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Loop Group Etiquette

You may have looped before, but do you know looping etiquette? As a loop group leader, you’ve worked with those divas. Those difficult political hires that you would NEVER hire again. Why you ask? Well, they show up late (always arrive at least 15 minutes early to your session) leave for the bathroom right before a huge group cue when you need them(always ask the leader if it’s a good time to use the restroom or make a phone call before you just leave the stage), and come completely unprepared (they have no notes for crime scene lingo, for example, when the whole movie is a crime scene). Sometimes I’ve even heard loopers bad mouth the project on the sound stage. (yes, I’ve looped on films that will NEVER see the light of day but it’s a paycheck and these producers/directors have spent the better half of a lifetime perhaps getting their project made so come up with SOMETHING nice about it!) You never know what their next project will be and you want them to hire YOU again!  Also a pretty obvious thing to note but I’ll say it anyway…make sure you don’t walk in while the recording light is on (or talk, eat, text, etc IN the room during a cue) You will ruin the cue and annoy your fellow actor. (not to mention look like a newbie)

A few other etiquette guidelines: always ask the loop leader for guidance if you are unsure of how to tackle a cue (you will step on toes if you think you know better than them or if you ask the ADR super before you ask the leader. Like any well run group, Looping goes much smoother when there is only one cook in the kitchen and the loop leader has usually painstakingly prepared each cue with what to do), ask ahead of time if there is anything to prepare, and don’t ask if you can leave early. When you work a union gig they have you for 8 hours at the day rate like any other acting job. We all have auditions and other work that can sometimes come up on the same day as our looping gig, but the loop group leader cannot promise to have you out early to make it to an audition, etc. If it works out great, if not…hey you got a paycheck that someone else would have killed for!

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