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Working a Union Shoot as a Non-Union DP


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#1 Ben Pluimer

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 12:25 AM

I've been approached to work as a DP (2nd Unit) on an NBC show. I am non-union, and I expect this job to only last for 2-3 days tops. I most likely have enough non-union days under my belt to join, but the high initiation fee is a bit hard to deal with seeing as I don't have any more union work lined up, and it's not something that I regularly get calls for.

Is there some sort of provision that would allow me to work these few days on the show as a non-union DP? Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Ben
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#2 Paul Maibaum ASC

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 06:27 PM

No.
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#3 peter Wunstorf

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 06:29 PM

I've been approached to work as a DP (2nd Unit) on an NBC show. I am non-union, and I expect this job to only last for 2-3 days tops. I most likely have enough non-union days under my belt to join, but the high initiation fee is a bit hard to deal with seeing as I don't have any more union work lined up, and it's not something that I regularly get calls for.

Is there some sort of provision that would allow me to work these few days on the show as a non-union DP? Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Ben


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#4 peter Wunstorf

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 06:33 PM

Are you in the 13 Western States?
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#5 Ben Pluimer

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 08:55 PM

Hey Paul & Peter...thanks for your responses. I'm in LA.

I'm willing to join Local 600, and plan to eventually. Do either of you have any advice for this situation? Thanks in advance.
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#6 Paul Maibaum ASC

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 11:24 PM

If you want to do the shoot join and pay on an installment basis.
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#7 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 06:05 AM

And exactly how is this not a protection racket?
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#8 peter Wunstorf

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 08:45 AM

If you want to do the shoot join and pay on an installment basis.



Does he not need to be on the LA Roster first?
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#9 Paul Maibaum ASC

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 09:51 AM

Perhaps. Safety Pass training is required for roster status. Best thing to do would be to call the local, talk to a B.A. and get the info straight from the source.
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#10 John Sprung

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 11:57 AM

I know, it's tricky to make that transition when your bread and butter is non-union. But don't be afraid to talk to 600. Their goal is to get both you and your bread and butter unionized.





-- J.S.
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#11 Dan Salzmann

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 12:41 PM

Perhaps. Safety Pass training is required for roster status. Best thing to do would be to call the local, talk to a B.A. and get the info straight from the source.


What is Safety Pass training?
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#12 Paul Maibaum ASC

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 12:57 PM

http://www.csatf.org/safety.shtml
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#13 Mark Dunn

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 08:27 AM

Are closed shops not illegal in the US?
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#14 Paul Maibaum ASC

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 09:34 AM

http://en.wikipedia....wiki/Union_shop

as opposed to:

http://en.wikipedia....iki/Closed_shop
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#15 Mark Dunn

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 09:52 AM

There doesn't seem to be much difference. You can be dismissed for not joining a union.
We put a stop to that 30 years ago.
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#16 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 11:38 AM

There isn't any practical difference; the entire idea of a "union shop" is a legal fiction designed to allow unions members to make more money than their job is worth by artificially restricting the supply of labour. The fact that this is the raison d'etre of these organisations could not be clearer and until I read those articles I had no idea anywhere was still clinging to the term.

I'm not sure why anyone stands for any of this. In a sane world, for every IATSE member there'd be five thousand aggrieved people standing outside the white house screaming about it, and I'm astonished there isn't.

P
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#17 Chris Keth

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 04:22 PM

I'm not sure why anyone stands for any of this. In a sane world, for every IATSE member there'd be five thousand aggrieved people standing outside the white house screaming about it, and I'm astonished there isn't.

P


A situation like that would assume that most or all work in the field is union, leaving few to no jobs for those not in the union. We all know that non-union films outnumber the union films.
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#18 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 05:41 PM

A situation like that would assume that most or all work in the field is union


I don't think so, although I suspect that most of the money is in unionised productions, regardless of their number. Regardless, exclusivity isn't required for the current situation to inflate union wages (which it unquestionably does).

Thinking about it, I'm also astonished that the producers don't get tired of this situation. You'd have thought that if they just tore up the union contracts tomorrow, they'd be able to hire perfectly adequate non-union people for considerably less money, considering that the people who ultimately pay for the union are the producers.

P
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#19 Thomas James

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Posted 04 October 2009 - 03:15 AM

But that is the whole idea which means not getting paid what you are worth but getting paid according to what your needs are.
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#20 Mark Dunn

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Posted 04 October 2009 - 06:36 AM

On reflection I do appreciate the difference between the union shop and the closed shop. You're not actually fired for not joining the union, you're fired for not paying the fees you would pay if you did.
As the barristers say, a distinction without a difference. It's extraordinary that such legally-sanctioned arm-twisting persists in a G10 nation.
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CineTape

Aerial Filmworks

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CineLab

Glidecam

Tai Audio

Broadcast Solutions Inc

Media Blackout - Custom Cables and AKS

Paralinx LLC

Technodolly

Wooden Camera

Metropolis Post

Visual Products

Ritter Battery

rebotnix Technologies

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

Rig Wheels Passport

Willys Widgets

Opal

The Slider