Entertainment Resources

Film Acting: First Steps

There is no one sure way to become a successful film actor. In truth, there are as many different ways as there are actors. Each actor finds success in their own way, using luck, connections, and perseverance. There are however, some basic tips that can help any new actor get their foot in the door of the entertainment industry. Here are a few ways to get started.


Almost every city and town has at least one small community theater where local actors gather and put on performances. Find theater casting calls on Casting360.com and take advantage of this opportunity, even if your primary interest is film and television. Acting is acting, and it changes very little between media. Any practice and exposure you get while doing Community Theater will only improve your chances of making it in the film industry. Also, many agents and casting directors attend plays and showcases in hopes of finding talented new actors. Remember, opportunities can come at any time.

Student Films

Is there a college in your hometown? If so, you will probably find some Student Film casting calls posted on the Casting360 website. Film students always need talented actors, and you could be just what they're looking for. They probably won't be able to pay you anything and the final product may not be that great, but the experience will be more than worth it. Just be sure to get a video copy of your performance and keep in contact with student director. Who knows... he or she may be the next Spielberg.

Be an Extra

Extras (sometimes referred to as "background" or "atmosphere" actors) are used in almost every movie. They may be a face in a crowd of thousands or someone who fully interacts with the other actors but doesn't have any lines. In either case, you don't have to live in New York or Los Angeles to get this kind of work. Watch for these casting calls on the Casting360 website. You might be able to get a few days work as an extra.

Even though most people in the entertainment industry do not consider extra work serious acting, it still gives you valuable experience. If you have never been on a film set before, you can learn a lot just by watching the cast and crew work. Also, there is a very small chance that you might get "upgraded" if the director decides that they need you to say a line. This rarely happens, but if it does you will receive a lot more money and be eligible to join the Screen Actors Guild.

Independent Films

Many low budget films cannot afford to hire experienced actors and will hold open calls. You can find auditions for these kinds of productions every day. However, it's a good idea to be cautious when responding to these casting calls. Take a friend with you to the audition and know what you're getting into. Most small films are wonderful experiences, but others can be purely exploitive. Always use your best judgment.

Get an Agent

After building credits and experience doing some or all of the things listed above, you should be ready to find an agent. Unless you live in a major city, this may be difficult. But even some smaller cities have reputable agents who submit their clients for commercials and the occasional film.

Be Persistent

You may be the most talented actor on the planet, but you'll never get anywhere without determination. Submit to as many casting calls as you can on the regular basis. Believe in yourself and never give up. If you want it, you can succeed in this business!

Disclaimer: Casting360 is not a talent agency, employer or a talent scout; the site is only a venue. Casting360 does not promise or facilitate employment. The number of casting calls available varies by location, roles available and the level of experience required. As with any business, results may vary, and will be based on individual capacity, experience, expertise, and level of desire. There are no guarantees concerning the level of income the user may experience.

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