(quotes take from http://werewolf.co.nz/2012/10/dealing-with-mistah-hollywood/)
Over the last few years and the rise of the internet, we have learned more about certain aspects of franchises, movies, tv series and such than we ever have before. In the past the contracts put forth to Power Rangers actors have been released, I have never actually read excerpts from them, amid criticism. The new Megaforce contract has been released to the public and I recently read an article promoted by RangerBoard, seen here, with some interestingly and sometimes outrageous provisions set forth. Here are a few, judge for yourself.
“The preamble to the contract document for instance, says that the performer has to be available anytime between 1 October 2012, and 10 May 2013 (by my reckoning, a period of 222 days) but “shall be guaranteed a minimum of 20 (twenty) not necessarily consecutive days” during that production cycle. These “working days” are 12 hours in duration, with a 45 minute lunch break. There’s a week of preparation that the performer is also expected to donate to the production free of charge.”
This seems like a lot of work! In the coming quotes you will notice that there a lot of duties the new actors will have to perform “free of charge”
It means more work, with minimal pay, for long periods of time.
“During the term hereof and continuing through the 2012/2013 Production Season, Performer grants Producer exclusivity in the area of children’s and children’s-related programming, including, but not limited to, programming for the United States television networks (CBS, FOX and NBC), Cartoon Network, Disney, Nickelodeon and Pax Net and Performer shall not perform in a continuing role or as a regular performer on any other episodic television series or perform in any program that is intended for exhibition in the United States on before 30 November 2014 without Producer’s prior written approval, which shall not be unreasonably withheld. “
Looks like the actors are not able to perform for any other network, in any series or program in the United States during the set forth time period. Which means that they want them to be the face of the Power Rangers brand for that set period of time. I mean, this is not a terrible request, however it limits the actors ability to make more money or expand their career. Which explains why we rarely see the PR actors in much during their reign as Rangers.
” During Performer‘s engagement hereunder, Performer shall, on any Working Day and for the compensation specified in clause 2.3 provide his or her Services in connection with the Series, whenever and wherever Producer may require, in a competent, conscientious and professional manner having due regard for the production of the Series within the budget, and as directed by Producer in all matters, including those involving artistic taste and judgment.
Performer shall provide services in non-commercial openings, closings, bridges, lead-ins, lead-outs and in and in connection with promotional materials (for both print and electronic media) created in connection with the advertising and exploitation of the Series, including, without limitation, trailers, interstitials, theme parks, video and computer games, public service announcements, station identifications, on-air promos, sound recordings for merchandise, phono records….; adlibs, improvisation, gags, bits and song lyrics etc and no additional fees shall be payable to Performer in respect of such Services provided the Services are rendered by Performer during a Working Day; such Services shall be provided either during or after the production period, subject to Performer‘s reasonable professional availability. Performer may be required to perform in multiple episodes on the same Working Day and within the same work week and no additional fees shall be payable to Performer therefore…..”
All of this is done by the Ranger actor without pay! As long as these duties are performed during the production dates stated above. These are stated in the contract like extra duties in addition to filming and ADR and are not paid by the production company. Again, seems like a lot of work right?
“Under clause 2.5 if the producer decides to re-record any number of dialogue lines, this will be done by the performer for free in addition to their normal work if scheduled on a designated Working Day for the performer – otherwise, the performers can be called in and paid only 60% of their ordinary daily rate, for recording sessions of up to five hours duration.”
I am assuming this in regards to ADR sessions or re-records of dialogue. Again, the Actors are only paid 60% of their normal pay rate for up 5 hour sessions if outside the work schedule, and this is in addition to their normal work amount!
“Producer shall have the unlimited right to exhibit and exploit all works hereunder and audio and visual excerpts therefrom in all forms and mediums now known or hereafter devised or discovered throughout the world in perpetuity without any further amounts owing to Performer”
This has been controversial in the Power Rangers contracts for some time now. The actors are not paid for their works preceding the end of the show; including DVD sales, re-airings of the show or video-games that use their likeness. This sucks. For the actors, I mean they don’t get anything for all the episodes that WILL re-air at some point or the DVD Sales which are now going bigger than ever before!
“Performer authorises the use, photographing and recording of Performer’s name, sobriquet, professional name. nickname, photograph, voice, sound effects, personal characteristics, caricature, signature, Performer’s actual or simulated likeness, performance, attributes and biographic data (collectively, “Name and Likeness”), and their reproduction in all manner and media in perpetuity throughout the universe in connection with the production, distribution, advertising, promotion, merchandising, exhibition and other exploitation of the Series and other works hereunder, including all advertising, publicity and promotion and materials related thereto (including, without limitation, reprises, flashbacks, promos, trailers, teasers, etc.) in any manner and by any means now known or hereafter devised including, without limitation, use on album or jacket covers of commercial recordings related to the Series (whether or not Performer’s performances are contained therein), use in theme parks, trade shows, Producer promotions, etc. and in connection with commercial advertising and commercial tie-ups relating to the Series (but no direct product or service endorsement without Performer’s consent), and no additional payment shall be required for any such uses.
Producer may use and license others the right to use Performer’s Name and Likeness in and in connection with publications (including, without limitation, novelisations, press books, souvenir programs, one-sheets, commercial publications, etc.), by-products, tie-ins, merchandise, commodities and services of every kind and no additional payment shall be required for any such uses. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, Producer may include photographs or other images or depictions of the likeness of Performer in or on or in relation to any exploitation of the Series and all documentaries, “behind the scenes”, “the making of” featurettes, promotional films and videos (including so-called “music videos”) of the Series in any manner and by any means throughout the world in perpetuity, and no additional fees shall be due to Performer therefore.
Performer shall not change Performer’s professional name during the 2012/2013 Production Season.”
This makes a lot more sense as the production company wants to retain the actors name and likeness for future products, tie-ins or flashbacks for the show or products. It also prohibits the actor to change their name during the production season. However, what is sad is that they won’t be compensated for this at all.
“Performer acknowledges that the Series and other works hereunder are intended for children and that Performer will conduct himself/herself during the 2012/2013 Production Season with due regard to social convention and good morals and decency and will not make any statement, commit any act or perform any role that will or may create notoriety, or bring Performer, Producer, or the Series or other work hereunder into public disrepute or reflect adversely thereon or on any distributor, exhibitor, or sponsor thereof.
Performer will not cut, restyle, colour, or alter in any way his/her hair, teeth, eyebrows, skin, body size or general physical appearance including, without limitation, becoming underweight, overweight, or piercing, or tattooing or tanning any part of Performer’s body without the prior written consent of Producer.”
I assume this is pretty standard, of course, we are talking about a kids show and someone who is going to be seen, looked up to and admired by millions of kids has to hold themselves to a higher standard of morals and appearance.
Interestingly enough, they actors are also prohibited from changing their hair, facial appearance or general physical appearance They have to be in tip top shape and stay that way and may not tan or tattoo themselves unless consented by the producers. Interesting, Alex Heartman must have gotten permission to change his hair. HMMM…
There have been a lot of tweets and lot of board postings about the new contract. While some find it raping the Ranger actors and some acknowledge it as a standard industry contract. Personally I have never read an industry contract so I have absolutely no idea if this is standard or not. The provisions as listed just seem a way to cut corners and maximize profits which is what a business is about. Others would say that the actors have signed themselves into slavery, and that might be true.
What do you think?
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