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The good news is that Carol’s attentiveness to her own personal budgeting and finances is
also extended to maximize her client’s production. Her realization that overtime is not only
a budget killer but also diminishes the performance of a crew is what endears her to both
clients and crew.
It’s often better and cheaper to schedule three-day shoots than two-days that go
into massive overtime. There’s that kind of pressure. They think we’ll get it done in
two days. The truth is, given what they have to cover, it would be two fifteen-hour
days so you might as well schedule three ten-hour days. This way people can be
fresher and you’re not paying out the ass for overtime.
Bill candidly responds that risk has always been part of the business and whether the pay
scale compensates for the precariousness of being self-employed:
The fact of the matter is that there’s always been a risk and the risk is increasing in
this business. If you work for a company you don’t see the risk elements because
you have a steady paycheck. You don’t see the big elephant charging until the
boss comes in and says I’m laying you off. You’re not ready for it. I have to be that
chases down the money without pissing the client off and keeping it friendly. I
know what the true financials are. I did a job in December and they didn’t pay me
until May. So that becomes an issue. You have to chase the work down, do the
work, and then you chase the money down.
Kate Farrell when interviewed in the summer of 2010 was a freelancer, for the Olympics
and the Super Bowls, and is now an executive producer for WE-tv. She was candid about
the major change she’s seen over the years and that is working without a contract:
This is something a little bit new. When I worked with NBC as a freelancer from
1994 to 1998 and from 1998 to 2000 I was staff and from 2000 to 2002 I was
freelance again. But I typically had some letter of agreement about what I was
doing and the rate I would be paid. This is hire and fire at will. The only person
who had a contract was the executive producer who had a contract with the
network for “x” number dollars to deliver a show.
Kate acknowledges that working without a contract is becoming de rigueur and states, “Of
course, there are positions that require contracts or agreements. But my job wasn’t one of
them,” where she was referring to working as an executive producer on the reality show
Raising Sextuplets.
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