This article is for all the actors out there where no one is buying what they are selling. If you have training, are perseverant in your auditions and submissions, then you should be getting auditions. Right? But what if everything is in place and you are not getting auditions? Maybe, it has something to do with your ‘look’ or the ‘type’ you are trying to sell. All actors should know their type and which characters they will get cast to play. Knowing your type is crucial to getting you in front of the right casting people AND not wasting anyone’s time (including your own) in the process. For example, if everyone else thinks you are the “girl next door’ and you think you are ‘the sexy bombshell’ then you might have some disappointment and frustration in your auditions. The good news is, once you know your type then it is a matter of the upkeep to your ‘look’. Which can cost a pretty penny out of your artist pocket. Those salon visits, gym memberships, and events all cost money. If you know your type, are submitting for auditions, taking workshops, and working on your craft you should definitely be getting auditions. However, if you find that you are still not getting into the audition rooms that you feel you belong in then you are probably lacking in one of the areas above. Are you meeting people and connecting at workshops? Was the last time you took a real acting class back in 2010? Or maybe, just maybe the image on your headshot isn’t working for you because it is not representing you and your type the best. Your ‘look’ could be identical to 1,000 other actors and not be helping your odds at all in trying to get that almighty part.
“Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” Albert Einstein
I believe in what Albert Einstein said full heartedly and apply it to every aspect of life, especially my career. So when is it a good time to evaluate your look and see if maybe something isn’t working? As soon as you find your work stopping or slowing down. I know it can seem startling to chop off your hair or get rid of that lumberjack beard. But, if the purpose of your current look is to get you work or fulfill a type and you are not cast as then you need to re-evaluate and make some changes. It is possible that you think you are one type and no one else agrees. If you have already been told by casting and other industry executives that you are a certain character and continue to get cast as that type then problem could lie in your presentation of your type. As an actor, we always have to sell ourselves. I will use the example of ‘the girl next door” type. Let’s say for this example, you have nice features, are in good shape, decent credits/reel and can portray 18-25yrs old (all general qualities of this type). Well I hate to say it, but you are in a very saturated market. This isn’t bad news it just means that you have to be more creative with your presentation of the type in which you are being submitted. How? Ask yourself the following while looking in the mirror; what about you at first glance makes you stand out? Do you have piercing eyes? Luscious lips? Beautiful curly hair? A distinctive nose? Everyone has something that makes him or her unique, find yours and bring it out. If your eyes are your best feature, are you using make up to make them stand out? If you’re lips are your favorite quality are you wearing lipsticks that showcase their shape? Does your haircut frame your face and bring more attention to your features? These are all checks that you should be doing when figuring out that next haircut or personal care purchase. Remember, to have fun. Appreciate the uniqueness that is you, because you have the power to choose what type of movie star you are. So, what’s your unique feature? Feel free to leave comments.
“Overcome the notion that you must be regular. It robs you of the chance to be extraordinary.”
– Uta Hagen
(sneaker photo courtesy of collegemagazine.com; changes photo courtesy of entrepreneursky.com)
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