View Full Version : Actor of the Night/Week?

07-21-2010, 10:04 PM
Does your house do any sort of actor reward program for a "best" actor/ess on a nightly/ weekly basis? If so... why kind of program do they do?

Our house used to do a program where the casting directors would pick a "best" actor of the night, whom they would announce at the end of the night meeting (and usually give some sort of reward such as gift certificates, one-of-a-kind swag, etc) and then on the last night of the week, they would pick and announce someone who did an exceptionally consistent job for the entire week. Now, they just pull a name out of a hat if you worked that night (no incentive to do a great job, just maintain a heartbeat through the evening).

I proposed a change to our current program, which was green-lighted by the haunt owner, but he wanted to see what other houses around the country were doing (or weren't doing) first.

Thanks for sharing!


07-22-2010, 08:30 AM
I've always used best of the night awards (Actor of the Night, Makeup of the Night, and Room of the Night) to encourage a bit of friendly competition and improve the quality of the show. I design and print certificates at home on a cardstock paper (which are personalized for the winner of each night), so the cost is minimal.

I then have posted sheets that show who won each award each night and at the end of the year, we had a large awards banquet. For this even I used a mix a certificates and a few fancy plaques for bigger awards (Actor of the year, actress of the year, makeup artist of the year, etc).

I think awarding great performances each night promote creativity and the desire to continually improve the show. I don't see a raffle prize having that same effect.

07-22-2010, 08:35 AM
One more thought to add to the OP... what criteria/method did you use to pick the awarded actors?


07-22-2010, 10:30 AM
As the cast manager, I would meet with my assistants and discuss the performances during the night (we'd go through with customer groups as well as just randomly going through to see if they stayed in character all night) and then vote on who should get each award.

There were nights when we had ties, and we often made honorable mentions (which tend to encourage those individual to strive more since they almost got the award).

07-23-2010, 12:12 PM
We have TerrorTory awards, Each night the area supervisors choose an actor who shines above the rest. They seem to like it a lot.


08-26-2010, 10:20 AM
we have actor of the night, and the prize is ten bucks. we have the roamers (usually actors that can fit anywhere, are good at any role, can break people for peeing/smoking breaks, and generally are 'head/lead actors' do a few walkthroughs a night trailing easy scare groups, 'high risk' groups (drunks, jerks etc.) and see how they handle situations, working people through their room, keeping to their post, character and all that fun stuff. you can also hear people talking when the exit a haunt and i listen to WHO they are talking about "oh that guy with the xxxx mask" etc. crowd feedback is a big factor in deciing who we give the extra cash to. sometimes the quiet shy little actor that is almost a 'prop' themselves can get the biggest reactions out of someone.

08-27-2010, 11:53 AM
sometimes the quiet shy little actor that is almost a 'prop' themselves can get the biggest reactions out of someone.

This reminds me of when we went through Darkness Cameron I believe was his name working in the funeral wake scene was amazing. He legitimately got me and several others thinking he was just another Unit 70 body amongst the others.

But on the subject of actor of the night or any other awards, from both sides, it was always great to receive the award and definitely helped boost morale giving it out, for any creative reasons you could think of. From makeup, acting, room of the night, to grossest character of the year, best werewolf etc....

08-28-2010, 02:28 AM
The place I worked last year did that sort of thing. The owner would pass out cash prizes to the best scarers of the night out of the high school kids (which was most of our cast) then slip a couple of us vets 10-20 bucks. At the end of the season they gave away shirts, pens, two iPod's to the best scarers and a few other things. I personally think it's a great idea for any non-paying haunts, looking at it from an actor's standpoint. When the kids screwed up royally one weekend, none of them got the cash prizes at all, and it definately helped motivate them the next week.

Lord Ogre
10-19-2010, 06:36 AM
We actually do it by section, for placement purposes the Haunted Forest is divided into four sections and we do constant walk behinds following patrons. We announce the runner up section and the section of the night the next day right before the show. The Section of the night has been one of our best actor incentive we ever came up with. They often shout they're section before going back "Section 2" or "Section 4" and they all get fired up to win. Sometimes it's so hard to pick the best section that we have an occasional tie once or twice each season but it's definitely a motivator besides just telling the actors you need to be more scary. The sections that come in last we usually talk to the individual person or persons that are not doing the best and coach them in private. Most of the time it works. If it doesn't and they don't respond well to constructive criticism we just let the actor go. We have no shortage of people who want to act at our place. At the end of the season we also do the award system with Actor of the year, Rookie actor of the Year, Most improved etc.

Dr. Giggles
10-19-2010, 03:33 PM
We do it at the end of the season. Best new actor/actress. Best Returning actor/actress. Then we have subcategories like Rover of the year, or Zombie of the Year. Also a seperate award for our best chainsaw maniac.

10-26-2010, 10:15 PM
The haunt i work at has an actress and actor of the night who each win $10 theyll also mention anyone who was doing an exceptional job etc. they also do scene of the night and we have a a type of "trophy" that the scene keeps that night and brings back the next day. all this is announced at the end of the night.