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Babies on film sets


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#1 Keith Walters

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 06:04 AM

For some years now I've been noticing the use of what are obviously some sort of animatronic dolls as stand-ins for real babies in TV dramas and movies.

What is the actual deal with having babies appearing as extras or whatever?

I just watched an episode of House , and I rather fear this is another area where the proliferation for full-HD screens is going to make things harder for special effects people.

I sincerely hope the baby Dr Cutty was carrying around wasn't real, because if it was, it has some pretty severe health issues :lol:

It just looked fake with a capital "F".

But then right at the end there was a very brief scene where Dr Cutty's baby has being held by what I presume is the Nanny, and that baby looked real. I mean generally babies tend to look at you pretty much the same way everybody else does, not stare at you like a lump of pink silicone with glass eyes :rolleyes:
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#2 John Brawley

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 06:45 AM

For some years now I've been noticing the use of what are obviously some sort of animatronic dolls as stand-ins for real babies in TV dramas and movies.

What is the actual deal with having babies appearing as extras or whatever?


In australia there are rules. Basically it depends on the age. newborns are only allowed to work for 2 hours a day i think. By the time you'r 5 it's 4 hours. And at 10 it's 6 hours.

Twin's are often used too, so if one baby is sooking, then they can swap it out for one that's happier.

Oh and various state rules often require a chaperone that's done a police check and the production also often needs a permit to specifically employ minors.


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#3 Brian Dzyak

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Posted 25 February 2009 - 09:32 AM

For some years now I've been noticing the use of what are obviously some sort of animatronic dolls as stand-ins for real babies in TV dramas and movies.

What is the actual deal with having babies appearing as extras or whatever?

I just watched an episode of House , and I rather fear this is another area where the proliferation for full-HD screens is going to make things harder for special effects people.

I sincerely hope the baby Dr Cutty was carrying around wasn't real, because if it was, it has some pretty severe health issues :lol:

It just looked fake with a capital "F".

But then right at the end there was a very brief scene where Dr Cutty's baby has being held by what I presume is the Nanny, and that baby looked real. I mean generally babies tend to look at you pretty much the same way everybody else does, not stare at you like a lump of pink silicone with glass eyes :rolleyes:



Click on this http://www.dir.ca.go...mmaryCharts.pdf for a chart of rules. Page 9 addresses your question above. :) More info here http://www.dir.ca.gov/dlse/DLSE-CL.htm also.
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#4 Michele Peterson

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Posted 26 February 2009 - 12:35 AM

It's very expensive to have a real baby for a scene. As the previously posted link details, babies cannot be actually working for very long, as little as 20 in newborns. As we all know, completing an entire scene (not just shot) in 20 mins is quite rare and difficult. In addition to that, a studio teacher/welfare work and a nurse have to be there. The nurse is needed because infants cannot control their own body temperatures, or tell someone when they get hot, like adults and can easily over heat when under even a few lights.

I often notice that many shows don't even bother with a fake baby, but just have a blanket cover the would-be baby that is being held in someone's arms. Also, the just-delivered-seconds-ago babies look freakishly large because they can only get an older infant.

Edited by Michele Peterson, 26 February 2009 - 12:36 AM.

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Technodolly

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Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Wooden Camera

Broadcast Solutions Inc

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