Find Extras Become an Extra Our Team News FAQ Member Login

Heading out for your first day as an extra? Please read our On-set survival guide first.

General Queries

Can anyone sign up to be an extra?

We accept all people of all shapes, sizes, ethnicities and backgrounds. We have no upper age limit, children must be aged 2 and above to register.

Am I guaranteed work?

No, we don’t guarantee anyone work.  However, we will endeavor to find a role that suits you and put you forward for as many projects as you fit the brief for.  We cast our extras according to the briefs supplied to us by each production.  Casting is a very specific process with many factors to be taken into account.  We pride ourselves on supplying the right extra for the right role, so if that’s you, you’ll be on the list.

I’m only available at the weekends. Should I sign up?

The majority of filming takes place Monday – Friday. There is occasional weekend work but it is less frequent.  You can still sign up with us, but you have a much better chance of being cast if you’re able to work on weekdays.

How flexible do you need me to be?

In short, very! The more flexible your schedule is, the better this kind of work is. We deal with constantly changing production schedules and we do require a lot of flexibility as filming can often be cancelled or re-scheduled at very short notice, sometimes even the evening before.

How can I increase my chances of being booked on a production?

That’s easy — just be a great extra. We notice and recognise extras who show up on time, are friendly and easy to work with, are good communicators and are flexible. We receive regular reports back from productions on our extras, so if you’re great to work with, there’s a good chance we’ll hire you again.

I’m not a resident of Northern or the Republic of Ireland. Can I still join your agency?

No. This is a strict rule. We need to have our extras on the same land mass as our productions. 

We deal with frequent last minute schedule changes and cannot rely on people having to arrange flights, boats etc. 

Sorry, but no matter how much you want to work on one of productions we cannot bend this rule under any circumstances.

Profile Queries

How do I register with The Extras Dept. and what do I need to sign up?

It’s simple to register with us. You can create a profile here. To sign up you will need a tape measure to record your measurements accurately, your National Insurance Number or PPS, a digital photograph, and a form of identification.

For ID we accept either your passport, or both your driver's licence and birth certificate.

My profile says it is under review. How long will it take to be approved?

Approvals can take up to one week. During busy periods this can take longer.  

Fear not though — even if your profile is under review it is still viewable by our casting team.

I’m not sure my measurements are correct. Does it matter?

It really does matter — we often cast extras based on specific costume sizes.  If your measurements are incorrect you could be missing out on roles.

My appearance has changed. Should I update my photo?

Definitely! It’s the most important part of your profile. It’s a good idea to keep your photo fresh, updating it every few months if you can. 

Any changes to your appearance (tattoos etc.) should be logged. We might have to turn you away from a production if you look different from your photo in our system, or haven’t told us about any changes.

My contact details (mobile number/email) have changed. How can I update my information?

It’s extremely important to keep your contact details up to date.  Please log in to your personal profile and update your personal information.

I’m having trouble getting my photo right. Do you offer professional photo shoots?

Yes. We regularly hold photo shoots so that our members can have professional profile photos taken. It’s a great way to get the perfect photo and meet our casting team. Our photo shoots are held every 3 months at a Belfast City Centre location and cost £25. Keep an eye on our social media pages and this website for announcements.

Getting Booked & Working on a Production

I have received an availability check, what happens next?

Once you have completed and submitted our availability questionnaire the information you provide will be available to the coordinator booking that production. Please bear in mind that this is not a firm offer of work, once we have ascertained the availability of a group of people we will move to making our final selection for the production. A coordinator will be in touch with further details and to chat you through what is required for this production. We do endeavor to let you know if you have not made the final selection, although with our workload this isn’t always possible.

You sent me an availability check, but I’m not available. Will this affect my chances of being selected on other dates or another production?

Absolutely not. It’s perfectly fine to say you aren’t available. We would prefer that you are honest about your availability.

I have a query regarding a production I am booked on. Who should I contact?

Please contact the coordinator responsible for your production. You will be provided with this information when you get booked. We often work on multiple jobs at once; please make a note of who your contact is. If you are booked on 2 different productions you may need to speak to 2 different people.

I am booked for filming on a production, when will I receive my information?

We will contact you the day before your scheduled shoot with the details of the location, call time, and any other information you will need. We do not receive this information until late afternoon and as soon as we receive it we will send it out to you. Please keep an eye on your email between 4pm and 6pm and always remember to reply to confirm receipt of the information.

I have been booked on a production and am no longer available. What should I do?

You must contact the coordinator for your production IMMEDIATLEY. We’ll need to replace you for the production so we need plenty of notice to do so.

I am heading to set for my first day as an extra. What can I expect?

Please have a read through our “On-set survival guide” which will hopefully ease your nerves. 

Payments

How much will I be paid?

Rates of pay vary between productions and roles. The majority of productions work on a base of minimum wage for extras. We will always quote you the rate that you will receive minus commission.

How long will it take for me to be paid?

Payments can take up to 6-8 weeks to be issued. Quite a lot of the time payments come through to us sooner, and as soon as we receive the funds from the production companies we pay it out to our extras. 

If you have been waiting more than 6-8 for a payment please contact our payroll dept on [email protected]

I have worked multiple days on a production but have only received payment for some of the days?

We invoice our productions weekly. If you work on a production across different weeks you will receive multiple payments.

What deductions are made from my wages?

We do not take any tax or National Insurance deductions from your pay. It is up to you to declare this to HMRC.

What fees do you charge?

We deduct 15% commission from every daily rate you receive, or 20% on jobs with a daily rate of over £400.  We also charge you an annual registration fee of £25 deducated from your first job. 

E.g. If the 1st day you work is 5th Feb you will have a registration fee deducted from this days wage, any further work you do until 6th Feb the following year will not be subject to this charge.

Children and Parents

My child is under 2 years of age. Can I sign him/her up?

We only accept children onto our books from 2 years of age. For casting for children younger than this please “like” our Facebook page and keep an eye out for Casting Calls

What are the chances of my child being cast in a production?

The majority of roles we cast are for adults. There are opportunities for children but they are fewer and further between. It is best to keep children’s expectations low as we realise the prospect of being on a film set can be an exciting one. We do like to be especially up-front about this when it comes to little ones.

How does casting for child roles work?

It works in the same way that we cast adult roles. You will be sent an availability check to see if your child is available on a certain day. Our coordinators will contact you with further details and chat the process through.

I am chaperoning my child on set. What will be required of me?

Your child is your responsibility throughout the day. Please keep them with you at all times when they are not “on camera”. Make sure they are happy and understand the instructions being given to them.  It is your responsibility to get their meals and drinks. Please make sure you bring anything they might need throughout the day to keep them occupied and content. Avoid bringing computer games, as they will not be replaced if they go missing.

Working with Children – Access NI Certificates

Do I require an Access NI certificate to sign up?

It is not a full requirement of registration but it is recommended.  Any productions that are broadcast on BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel 5 or Sky require that all extras that are on set on productions where children are present have a valid Basic Disclosure Certificate.

What is a basic disclosure certificate?

A basic disclosure certificate is a document containing impartial and confidential criminal history information held by the police that can be used to make safer recruitment decisions. The basic disclosure document will provide details of an individual’s unspent criminal convictions, or state that they have none.

How do I apply for a basic disclosure certificate?

Currently Access NI is the official UK body authorized to provide basic disclosure certificates in Northern Ireland.

What is the cost of a certificate? What information do I need to provide? How long does it take to issue certificate?

Through Access NI the current cost of the certificate is £26. You will be asked to provide 3 forms of identification to confirm your name, date of birth and current address. For example: passport, driving licence, utility bill rental agreement, and mortgage or bank statement. You will also be asked to provide address details for the last 5 years.

How often do I need to provide a certificate?

A new certificate will need to be provided every 18 months. However, if within that period you are convicted of an offence under the Sexual Offences Act 2003 you must inform The Extras Dept. immediately.

Who do I show the Basic Disclosure certificate to?

You need to provide Extras Dept. with a copy; we have implemented a new section to your profile that will allow you to upload this in a similar fashion as you do with your identification documents. You will also be asked to enter the date of issue so we can monitor its expiry correctly.

I already have an Enhanced Disclosure Certificate or a Standard Disclosure Certificate. Do I need to obtain a Basic Certificate?

No. All criminal background checks are valid from the date of issue for this purpose. A certificate will need to be obtained 18 months after the issue date of the original. If it is not possible to obtain another Standard or Enhanced a Basic Disclosure Certificate must be sought.

What will happen if I don’t obtain a Basic Disclosure Certificate?

If you would prefer not to obtain or disclose your Basic Disclosure Certificate you will still be eligible to work on productions that do not involve children.