Breaking in to the showbiz industry is not an easy task, but for kids and teens, time is on their side. In fact, babies, children and teenagers actually have an easier time of “getting discovered” than most adults over the age of twenty five actually do. So, if your child is expressing an interest in becoming an actor or performer, or if others are telling you that he or she is so cute they should be in commercials, you are probably wondering exactly how to get started.
The steps to becoming a child actor or model, while challenging, are actually fairly strait forward provided you know what they are. The problem is, many people are misguided, scammed, or simply attempt the task in a way that is actually detrimental to the child’s blossoming career.
If you educate yourself about the ways of the entertainment industry, it will be much easier to avoid scams. Knowledge is power and knowing the proper steps will keep you in control. Here are a few red flags to look out for:
– Talent agents, especially those in California where it is the law, are usually licensed
– You should never pay an up-front fee as a condition to be represented by an agent or manager
– There is a difference between being represented by someone and taking their class. Classes cost money to attend and don’t guarantee you’ll get a job
Following the Casting Process
Many parents want to immediately seek out casting opportunities for their kids the moment they decide to help them start an entertainment career. However, this is definitely NOT the first step to making your dream a reality.
To become a child actor, you must first focus on getting an agent or manager. In the “old days” you would do this by sending headshots and resumes to agencies. This can cost a lot of money and take a lot of time. Today, there are safe and reputable websites like childreninfilm.com which talent agents and managers use to find new talent. This site in particular, childreninfilm.com, allows you to search reputable agents and managers nationwide and submit directly do them. Your child’s online profile (complete with pictures, resume and a bio) is automatically attached so you never have to spend money on mailings.
Once you’ve secured representation, you are then ready to begin submitting to casting opportunities. Sites like craigslist.org and exploretalent.com should generally be avoided. While many of the sites that come up when you Google “castings for kids” may appear reputable, they often are not. Additionally, they are not used by the pros within the industry. Sites like Actors Access and LA Casting are used with in the industry. However, these sites are designed for actors of all ages. ChildrenInFilm.com, also an industry standard, is the only site that posts casting notices specifically for kids. These castings are also pre-screened and the producers/directors/etc agree to abide by the laws (pay the kids, provide school, etc.)
If you follow the casting process of first getting an agent or manager and then seeking out casting calls, you will be more likely to succeed in breaking in to the industry.
Source by Heather Leigh Broeker