Thread: Some Questions

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    Some Questions
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    Some Questions, maybe the wrong forum. I am not a filmmaker, just a lurker on this board and I am amazed by all of the talent and creativity here. Some of you are pros and some are not, so I am looking for answers from both sides. If you have a character at the beginning of your film that is 8 years old and have to follow this character through his life up to 60 years old, i.e 12,17, 24, 48, 55 ect. You would also have supporting actors age as well. It seems like you would end up with a whole lot of actors that you would have to pay and find. Where and how do you come up with actors to fit these rolls? If you were a pro, a talent agency would fit the bill right? I donít know how much this would cost but it seems expensive. If you are an independent and have no money how would you do this? Would you use social media, Craiglist ? Who would pick these actors from a pool of actors?, producer, director, script writer? This seems like a very hard task. How would you approach this? Thanks Mike


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    Indie Arms Member Doc Bernard's Avatar
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    The Casting director would technically choose them. But on smaller productions, that hat may be worn by the director, one of the producers, etc.

    Being "pro" has many definitions. Needless to say, there are pro's on here that still use Craigslist and social media to disseminate casting calls. I picked up a TV gig that way. You'd be surprised on how many castings are done "under the wire" for cable TV on Craigslist.

    And, yes, if you are following a character through an extended timeline, each age "snapshot" you will need new faces, and characters to fit that scene. Having the actor playing the best friend at age 8, then dressing him in bigger clothes while sanding on an apple box is not going to sell he has aged 10 years.

    Hope that helps.


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    Thanks for your fast reply, I was trying to figure how many people were involved in the decision making prosess. This seems like a costly and labor intensive endevor to follow a character through that length of timeline. This sounds very expensive. Thanks Mike


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    Indie Arms Member Doc Bernard's Avatar
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    It is, to do right, or if you don't get lucky.

    On a larger project, the CD picks out the faces they want to see in person, auditions are held, then they whittle that down for call-backs if someone didn't just stand out for the role.

    The decision is usually left to the people holding the auditions, and many times the director will sit in on these, or review any footage of the audition. I have sat in on auditions and helped the staff make decisions for roles that had to give a certain persona or had to have a certain talent. Then I would put the actor through the paces to verify they knew what they claimed. If they didn't, I cut them from the running for that part of the role and gave my notes to the director.

    Other times, if it is a bigger name actor, they role is theirs if they want it, because many times the role was written for that person in mind. Or the production wants an "A-lister" on the project.

    There is no hard and fast rule on how a casting is done, other than trying to get the right talent for the role. I have been on cattle call auditions (60 other people for the same role), and I have been called up on the phone, saying I was exactly what they wanted based on my reel/headshots/resume/abilities, and "would I like the role?" (no audition, just show up for the first rehearsal).
    Last edited by Doc Bernard; 02-02-2012 at 01:04 PM.


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    Thanks again for your insight, very helpful, I am just trying to find out how these things work. It seems like a thankless job with all that goes into casting, and then watch it all come together on screen seem seamless and easy, but in the real world very labor intensive. Thanks again .........Mike.


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