In this article, we will walk you through what you need to know to understand and successfully complete a SAG-AFTRA exhibit G form.

Anyone who has worked in the Assistant Directing department on a movie knows that there are an insane number of details to keep track of. A prime example of one of the more detailed requirements of the AD department is the SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G that is completed every day.

If you are a nitty-gritty details kind of person, then you may love the thorough nature of the SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G. If not… well, then hang tight — there is a lot to take in. In this article, we will walk you through what you need to know to successfully complete a SAG-AFTRA exhibit G form.

What is an Exhibit G form?

The “Exhibit G” is actually the shorter name for a form that is properly titled: “SAG-AFTRA Performers Production Time Report”. This report is created by SAG-AFTRA (Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists) and serves as the official record of each actor’s times for a given shooting day. At the end of every week of shooting, that week’s SAG-AFTRA reports are sent to your SAG-AFTRA production representative along with that week’s call sheets. The Exhibit G form includes many details about each actor’s work day including arrival times, set times, dismissal times, and much more.

Before we break down each section of this form, you may want to download the latest version of the SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G Form. That can be found here: 

Why do I need to complete
an Exhibit G?

If you are working on a film or video production that is using actors who are part of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG-AFTRA), then you will be required to complete this form for every day that an actor works on set. It’s worth noting that even actors who are not part of SAG-AFTRA should be listed on this form. The union requires this form so that they know exactly what their actors are being asked to do every day and so they can ensure that the production is paying any overtime / penalties that are due. 

If your production is not shooting as a union project, then you do not need to complete this form (although some projects still choose to do so just to have an official record of actor times).

Who fills out the Exhibit G?

The Exhibit G can fall into different hands depending on the type of production. On larger shows, generally speaking, the 2nd AD, or 2nd 2nd AD is responsible for making sure this is completed; but they will sometimes delegate it to a Set PA, or Basecamp PA. Often it makes the most sense for the PA that is with the actors in hair / makeup to be the one that tracks times, as they are the ones communicating with the actors when they arrive and when they leave.

On some smaller shows, the SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G will fall into the hands of a producer or even the 1st AD. It all depends on the size of the show and the number of talent that need to be tracked.

How to fill out an Exhibit G

Step 1 – The Header

The first part of the Exhibit G form is the header. Most of the fields in the header are project-related and will remain constant throughout your production. For this reason, it’s a great idea to fill these in using a PDF editing program such as Preview for Mac or Adobe PDF Reader for Windows. Then you can save this version to use later to avoid retyping data over and over.

Now let’s go through all the individual fields that you’ll find in the header section of this form.

 

Picture TitleThis one’s easy! The title of the production. Use the same title you submitted on your SAG-AFTRA paperwork.
CompanyThe name of the production company.
Production No.This is the production number that is assigned to your production by SAG-AFTRA when they approve your application. SAG-AFTRA usually sends this number in an email along with your production paperwork packet.
Date  Today’s shoot date (such as Oct 23, 2018). You should fill out one Exhibit G form for each day of shooting.
ContactThe name of the person who is the primary intermediary with SAG-AFTRA. Typically, this is a production manager or producer.
PhoneThe primary contact person’s phone number. If you have an official production office phone number, you could use this here.
Shooting LocationThe name and address of the primary shooting location(s) for the day..
Is today a designated day off?The time the actor was dismissed from hair / makeup / wardrobe and approved to go home.
Production TypeSelect if this project is a motion picture (MP), television (TV), Movie of the Week (MOW), Industrial (i.e. commercials), or Other.

 

Step 2 – The Actors

As you know, SAG-AFTRA Exhibit Gs are all about the cast. So, naturally we need to start by listing all the actors that are working on this day. You’ll start by filling out one row for each cast member.  Let’s look at the first four columns on the Exhibit G:

 

CastThis is where you’ll list the name of each cast member. It’s a good idea to list all cast, regardless of whether they are union or not, just so you have a complete record. Better to record more than less!
MinorIf the actor is a minor (under 18), check this box. Make sure you’re familiar with the restrictions that apply to minors.
CharacterThe name of the character / role that the actor is playing (e.g. Indiana Jones).
Work ScheduleThis field is for designating the type of work the actor is doing that day.  There is a specific list of abbreviation codes to use for these fields. You’ll notice a key to these letters in the header of the Exhibit G (F, W, SW, T). While it seems a bit confusing, these letters are abbreviations for different kinds of work. Here are some of the most common abbreviations:

  • SW = Start Work – The actor’s first day of work.
  • W = Work – This is a “normal” production day for the actor.
  • WF = Work Finish – The actor’s last day of work. 
  • SWF = Start Work Finish – The actor’s first and last day of official work on the project.  This is another way of stating that this is the actor’s only day of work.
  • H = Hold – This is used to designate when the actor is not officially working, but is still asked to remain available in case they are needed.  Typically, hold days for actors are paid though this can vary by contract.
  • T = Travel – The actor is traveling this day.
  • R = Rehearsal – The actor is in rehearsal this day.

 

For a complete and detailed list of work status codes, please check out our Work Status Codes Cheat Sheet. Don’t get too freaked out about all these letters. Usually, these letters will be listed next to the actor’s name on the daily call sheet, so you should be able to just copy those codes over.

Step 3 – Track Daily Times

Once you have an actor’s name and character listed, your next task is to keep detailed track of their times.  Usually, this will be done by either a Production Assistant (especially the basecamp PA or a paperwork PA) or on smaller shows may be done by the 2nd 2nd Assistant Director.

Before we break down what times to keep track of, let us take a moment to explain how to properly record these times.

If you live in the US, you’re probably used to writing times like 7:24 PM. However, you’ll quickly realize that there is not much space to write times out like this in the small cells provided on the Exhibit G. If you try to do this, you’ll either be writing microscopically small or else the form will turn out to look like a complete mess. Luckily, there’s a better way! It’s called Military Decimal Time, or 24-hour Decimal Time.

Here’s how it works. First, you won’t write AM and PM. Instead, you’ll write the hours in 24-hour format. For instance, 7 PM would become 19, since it is 7 hours after noon (7 + 12 = 19).

Next, when writing minutes, think of them as fractions of an hour. For instance, 30 minutes is really equivalent to half an hour. Thus, 30min = 0.5hr. When we combine minutes and hours, we’ll end up with numbers like this:

7:30 PM = 19.5
9:42 AM = 9.7
12:10 = 12.2

As a rule of thumb, you can usually round to the nearest tenth (i.e. increments of 6 minutes).  So instead of writing 12.166 or 12.15, just write 12.2. This is precise enough and makes everyone’s lives easier when trying to calculate overtime. 

A huge advantage of writing in 24-hour decimal time is not only that it is space saving but also that it allows times to be added and subtracted much more easily. Instead of having to calculate the work duration between 11:12am and 8:30pm you instead simply reference the duration between 11.2 and 20.5. This becomes a simple subtraction problem: 20.5 – 11.2 = 9.3 hours. Super easy.

For a more in-depth explanation of military decimal time and a handy conversion calculator, check out this article.

Okay, now that we’ve got that out of the way, we will break down the other fields on a SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G, starting from the left side of the form and working right.

Work Times

Report Makeup WardrobeThe time that the actor went to hair / makeup / wardrobe. If the actor arrived earlier than their call time you would simply list their call time from the call sheet, however if they arrived later than their call time, you should note the actual time.
Report on SetThe time that the actor was called to set to begin shooting or rehearsal. This is generally the time that they are finished in makeup / wardrobe.
Dismiss on SetThe time the actor was dismissed from the set (i.e. wrapped) for the day. The actor then reports to makeup / wardrobe to remove hair / makeup / wardrobe.
Dismiss Makeup WardrobeThe time the actor was dismissed from hair / makeup / wardrobe and approved to go home.

 

Meal Times

SAG-AFTRA has very specific guidelines around meal breaks. Usually, actors are required to be given a meal break within six hours of arriving at location. If the meal is missed, there are penalties that must be tracked and paid.

ND Meal In

ND Meal Out

This is related to the Non-Deductible Meal, which allows you to offer an actor a 15-minute meal break within 2 hours of their earliest call time in order to reset their 6-hour meal clock.  You can learn more ND meals here.

These fields are for listing when the meal break began (in) and when it ended (out).

1st Meal StartThis is the time that the 1st meal break (i.e. lunch) began. Since many sets go over schedule, it’s a good idea to budget extra money for meal violations, just in case.
1st Meal FinishThis is the time that the 1st meal break (i.e. lunch) ended (when “back in” was called). Typically 30 minutes after “last man” was called.
2nd Meal StartThis is the time that the 2nd meal break (i.e. dinner) began.

You may only have to offer a second meal on particularly long shoot days. If you don’t have a 2nd Meal Break, we recommend filling in with a “N/A” or dash mark – that way SAG-AFTRA knows you didn’t forget.

2nd Meal FinishThis is the time that the 2nd meal break (i.e. dinner) ended (when “back in” was called).

 

Travel Times

If you’re shooting on location, you’ll typically need to account for travel time.

According to SAG-AFTRA, travel time is considered whenever an actor is commuting to a location outside of a designated “studio zone”. It’s important to remember that travel time is considered paid time.

In essence, “studio zones” encompass the greater metropolitan area of major cities, such as New York and Los Angeles. So, if your SAG-AFTRA actor lives in East Los Angeles and you’re shooting in Santa Monica, you’re not paying for their commute.  But if you’re shooting in rural Georgia and the actor is lodged in a nearby hotel, their travel time is on the clock.

Leave for LocationIf you’re not in the “studio zone”, this will be the time that the actor left their lodging to travel to location.
Arrive at LocationThis is the time that the actor arrived at the location.
Leave LocationAfter they are dismissed from work, this is the time the actor left the location to drive back to their lodging.
Arrive at StudioIf you’re not in the “studio zone”, this will be the time the actor arrived back at their lodging.

 

Penalties and Adjustments

The last columns on the SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G are where you can mark special events that happen on set. Sometimes these are referred to as “adjustments” and will usually result in extra union penalties you’ll have to pay.

For this reason, it’s important to hire an excellent UPM / line producer who knows SAG-AFTRA guidelines so you don’t go over budget, as well as working with an experienced SAG-AFTRA payroll company.

Stunt Adj.Stunt performers are paid a stunt adjustment based on the difficulty of the stunt they are performing.  If this is a stunt performer, indicate the dollar amount of the adjustment for the stunts they performed that day.
Minors’ Tutoring TimeIf you are working with minors on set, they will usually be required to have some kind of tutoring time to get in school hours.  If this is the case, record the total duration of how long the minor was in tutoring.
Number of Wardrobe Outfits ProvidedIndicate the number of outfits the actor provided.  

Actors that wear their own clothes in the movie are owed a “wardrobe allowance” for each outfit they wear, which you can learn more about here.

Forced CallA forced call happens when an actor is not given full turnaround time. Generally, a 12 hour break (i.e. “turnaround time”) must be given to actors after leaving set and before returning the next day. If this full time is not give, then you must mark this as a “forced call”. A forced call is a pretty expensive fee (usually a whole additional day’s pay) so do your best to avoid this penalty. There are occassions when turnaround time can be reduced to 10 hours, such as when traveling to locations outside of the studio zone.
MPVsMeal Penalty Violations (MPVs) are penalties owed to the actor if the production goes more than 6 hours between meals.  These are paid in 30-minute increments and are rounded up, so if the actor went 6hr and 45min between meals, you would put down “2” MPVs.

 

Signatures

The last thing you’ll need to do for each SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G is get your actors’ signatures before they leave set each day. This is necessary for the form to be legally valid. While it is simple in theory, actually tracking down the actors to sign out can sometimes be the hardest part of completing the Exhibit G (especially if you have lots of actors wrapping at the same time). Make sure actors (especially beginning actors) know to find you before leaving so they can sign out with you. While actors are often in a hurry to leave set, it’s important that they understand what they are signing off on and have the opportunity to ask questions if anything concerns them.

Performer’s SignatureThis one’s pretty self-explanatory. 🙂  At the end of the day, you must ask the actor to sign out. This allows them the chance to look over the times you’ve recorded from the day and officially “sign off” on them.

 

What to do with the completed Exhibit G’s

Once your Exhibit G is complete, you should scan in the signed document and save a digital copy. The original Exhibit G should always be kept in a safe place, such as an official production binder or filing cabinet. 

At the end of every shooting week, you will need to send the Exhibit G forms to SAG-AFTRA directly along with the call sheets from the week of shooting. Be sure to coordinate with your SAG-AFTRA representative about this to make sure you are meeting expectations. 

If you are working with a film payroll company, you will also need to send your Exhibit G’s to the payroll company for them to calculate and prepare actor payrolls. Unlike other payroll companies, SAG-AFTRA payroll companies are permitted by The Screen Actors Guild to process and run payroll. Because there are many nuanced rules and regulations about how actor payroll and overtime should be calculated and tracked, we highly recommended that you work with a SAG-AFTRA approved payroll company rather than trying to do things by hand with a standard payroll company. Here is a list of payroll companies to consider.

In Conclusion

Completing the SAG Exhibit G can be a bit daunting at first, however, pretty soon it will become second nature. While it can feel like a lot of tedious paperwork, it serves as a very important way to track each cast member’s day to ensure that everyone is being treated fairly and is compensated in accordance with union regulations. 

Done right, the SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G will actually be a stress-relieving tool because it ensures that everything is measured and reported predictably and that no one falls through the cracks.

Do you have any SAG-AFTRA Exhibit G questions that we didn’t address in this article? Let us know in the comments section below!

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