You ever wondered how celebrities and talent get paid for appearing at conventions? Well, there are a few different ways that can happen. Talent make decisions on appearances based on a number of factors (location, time of year, etc.) and those can play into how much (or how little) he/she is willing to be compensated for an event appearance. Here are the the four primary payment formats that Talent for Cons utilizes.
Talent will appear for a flat fee paid by the convention to appear as a Guest. Sometimes talent might request half the fee in advance (and, in some cases, all of the fee in advance) before appearing. In any case, Talent requesting an appearance fee will almost always request travel expenses and a per diem, too.
In some cases, Talent might be interested to come to a convention to check it out without asking for ANY fees. In this case, he/she will usually expect a convention to make the appearance cost neutral by asking that all travel fees and food are covered. While this isn’t very common, it DOES happen from time to time.
Talent will earn his/her fee by selling autographs and similar services (and, thus, is paid by the attendees) during an event. The convention, though, “guarantees” that Talent will make a specified amount of money by selling these items and, if the talent DOESN’T sell that amount, the convention will pay out the difference. For example, if you guarantee a voice actor that he will sell $1000 in autographs, but at the end of the convention weekend he only sells $800 – the you (the convention) will pay the voice actor the remaining $200. Talent appearing based on a guarantee will almost always request travel expenses and a per diem, too.
Talent will appear for a reduced appearance fee AND a guarantee. This usually works for smaller events on a budget since offering cash up front for the talent (the appearance fee) eases concern of a lower turnout and, thus, making no more money than the guarantee. As with Appearance Fees and Guarantees, Talent will almost always request travel expenses and a per diem, too.