Episode 5: Why is it important to know your worth as actor?
Working on set as actor in Thailand is a little bit like in the Wild West. There are no unions. There are no regulations. There are hardly any real agents that stand up for the talents.
Therefore, you have to determine what you are worth. You are the only one that can do that. What is the minimum budget that you want to work for? Even if you are in a tight spot, you won’t accept budgets that are lower than that.
And then you need to set the budget that you really want to work for to make it worth your while. What is the budget that you feel happy to work for. With which budget do you feel that you want to give it your best.
And then you need to set the budget that you want. The budget that will make you feel completely at ease. Where you show up happy on set and are happy to do whatever they ask you to do.
Now you have three budgets. The one that is your minimum. Your ‘comfortable rate’ and your ‘happy rate’.
Now you need to find a way to make your ‘happy rate’ your minimum rate.
The only way to do this is by investing in yourself.
You can do so to invest time and / or money.
Here are four ways in which you can invest in yourself.:
1. Work on student films
There is no better way to get experience, exposure and build connections than to work on student films. You have only played small parts before? A student film may give you the chance to play a supporting part or even a main part. You can build your reel with the materials. You get to experience what it means to be the main in a production – it is completely different from being an extra or featured extra. You build connections, because the kids at university will soon graduate and if they like you they will remember you for future projects – if you mess it up they will remember, too.
2. Make your own projects
Instead of complaining that there are no jobs, create your own job. Create your own project. Write your own script. Find people that are in a similar position as you. That want to do something. Make your own short film. There are film makers out there that want to create stuff all the time. Find a group of people that share similar ideas. Be pro-active. It is the best way to gain experience, connections and maybe a show reel for yourself.
3. Join a theatre production
The Bangkok Community Theatre is a really good place to start. It is English language, they work with people from all traits and places. They have regular productions. It is brilliant for networking, to get experience, to get training by doing…and being pro-active. The BCT was the first place I started here in Bangkok exactly 10 years ago. I am still friends with the people I met back then.
4. Take workshops and / or classes
When I started, I took a lot of workshops. A LOT. With different teachers, different techniques, different locations. Some very weird stuff, which all added up and every single one of them was an amazing experience that I don’t want to miss from my life.
In the field of acting there is so much to learn. It is a life-long journey and if you are open for it, you have no idea where it is going to take you.
It all starts from knowing your worth and then upgrading that worth. Invest in yourself. Become better at what you are doing and people will see your determination. They will appreciate it. And will appreciate you for it.
Never stop growing and know that you are worth it.
This is Robin Schroeter from MasterClass Studio
Videography: Tida Visan and Pandit Teerachetthongplung
Editing: Pandit Teerachetthongplung
More information on how to enter the acting industry in Thailand:
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