work in SAG-signatory productions. They find particular value in iActor's ability to offer access to regional SAG actors, no matter where you live. We are getting great feedback on iActor's content-rich database. But they have some notes for you.

Many of you aren't listing a contact number on your resumes, so that means they can't reach you for an audition. The number one rule from the casting community is that contact information is a crucial element of your iActor resume. It's just as important as a beautifully presented headshot, up-to-date credits and a full representation of your skills and talents.

Please make sure to list your current contact information, either a service number or your representative's, so you won't miss that important work call.

We've also noticed that many of you aren't marking your resumes "viewable," so as far as the casting community is concerned, you aren't seen. It's extremely important to complete the final step in completing your iActor resume. You have to mark it "viewable."

iActor liaisons are ready to help you at (310) 549-6789 or webhelp@sag.org.

A NEW AND IMPROVED NEW MEDIA CONTRACT

The Strong, Flexible, Fast and Easy way to use SAG Talent

Just released, SAG’s New Media Contract radically expands opportunities for SAG members to work in new media. Whether you are producing new media content or appearing on screen, this new contract greenlights your way.

Tell your friends, the contract is…
• STRONG. It protects the use of your work—wherever new media technology takes it!
• FLEXIBLE. Performers and producers now have a flexible contract specifically designed for new media production!
• FAST. You can sign contracts and get shooting in record time!
• EASY. Performers and producers can use one contract for all new media distribution!

SAG wants to work with everyone who produces new media, and we’re counting on you to spread the word. It’s every member’s right and responsibility to only perform on SAG covered new media projects.

To help organize new media, call (888) 963-3429.

TAKE A CASTING WORKSHOP FOR FREE


The Screen Actors Guild Foundation’s Casting Access Project (CAP) offers SAG members the opportunity to meet and learn from respected casting directors via free workshops. In fact, this renowned program was chosen by Back Stage West as “The Best Way to Meet Casting Directors in Los Angeles.”

Now the SAG Foundation has made registration for branch members one step easier: If you plan to be in New York or Hollywood and would like to attend, SAG members (18 years of age and older with active, paid-up membership status) living in areas other than New York and Los Angeles (membership records must reflect this information) can contact either nycap@sagfoundation.org for workshops in New York or cap@sag.org for workshops in Los Angeles.

In order to request a Casting Access Project orientation packet, SAG members planning to visit either area may simply contact the CAP region they plan to visit first. The packet is e-mailed to the recipient. Guild members without access to e-mail may request a mailed hard copy by leaving a message at the appropriate CAP hotline: (323) 549-6022 in Los Angeles, or (212) 591-0288 in New York.

At least one week’s notice is desired, whenever possible, to ensure space in an upcoming workshop.

Just follow the instructions and you will be given priority entrance into the next available workshop. For more information on CAP, visit the SAG Foundation website at www.sagfoundation.org.

GUARANTEE OF FILM COMPLETION

The Screen Actors Guild National Board approved staff to issue Guaranteed Completion Contracts to independent producers of theatrical motion pictures provided that none of the financing or distribution is with an AMPTP represented company. This will permit a company to continue filming in the event of a work stoppage and is designed to alleviate the concerns of financing entities and bond companies so that these productions will not be affected by the expiration of the Theatrical Basic Agreement on June 30.

THE MISSION OF YOUR GUILD


Screen Actors Guild is the nation's largest labor union representing working actors. Established in 1933, SAG has a rich history in the American labor movement, from standing up to studios to break long-term engagement contracts in the 1940s to fighting for artists' rights amid the digital revolution sweeping the entertainment industry in the 21st century. With 20 branches nationwide, SAG represents nearly 120,000 working actors in film, television, industrials, commercials, video games, music videos and other new media. The Guild exists to enhance actors' working conditions, compensation and benefits and to be a powerful, unified voice on behalf of artists' rights. Headquartered in Los Angeles, SAG is a proud affiliate of the AFL-CIO.

Screen Actors Guild represents its members through:
• Negotiation and enforcement of collective bargaining agreements that establish equitable levels of compensation, benefits, and working conditions for performers.
• The collection of compensation for exploitation of their recorded performances and protection against unauthorized use.
• The preservation and expansion of work opportunities.