If the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) recently signed between Cine and Television Artistes Association (CINTAA) and Indian Film and TV Producers Council (IFTPC) is anything to go by, lead actors and additional leads of a show will not be permitted to exit the same for at least three years.
Divyanka Tripathi and Karan Patel in a still from the show, Ye Hai Mohabbatein
The MoU, that came into force from May 1, specifies that if an actor wishes to leave the show after the completion of three years, he/ she will have to give a notice of four months in writing to the show's producer. If the actor continues to be on board, the new contract will be binding for only one year.
The MoU also deals with the issue of actors coming late to the sets. All actors will now have to sign a daily attendance muster where the call time and in-time of the actor along with his signature will be duly recorded by someone from the producer's team.
A source from CINTAA says, "Actors reporting late has a direct bearing on the timely delivery of episodes to broadcasters; this delay then leads to additional costs that have to be incurred by the producer. Now a producer can impose penalties and deduct payments from actors' fees."
Shifts in place
Actors will have to work for at least 12 hours per day and if they are unable to do so, they will be paid on a pro rata basis for the hours of work done. "If there is a dispute about a fee deduction made by the producer, then the deduction shall not be made till the Joint Dispute Settlement Committee hasn't addressed the problem."
The MoU mentions that block dates of additional actors will be reviewed if they are being wasted. Similarly, it tackles the issue of actors overcommitting themselves and working on four shows in a month resulting in poor performance and exhaustion.
"If the during the course of the show any lead characters are discontinued or lose prominence in the story, then the producer can re-designate some other character as the lead character. In such an event, those who cease to be the lead actors shall no longer be subject to terms and conditions governing the MOU," reveals the source.