How To Enter Singapore Stunt Industry – Your Insider’s Guide (Additional Information)
There was a limit to how much information I could cram into these How To Enter Singapore Stunt Industry posts. Thus, here I’ll elaborate more extensively on some of the points.
In addition, I’ll also include opinions of my own on the current state of the industry, which are completely subjective.
Lastly, I’ll lay out the various companies that you can seek out for employment. I preferred not to lay them out in the slides as it’ll be easier to keep an article updated should there be information changes in the future.
As Instagram posts are more or less locked in, I have decided to keep the information in them limited to what are more or less timeless, and less likely to be subject to change over time. Therefore, for any additional information, I’ll write them here instead.
Disclaimer; I’m going to assume you have already read the 3 IG posts. And this article will be an elaboration on the points written in them. Hence, if you hadn’t read them yet, it might be difficult to understand.
How To Enter Singapore Stunt Industry 1st Post – Overview
In this first post, I cover the frequently asked questions. Such as;
- What skill sets do I need
- What are the job scopes like
- How’s the wages like
Entry Level Skill Sets
Prior, I’ve already put up the Reactions series, as well as the Rolls series. Looking forward, I’ll plan to cover all the basic essentials eventually, so that you’ll at least have online resources free and accessible if you aren’t able to attend our seminars or the other group’s classes. Thus I hope that helps a little somehow, at least in theoretical knowledge.
As for your foundations in kick-boxing, it’s always best to attend regular classes if you don’t already have the background.
3 main roles:
- Stunt performer
You’ll be playing a role as yourself, and performing fights, falls, flips, wire pulls or car hits.
- Stunt double
Being a body double for an actor of similar body proportions as yourself, to perform fights, falls, flips, wire pulls or car hits.
Helping the coordinator with pulling wire, or setting up equipment, helping actors put on harnesses or padding, or occasionally helping choreograph and teach the actors.
Equipment & Insurance
To be clear, when I said that the coordinators should have insurance settled for you, I’m not saying to assume they have. I’m telling you that it’s our job to do it, and you are well within your rights to ask. And really you should check with us or them to be sure. Please do ask, don’t assume.
As for the Protective Gear, I had put up a brief introduction to the various protective paddings in the final slide of my Shoulder Rolls tutorial, of the [ Types of Rolls: A Step by Step Walkthrough ] series.
Wages Now (2020)
Here comes the conversation of local stunt rates. I’ll try my best to state the facts without coloring it with my opinions too much.
$150 / day rate, is the current industry average for entry to mid level stunt performers.
This rate is popularized – or should I say normalized, by Mediacorp. They provide a relatively consistent flow of jobs for entry-level stunt performers. And hence many of the lower to mid level stunt man have to become okay with that wage.
I’m not making a statement if it’s a fair rate. I’m only stating it for you to know what to expect.
When I started, there wasn’t any resources anywhere that shared these things, so we went bumbling around like blind chickens.
This rates standard was in place since the early 2000s. I’ll let you make of that information what you will.
Why is a sustainable rate important
Over the past 10 years being in the industry, I’ve seen many talented stunt performers come and go. And the common reason is always the fact that they can’t make a living. Even now some of the best physical performers I know have to juggle a host of side-jobs in order to sustain a reasonable income. And I’m referring to those whom are top of the game right now.
As a result, they can’t achieve their maximum potential after being worn thin with 3-4 jobs. Eventually all the good ones leave. Hence what’s left are the constant in and outs of bright-eyed inexperienced fledglings. And in this kind of landscape, it’s very unlikely for Singapore to achieve a generation of solid action performers.
There are good people working to make the industry better, but the climb is slow and all uphill.
In the light of this, I hope you are very sure this is what you want to do when you decide to join the stunt industry. Because you’ll be pushing that uphill battle alongside with us.
@laurakeelt – How much time do you usually need to put into training consistently?
Answer – Personally i train between 6 to 2 times weekly depending on how busy work gets, and the best stunt performers i know try to train at least 3 times weekly.
Although for the average stunt person, it really depends on project to project, and it also really differs between the various coordinators, directors and production that’s on the project.
And what i mean by that is that there will be good projects that allows you ample time to receive rehearsal and coaching from the coordinators. In those cases, you’ll be trained and prepared in the specific skills you need for the scenes, and hence not much pre-prep and background is needed at all.
However, more often than not for local tv you’ll have to learn, practice and perform within a matter of minutes. In those cases, you’ll need extensive background in every form of martial arts that they request on the fly.
In those cases, your body has to be primed and trained almost daily in order to simply keep yourself safe on set. It’s really poor industry practice that’s both dangerous and costly in the long run, and the end results rarely come out looking good.
That’s something we hope that as a nation, we can change and improve together in due time.
In any case, it’s always great to have stuntmen on hand whom are prepared, primed and ready to go.
The crucial pre-prep and background comes in for projects that require specialized skills, e.g. acrobatics, advanced breakfalls, weapons or traditional martial forms.
Grappling arts like judo, bjj, shuaijiao and greco roman are also something that requires pre-training due to its very technical nature.
How To Enter Singapore Stunt Industry 2nd Post – CV
Let’s discuss about self presentation. CVs are a standard in almost any industry, but for some reason there are some stunt people who don’t put in the effort to put a basic one together. Don’t be one of them. Take yourself seriously, present yourself the way you want to be seen.
I also have an online version of >> my CV << on my website here.
The one in the IG post is my Stunt CV, while the link above is my Actor’s CV.
And what I really meant what I said in the last slide. I don’t know why but it might be an Asian humility culture thing. But we are all so bad at representing ourselves. So I want you to imagine being your own best-friend.
What are all the nice things you’ll say about them, and the positive qualities that you can see in them that seems to be invisible to themselves.
Take that kindness and generosity, and extend it to yourself. You deserve to treat yourself nicely!
The studio that shot mine is: Minto Studios.
I highly recommend Lionel. High skill level, pristine end products, and very comfortable to work with.
tiffanyyongwt4242 – is it necessary to provide social media handles? I have friends who don’t really post much about themselves on ig or fb. Mostly food and pets.
Answer – There’s no hard yes or no to this question; previously social media and professional work can and should be separate
However in recent years, the line between them has blurred, especially so for the media industry, actors and stunt people alike.
Increasingly, we are seeing a trend of casting agents checking out auditionee’s social media during the shortlisting stage to select people.
Hence, it has become a tool of immense leverage should you choose to utilize it. With the ability to showcase not just your portfolio but also your personality and other talents, it’s has become an unparalleled avenue to do your self-branding and advertising!
How To Enter Singapore Stunt Industry 3rd Post – Showreel
The final post of the series, here we explore self-branding. To aim to find your U.S.P (Unique Selling Point), and presenting that through your showreel.
There are 5 career stages according to google. However I’m only focusing on the early stages, as these articles are meant to help new comers out. Comparatively, the old birds already know what they are doing and don’t need my mansplaining.
Furthermore, I’m adding pre-entry into it, meant for those of you who hadn’t started yet. Those of you who are stuck in the horrible place between zero and one. Starting out in any new endeavor is always really difficult. And so these resources are for you.
Here’s where you are figuring out how to even enter the industry. Keep things simple, and set attainable goals. First, build your reel out of training footage, passion projects and student films.
This is where you are in the industry for 1 to 2 years. At this stage you are exploring where you should move towards. Subsequently, what are your end goals and how should you close the distance between where you are and where you hope to be.
Perhaps you think you only want to work on screen? Do stage shows anyways! Broaden your horizons and network. Meet people. Learn more, learn everything.
Additionally, increase your expectations. Build a reel out of a combination of your professional projects, and also the more ambitious indie projects.
All in all, try and display a broad palette of experience and competencies for your potential employers.
You are 3 to 5 years into your career. If you have made it this far, chances are you are gonna keep going. Well done holding it out for this long mate! You may feel that there’s still a long way to go, but look at how far you’ve come. Look at it! I’m proud of you.
At this point you should have developed a level of skill in a particular direction that is unique to you. This is you establishing your personal brand. Why would a production cast you over another equally amazing performer? What sets you apart?
In any case, chances are you know it already if you’ve made it this far. Granted, sometimes we can’t see what’s great about ourselves. in that case, I can try to help you. Hit me up!
Now that you know what that U.S.P is? Great, let’s drop that into your reel, so that everyone can see it too.
ESTABLISH. YOUR. BRAND.
You can do it, I believe in you.
@yhungslyf – Hey there! I’m a freerunner/tricker from malaysia and i would like to know more about how someone like me could get started in the stunt scene in sg
Answer – There are several stunt teams in KL, and JB too. So perhaps consider looking them up. All the previous post recommendations on CV and showreel creation still applies.
However if you really want to come to Singapore’s industry, there’s no problem. I know of a handful of Malaysians working as stunt performers here.
None of the local teams have any issues with hiring Malaysians, so that isn’t something you have to worry about. The main challenge will actually be logistical.
Work pass/working VISA: All the stunt teams hire on project basis, and a full time contract is what you’d require to get the work pass. Therefore what all my Malaysian stunt friends have to do, is to have a full-time contracted job, while juggling stunt projects on the side. It is a very challenging hustle.
So make sure this is what you really want to pursue before attempting this.
Otherwise you can opt to travel into Singapore on a project basis. However, you are going to need to have a high-level competence in a damn unique skillset, for the employers to consider paying for your transport and lodging to hire you in.
How To Enter Stunt Industry Companies in Singapore
Here I’ll number out the various stunt groups and companies apart from myself that are currently providing services in Singapore.
Photo Credits: Daryl D’cotta
Action Horizons is a massive US-Based Stunt company. Well known for several Hollywood feature works such as; Agent 47, Taken 3 and The Revenant.
Moreover, they also run many of the Universal Studios Themed Parks’ stunt live shows such as; The Waterworld Stunt Show, Bourne Spectacular and the Jurassic World.
How To Reach Them?
You can reach them on their website >> here <<
If you are interested in a career in live-shows, you would really want to get in touch with them and see if you can get the chance to work with them
Ronin Action Group
Ronin Action Group, spearheaded by Sunny Pang is a local-based stunt stunt group that has done work all over Asia. Known for several works such as; the local feature film Zombiepura and MeWatch’s The Driver.
And Sunny Pang himself, best known local as Inspector Han in Code Of Law, has also got a number of feature films under his belt in the South East Asia region. Namely: Headshot and Netflix’s The Night Comes For Us, are both by the awesome Indonesian team that brought us The Raid 1 and 2, featuring the amazing Iko Uwais.
How To Reach Them?
You can reach them at their Facebook >> here <<
If you are looking for projects in features, dramas and commercials, they are a good group to get connected with.
Mediacorp’s Stunt Directors
How To Reach Them?
This one’s a little tricky as they don’t have a collective public site per se.
However, if you are interested, I can point you in their direction!
Peps Goh Fight Design
My company works predominantly on screen work, such as film, TV and commercials. Nonetheless, we also do live stunt & parkour performances from time to time.
And we have a media deck, where the productions I work with would look through to select casts and talents out of. Within the deck, apart from my team, are also my past students from workshops, seminars and private coaching.
The involvement is project by project basis, no worry about long term commitments. Non-exclusive arrangements, feel free to be part of any agencies or teams, I’m on good terms with everyone.
If you would like to be included in my media deck, feel free to send me your Headshots, CV and Showreel!
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Peps Goh is a Singapore based Fight Designer, providing Action Choreography & Coordination services for both screen and stage. He also holds screen-combat & stunt seminars annually for actors & performers. Private coaching sessions up to a group of 4 are available. For business inquiries, you can reach him at PepsGoh@Gmail.com