Last Tuesday, I co-taught a workshop for actors with Casting Director, Rebekah Renne and was excited by what she had to say about the film industry . . . and I wanted to share it with you!
Rebekah has worked in the film industry since 2009. Based in San Francisco, she works on all sized projects from small films to large union films in the Bay Area as well as Los Angeles and advocates for actors and filmmakers with her filmmaking collective, Pictoclik. And do you know what was most astonishing to me about what she had to say?
She is dying for more actors who can simply show up and be professional.
When we think of the film industry, we think that there are so many actors and competition out there, and very few "real" jobs. But she had the complete opposite to say.
Her take on the San Francisco Bay Area film industry was that there were viable jobs, but that she runs into a lot of unprofessionalism that makes it hard to fill the roles.
Here are my main takeaways from her class:
1. Showing up is half the job.
Surprisingly, only half the people called into auditions in SF actually come to them. And half of those people come late and without head shots and resumes. Always arrive 15 minutes early for an audition.
2. Have a professional and friendly attitude.
Unfortunately, Rebekah has encountered some diva attitude here in the Bay. Folks consider film acting to be a hobby rather than a profession. If you're moving forward with your film career, be willing and ready to take jobs. And when you book them never ever cancel in order to take another job. This industry is small here and you'll make it hard to find work quickly if you do this.
3. Keep your headshot and resume up to date.
Whenever your looks changes (you get a haircut etc.) you should get new head shots. And then . . . remember to always always bring one with you to auditions.
4. Create partnership with your agent.
If you feel like you're agent isn't working for you, then do a little leg work yourself on SF Casting to find some paying jobs. No matter how small paying the job is, once you get a gig, let your agent know about it. If they do a little negotiating for you, give them their 20%. Even if the job only pays $100, they will remember that you called them and appreciate this. It tells them you're actively looking to work and puts you top of mind. Then watch how they remember to call you the next time they get something for your type.
The main thing I realized after hearing what Rebekah had to say was that if you really want to be working more in film here in the Bay Area, then it is absolutely possible. It's just a matter of showing up and being professional.
Here's to your success!
P.S. I'm leaving bright and early tomorrow for my L.A. speaking tour. Join the Performers & Creators Lab Facebook group to be a part of my journey.
I'll be posting pictures, insights and updates about my experiences in Lala land there. Also, this Facebook group is slowly evolving into a wonderful resource for artists where you can post your own questions, calls for support, collaboration.
Check it out.
Hope to see you there!