I recently read an article on Thrive Global that really peaked my entrepreneur mindset. It was an interview titled Predicting Future Trends in the Acting Industry With Larry David Eudene by Yitzi Weiner. The interview was a great read about Larry David Eudene’s journey in the industry and it also addressed trends in the acting industry…which were spot on.
So this answered my initial research question of what does the future of acting include? And it got me thinking about my own experience reviewing trends.
So what does the future of acting include? A different process to casting? Actors having a closer connection to the decision makers…better access?… more exposure and mediums to be seen?
These are all possibilities.
Acting is an art form, yes and we should do it because we are passionate, yes. Acting is also a livelihood for career actors and a business with the TV and video industry garnering upwards of $286.17 billion (according to statistics.com) worldwide and the theatre industry garnering $1.26 billion (statistics.com) just in the U.S. (And yes, I noticed the huge difference between TV/Video and theatre income..even with worldwide versus U.S. performances…which is a topic for another day, yet stay with me).
My major point is that we have to know the trends in the industries of our business in a way that puts us “ahead of the curve" so to speak. When we know and understand industry trends, we can then incorporate this information in how we schedule auditions, network, prepare, book work and ultimately build our careers as actors.
I also note that there are many knowledgeable actors who have done their research and are practicing this process to the 10th degree and this is why they are successful and elevated performers booking consisted paid acting work that does more than sustain them and their families financially. If this is you, keep reading and let me know if I am on track and if this is not you, keep reading and take note of what you can do to take your career to the next level.
In today’s industry with Film, TV, Video and Theatre, more actors are being auditioned from their home offices. More often, quite a few companies want to shoot their films where it will be most cost effective for them to do so. These companies are looking at how they can save on production costs and have more tax incentives based on where they shoot. I experienced this when auditioning in Arizona for a role in a production being shot in Mexico by a California based production company. Being that we have a digital world, companies and directors are taking advantage of our technological age by auditioning and working with actors via online face to face platforms versus bringing people in to audition in the same room. Some companies have done their auditions this way for a long time and others are just catching on. Furthermore, more productions are focusing on using local actors for roles to fill so they can save on costs. So pay attention to what productions/films are being produced in your area in the coming years via your local Film Board and SAG-AFTRA Offices.
Some companies are also viewing talent on membership portals like SAG-AFTRA, Actor’s Access and Backstage and contacting actors who they believe will fit their roles. I have gotten requests via these online portals to submit a self-tape audition or even hold dates for a role without even auditioning. It will benefit you to keep up to date profiles on Actors Access and Backstage.
Directors want to cast their own talent for productions based on their vision. It will still work to your benefit to keep in contact with directors who you have worked with in the past and created a solid relationship with and to continue to network and meet directors via Film Festivals, previously booked roles, classes and industry related events. You have to also note that some shows are previously casts based on a previous working relationship between a director and an actor. Some directors really like to work with actors whom they have already built a solid working relationship with and many of the lead roles are given to actors who the director connects with most and feels has the ability to do great work…and then the director will look for actors to fill the other roles.
It is true that more actors need to be aware and considered for all roles in the beginning instead of being considered for what is left over…yes, I agree.
On the other hand and in this day and age, you have to be proactive by knowing industry trends, developing and maintaining solid working relationships, reviewing what is coming up in your area, as far as productions, a year, two and even three years in advance and ask directors directly for an opportunity to audition (make sure you have done the work to prepare for the role…getting in the mindset of living the character’s life circumstances and even wear clothes that will help you feel the part during your audition).