Hello there, my name is Bianca and I am the Brand Manager at The Production People and Extras Ireland. Coming from Mexico City, I faced all the different challenges that non-EEA migrants need to overcome to be able to live and work in this beautiful island. So believe me, I know exactly how you feel.
I am sure that all of us who decided to move to Ireland were at one point wondering the same question… “once I am there, how easy is it to get a job?!”
Well, in order to answer some of your questions and let you know how you can work in Ireland as an Extra, I gathered all the key information you need to be aware of before starting your new adventure. So let’s begin!
As non-EEA you will need to take an English course, or an advanced education course, to be eligible for a part-time working visa. Your visa will have different constraints depending on the course you are taking. Some visa types can be renewed more than others.
Going through the visa process is always tricky, you have many questions that never seem to have an answer, but don’t worry, on the Irish Immigration Service website you will find all the information you need to apply for your visa.
Once you have your IRP card (a.k.a visa), the next step is to get a PPS number. For any kind of job in Ireland where you are going to be paid via bank transfer (such as being an Extra), it is necessary to have a PPS number. This is your tax number, which you also need to avail of some healthcare services, so it is important to have it as soon as you get your visa sorted.
Ok, I have my visa and PPS… now what?
Well, now the time to look for a job has begun! As a non-EEA you are allowed to work part-time (this means 20 hours per week). There are some exceptions such as the Christmas season and the time-off you have from your school course, when you can legally work full-time.
For those periods, or for whenever you need to make a bit more extra money you should consider working as an Extra. The film and TV industries in Ireland have been growing during the last years, so there are many opportunities available. You can be an Extra in films, TV series, documentaries, ads, music videos, corporate videos and so much more!
The first step is to join an agency like us, Extras Ireland, where you will need to fill out a form with all your details such as: gender, nationality, body measurements, and other personal details, as well as if you have any additional skills such as playing an instrument, the languages you can speak, if you can talk in any accent, if you’re a pro in any sport etc.
The more specific you are about your abilities, the better! Sometimes we need an Extra that can talk with a Liverpool accent and knows how to drive a bus… so do not underestimate yourself.
At Extras Ireland we help you create your own CV and profile with all the information you have given us. We know what producers are looking for, so no worries you are in good hands!
Is there any other material I need apart from my CV?
Yes, as an Extra it is very important to have good pictures of yourself – they must be recent.
If you want to learn more about how to take and select the best pictures for your profile, check out our Top 5 Headshot Tips post.
In addition to this, if you have worked as an Actor, Model or Extra in your home country and you have a video reel available, do not hesitate in adding this to your profile. If a Director can see you in action you have a better chance of being hired! The more prepared you are the better.
If you have no previous experience, that is no problem at all. Many of our Extras started with no experience whatsoever and they have been hired on some wonderful projects! We all start at some point, don’t we?
I created my profile and it looks great… When will I start working?
Well, there is no rule of thumb in how long it will take to book a job. It is all a matter of time and availability. Some of our Extras get work on the same week they registered, while it can take a bit longer for others. It all comes down to whether or not you fit the brief the Director is looking for.
If your description is what we are searching for we will send you an Availability Enquiry with the role and fee. If you are available to work and you are interested in the job we will pass your details on to our client. This is not a job offer, we just want to see if you’re free and interested in the project. If the client wants to book you we will confirm via email. There it is! You are confirmed for your first project as an Extra.
At Extras Ireland we always aim to take care of you, so before the shoot we will send you all the details you need (call time, location and wardrobe guidelines). We are always here to answer any questions you may have!
As an additional feature, when you register with us, we will send you a leaflet with a general overview of set etiquette (the do’s and don’ts for Extras). We will always have your back!
I really hope these tips help you to start your journey as an Extra in Ireland. Remember that we have other articles on the blog here for you to learn more about this industry – make sure you read them to give yourself the best possible opportunity for success.
If you have any other questions, please get in touch with us. We will be happy to assist you and get to know you!
If you’re in need of Extras, Actors or Models for your next Creative or Commercial Project, get in touch. We’d love to help. Simply email [email protected] or call us on (01) 634 3112 to see how we can collaborate with you.
One Reply to “How to work as an Extra if you are non-EEA”
Hello, I am a seasoned actor in my home country and aspires becoming an international icon. I am in Botswana, Africa and has a well rounded skills and experience in the acting field. I have a partner residing and working in Ireland and my wish is to relocate that side. I know one ought to start somewhere but my ask is beyond just registering as an extra but really becoming an icon as mentioned. Do you perhaps also register beyond just an extra? If all is presented to you of cause including my TV ads, and other reels and profile is this something that can win me a safe space? I am currently working 8-5 permanent job and I’d like to move for a long and promising carrier in film and TV space.
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