Casting Directors are the folks who do the big work to whittle the many casting choices down to a very few before the director and producers weigh in and make a final decision if the role is a big one.
Typically when your child auditions, they step into the room with the casting director and their assistant, and the audition is filmed for later review. Casting directors are typically freelancers who may work on multiple projects at once, both film and TV. One of the major reasons to be in Los Angeles if your child is pursuing an acting career is being physically available to audition in front of casting directors.
After your child has been auditioning for a while, you will begin to notice that they are going in front of some of the same people repeatedly, for different projects. This can be good for a number of reasons: your kid is likely to become more comfortable and turn in a better audition if they are familiar with the casting office; and frankly, if a casting director is familiar with your child they may even request that they come in to audition for a certain role!
If your child develops a good relationship with a casting director before getting an agent, that CD may be able to make the coveted recommendation that gets you a meeting with a great agent as well.
This is one of many reasons that it’s important to go out on as many auditions as possible—not only is your child getting better and more practiced with every audition, but they are becoming familiar to the people who may keep them in mind for future projects.
These are the intelligent, hardworking people who manage the gritty details of every aspect of this business. Your agent, manager, casting director, lawyer, and business manager all have assistants, and they are the secret glue of this industry.
From the moment you walk into a waiting room to the moment you leave, you make an impression on these guys and it is important to understand that how you treat them and what they observe are part of the process. It’s just common sense that someone who is difficult when they don’t believe they are talking to someone “important” will be difficult on set. Which is another way to say that YOU are auditioning too, and generally for the assistants, who report back.
So be smart, and be kind. Many assistants will be running their own agencies and firms some day.
NEXT: Part 4: Lawyers, Business Managers, and Public Relations
My book, The Hollywood Parents Guide, available on Amazon contains everything I wish I’d known when Dove and I started this journey, and will save you untold amounts of time, money, and stress. Full of information you MUST know, it also features stories from parents of other kids who’ve made it!
If your young actor is 12 or older, they will enjoy reading my second book, Young Hollywood Actors, which shares stories and advice from some of their favorite performers.
You can also book an hour consulting with me to come up with an individualized plan that takes your own unique needs into account. For about the cost of an hour with a professional acting coach, you can get your questions answered and a road map to help you move forward toward your dream.
Invest a little in your kid’s future today.
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