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Billing: Opening Credits vs. End Credits

Billing is the order in which performers’ names are credited in a film, tv show, play, etc.  Actors, directors, producers and other members of the production may be listed in the main credits (opening credits) or ending credits.  When an actor receives Main Billing, that means that he or she is a large role in the project– a lead or strong supporting character.  They are normally credited at the beginning of a film in the title sequence.  A fun trick to distinguish whether or not an actor has received main billing is when their name is on the movie or television poster.

Series Regulars (the leads) of a television show are normally billed at the top of show (the beginning of an episode) along with any recurring (multiple episode characters) or guest star actors whose agents have negotiated top of show billing in their contract. Names of co-stars (or day-players— who work just for the day) are usually seen in the end credits.

Examples

Opening Credits to "Catch Me If You Can"

Opening Credits in “Catch Me If You Can”

Leonardo DiCaprio receives Main Billing during the Title Sequence of “Catch Me If You Can”

Opening Credits

End Credits of “Batman Forever”

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