What is Catering & Craft Services
When people in film, television or video production talk about Craft Services, they’re usually referring to food and drink station provided in a kind of round-the-clock buffet on set for cast and crew. People who work in a Craft Service position are considered crew members, so the person or people cleaning and stocking those tables of snacks and drinks are part of the production. In fact, on most television and film sets (especially for union productions), Craft Service is a full-time job and sometimes a lifetime career for the people working it. Craft Service is not the same as Catering, which provides the hot meals for the cast and crew; the catering company is usually a local company depending on where the location site will be.
Craft Services as we know them today started at Universal Studios. In the old days, meals on set were brown-bag lunches people brought from home. Universal Studios started rolling coffee carts (later adding doughnuts, snacks) to the different stages for between-meal boosts. While the Craft Service crew members used to be something like P.A.s or Production Assistants, they have become an important part of production.
Fat Freddy’s Catering has worked on several commercial shoots over the years; we are always amazed at how elaborate these Craft Services tables can be. We provide the hot meals twice a day but all the snacking that keeps people going between meals is Craft Services. Whether you’re shooting for print, television or film, production days are long days. Craft Service is there to keep everyone on set going with the extra energy from eaten calories. On larger productions you can expect a variety of foods, candy, snacks and drinks all day long. Sometimes there are two craft service stations, one for cast and crew and a second area for non-union background actors.
Catering & Craft Services explained in photos