by Casting Director, Laurie Records
A multi part series for the not-so-established actor, hoping to improve their career.
It’s a new year. I am assuming the ‘ole New Year’s resolutions are being made, and your acting career, the topic of many of them. I support you in setting your goals. Be specific and make sure they are obtainable. But in your planning the goals for the new year, don’t forget the basics. Sometimes it is hard for actors who are at the beginning of their career to know whether or not they should take a certain job… take every job… or what the heck! I would like to give you some simple food for thought that may ease the decision making process.
Commercial actors should never be confused about whether or not to take an acting job.
What? Huh? How can confusion be avoided? By asking yourself these 3 simple questions:
Would I make good money?
Would it further my career?
Would it be fun to do?
The key to deciding whether or not to take a job is if you can answer YES to two out of the three questions! Let me throw out some examples:
You submitted yourself on a student film and you were offered the part. It is for copy, credit, and meals. Ask yourself the three! Good money? NO. End of story on that one. Further your career? YES if you need to build your reel. NO if your reel is just fine. YES if it is a good contact that may offer bigger and better work later, but it is a student film, so that can be a little hard to predict. Fun to do? That all depends on you! So, depending on how you answer… and if you can answer yes to 2 of the 3… Viola! You will know whether or not to accept.
Another example. Commercial extra work. Good money? YES and NO. It depends on if 300 for a 12-hour day sounds good to you. Would it further your career? NO. Not usually. But you always hear those stories of an upgrade… or a chance to get in front of a good director. Fun to do? It depends on your definition of fun. Some actors just love to be on set. For some the charm has worn off. Only you can answer these questions.
I don’t imagine I need to continue with the examples. You get the point. The cool part is it’s easy!! This could translate to deciding whether or not to take ANY job…but for our purposes, we will stick to the acting realm.
To all you new actors out there, start the new year off right, by making smart and informed decisions when accepting a role. Don’t waste your time and energy with jobs that aren’t beneficial to you… keep your schedule open for the ones that are. You will be surprised how this easy (switch easy and this) test of questions will help your decision making process and achieving your goals.