General Question

mikey7183's avatar

How best does one break into the Acting field? In other words, how can I be "found" if I, in fact, do have Acting talent?

Asked by mikey7183 (338points) December 10th, 2008

i know this question seems a bit ridiculous, but any help is much appreciated. People often tell me I have the makings of an Actor, and I do love to be filled with drama! How best should I explore this talent?

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8 Answers

dynamicduo's avatar

The old answer was “move to Hollywood, take any acting gig you can get and hope you get noticed”, which did in fact work and probably still does today. Nowadays though thanks to the Internet, I’d say you have better chances of breaking into the scene if you take things into your own hands. Find some other people interested in making an indie film (an aspiring writer, producer, film editor, etc), buy a camcorder and a boom microphone, and make a movie. Post it on the net, tell your friends about it, and start make another one. Everyone will get better at their jobs as they go along, some may leave but you can find another person or even learn the job yourself. Your film won’t get you any Academy Awards well one never knows but you will gain practice and experience which really is worth its weight in gold in that field.

If you want to focus on your own skills to start, buy a camcorder and tripod and a good mic (most camcorders are fine for video quality, even some good point and shoot digital cameras are OK to take video with, but the built-in mics sucks 100%, you really need to get an external mic, even if it’s a lapel mic it will be better than the built-in one), set up your gear in your house, and record yourself reciting a dramatic piece, or a poem you’ve written, or act a Shakespeare scene out. Practice makes perfect, the video will not only let you review your act so you know where to improve, but you can throw it up on YouTube. Who knows, maybe a local aspiring film director will see your test video and ask you to be in an indie film. But at least you’re making a name for yourself and getting experience at the same time.

Hobbes's avatar

Well, getting an agent would probably be a good first step if you want to act professionally. If you’ve never received training, that would also be a good investment as everyone else at professional auditions will have. If you’re not ready to jump in at the deep end, join good community theatre productions and build up your resume. This will also help if you’re just trying to get your toes wet. Professional acting takes a lot of dedication tot he craft, as it doesn’t pay well, is full of disappointment and rejection, and sucks up all your time.

gailcalled's avatar

Go ask Andrew. My mother went to Hollywood High and was “discovered” three times by agents because she was so beautiful. Luckily it was the age of Busby Berkeley and she could dance. So she was in 15 movies in two years.

I believe times have changed. Andrew has several fall-back talents, of course. That helps.

Zaku's avatar

Take acting classes, from an acting school, and there will be people to discuss this, and who have contacts, and so on. Start by looking into the acting schools in your area, and the class descriptions and other texts.

Foolaholic's avatar

If you think that you’re ready, then I would suggest finding an agent. They will be able to promote you much more effectively than you cloud alone because of contacts in the business.

Nathanael's avatar

i’m in this and its a great program

andrew's avatar

I’m a professional, working actor. It’s hard.

Simply “finding an agent” isn’t really an option unless you’re very young, very interesting looking, and very ambitious. Many, many, many of my highly trained, beautiful colleagues are still having a hard time getting an agent.

Simply being “filled with drama” isn’t going to help you much. Being a working actor takes a lot of patience, and lot of grit, and a deep love for what you do.

My best advice to you is to develop your appreciation for the field. Watch a lot of plays. Watch a lot of movies. Make your own movies. Write. Get your friends involved.

Beyond that, the one thing I know about this field is that any advice I give you is pretty worthless—actors, moreso than any other profession I know, each have a different path of what works for them. What worked for me was training: happening to fall into one of the top theater undergrad programs, getting into a top-tier MFA program, getting a top-tier agent, and moving to LA. But I’ve had friends without agents who’ve booked big roles, who’ve been in high school and got discovered on the beach, who’ve been in music conservatory and done tons of theater, who’ve struggled for 15 years before getting a break, and who abandoned it entirely to have a family.

The only common thread among the actors whom I respect is a deep love of hard work and a genuine curiosity, and resilience. (Actually, that’s pretty much anyone I respect).

Without knowing more about your specific situation, that’s all I can offer.

crisedwards's avatar

For goodness sake: avoid LA and New York. Why go to the places where there are thousands of other people doing the exact same thing?

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