Attention Extras in that Matt Damon “Contagion” Movie: SF Minimum Wage is $9.92 Per Hour

[UPDATE: It’s all good, hard-working extras. Just got the call from Down South about how you all are going to get at least $80 per working day. They were all apologetic, saying stuff like, “Thanks, you really saved our bacon on this one.” Turns out that San Francisco County is the only place in the entire state what has a higher-than-CA min. wage.]  

That means that $64 ($8 times 8 hours) isn’t going to cut it, right?

Remember those “unfortunate,” “innocent” 18-year-old faux prostitutes in Chinatown from the time that horrible Trauma series came to the 415 all lies and jest? Those people got paid way more than $64 a day – it was close to $80. So why should you Contagion extras get paid any less?

Is it possible that Rich King* Casting doesn’t know the minimum wage in the area where it’s casting?


Those playing hos back in ought-nine got paid minimum wage, so why not you?

Feel the excitement:

(And the beauty part is that there are “no fees to apply” Really? No fees to stand around for hours trying to get a gig that doesn’t pay minimum wage? Sweet, Thanks Rich King Casting.)

So, extras, practice this line: “I knows I gots to get paid!”

Start chanting all together and then your $64 paychecks will increase to $79.36 paychecks tout de suite.

Of course, if they take you to the East Bay or if they shoot on Federal land(?) in the 415, well then maybe you won’t get your full $9.92 per hour. But they’re talking about filming at Candlestick Park and Chinatown,** where San Francisco laws are in full effect.

In closing, these pretzels are making me thirsty!***

Extras Needed for New Matt Damon Film “Contagion”
Filming in SF February 9-19, 2011
Casting Call
– 1/29/11 Fort Mason,
– 1/30/11 Embarcadero YMCA

Filming starts on February 9th and goes through the 19th. Before shooting though, we will be coming to San Francisco to do an open casting call for those who may be interested in working on this film on Jan 29th and 30th. We are looking for Men and Women all shapes, sizes, types and ethnicities to be background performers for this feature.

We look forward to offering the opportunity for fun,exciting PAID work to San Francisco and Bay Area area residents. We will be casting lots of locals in the production.

The date and times for the open call castings are:

January 29, 2011 (2pm-6pm)
Landmark Building C
Room C260


January 30, 2011 (10am-4pm)
Embarcadero YMCA

All applicants need only a pen, a small photo of themselves and a great attitude. It’s as easy as that!

>> For more information about the casting call: 415-373-4202

*C’mon, “Rich King?” I suppose that’s better than Sandy Beach or something. (Never trust anyone from the movie biz.)

**Contagion in Chinatown? Hey, remember SARS? Restaurant owners would come out on Grant and to try to, physically, pull diners inside.  Bad times.

***That’s from the comments section on SFGate. (Kramer was going to be more than an extra on that Woody Allen film, but anyway…)

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12 Responses to “Attention Extras in that Matt Damon “Contagion” Movie: SF Minimum Wage is $9.92 Per Hour”

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Yancey at Yancey G and SF Community News, SFCitizen. SFCitizen said: RIP-OFF! Those extras in that new Matt Damon movie Contagion will only get $64 /day – that's LESS THAN MINIMUM WAGE […]

  2. Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable says:

    Wait, how can they get away with paying sub-Minimum Wage?!

  3. Alastair Dallas says:

    Who cares about the money? People will be streaming pirated copies of Contagion for years to come…and there you’ll be in the background. That’s cool.

  4. Chewy says:

    If you read the ordinance of the minimum wage for S.F. and I quote: “the provisions of MWO may be waived by a collective bargaining agreement.” under point 15. (link to the full page of info at bottom of this comment)

    So, I bet the studios make deals with the city to pay the state minimum wage of $8 by saying that they are bringing thousands of extras into town who will buy food, gas, pay for parking, etc that will go into the city coffers.

    But hey, my son and husband were hired as extras for “Contagion”…it’s their first time involved with a film, so they are looking forward to the fun of it and the experience and are happy with $8.

    Here’s the page of FAQ’s…check out number 15 for the full read:

  5. sfcitizen says:

    I hear you, but if there were some kind of union out there representing the extras, I think I would have heard about it. ‘

    And actually, the rate for union workers doing this gig is $139 per day.

    I’ll tell you, Rich King himself seems clueless on this issue.

    And it would be a big deal in town if somebody cut a deal where a minimum wage requirement got waived…

  6. Mom of extra says:

    The extra’s are getting the $79. Per day, kids$139

  7. sfcitizen says:

    Thanks Mom!

  8. foxy hole says:

    I went to the casting call at fort mason
    never recieved email conformation
    Did they film at canelstick park feb 16th

  9. sfcitizen says:

    Yep. Sorry about that…

  10. calibanker says:

    I got in the film. I was a reporter and we film last sunday in the SF chronical. Hopefully that scene won’t be edited out. look for me in the back ground. I’ll the guy in the grey button shirt at the desk

  11. sfcitizen says:


  12. a.blunt says:

    I got in the film as well, but its now mid April, and I have not seen the payment in the 6 weeks that the casting company stated. Got my work receipt right here – would be nice if someone from this casting agency would follow up with my contact attempts. It was still a really cool day either way. I got to see an amazing set up of the set @ Candlestick and didn’t mind standing/sitting around all day. That is what background extras do. All of these girls were being very rude that day saying “when are we going to meet the stars”, and “I can’t believe they are making us stand around”, and “come on! I wan’t to be in the movie already!!”. Shortly after one of the assistants heard those remarks, our group was dismissed for the afternoon. It is like they never listened to what they told us at the casting meeting at Fort Mason, or the information the casting directors told us over the phone when they offered us the part. I did not get an email confirmation after that day, but a personal phone call. Would be nice to see my check, but I will give them a bit more time to respond since I bet the other 5,000 are hounding them as well. I mean come on – I am on unemployment – it would be nice to have the $79 bucks right now, but I can wait a bit.