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Chris Messineo
02-08-2006, 11:47 AM
I am casting the lead actress in my first SAG film.

Last Friday, we put our ad online at BreakdownServices.

So far I have received over 500 headshots and resumes.

Any suggestions on things to look for (in the resume) to help cull this down to a manageable number?

Chris

p.s. Tomorrow our ad comes out in BackStage. I have this fear I am going to be buried under headshots. :)

skinnyboy
02-10-2006, 05:15 AM
If you've got that many, you have the luxury of picking a look and going with it (that will narrow it down - for example if you just want blondes in their 30s). I would look at experience and training next, and narrow it down to those with more of both. You can also look to see if she has worked more than once with directors - that may be a sign she is easy to work with.
Unfortunately resumes and headshots only give a part of the story, but I think you'll find that you get a keeper even if you only call in 50 women.

penfever
02-10-2006, 06:30 AM
I got about 200 resumes for my last short, but when I held auditions, I only saw 20 people there. Don't narrow it down, let the auditions do it for you. The last thing you need is to say, she's the one I want, only to find out she doesn't think you're important enough to meet with.

Slimothy
02-10-2006, 08:03 AM
I agree w/ penfever. Hold an audition.

MsManhattan
02-10-2006, 08:31 PM
Chris, Congrats on getting such a great response to your ad. I suspect you're right that after the Backstage ad appears you'll be inundated. If I were in your shoes I'd go through the resumes looking first for the ones who match the age range of the character you're casting, toss any who are just obviously wrong looks-wise, and then look for those with the most experience in the genre of your film (eg, comedy, dramatic roles, etc.). I would probably also favor those with more film experience vs. stage experience.

Blaine
02-10-2006, 10:33 PM
Chris,
You're in a great position. You have to love the fact that so many want to have the opportunity to act in your project. I'm sure you've got a picture of your lead actress in your head. Follow your gut...it will lead you where you need to go. :beer:

cyclone
02-10-2006, 11:01 PM
Skinnyboy,
Wow, what a great idea. I'm in my 50's and have been doing casting calls, callbacks and auditions for about 20 years. When I look at headshots, I typically look at depth of experience, types of roles and training. I never considered looking to see if they have worked with a director more than once. That is probably just as important (or maybe more important) than many of the other things. Thanks for that. An old horse just learned a new trick! By the way, good luck, Chris, and congratulations on a terrific response.

Chris Messineo
02-14-2006, 06:29 AM
Thanks for all of the great advice.

The count is up to 900 and while it is slowing down, we are still getting about 30 more each day.

We rented a casting studio in NYC for 6 hours and are inviting our top 36 candidates in for auditions (6 an hour). Choosing the 36 has been hard though! I'm trying to trust my gut and read between the lines in the resumes to find the "diamonds in the rough".

I just never imagined we would get a respons like this. :)

Chris

p.s. That director tip is a great one.

capitalP
02-14-2006, 09:09 AM
Off topic if you don't mind, I plan to hold an audition one day, you said SAG Film, I assume means you're paying the Actors right? If you don't mind me asking, how do you determine what to pay them is there a SAG Set price, or do the ACtors give you a price.. I'd love to know how that works.

Blaine
02-14-2006, 09:13 AM
Off topic if you don't mind, I plan to hold an audition one day, you said SAG Film, I assume means you're paying the Actors right? If you don't mind me asking, how do you determine what to pay them is there a SAG Set price, or do the ACtors give you a price.. I'd love to know how that works.
Here is a site that will help answer your question.
http://www.sagindie.com/contracts2.html

Chris Messineo
02-14-2006, 12:39 PM
We are shooting using the SAG Short Film Agreement.

Under that agreement you can legally defer salary, but we are not. We are paying $100 a day to each of our actors.

Factoring in rehearsal and shooting time, this will total out to $1,700 for our 3 actors.

Chris

p.s. As Blaine mentioned, you can get all the details at: www.SAGIndie.org

capitalP
02-14-2006, 08:29 PM
Thanks guys for the info

kimko
02-14-2006, 11:51 PM
oh Chris make sure you have 3 backups for each role, because some will bail on you, for whatever reason

RomanJaquez
02-18-2006, 10:15 AM
Kimko, thats a good advise,... backups always a must. I've seen when even at the very last minute, just before the shoot start things have gone as unexpected.

One thing I pay close attention in the photo its self is how comfortable and confidence they portray themselves... if that smile and strong eye contact or if neck and chest are up, thats a good sign.

Chris Messineo
03-06-2006, 10:49 AM
In the end, we had over 1,200 headshots. We brought in our 30 favorites for private auditions in NYC. It was an amazing experience.

We cast Clare Stevenson.

http://www.OffStageFilms.com/images/clare.jpg

We are now fully cast and rehearsals start next week-end.

Thanks again everyone for your guidance,

Chris

SilverWolf
03-06-2006, 11:29 AM
wow you've got some good stuff going on Chris. I'm glad I was able to work with you

kimko
03-06-2006, 02:14 PM
Kimko, thats a good advise,... backups always a must. I've seen when even at the very last minute, just before the shoot start things have gone as unexpected.

One thing I pay close attention in the photo its self is how comfortable and confidence they portray themselves... if that smile and strong eye contact or if neck and chest are up, thats a good sign.you mean like my avatar

jpbankesmercer
03-09-2006, 05:06 AM
Glad you cast. I think its an integral part of the process, (working with good performers), it also gives you an insight into what to look for...hehe...when looking though CV's its a nightmare to distinguish any truth, we've all exaggerated haven't we?
Get them running around like monkeys and then see if their available.
J

Chris Messineo
03-09-2006, 06:20 AM
Now that we have a cast, everything feels very real.

We have our first rehearsal this week-end and I am so excited. I am going to have the whole cast and crew there for a table read and a kick-off party.

Chris

lucidz
03-09-2006, 12:43 PM
not a bad looking young woman i must say.

wish we had those in jacksonville

Slimothy
03-09-2006, 11:17 PM
Good luck w/ everything Chris. Is there a site where we can follow the progress of the movie?

Chris Messineo
03-10-2006, 05:40 AM
Yes, it's this really cool site called, DVXuser.com. :)

Our own web site (www.OffStageFilms.com) doesn't have that many updates, but I will continue to post news and behind the scenes stuff at DVXUser.com since I consider everyone here my extended crew.

Chris