I know, I know, I said I was going to take a break, but I hadn't realized how many threads there were on this and how out of hand the "discussion" had gotten. But this is it, I promise.
As for all the discussion about contracts, I should point out that the eight or nine foreign extras who were hired to work the day I met Jasmine had all been working on this movie for a couple of weeks already and had worked longer hours and been paid less than promised by Jasmine on several occasions. They were so frustrated at being repeatedly lied to by her that they asked me, as the eldest one there that day, I suppose (I am [18 x 3] + 2!), to write a simple contract stating the hourly rate and payment schedule, which I did. After about an hour of trying to get her to read it and having her ignore us, she finally signed it and threw it in my face with a few choice epitaphs. What the well meaning people on this and the other threads that Jasmine started don't understand is that Jasmine doesn't need advice about contracts because her fundamental lack of decency makes her terrified of them. And of course, at the end of the day she didn't honor the contract that she had signed only that morning, to no one's surprise.
All this whining by Jasmine about how tough it is to be an agent is really of no concern to the people she hires, whether they be daily extras, professional actors, Chinese, foreign, have work visas or not. The people she hires have no control over the people she works for. She needs to figure out a way to do her job in a professional manner or do something else.
One last thing; I am also surprised to see the depth of animosity between some Chinese and foreigners in Kunming expressed on these threads. I hope they are the minority. Speaking for myself, with one notable exception (guess who?), I have been overwhelmed with kindness, generosity and true friendship by the vast majority of Chinese I have met during my time here. Maybe exercising good judgment about who you associate with is a good idea no matter where on the planet you live, whether you are a foreigner or a local in whatever country you find yourself. I wouldn't trade my Kunming experience and my wonderful Chinese friends for anything. And I do feel very lucky to be a foreigner in China at this time, but I don't think I'm spoiled. I work hard at what I do, give good value for money, and make much less than I would in my home country. And it's pointless to compare my salary with my Chinese counterparts, because I have skills that they simply don't. I'm not putting them down, that's just the reality of the situation. That's why the government issues work visas and foreign expert certificates, because right now, China needs them. It's as simple as that.