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SA Guild of Actors

A Powerful, Unified Voice for Actors' Rights


Do you have Financial Freedom?

The notion of Financial Planning has many of us freelancers burying our heads in the sand. And for good reason; our income is erratic at best and our job security is nonexistent. As independent contractors we enjoy none of those safety-nets afforded the regular nine-to-fivers: pension fund; paid leave, including sick-leave; unemployment insurance; medical aid and access to workman’s compensation and, for those fortunate enough in these tough economic times, an annual bonus. No, we’re independent contractors, we’re free agents.

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What Kind of Actor are You?

As a director and actor I have had the opportunity of working with the best and worst actors that South Africa has to offer. From the consummately professional to the tardy and utterly talentless. Although, to be fair, the marginally talented yet direct-able goofball can often be more appealing to a director than the ego-centric, self-aggrandizing genius.

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“So, what’s your real job?”

When the long-running soap-opera ‘Generations’ went off air, the 16 actors at the centre of the storm filed papers with the CCMA, challenging their dismissal. The first question the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration had to answer is whether or not it has jurisdiction at all in the matter: are the actors ‘employees’ as defined in the labour legislation, or are they in fact common law ‘independent contractors’.

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Who pulls the strings as the puppets dance?

The recent Generations debacle elicited much heated discussion on the social media with lengthy threads of self-replicating spirogyra clogging the pond for days. Strong opinions sprouted from all corners but very few hard facts emerged amid the bluster: everyone had an answer but it seemed that no one was willing to ask the right questions. Now, as the thunder rumbles on beyond the horizon and mop-up operations get underway, perhaps it’s time to reflect on some lessons learned.

Who pulls the strings as the puppets dance? Read More »

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