“Everyone says I have a great voice and I should do voiceovers.” The all too common phrase that sends a cold shiver down the spine of anyone even remotely related to the world of voiceover casting. And seeing as voiceovers make up the lion’s share of my casting business, I spend a lot of time shivering. Someone hears what I do for a living, tells me that they have a good voice and the responses start buzzing wildly through my head like a hive of agitated bees. Do I smile, nod, and let it go? Or do I go into a lengthy explanation of what voiceover really is; a misunderstood, multi-faceted branch of the entertainment business that goes so far beyond something as genetically arbitrary as a voice quality. read more
Social media is a way of life and should not, and cannot be avoided. It’s worth looking at the pros and cons of social media in your career.
NUMBER OF FOLLOWERS
A big question seems to be, “does it matter how many followers I have?” “Will I get more auditions or book more commercials if I have more followers?” “Can the number of followers I have help me get more bookings?” read more
I think you all know how I feel about Hamilton. If not, it’s how you feel about Hamilton, if you’ve had the opportunity to be “in the room where it happens”. Everyone, everyone, everyone loves it. And rightfully so. But what now? Where do all the Hamilton lovers go, besides back to the theatre to see it again and again, inevitably leaving them homeless and penniless? The Kirk Douglas Theatre may have a solution for those suffering Hamilton withdrawls. Ladies and Gentlemen, may I suggest Spamilton, An American Parody! read more
One good thing about having knocked around the planet for over half a century is that I’ve got enough years behind me to have test-driven a variety of annual planning methodologies, and enough wits still about me to retain some curiosity and enthusiasm over what comes next. (Well, I hope so, at any rate!)
That said, what has worked for me may not worked for you. And what worked 5 or 10 years ago may not work for either of us now. For example, at a certain point in your life, you may want to lean into a detailed, analytical system, like Jinny Ditzler’s Your Best Year Yet. Then, at another point, you may want to go for the more visceral, intuitive experience of creating a vision board. read more
10 Ways To Build Resilience
Talent alone is not enough to bring you success. You must have resilience in order to hang in there when the going gets tough. Woody Allen recognizes the importance of stamina when he said, “Eighty percent of success is showing up.” Last Sunday, I was visiting the Hammer Museum with my family and noticed Dianne Wiest eating lunch alone. She looked fragile with her arm in a sling and I thought to myself, underneath that angelic exterior and soft voice is one tough cookie! I remembered reading about what she had gone through as an actress in her early days. As a young actress, she hit a bump that could’ve ended her career. Cast in a play and feeling totally lost, during a rehearsal, the director exploded at her saying, “If I had any idea how BAD you really were, I never would have cast you!” Instead of going home and giving up, she found the strength to hang in there and create a flourishing career. In an excerpt from the book, “Actors At Work,” by Tichler and Kaplan, Wiest talks openly about another challenge in her career while filming the film Bullets Over Broadway – “Woody sent me the script (Bullets Over Broadway) and said I’d be perfect for the part. read more
Casting Networks – An Update for Agents and Managers
We have been working as quickly as we can to make the 20th Century Fox TV and Feature transition as efficient as possible for everyone involved. The onboarding process has been a big undertaking, and we really appreciate your patience through this time.
I always like to keep things in perspective when casting. A favorite phrase of mine: We aren’t curing cancer, we are casting a commercial. This is important for me, personally, to keep in mind because things can get stressful quickly in the world of commercials and sometimes it feels like the walls are caving in. As things move quicker and quicker and demands become more insane, actors will be increasingly finding themselves in the position to save the day.
Commercial actors should never miss an opportunity to become a casting director favorite.
The acting business is based on so many variables that you don’t have control over. The good news is there are many things you do have control over. I hesitate to share this list of errors because every item seems so obvious to me, but it’s happened too many times that I would be remiss not to share. Getting these things right can make a difference in being considered a trusted professional and, sometimes even getting or losing an audition.
- Attach a resume to your breakdown. Some people do not have a resume attached to their photo submissions. If there is no resume a casting director knows nothing about you. Casting directors are choosing people who they know something about to fulfill a role, even if it’s just a look. You cannot be considered without a resume. Someone who has a resume will be chosen over someone who does not. read more
Think back: do you remember the moment you knew you wanted to become an actor?
For many, it was watching a mesmerizing performance onscreen or onstage, one that seemed to reach out and speak truth to them and them alone. If you’re like me, there was an electric moment you actually experienced onstage—one where the world both disappeared and was more “there” than ever, and you felt some kind of magic power flowing through you. For (too many) others, it was watching their favorite performer clutch a gold statue in front of millions, or seeing some trumped-up, impeccably art-directed version of their life in a publication or piece of video.