Realistic Animal Costume Rental FAQ

by Jim Boulden

Realistic Animal Costume Rental Info Is an actor included in rental rates?

To us, the actor is the one who interprets the director's vision on any particular project.  Rates on these actors can range significantly.  There is quite a difference in production cost when considering possible union affiliations, stunt bonuses, and distribution options.

Animal Makers can make recommendations in costume actors, cast the actor, and even conduct tryouts at our location.  These services will add to published rental rates.  We have cast shows all over the world.  Here's Lina whom we cast in a Vodafone campaign.

How does this compare with booking an "animal personality"?

Most film making involves actors performing to a script of some kind.  There are many actors that do amazingly well in full realistic costume, but will interpret the script completely differently.  Animal Makers has seen this with bear costume tryouts where all of the actors were given the same direction, yet their performances, and thus the performance of the animal, are completely different.

This one factor allows the director to cast the animal part just like casting any other acting part.

An "animal personality" is one performer with one range of acting.  Don't get stuck with that one actor.  If that person isn't feeling up to it today, production has nowhere to turn!

How can this affect the production?

If the "animal personality" gets unhappy with anything, they can pull out of a project last minute.  When the talent and the animal costume are on separate contracts, there is more control.  In a worst case scenario, another actor, pa, or even you can get in that suit and do the bit.  That's security for production.

Traveling talent can be more expensive than traveling crew

By booking the talent in the shoot location saves the cost or high end airline tickets, hotel rooms, and per diem for talent.  By booking crew from Animal Makers, production gets hands-on walk through customs support for each of the realistic animal costumes provided.  Also, the Animal Makers crew member brings along a animal costume support kit which includes many items of use in the field, as well as material to fix and repair from the day's activities.

Local talent understands the assistant director's native language

This is a factor that often gets overlooked.  The director needs to be able to communicate with all of his actors.  This means that the First Assistant Director doesn't have to translate everything to the "animal personality".

Local talent usually conforms to local payment methods

Many productions work different hours than American productions.  It's good for production to book talent that conforms to local customs and payment schedules.

What about a wardrobe dresser?

This person is provided by Animal Makers.  A good wardrobe dresser can get anybody within the size range into and out of these amazingly realistic animal costumes quickly and safely.  A wardrobe dresser can also operate a radio control unit to animate a bear or gorilla's face, as needed.  The dresser will usually require a local wardrobe assistant to get the talent in and out of the realistic animal costume.