We have new jobs and standards in the film industry-and if If they work, we could pave a path to contain COVID-19 for the whole country.
Professional film sets are machines for logistical problem solving. Production teams safely navigate volatile areas like crowd control, dangerous stunts, and enormous egos. If anyone can find a way to work safely in the face of COVID-19, it could be Hollywood.
So welcome your new appearance as COVID-19 Compliance Supervisor on the set.
A recent agreement between unions and producers outlined an entirely new approach to film production in relation to pandemic production. It is based on the results of statistical modeling from Columbia University and changes the production day dramatically. New compliance regulators and officers will enforce shooting zones, daily tests, and a maximum of 10-hour shooting days.
For union rates this will be a new standard. For indies, this is a blueprint (and kind of a budget for it).
Whether you want to become one COVID-19 Compliance Supervisor or apply these protocols to your own production. Here is a breakdown of the information you will need.
What is a COVID?-19 Compliance Supervisor, and who created it?
Last month, unions and producers agreed on how to safely resume Hollywood film production. The COVID-19 returns to work AGREEMENT published by the GDA, IATSE, SAG-AFTRA AND TEAMSTERS / BASIC CRAFTS describes the requirements that must be met for all productions by August 2021.
Much of the agreement is based on an earlier 37-page working document entitled: "The safe way forward" A joint report by the DGA, SAG-AFTRA, IATSE and Teamsters committees for COVID-19 security guidelines.
Not only does the agreement provide details of how all devices will work during the pandemic, it also creates a new health security team. At the center of the health safety team are the COVID-19 compliance supervisor (referred to as the Health Safety Supervisor (HSS) in previous publications) and the COVID-19 compliance officers. From the most recent agreement:
This is actually just the first paragraph of the legal version of the document. Basically, however, every sentence must have a COVID-19 compliance supervisor. And as a COVID-19 compliance supervisor or senior union set officer, you will be charged the following fees:
- Hiring and coordinating COVID-related medical staff
- Cooperation with producers, UPM (Line Producer or equivalent for productions with multiple cameras), 1st AD / Key SM, department heads and the Health Safety Manager (HSM)
- Monitoring of all tests by medical personnel and handling of the results
- Along with the 1st AD / Key SM, provide instructions at daily safety meetings or at any time of the day when revised health safety instructions are required
- Make sure the device follows the zone system
- Stopping production in the event of a violation
Stop set? You need a steady constitution to make these calls, but you do so out of concern for life or death. You won't be a producer's favorite person, but if you join the zoning system like you should, everyone will be fine. What is the zone system anyway?
The zone system: learn about the new way of pandemic production
According to The Safe Way Forward, on-set security depends on two factors that work together: the testing and the zone system. In simple terms, Zone A are places for actors who cannot use PPE because of their role. Zone B is the rest of the set and Zone C is the outside world. Here is their breakdown:
The inherent problem with most business operations is no different from movie sets: however limited the workplace may be, everyone will go home at night and on weekends and bring them back to the rest of the Zone C world. So the Zone system only really works on film sets if it works Hand in hand with testing.
How often and who to test
This is how the tests work according to the agreement for all three zones:
- Zone A personnel are tested at least three times a week, daily when close-by scenes or exertion are required (with a quick on-site CEPHEID test being performed in less than 60 seconds).
- Zone B personnel is tested at least once a week, preferably on Mondays or Tuesdays, and tested and approved before entering Zone B for the first time
- Nobody can be "pushed" from Zone B to Zone A immediately until they have been tested and cleared 24 hours before entering Zone A.
- If traveling by air, cast and crew must be retested and cleared within 24 hours of the flight and before entering Zone B or Zone A for the first time
How do we know the zone system will work with this test frequency?
According to the first article "The Safe Way Forward" a model was operated by Jeffrey Shaman from Columbia University to predict outcomes of various systems. The models predicted the following:
How to become a COVID-19 Compliance Supervisor or Officer
That role will continue to play a big role in the future, even if a vaccine against the virus is found. (Especially since we don't understand whether antibodies actually lead to immunity, even from those who survived COVID-19.)
If you intend to work in the world of the Union, you should contact your Union to find out how best to educate you.
If you do union or independent appearances, you will first receive training and a certificate. There are online resources that offer film production training courses, such as: B. Health Education Services, which cost around $ 50. You can even get free training (though not specific to movie sets) in Los Angeles County. Your training will reflect whether you want to become a compliance officer or just want to continue your education –and make yourself more attractive than say a PA.
If you're looking to hire a compliance officer, Health Education Services has a database of people with certificates by region, and companies like CrowdRX can offer you comprehensive officer and on-set testing solutions.
How much does it pay
Depending on the type of kit, we're seeing prices ranging from $ 25 per hour to $ 350 to $ 500 per day. In an article in the New York Times, film entrepreneur Jessica Lesley explained this It charges around $ 500 a day for a supervisor and less for assistants, while some charge up to $ 1,000 a day. Here's a look at a recent Indeed ad from Buzzfeed, including:
Possible problems with these new recording protocols
Money is at the top of the list. Not only does a new department have to be hired, but the entire working day has to be postponed in order to organize, rehabilitate and keep the immune system on set uncompromising. (The final reason is why this includes shorter working days as well.) This means that a significant budget has to be found for these new protocols. In the conclusion, “The Safe Way Forward” mentions this and pays lip service to the idea that “women, people of color and people with disabilities” should not be the chopping block first.
For independent sets working on smaller budgets, this will be a big endeavor. Will productions compromise elsewhere and result in loss of work in other areas on the set? Or are they sure to cut corners? Will we be lucky enough to see new government and local funding initiatives spring up to help?
We have to find out.
"The Safe Way Forward" has been asking us that since the film is an industry with a long history of creative solution to logistical problems. "Why not use these powers to work from a safe starting point?" It's a decent question. If filmmaking can actually find a way to successfully apply this type of risk reduction, other industries and companies may be able to follow suit. It's a bit of a stretch, but maybe, just maybe, Hollywood can save us from the pandemic.
If you are planning a pandemic production or want to become a compliance supervisor, here are the two agreements we mentioned in this article:
What do you think? Anyone out there planning to become a COVID-19 Compliance Supervisor?
Please share in the comments.