Casting Directors - How a Film Casting Process Works

Talent Agent

"How does the film casting process go a long way?" is a question that as professional agents and directors we are often asked: whether by up-and-coming actors seeking jobs, or by new directors and producers. In the following paragraphs, we hope to provide a solid understanding of the process and give some guidance in regards to what casting directors, producers and directors needs to be aiming to achieve from your process.

The Casting Process

Let's begin with saying that there is no definitive reply to the question. Projects vary greatly, as do budgets, cast requirements and time-scales. But you will find fundamental elements important to note which we think will probably be helpful to both directors and producers.

Briefing the Casting Director

Possibly the single most important part of the process could be the briefing of your casting director. Any director worth his salt will currently have a clear vision for his film. Hopefully this is the one shared with his producer. That vision has to be effectively communicated to the CD, who having read the script can be of inestimable aid in identifying potential casting problems. It is not uncommon for a key character to feel underwritten and disappear for a good portion of a script. Not helpful in case you are hoping for a 'name'. Sometimes a lack of sympathy or redemption can create a part unattractive; a possible casting 'black hole. ' Listen to your casting director. They're able to identify these problems. If lead actors consistently ignore a script, you will find there's reason.

Talent Agencies

Key Questions to ask...

As a director/producer you may already have strong casting ideas. Are these in line with your budget? Are they realistic? Don't become too wedded for an idea. Is that actor actually available? Would it be something they would consider? Your casting director is much better placed to know or learn for you.

Meeting the talent!

In terms of meeting actors, the director is liable for setting the tone in the meeting. It is important that he engages with all the actor, is forthcoming and gives notes. If an actor is asked to read again, then make it clear what it is you require from them. Will the scene you have supply the actor give sufficient possiblity to show light and shade. Develop a comprehension of mood. Actors shouldn't ought to jump through hoops. If you're absent from a session and so are viewing tapes, have confidence in CD to elicit the most effective performance from the actor , nor make rash judgements.

Producers in many cases are guilty of arbitrary objections determined by hair length or shirt colour. Never forget the actor is giving a reading, not a performance. If you don't like a particular actor, fair enough but have always good reasons for your decisions.

Rest assured in your decisions as well as your script!

It is a frequent misconception that everybody is desperate to work with your project and will keep themselves available indefinitely. Sadly this really is rarely the case. Agents may well be juggling projects for clients and there is always the opportunity of something better approaching. If an actor really loves a script then better the chance you have of getting him up to speed. It is a mistake to throw money at somebody in the hope that they will say yes. Money becomes a concern in negotiation if deep-down they are not really bothered whenever they do the job or not. Be guided through your

The casting process is as simple or as complicated as you wish to make it. It is the job in the casting director to facilitate that process in the thorough and creative way. But they must always be given clear thoughts, up -to- date information and trust, to have this. As a director/producer, idea hard to let go!

However with trust, whether it is choosing the perfect lead, or discovering a thrilling new talent the casting director can begin to play a pivotal role in giving your movie balance - and thus the film has a much greater possibility of success!

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