Show Me How To: Be a Movie Extra
Now that Gov. Martinez signed a bill April 5 that increases tax credits for TV shows and movies filming in New Mexico, film-extra positions are in high demand. This bill adds to New Mexico’s attractiveness as a filming site. Popular shows such as “Breaking Bad,” along with large-budget films including “The Avengers” and “The Lone Ranger,” set be released July 3, have used the state for production in the past, and each of them required large numbers of background cast members.
Interested in becoming a movie extra to gain experience in the film industry, or even to have a little extra cash? Below are steps listed to help you in your search for job as a movie extra.
Take a head shot, a picture showing only your face, and then go to NMFilm.com. This website has information about film projects and the movie industry for New Mexico. Once you are there, click “Casting Calls” at the bottom of the page.
There will be casting calls listed which you can click on to receive more information about the job. This may include the shooting schedule, the type of extra that they are interested in, how you can contact the interested party, and how much you will be paid, if at all. Some gigs just provide food and credit as compensation.
According to eHow.com, if you are chosen as a movie extra, arrive on the set before your call time and be ready for a long day. Most movie extras work extensive hours that can be repetitive if you are doing the same job for a long time. Follow all instructions as precisely as you can while remaining upbeat.
Once you have finished the job, you can create an acting résumé where you state type of work, the date, the director, and the release date of the project you just worked on. Having an acting résumé will help you land larger jobs further into your movie career.
Becoming a film extra creates acting experience for hopeful college students, but beware of acting and casting call scams. If you arrive at the casting call and feel uncomfortable or unwilling to do the work, do not be afraid to say “no,” and do not agree to pay money — a typical sign that a casting call is a scam.