There are all kinds of customers for the actor…
It goes without saying casting directors are the first people to lend a hand when it comes to you getting paid work. They are the people who open the door for you to get in front of those who will pay you because this is how that side of the business works. In other words, if I’m making a movie, I hire a casting director to cast it for me. The casting director prequalifies the actors who he thinks could play the part. Actors are selected at auditions. But this doesn’t mean the only way you can get in is by using the front door. There are plenty of other buyers out there Directors, Producers and Writers and even friends of your family!!
Note that a lot people use the incorrect terminology here. You may hear people refer to “casting agents.” There is no such thing. The term is “casting director.” This confusion of terms prompts actors into thinking an agent is going to get auditions for them. This isn’t true. Casting directors manage auditions.
What an agent does is submit your picture to casting directors along with a thousand other pictures for every role that comes out. Then the casting director chooses who they want to see. In other words, all an agent does is push a button to submit you. Everything is done electronically now.
“As I started working with Valorie and really developing my niche and marketability rather than bouncing against the wall to see what would stick, she helped me hone in on who I was and what I was going for. She helped me realize the sky is the limit if you take action and put yourself out there in a more direct way.” – Sara Banerjee, actor/Actor’s Fast Track client
How to Get Known by Buyers
Once you have identified your brand and know the types of TV, film, play, or commercial roles you are right for, because you’ve determined who you are and what you do better than anyone else, then you need to find out who the people are that are involved in these shows; the casting directors, directors, producers, and writers.
Make a list of ten Casting Directors who cast roles you’ve already identified as your brand.
Make a Hit List
Your next step will be to develop a who/what/how list I call “The Ultimate Hit List.” Every one of my clients has one.
When you have your hit list ready, start hitting them. Figuratively speaking, that is! You’ll learn more about how to do that in Chapter four.
As you also go through this process, you’ll be knocking on a lot of doors and making a lot of contacts. So, it’s important to keep the following in mind:
- Be organized. Keep accurate records.
- Identify who is casting/directing a project you want to be booked in.
- List the project and details you know about it.
- Gather names of everyone you want to notice you.
- List their addresses, phone numbers, email addresses, and social media outlets.
- Write down how/when/where you met them.
- Enter every communication you had with them: when it was, and what was said and done in it.
- Include the approach you plan to take to get the attention of the person/people doing the hiring.
This hit list will be with you for your entire career. It’s a way to catalogue who you know. And It will neverbe complete until you are done acting.
It’s good to start with dividing the names you collect into casting directors, writers, producers, directors and others. Also, add miscellaneous because lot of times in a long career you might meet someone who is a friend of the family and has connections. One actor I know has built his entire career on connections with show runners and camera men.