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Your Questions About Actors Access

Lisa asks…

Actors Access help?!?

So I just made an Actor’s Access account, and I have question. When I submit for roles, is that all I do or what do I do after I submit for a role?

admin answers:

Right,then you wait to see if they contact you for an audition. PS. No point in submitting for any roles that you could not get to where they are having the auditions.

Laura asks…

Is it too late to become an actor? I’m 16?

I’ve just turned 16, I’m finishing High School this year, and my dream is to be able to act, in anything, musical theater, movies, anything. I was in a play once, at my previous High School and i got the lead part, I’ve never tried acting before or after that, and I’m currently in a Sports school for swimming. I was never able to do things such as acting classes or plays because my swimming schedule takes up an extra 27 hours out of my week ( 18 pool hours, 5 driving hours and 4 stretching hours ). But now that I’m finishing High School, it’s time for me to decide what I really want to pursue in life, doing something that i love, and I’ve always loved the thought of being able to act, I loved doing the 1 play I was in and would love to do more, but now that I’m graduating High School, is it too late for me to integrate myself into something in the acting world?

If not; How can I become an actor now? What steps should i do to become an actor?

PS. I want to be an actor because it’s something I love doing, not because I want to be super rich and famous ( that would be a bonus, it’s not my main goal )

admin answers:

Most actors don’t begin their careers until they’re considerably older than you. Golden Globe-winner Glenn Close didn’t begin acting until she was almost 30 and Danny Glover started his career when he was close to 40. Acting isn’t something with any age restrictions. Anyone with the talent and the will to learn can begin a career at any age. In fact, there are a lot of actors who don’t even venture into theater until they’re retired because that’s when they finally have the time to devote to it.

Just about all actors begin their careers in community theater, since that’s about the only place an aspiring actor can learn while gaining the professional experience needed to access other opportunities. If you enroll in classes at a local theater and show that you’re talented and committed to learning and mastering the craft of acting, you’ll be considered for roles in upcoming productions. Once you’ve appeared in a few of those, you’ll have the experience needed to shop for an agent who may be able to find you other work. Most stage actors also work in commercials, TV and movies, so your theater peers will be able to recommend legitimate agents when you’re ready to take that step.

Being involved in community theater has huge advantages over scouring the internet in search of random open auditions. For starters, most open auditions for TV shows or movies aren’t about finding actors. They’re about generating publicity for an upcoming production. The roles still go to experienced, professional actors who can show up to work knowing exactly what’s expected of them. But when TV shows and movies shoot on location, they often use local actors for smaller and extra roles. Those opportunities aren’t advertised to the general public, since casting directors aren’t interested in working with amateurs.

Most famous actors spent years studying their craft and appearing in low-profile theatrical productions before they were able to land agents and later the roles for which they’re recognized. The dues-paying process is important because it weeds out the wannabes from the people who are serious about the craft of acting. Agents know that most people who claim they want to be actors really just want to be famous, so they can afford to be choosy about the people they represent. And since agents (legitimate ones) only get paid when their actors do, they can’t afford to represent people who aren’t ready to be sent to structured, professional auditions. But if an agent sees that you can recreate the same characters night after night on stage without your performances becoming stale and predictable, he’ll know you’re the real deal and consider representing you.

You’ve got the right attitude about acting. People whose goal is fame rarely achieve it because they’re focused entirely on the wrong thing. Acting is the cake and anything good that comes from it is the icing. And most of the A-list actors are people who’d continue acting even if their fame and fortunes vanished tomorrow. They do it because it’s their passion and it defines who they are. And it’s that level of commitment to acting that sets them apart from other actors and ultimately leads to their success. Good luck!

Linda asks…

Is extras access legit? * PLEASE READ *?

Im a 13 year old actress and wanna get my start into acting! 🙂 So i was on the internet looking for ways to really break into acting, and i came across extras access! I dont wanna waste my time with a website & auditions that aren’t real. So is breakdown services ( extras access) legit..? Have you had any personal experiences with them? If it is legit, do you have to live in a big city for it? I dont live in Los Angeles or New York.. I guess the city im close to is kind of big but its not one of those major acting places. Also, while you’re reading, can you please help me out and let me know of any other LEGIT audition/acting websites that you know of? Thank you! 🙂

admin answers:

Yes, extra access is legit. In fact, Breakdown Services own the copyright to the vast majority of breakdowns (casting descriptions) in the entertainment industry. About 80% of all theatrical (move/tv) breakdowns are listed here. Of course the vast majority of them are accessible only to licensed talent agents and managers and not to actors (because that’s how the industry works).

To be an extra, you have to live near where the filming occurs. It’s not unusual for extras to be called on very short notices (like the night before). So if there’s no filming going on near you, you’re not going to get to be an extra. And since you’re only 13 there are several legal requirements/ restrictions for you to work. You probably need a work permit (your parents would have to check into that). And anyone under 14 has to have a parent or guardian with them on set at all times (unpaid). Your also restricted as to when and how long you can work on set. So most production companies avoid hiring minors as extras. It’s just not cost effective for them. Plus, extra work is NOT a good way to break into acting. In the industry, extra work is not considered acting experience and isn’t something you would include on an acting resume.

If you’re still interested in extra work, you can talk to your parents. Maybe check out the website of your local film commission and see what’s filming in your area and if they need an extras. Extra access is legitimate and will list work – but it probably won’t be near where you live at all and it probably won’t be a lot of calls for children. It’s probably not worth it for you personally.

You should understand that most tv shows and movies are not cast through open auditions. Companies are in the business to make money and it’s just not cost effective or efficient to hold open auditions. You have to be invited to audition, usually through a talent agent. How it works is a casting director writes a “breakdown” (a description of the project and the roles they want to cast). They then release the breakdown (through an online communication network like Breakdown Services) to licensed talent agents (not to actors or the general public). Talent agents review the breakdowns and submit their clients for the appropriate roles (which means they send in the actor’s head shot, resume, and acting reel to the casting director). If the casting director is interested in the actor, they contact the talent agent to set up an audition.

And you can’t just hire a talent agent. It’s more like they choose you. Agents are paid on commission, getting a percentage of what their clients make. Since they are paid only if their clients book jobs, they are very picky about who they take on as clients. And they can be picky because there are a lot more people wanting to be actors than there are roles. Agents looking for clients who are “marketable” and who can demonstrate that they have the talent, training, experience and commitment to book professional jobs. You (or your parents since you’re a minor) need to know how to market you and your skills and have to network and make connections in the industry to help you get an agent.

So professional work is mainly cast through talent agents, not websites. What you can do is focus on learning and growing as an actor. Take acting classes, audition for what you can locally. Talk to your parents if you want to act professionally. They will HAVE to be involved and be willing to run your career for you, so they’ll need to research and learn the industry. Some helpful websites:

http://www.bizparentz.org/thebizness/onlinecasting.html
http://www.backstage.com/topics/kids/
http://youngperformers.sagaftra.org/files/youngperformers/YPH_FNL3.pdf

George asks…

If i wanted to be an actor how do i start?

help pis i want to be an actor

admin answers:

1. Classes. You dont have to go to a university or do a college class for acting to be an actor (unless you live in the u.k.). Take acting classes. Scene study, improv, auditioning skills. The whole nine yards. You have alot of choices to choose from so take one you like.

2. Head shots and Resumes. You must have both. Head shots are very pricey nowadays. The professional ones range anywhere from $300-500. You resume is a compilation of everything you have done in your acting career from special skills to shows you did to training.

3. Auditions. If you live in the u.s.a join backstage.com or actors access.com They’ll give you auditions until you get an agent.

4. An Agent. Dont jump to get one. Take your time. You dont need one until you have a good amount of credits on your resume and you feel confident you can go into an audition room and do some serious “wow”-ing

Helen asks…

LA Casting vs Actors Access?

What actors website is more effective for what you pay? I have researched and found theses are the 2 top sites, now I need some feedback on which one is better quality, any ideas.

admin answers:

LA CASTING

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