Industry Advice: 5 Tips for Organizing Casting Calls
Working as a casting director, you’re probably more than familiar with how the casting process goes. But if you need some pieces of advice as you work on your next project, here are some tips for organizing casting calls.
Tips for Organizing Casting Calls
From bits on deciding on the right venue to choosing the best date to hold it, here are some helpful tips for organizing casting calls.
1. Secure a good venue
When organizing a casting call, one of the first things you need to take care of is the venue. Much attention is paid to venue selection, as there are a lot of factors that have to be taken into consideration. One, you need to go with a place that is within your budget. Now this step could be hard because you don’t really know how much of the whole production budget would go to the casting part. But there are a lot of options waiting for you, so you just have to be wise and practical when making a decision.
2. Choose the best audition scenes for on-the-spot readings
Choose a scene that will get the best out of the actor. Have them read and act out a piece that will allow the talent to show their range of emotions. It shouldn’t be so long nor too short. You can choose a scene that involves a couple of actors to see how well they complement each other and how they look like on the screen together.
3. Spread the word
Advertise the casting call. You can do this online through social media or website banners or post flyers to get the attention of more people. How wide the advertising is depends on the size of the production, but you can trust that there are a lot of platforms you can take advantage of to spread the word. Besides online advertising, print media advertising is one good option too. Seeking help from newspaper companies and community theaters would be a good move.
4. Provide information sheets
Prepare information sheets for the actors who made the cut. Make sure you’ve already decided on the schedule for rehearsals and production and include them in the sheet too. This is so the actors can make sure that there won’t be any schedule overlap and the filming can continue without any problem. Additionally, it’s highly advisable you distribute a separate sheet for actors to fill in their contact information and other details you will need.
Organizing casting calls can be difficult and can take a toll even on those who have been doing it for so long. But just follow these tips and give the task before you the full attention it needs, the whole process will go as smoothly as you hope it will.
Before the actual film production can commence, there is the pre-production process. It is in this stage that selecting film locations and casting are done. While working out shoot locations requires intense planning too, casting can be tedious and physically draining. The casting department has to exhaust all resources they have to look for that talent perfect for each role, even the smallest of the bunch.
Now as a casting director, you probably know that and have had your fair share of hardships as you try to seek fresh new faces for the project you’re working on. You choose schedules for casting and the venue for auditions. What should be considered and what should be avoided in order to complete auditions problem-free is something that you have grown accustomed to. What some directors fail to acknowledge, though, is the possibility that there could be a thousand talents out there who are equally deserving of the role but just cannot be there physically.
It is for this reason that online auditions exist. The Internet has made it possible for people with the same interests and goals yet separated by distance to meet on one platform. By allowing aspiring talents to audition for roles online has greatly helped in the casting process.
But how does one organize an online audition?
Helpful Tips for Holding Online Auditions
Online auditions are basically just the same with the traditional way of applying for a role, minus the travel and having to wait at the audition hall for hours. As a casting director, there are needs you have to meet to make sure the audition yields a satisfying and fulfilling result. Here are some tips for holding online auditions.
Lay down the qualifications properly
Make sure the qualifications are clearly stated. From the physical traits and the basic traits of the character, describe the characters to be played properly, clear enough for the talent to know for themselves if they can play the part.
Provide a monologue
When Morgan Creek Productions announced that they will be producing a film about the late Tupac Shakur, online auditions immediately started. To make sure they get the right guy for the role, they gave a courtroom monologue every applicant must read and act out in the five-minute video they submit.
One of the most important tips for holding online auditions is to provide a monologue for your applicants. If you are looking for a singer to play a role in a musical film, you can give them a specific song that they can try to belt out. Or if you are looking for someone who can play a lawyer in a legal drama, you can provide a short exchange to be used in one of the intense courtroom scenes.
Make media sharing easy and convenient
When talking about online auditions, audition video is the very first thing a talent will think of. Now how they make the audition video is up to them. What you can do, though, is make media sharing easier and more convenient for your applicants. Pay attention to every detail including the size and the length of the clips they can share.
Advertise the audition
Get the word out. There are many ways you can do this. Email marketing, social media marketing, or putting up Web banners are just few of the many types of online advertising you can take advantage of to let more people know about the audition. The more you advertise the audition online, the bigger the chance you’ll get the turnout you need.
The history of cinema dates back to the late eighteenth-century. One of the earliest films was released in 1878, titled The Horse in Motion, made to answer a question that had been bothering people for long: are all four hooves of a horse off the ground when they’re galloping?
Ever since, cinema has changed a lot. Colored movies started to grace the big screen to everybody’s awe. Films have gone from being only a few minutes long to providing two long hours of entertainment. Now we talk just about everything, from our inner struggles to global issues.
With these changes comes a shift in the way actors are cast too. A traditional audition would have the team spreading the words about an upcoming audition for a role in a TV show or film. Then the audition day comes and a long line of aspiring actors will enter the audition hall, all ready with their acting portfolio and acting chops. The casting director takes a look at their profile, has them read the script or say their own lines, until they know enough to decide whether they’re the right person for the role or not.
There’s only one set of qualifications for every role, and these are criteria a lot of people meet. Problem is, not all of them have the means to show up to audition. May it be the distance or financial problems, it can’t be denied the traditional audition process puts a limit to who can only try out for the part.
This is where online auditions come into the picture.
Ways Online Auditions Can Help in the Casting Process
Holding online helps in the casting process. Here’s how.
One, it gives everyone a fair chance.
The entertainment industry is a whole world full of young talents looking to break into the show business. While many have what it takes to be the next big thing, only a few get the opportunity to showcase what they’ve got.
The traditional way of holding auditions robs these people of that one chance to apply for a job they would’ve been perfect for. If the audition is in the US, it is almost impossible for someone in an Asian country to stand before a casting director.
But through online auditions, these talents now have a way to prove that they might be whom you’ve been looking for.
They can just fill out a form online, send a demo reel that highlights their talent, and wait for a decision.
It’s not just aspiring actors that online auditions are helping. This new method has benefits to offer to casting directors too.
Allowing anyone, as long as they meet the basic qualifications, to apply gives you a wider range of auditionees. Just because you’re holding the audition in Milwaukee does not mean you have to end up hiring someone within the Wisconsin state. If you put up an online audition, you will receive audition tapes from all around the world. Who knows, the man perfect for the campus crush part you’ve been trying to fill is out there in Europe just waiting for your call.
Additionally, this saves you time and effort required by traditional auditions. You can watch demo reels and audition tapes from the comfort of your own office or your own home, and you have all day to go over each of them.
Times have changed, and we are not obliged to do things the way our predecessors in the industry did. As a casting director, it pays to be generous enough to let everyone try out for that acting job. And you can do that by holding online auditions.
The entertainment industry is one that welcomes a new face every second. Every day, in every movie and show that invades the screen, a star is born. With this comes the fact the competition is high, making it one of the most competitive industries there is.
As a casting director, it’s your job to find someone who will stand out in the role they are to portray. When looking for a talent for a shampoo commercial, you have to look past one’s hair. Convincing people to purchase the product requires more than just long, shiny locks, after all.
Casting can be draining, psychologically and emotionally, but today’s world has provided a lot of platforms where casting directors, agents, and talents can find each other. The rise of the Internet has revolutionized the casting process. It has helped major industry players find new faces that helped them make their projects the revelation that they are.
Ways Technology Is Revolutionizing the Casting Process
The Internet isn’t just for meeting new friends, it’s for working your way to stardom too. And for casting directors like you, it’s for discovering fresh faces with unique personalities you can hire for your next project. Here are the ways technology is revolutionizing the casting process.
If there’s anything about the new times that has been a great help in connecting people, that would be the Internet and social media. It’s true, this side of the Web has its downsides, but it has also helped bridge gaps, unite diverse groups, reconnect lost and severed ties, and build relationships.
For aspiring actors, it is on social networking sites that they share just about everything. From photos and videos to random thoughts, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram have seen these people’s lives unfold. As a casting director or agent, it is your job to seek new faces that will suit a certain role. Holding auditions remains the best way to get the task done, but you don’t have to limit your choices to those who walk into the audition room.
Take advantage of the world of social media. A lot of new talents these sites to reach a wider audience. Be a part of their crowd audience and you might just find the next big star that will make the project you are working on the talk of the town.
Online media distribution platforms
YouTube has done more than just entertain people through funny and informative clips. Some casting directors and agents credit the site for helping them discover today’s biggest stars.
Ever since it was founded in 2005, YouTube has grown to become the biggest video-sharing platform ever. If before, we could only rely on television and theaters to give us a good laugh, now we have YouTube. The site allows us to share videos we believe are entertaining to the rest of the world. Everyone can now watch an artist’s music video without turning their TV on or watch movie trailers without going to the cinema. Taking advantage of the site, some aspiring talents turn to YouTube to share videos of them singing, dancing, or acting in hopes of attracting casting directors and agents.
While most social networking sites come with a free mobile applications too, there are apps that specifically cater to the needs of aspiring actors.
One good example is the Actors Apply, the app where talents and casting directors meet. The app has information on latest auditions, the location and requirements, how to apply, etc. These applications connect industry players and break the barriers that hinder them from working together, like distance and language. With these phone apps, a few taps will get you closer to the talent you’ve been looking for and them to you.
Demo reels are probably one of the best ways technology is revolutionizing the casting process. As mentioned, one of the major obstacles aspiring actors and casting directors face is the fact that sometimes, they’re from different sides of the world. As a casting director, you organize auditions and conduct interviews. Before you are talents looking to break into the industry. Outside the interview room, however, is a whole big world full of equally, if not more, talented actors that would have been the perfect fit but just couldn’t be in the same room with you.
This is when demo reels come into the picture. With the help of a camera and the ever-helpful email service, talents from all around the world can flaunt what they’ve got, without worrying about having to fly across continents. And you can just look at their videos and decide if they’re worth hiring.
Online casting service
Another one of the best ways to discover new talents is by signing up to online casting services. It’s where talents find casting opportunities and where casting directors like you can find the best person for that acting job. And it’s very convenient too. A talent just uploads their portfolio, gets matched to a role, a casting then director looks at their details, and their journey together starts from there. There are a lot of reliable casting in existence. Slowly rising to prominence is Auditions.net.
Auditions.net offers free casting service to casting directors, agents, and talents who want to make a name in the industry. It is also easy to navigate. To get started, you just have to fill out an online form. Casting directors post about their upcoming projects, which talents can look into and apply for, if they believe they have what it takes.