This is a topic I’ve spoken about, blogged about and have been questioned about many, many times in the past. It is a recurring theme in my life for a reason… it is probably one of the most important questions you will ever ask yourself, especially if you want to be an artist.
THE PAINFUL TRUTH:
What Agents Are Really Looking For
If you were with us last blog you will remember that I decided to offer up five unorthodox bits of advice for pilot season. I wanted to break the mold this year and encourage you to do things that the rest of the actors in town weren’t. Hopefully, you’ve snagged a few pilot auditions this year but if you haven’t here’s a bit of out of the box thinking that just might make it happen for you.
5 Unorthodox Undertakings For Pilot Season
Sooner or later I knew that technology would bite me. For the first time ever, I accidentally erased over my latest blog before I was able to post it. Uggh! Welcome to the new year! After several hours of formulating my thoughts I wrote a blog called, "10 Unorthodox Goals to Shoot For In 2013." It was cute and I’m sure there was some good stuff in there but for some reason I didn't love it. Maybe it was God telling me that there was something better that needed to be said. So with that in mind, I've decided to start completely from scratch and answer the burning question that seems to be on a lot of our minds, "What should I do in 2013?"
I have nothing negative to say what so ever about taking acting classes… unless the teacher sucks. Every actor needs honest, expert, objective feedback about their work and their ability if they hope to improve their craft. Without it you’ll be like an athlete trying to win the Olympics without a trainer.
If I’ve heard it once I’ve heard it a thousand times, “Your headshot is the most important marketing tool you have.” Is it true? Yeah, it probably is true. Unless you’re a big star or someone well known in the industry chances are your headshot is the thing that will get you through the door and into a casting director’s office more than anything else. But, because actors know how important a headshot is it creates a ton of anxiety when it comes to getting good shots. Good headshots can be expensive, nerve-racking and a huge burden. That said, let’s take a look at some of the easiest ways an actor can ruin their headshots.
It’s been said many times in many ways that acting is probably the most difficult profession on the face of the earth. A couple of years ago I was at an art opening talking to Aaron Eckhart when a man approached and said to him, “You’re so lucky. Acting is the easiest career in the world.” Aaron literally went off on him for 20 minutes, telling the man why he was wrong. He said things like, “You go from laughter to sobbing on cue in front of a crew of 100 people. You convince a studio head that your are entertaining, mesmerizing and worth a fee of 25 million dollars. You do job interviews every day for six six years before you finally get a job, only to realize you’re loosing it again in a couple of months.” Aaron let him have it, and rightfully so. The guy clearly had no idea what he was saying. Why? Because, actors like Aaron make it look so effortless and easy. Samuel L. Jackson says, “The actor’s job is finding work. The fringe benefit of our job is that we get to act.” Finding and keeping work as an actor is a never ending task. And, without fun there would be no reason or incentive to pursue it.
What’s the Most Important Thing?
There is one question that I get fairly often and it is probably the most powerful question you can ask. It is this: “What is the most important thing you can do if you want to be a working actor?” Think you know what it is?
For the past couple of months I focused these blogs and the techniques and tools of being an actor. I mentioned at the beginning there were 10 tools that I thought were essential to acting. We’ve covered seven of those in the past seven weeks. I still have three more to discuss, and I will, but I’m going to change the format of these blogs and get a little more personal.