Loop Group Leaders Part I

Some of you may wonder what you actually do when you not only work as a looper, but also lead the loopers. There are MANY loop groups out there.  Some are run by only one individual, but the majority of groups have 2 or more leaders. Why do they have more than one leader? Well, I’m sure different reasonings abound, but for us we have 4 group leaders. Any one of us have and do lead the group. With 4 of us there are more opportunities because we all know different people, and have different abilities. Usually whomever secures the job leads the group for that project (unless that person isn’t available on that day, has another job that day, or simply isn’t right for the project…like an all male war film for example).

The process, like everything in the biz, fluctuates; but this is a typical scenario. First we’ll set up meetings or phone calls with potential Films/Series. Sometimes if it’s someone we’ve worked with in the past they’ll just ask us if we are available (we love that!) If not, it can take several weeks or months of work to land the gig in the first place. (many repeat phone calls, mailings, meetings etc. until you talk to the right person and get then to hire you) With the unions, there are no “bids” because actors work for the set daily rate that the show was shot at. (SAG modified, low budget, etc) You can always negotiate up (It’s pretty hard to find loopers who will work for an entire day at $100…it’s 8 hours of straight work unlike on camera gigs where you may wait all day to shoot for 1/2 hour) Usually the producers have a set rate they can spend on the sound (looping included) and we work from there with how many actors they can hire (how many conracts they have) and how many they really NEED to do the job right ( a huge fight scene is pretty hard to do with 3 loopers. It would take MANY passes of the same scene over and over where having 8 loopers is more doable) Sometimes we can negotiate a small additional amount to add to our own contract for leading the group, but nowadays, more often than not, it’s mostly just getting to work the job and there is no extra money for leading the group. Movies can be a little more flexible. Series have more things set and once you work together on a series, all parties usually develop a “groove”.

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