It's surprising to me that people actually ask me how much money I make. I guess they have heard about "residuals" and are just curious to know how that works, but it seems like a ridiculous thing to ask. I feel like they should follow-up by asking for my weight and the date of my last period.
But people wonder about these things so I need to come up with some sort of answer.
I heard that somebody who had worked on Jurassic Park went to their mailbox one day to find a check for $100,000. I'm not sure if that is really true, or just one of those urban legends that was intended to increase morale amongst us working actors in a sometimes brutal industry.
Just to be clear, I have never stumbled across such a residual check.
Here's how it works - when my movies or TV shows are rented or shown on television, I get a fraction of a penny. Those pennies get bundled together and the checks arrive randomly, sometimes a couple of them show up one week, other times there is nothing for months.
The amount has diminished over time, these days, the average check is about $4.71. Occasionally they are more and my husband and I get to have a nice dinner out. But then there are times when the check wouldn't cover the price of the stamp and it can be a little embarrassing to take a 23 cent check to the bank.
Foreign residuals are always fun; it's neat to get a check for $17 because one of my disease-of-the-week TV movies was on cable in Denmark.
It's nothing life-altering and it's certainly nothing that you can depend on. At some point, the term "residual" started to be reminiscent something that gets stuck to the bottom of your shoe rather than a legitimate source of income.
But regardless of the amount, it's appreciated, because what kind of asshole doesn't appreciate random money showing up for something that they did 20 years ago?
Even if it is less than they would get from babysitting.
Check back next week when I will be posting about my weight and the date of my last period.
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