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Old 10-01-2002, 09:21 AM   #76
animalcrackers
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I guess most of us have no idea what goes on behind the scenes. It doesn't sound like too much job security. Another question David, whenever we see the extra's in the background and they are talking, are they just mouthing anything or quietly talking? Years ago a extra was being interviewed and she said she just says, "watermelon & cantelope" over and over.
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Old 10-01-2002, 10:59 AM   #77
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I think they just talk about whatever. I was an extra on the Blossom "Paris" episode that I wrote. I was in the final scene at the airport. I am holding a guitar. I was waiting in line with my ticket and they hooked me up with this Blonde girl for the trip. So we just talked while we were in line about the show, about when to move, how long she was working that day, like that, just whispers. When I got up to the ticket lady I just made jokes about the imaginary trip to Paris. Usually you just talk about the scene. Sometimes people work for weeks other times it is just one afternoon. Extras know extras. I worked on one show with my brother called Wizards & Warriors and all the extras were midgets dressed in lizard suits. Talk about strange. Then I found out that some of them had actually worked on the Wizard of Oz as Munchkins. I was talking with The Lolipop King and I didn't even know it. He looked like a lizard to me.
http://www.wizardsandwarriors.org/index.htm

Also when there are dance scenes. The extras are not really dancing to music. The music is usually added in later.

I remember hanging out with the Head Magnet on the Joanie smoking show. She was an actual actress though, not an extra.

Here's a present.
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Last edited by David77 : 10-01-2002 at 12:08 PM.
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Old 10-01-2002, 11:01 AM   #78
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That's me, Al, Bobby Hoffman, Fred Fox jr. & Ron Howard.

Yeah lunch is on me.

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Old 10-01-2002, 11:41 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally posted by David77
You're welcome Lil Kelso. I like your graphics. I like the one with the flag the best so far.

Oh cool, Thank you. I can never stay with the same graphics for very long. I tend to get bored.
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Old 10-01-2002, 02:05 PM   #80
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Quote:
Originally posted by David77
Potsie Quits School & Extras:
The main idea of Potsie having to think up a song in his head to remember his anatomy was my idea. Being a musician most of the TV shows that I wrote have a music theme. Like Blossom "Guns in school" episode "38 special" which I wrote and I got a part in too (I'm in the band scene playing guitar) Sometimes one person has an idea and it is given to another person. Like the Christmas show where they all bring a tree in to the Cunnigham's? . That was my idea although Beverly Bloomberg got credit. Most of the writers were under contract for 3 scripts a year plus a weekly salary (and to get a parking space on the lot was a whole other big deal where your agent has to actually negotiate it.) I had to park outside the lot across the street and pay. (But that is another story.) Show Biz. "The slimey underbelly of the show business world" Anyway, people crank out story ideas and they are all delegated to different writers. The networks want certain story lines, the producers want different story lines, etc etc. So when it says "written by" or "story by" or "teleplay by" it really doesn't mean squat. They have to assign storys. It is a team effort.
Sometimes a writer will pitch an idea based on a theme or direction the producers want to go and it connects and he or she gets to write it. Other times a writer will pitch and idea and they like it and give it to another writer on the staff who is due under contract to get a script that season. Maybe the other writer already did his three scripts. So that being clear, I had already sold the Fonzie Jacket "Story by" that never got filmed. So in the total picture I did get a story and a teleplay.
There were other people that were Production Assistants like Jim Dunne who got "Story By" on Potsie Quits School. Jim Dunne was an all around guy on the Happy Days Crew. Originally I heard he was Gary Marshall's tennis pro. Gary liked him. So He worked with the actors, he wrote music, he came to writing meetings once in a while. He was just an all around guy. Gary Marshall wanted him to write and his first writing assignment was "Story by". It got him in the union.
He was close with the actors. I didn't have the chance to get
too involved like that on the stage. I was hired stictly to be an apprentice writer. In fact I didn't even have my own typewriter. I had to share one with Allen Goldstien. My agent didn't negotiate a typewriter. Now a days you have to have an agent to get an agent. So that is how it works. I liked the idea of being an extra but it never happened. I didn't push for it. I was a musician. I brought my guitar in and Brian and Fred would hear me play and bring me up to Bob Brunner's office. Bob would say, "I don't know what to do with that, go talk to Anson". It just didn't connect for me at that time. I later worked on other shows but it took years and years. That is just the way it went down. That girl drummer was a steady extra. I don't remember her name but when they say her name on the show, that is her real name. Sometimes Richie will say her name. She was cute, yeah. I talked more with Heather. (The girl with the wig). She would come to the booth and hang out on Friday nights. The other girl was kind of shy.

That's Cool! I Was Always Wondering About That! I Have A Question, Did All The Actors Like Playing The Charactors They Did?
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Old 10-01-2002, 02:29 PM   #81
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Thanks Fonz.

I can't say for sure but I think they all liked the characters they played. They did them so well. They must have enjoyed it.

I'm sure they didn't always like the scripts.
Actors and writers are like cats and dogs. If the actor has a problem with the script he goes to the director who goes to the producer who goes to the writers.

When all else failed the director and the producer would meet with Gary Marshall. When Gary Marshall came to the writer's table it was serious business. That only happened once while I was there.
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Old 10-01-2002, 02:51 PM   #82
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Wow! Cool, Thanks!
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Old 10-01-2002, 02:51 PM   #83
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Quote:
Originally posted by David77
Thanks Fonz.

I can't say for sure but I think they all liked the characters they played. They did them so well. They must have enjoyed it.

I'm sure they didn't always like the scripts.
Actors and writers are like cats and dogs. If the actor has a problem with the script he goes to the director who goes to the producer who goes to the writers.

When all else failed the director and the producer would meet with Gary Marshall. When Gary Marshall came to the writer's table it was serious business. That only happened once while I was there.

Your Welcome!
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Old 10-01-2002, 02:57 PM   #84
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David I notice "Christmas Time" & "Fearless Malph" are from the 78 era. Great episodesI feel. Were you involved in either of them? Also Fred Fox's face looks famaliar, could he have been in Stolen Melodies?
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Old 10-01-2002, 03:40 PM   #85
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Yes. yes, yes. (or should I say, yep, yep, yep) Fred Fox was the band leader who got his wig pulled off. Yes, Chistmas Time, I had a lot to do with it. It was my idea about the trees. Also Fearless Malph yes. My first joke was in Fearless Malph. The tornado set was really something.
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Old 10-01-2002, 03:49 PM   #86
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David, do you get paid $36.00 every time it airs on ANY station (like if it airs locally on a station in Boston) or just on one of the major cable networks like TV Land or Nick at Nite?
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Old 10-01-2002, 03:54 PM   #87
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Quote:
Originally posted by David77
Yes. yes, yes. (or should I say, yep, yep, yep) Fred Fox was the band leader who got his wig pulled off. Yes, Chistmas Time, I had a lot to do with it. It was my idea about the trees. Also Fearless Malph yes. My first joke was in Fearless Malph. The tornado set was really something.

That's Soooo Cool! Fred Fox Was The Leader Of Freddy And The Red Hots? Cool! And Like TJ Said Do You Get Paid Everytime Any Station Plays Potsie Quits School? Or Do You Just Get Paid When Nick At Night Or Tvland Airs It?
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Old 10-01-2002, 03:57 PM   #88
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Usually I get $36.00 take home after taxes. Sometimes half that but not too often. I have to look at the check stubs next time to figure out what is what. They don't show exactly when or where it is played. It just says cable. When I get less than $36.00 it's a real let down. It also takes four months after it airs to get paid.
It seems to be a quarterly. No lunch until February!
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Old 10-02-2002, 09:25 AM   #89
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Quote:
Originally posted by David77
Usually I get $36.00 take home after taxes. Sometimes half that but not too often. I have to look at the check stubs next time to figure out what is what. They don't show exactly when or where it is played. It just says cable. When I get less than $36.00 it's a real let down. It also takes four months after it airs to get paid.It seems to be a quarterly. No lunch until February!


David, do you know what the actors get for payment after an episode is rerun? If they all get $36.00 per episode, that's a pretty good deal. TV Land seems to air like 3 different episodes a day now ... that comes out to like $826.00 per week! Not a bad take for work completed over two decades ago!

I thought I heard that back in the 50's and 60's, TV actors, writers, ect. did not get royalties when shows were rerun (I remember hearing, for example, the cast of "Gilligan's Island" never cashed in on the success of the show's reruns). Did this change in the 70s or something?
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Old 10-02-2002, 11:04 AM   #90
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I think the actors get more than $36.00 for a re-run. ha ha! They get a certain percentage of what they were making at the time I'm sure. What is in their contracts etc. I was just paid scale for a teleplay. Writers get paid for a script in four parts usually. Story, teleplay, first draft, final draft. If it all works out and gets filmed it says, "written by". It can stop anywhere along the line though for whatever reason. The term for that is, "It got eaten". Like my Fonzie's Jacket story. Yeah, tv is big bucks. In the old days there were no residules. I think the residules started in the early seventies. Most of the old timers just got a flat fee. That must be hard to take.

Last edited by David77 : 10-02-2002 at 11:38 AM.
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