With the holiday season just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to give a Thank You to those who’ve helped your career. This includes your agents and managers, casting directors and directors, publicists and attorneys, acting teachers, coaches and whoever else had a hand in helping your dreams come a little bit more true. Because whether we like it or not, Hollywood is a gift-giving industry, but knowing what to give isn’t always easy. I’ve been helping actors decide what to give their agents and managers for years. I’ve also been closely listening to other agents and managers for clues on what they like to receive. And before I make it sound like we’re ungrateful for your show of gratitude, let me explain. All my industry peers agree that we don’t need gifts, because if we needed something, we would simply go out and buy it. But the gifts come anyway and it’s joyful to receive something that we will truly enjoy. So how can you make sure to master this annual endeavor?
How a casting director goes through thousands of submissions, what it’s like casting for LOST and how to stand out in auditions
Farrah West is a casting director in Los Angeles with projects like LOST, What About Brian and dozens of feature films on her ever-growing resume. She has impeccable taste in talent especially because she recently cast one of my actors, Tom Plumley, as the lead actor in Max Reload and the Nether Blasters, a super fun, adventurous video-game feature film that’s currently filming in Phoenix, Arizona. Working with Farrah on casting my actor was easy and exciting, which isn’t always a given in our bottom-line-obsessed industry. I could tell she took a deep interest in protecting the talent while also being passionate about the project and its possibilities. I was so excited when Farrah wanted to sit down and be interviewed on Actors For Lunch—check it out!
How spirituality ties into acting, the traits that make an actor successful and how online casting changed the industry
When deciding what kind of Hollywood professional I wanted to interview for my first blog post, I immediately thought to start with the foundation of the industry: the craft of acting. Without it, what could Hollywood ever be? So, to answer my questions about what acting is and what makes an actor good, I thought of Zak Barnett, teacher and studio-owner of Zak Barnett Studios. He’s digging deeper with his ‘Spirituality, Entertainment, Activism’ approach to the art. Also joining us for our mid-day meal was John Rushing, teacher and new Director of Development at ZBS. What I thought would be a simple lunch interview about acting and actors, turned into a profoundly informative, philosophical and open dialogue uncovering new layers to something I thought I knew all about. Find out how actors really transform into some of your most beloved characters with Zak Barnett and John Rushing here.