Kit Fee, Kit Rental, Box Rental

Dwayne writes in:

I’ve just been hired to do crafty for a set where there might be 100 people on the heaviest days.

My instructions are:

  • we could have 100 people at our heaviest days
  • 21 day shoot (maybe 20)
  • there is a $50/day Kit Fee
  • your budget is small for crafty – just keep that in mind
  • you’ll get a day of prep
  • no meals and/or second meals
  • You’ll be strictly craft services. Snack, drinks, coffee, tea, hot chocolate, the usual (gum, etc.)
  • You won’t have a PA to help with tables, setup, etc…just a head’s up.

So my questions are:

  • What would should the Kit Fee include? Large Coffee urn? water dispenser? What else?
  • What is proper etiquette for Kit fee? If I have extra monies from this can I use it towards special treats, etc? for crew?
  • Any tips or ideas or general info for me to do a good job?

“Kit fees,” “kit rentals,” and “box rentals” are all basically the same thing. The production is paying you for wear and tear on equipment that you own, which you use on the shoot. It’s cheaper for them, because they don’t have to rent that gear, and a nice tax-free bonus1 for you.

This doesn’t come up for PAs very much, because PAs don’t need all that much. And what they do need, the production often pays for, anyway. Still, here’s a list of useful items you might want to get.

The most likely thing you’ll get a kit fee for is your computer. That usually runs $30-$50 per week, depending on the show.

If you’re moving into crafty, Dwayne has the right idea. Coffee urn, water dispenser are a good start. Also, the crafty table; baskets to keep the snacks organized; maybe a nice table cloth (rather than a plastic one you throw away at the end of the day); containers for smaller items like sugar and stirrers, etc. A hot plate or microwave if you want to serve hot things occasionally. Any money of the kit fee you don’t spend is yours to keep.

But you shouldn’t be buying edibles (food) or expendables (cups) with your kit fee. Those are from the crafty budget. This is true for office PAs who are sent to buy crafty for the office.

Footnotes    (↩ returns to text)

  1. Similar to mileage.
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