More Thoughts on SAG vs SAGe / What Does Your Resume Say?

by txactor on July 24, 2010

Check out this animated video I created on the Xtranormal site and let me know what you think about actors who put SAGe on their resumes? Is it right? Is it ethical? Is it even legal? DISCLAIMER: No one at Screen Actors Guild participated in the creation of this video. This video was created by one SAG member, me. So if you don’t like what the video has to say, blame me not Screen Actors Guild. Got it?

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Joe Ellis July 25, 2010 at 3:15 am


Markell Pool July 25, 2010 at 3:09 pm

I thought it wasn’t lame at all. I think it brings up a pretty good point, although I don’t think anything will be done about it nor will anyone listen. Game on…

Sharon Garrison July 26, 2010 at 7:03 pm

Good work, Tommy. The mark of a true professional actor . . . SAG!!! Protection for the actors, the producers and a statement of commitment to our work! Thanks.

Non SAG Actor March 4, 2012 at 12:39 am

I am not in SAG and I do not put SAG E on my resume. That being said, when I first started acting in Texas, I did a SAG commercial as an extra to get things for my resume. While on the shoot involving about 200 extras (a stadium shoot) in several of the background shots a number of SAG actors were next to me. Their main discussion was how to slow things down so they could get into overtime pay. Is this the ‘professionalism’ you are talking about of SAG work?

Non SAG Actor March 4, 2012 at 1:08 am

I seriously considered joining SAG. When the Texas SAG office ran a membership drive a few years ago offering a reduced price to join, I thought perhaps now is the time to join in hopes of getting more work in the Louisiana market. Then I learned that joining at the ‘reduced price’ was only good for work in Texas. SAG failed to mention that! So had I joined then rather than getting more work in Louisiana, I would have missed out on the non-union work in Texas. I am not saying Texas SAG should not have offered this ‘reduced rate’ price to increase membership. I AM saying they should have been up front in saying that it was a ‘limited membership’. Not being in SAG does not make you less professional as you suggest. I’m tired of SAG actors telling us we are second-rate actors. As for pay on non-union jobs, if I don’t like what they want to pay me, I can turn the job down.

txactor April 9, 2012 at 8:31 pm

You’re slightly confused about initiation fees. Texas, like other regional offices have a ‘reduced rate’ (actually HAD as following merger all regions will have to pay the national rate). IF you joined in Texas and moved to work in Los Angeles, for instance, you would have to pay the difference between the regional initiation fee and the national fee. That information is not hidden. What would be the point? This wasn’t some ‘sale price’ this was a long established recognition that work in regional offices is usually less plentiful and so regional actors were given a break. The ‘reduced price’ you speak of would allow you to work in any other region as long as there was not a local office that had a higher initiation rate. If so, to work that locale you’d have to pay the difference. What…you think you should be able to pay less then move to an area where other actors had to pay more and you’d just skate? I don’t see your gripe. There is no ‘limited membership’. You’re a member or you’re not.

txactor April 9, 2012 at 8:38 pm

Talk is cheap. Such talk is certainly not of the highest ethical order. On the other hand it was probably just talk. IF the actors you mention had actively done something to undermine production that would certainly be unprofessional. I’ll be recording an interview with actor Markus Flanagan about his book ONE LESS BITTER ACTOR. Look for it on the site around 4/12/12.

Non SAG Actor April 29, 2012 at 5:44 pm

txactor, I stand corrected. You are right. I was confused I guess. I thought it was as you said, ‘You’re a member or you’re not’. I thought that once I had my SAG card that I could work any where as a member of the union. I guess that now after the merger, it is a moot point any way.

As for the other though, ‘Talk is cheap’. It was much more than talk. They DID try to slow down production. ‘Leave your purse here. Then when we get part of the way to the other area of the stadium, notice you forgot your purse and have to come back and get it.’ Check their watches to see how much longer till the overtime would start. ‘I’ll leave my sun glasses at the next move. Try to get in the middle of every one so when you have to come back that will slow every one else down. Look at all those saps trying to hurry and do what was asked. Obviously not SAG actors. What a bunch of jerks.’ and on and on and on all day long. Before that, joining SAG was one of my biggest dreams.

After that, I’ve noticed more and more the attitudes of the SAG actors. Berating the people who aren’t SAG actors, many of whom are young actors just starting out and haven’t been able to become eligible yet. My friend who loves flashing his SAG card around and bragging of being a Union actor yet takes a withdraw so he can audition for Non Union work but when some little something comes up, he is the first to be on the phone calling the SAG office to report it. I know you can say these are just a few isolated incidents and perhaps it is but I see this sort of thing over and over. I know that SAG has done a lot of good things to improve conditions for actors. That is why at one time I would have been so proud to be a member of SAG but not any more-because of the way SAG actors conduct themselves feeling confident that they have the Union to back them up. They are some of the most uncooperative people filled with their on self-importance. Am I bitter? No, I’m not bitter. I’m just telling you my impression that I get of SAG actors. Don’t berate me for working hard and trying to do a good job as efficiently as I can. I still may join SAG some day. I just hope I don’t become one of these SAG actors.

txactor April 29, 2012 at 9:39 pm


Sorry to hear of your negative experiences. I can’t say in 30+ years that I’ve ever seen the same. You say you aren’t bitter and I hope that is the case. As to SAG, I don’t think you’re going to change your mind and that’s your business. I don’t think what you’re describing is the norm in the least. I wish you the best as you move forward in your career.

Actors Talk Podcast:

Non SAG Actor April 30, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Thank You txactor. That is very generous of you. I really do appreciate it. All the best to you and to all the great SAG actors out there. What it boils down to is to try and say having a SAG card doesn’t automatically make you a ‘professional’. Not having a SAG card doesn’t necessarily make you ‘unprofessional’. I’m sure you will agree that how we conduct ourselves is the true measure of our dedication to our craft. What set me off on all this is the comment above ‘The mark of a true professional….SAG’. Not always. Thank You again.

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