This month we were fortunate enough to talk with casting director Claire Bleasdale straight after a short film she cast, Cowboy Dave, won a highly coveted BAFTA. Claire is a very experienced casting director who has worked in many facets of the industry from acting – so many casting directors seem to start there – through to extras and crew casting, until more recently working as a casting director in London and up north. We asked Claire all about it, eager to find out more about the BAFTA winning short, what she has planned next, and tips for actors contacting casting directors.
Guys! You’ve gotta see this set! I know it’s a potentially terrible statement to begin a theatre review. It’s not as bad as it seems. Honestly, I just desperately want to live in the bohemian apartment in Pasadena Playhouse’s west coast premiere of Amy Herzog’s play Belleville. Bravo to the scenic designer, David Meyer. read more
Ch-ch-ch-changes! The self tape requests have just made their way to commercials, folks. Well, that’s not exactly true. The first time I was asked to gather a few self tapes for a job was about 5 years ago. It was for a SAG job. Production had added a completely “new role” after the job had been cast, talent had their wardrobe fitting, and they were on day one of the shoot. Instead of booking from headshot/resume/reel or hold an additional casting session (which we didn’t really have time for) they asked that I have 5 or so actors put themselves on tape. Nothing crazy, just with their phone, no fancy camera or lights necessary. It was a new request to me… but it certainly made sense. And the requests and the circumstances have continued to evolve and roll in from there. read more
A “world premiere” always sounds really special and exciting. And it is! But truthfully when you take a seat at a world premiere of a play, you should know what you are getting into. Even when it’s an established award-winning playwright it can be a toss up as to its success, and if it’s a relatively unknown playwright, it’s just plain risky viewing. And exciting. Don’t forget exciting. You could be a witness to brilliance, or more often an intriguing show that still needs some work. read more
That’s it! You’ve decided to upgrade your fridge and pantry products to A-list stars. Those items filled with artificial sugar, hydrogenated oil and garbage have been retired to well, the garbage.
I’ve got 5 EASY swaps to say, “That’s a wrap!” to the junky food and to get new, nutritious stuff in!
The quick cheat sheet or table read if you will:
When I first moved to LA, I had this great idea. I was going to move to there for just one year and if, after one year, I hadn’t booked anything, I was going to move back to Sydney. After just three weeks of living in LA, I realized it was going to take more than one year. In fact, it could take many years. This realization was quite scary for me. It meant I was leaving Sydney for good and that a lot of the instability and uncertainty of pursuing a career in acting in LA was going to be my whole life. The safety blanket of living of Sydney was gone and I was faced with an arduous road ahead. The journey in understanding the sheer amount of resolute and unwavering dedication required to pursue a career in acting in a city filled with such incredible talent was overwhelming. However, I realized very early on, that in order to survive and succeed in LA, you really had to commit, there was no half in and half out. The past couple of months, I have been in Sydney spending time with my family and this short visit and time spent away from LA has truly allowed me to reflect wholeheartedly on my life there, my career, my commitment to acting and what it really means to be dedicated to something. read more
Mithila Gupta is an Indian-born, Aussie-bred screenwriter that is quickly emerging as one of our best new talents. Her devotion to creating honest, culturally diverse characters in the landscape of Australian film and television, one that has largely been dominated by older, white males has ensured she is not only in demand for her fiery ideas, talents and spirit but that she also a breath of fresh air. read more
To agent or to no agent… and which agent? Those are the questions! Sometimes I feel like you can find an opinion to match what you think/want to hear on any aspect of the industry. I always go with the study that confirms that I’ll live longer for drinking a glass of wine a day, so I get it. All you’ll be getting here is my opinion, but let’s face it, that’s par for the course in this column. And (drumroll, please) my answer to the agent or not to agent and which one question(s) is:
it depends. Don’t worry, I’ll explain.
Commercial actors should never be confused about commercial representation. read more
Once again we welcome the Casting Directors Association (CDA) awards with open arms. It’s a wonderful time every year where casting directors are acknowledged for their incredible efforts in all things castings…something we believe should happen more!
This year the Casting Directors Association awards will take place on May 3rd, and the gala evening will be hosted by comedian and writer Shappi Khorsandi. Sitting on the panel of judges this year are Claire Beale (Global Editor in Chief for Campaign); Steve Davies (Chief Executive of APA); Simon Evans (Theatre Director); Robert Glenister (Actor); Andy Levine (Head of Production at Stink Film); Tom Oxley (Photographer); Christine Payne (General Secretary of Equity).
Here we take a look at a few of the nominees and their brilliant work. read more
I’m going to start out with ways to calm your nerves that you have all heard before. One element that can get rid of your jitters, and can calm your nerves is certainly knowing your technique. In addition, understanding the venue you are working in, including who the players are. In addition understanding the selection process and the booking process will also give you more of a comfort level, and certainly we can add getting familiar with the casting community…. And let’s not forget being good at improv.