Sunday, November 9, 2008

Working-out as Work!

Have you ever wondered who those people were in the background of workout infomercials? You know, the ones gleefully using the machine, gadget or what appears to be a child's toy, while a frighteningly muscular guy tries to sell you the equipment?

Answer: ACTORS!

This morning I will be filming a workout infomercial. I have no idea what I've gotten myself into!

I submitted for it a day or so ago on the booking website I subscribe to. Because I only have headshots, not a full or even half body shot, I really didn't expect to hear from them. I mean, you'd think they'd want to make sure people have the right physique, but I guess not... The breakdown was as follows: "Men/Women for fitness class and testimonial shoot. We are taping a first time users class with Hot LA Fitness Trainer Ashley Marriott for use in a commercial for a new at home fitness product. I need 20 people attractive, 20 to 50 years old, any ethnicity and good bodies. Shoot is Sunday November 9 approximately 5 hours. Be ready to work out and take a fitness class and then give testimonial regarding the class and the product. There is no pay."

When I submitted for it, I figured, "what the hell!" At least I'll get a free workout session out of it, as I'm in desperate need of something to get me exercising again. As it turns out, I'll also get $40 for travel. A few months ago I came very close to doing an acne product infomercial. They were offering a years worth of free products (no, I don't remember what kind, I don't think I was told), but because it would be shown nationally, my acting teacher said I should absolutely not do it without being paid money. The casting director told me that it is unethical to pay someone who gives a testimonial. Free products would have been nice, but I opted not to do it.

Forty bucks isn't much, but in this case at least I'm getting some cash. I have no idea where this commercial is being distributed; if it's national, this is a pretty raw deal, but at least it wouldn't be featuring my unflattering zits! :)

I asked what type of product it is and what muscle group we'll be working; I was told it's like a mini BoFlex with 12 exercised for various parts of the body. Although we'll only workout for about an hour, I have to be there from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. to give before and after testimonials.

I'll need to be up by 7 a.m. at the latest, but I've been going to sleep around 4 a.m., so this will prove interesting...

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