Successful Self-Submissions for Auditions

The BSTA Warm Up:  The following  three suggestions are given at the starting line to help get YOU to the finish line (the audition).  Explore and use only what works for YOU because YOU are special and unique.  Choose to follow some paths but also feel empowered to try other routes you pave for yourself. Go TEAMYOU!  LISA BERMAN, CEO of the BERMAN/SACKS TALENT AGENCY LLC (the BSTA)

1)  A Single Submission for Each Project:

Unless otherwise instructed by Casting, only submit once to a single project.  When Talent self-submits to projects there is a tendency to want to submit for more than one role. While Talent can often be right for several roles in a single project, it is generally a mistake to double submit.  Instead, it is best to pick one role and go for it.  Casting can easily move Talent to a different role within their project. Casting can bring in Talent for unreleased roles after receiving Talent's materials on a released role.  Double, triple or quadruple submissions by the same Talent, on the same project, may be a negative flag to Casting that the Talent might be inexperienced.  Multiple submissions also clog up Casting's submission files and waste Casting's time causing them to wade through duplicate submissions when creating their schedules.  Multiple submissions may also upset Casting when it causes them to accidentally give one Talent a duplicate audition spot. Casting rarely asks Talent to read (audition) for two different roles at two different times for the same project. When up for multiple roles, one Talent will read for various roles during their one audition appointment.  If Casting decides at that moment the Talent is also right for another role, they will give the Talent sides (dialogue) and time to prepare to read for them in that same audition appointment.  The BSTA rule is always make Casting's job easier, not harder, in order to win them over.

2)  Select a Photo That is Right for the Specific Role:

Select a recent photo to submit that looks the most like the role desired. If the role calls for an athlete playing in a sports competition, submit a photo in athletic attire, rather than an office suit and tie shot.  Neutral black t-shirt shots are best kept for Stage projects.  Auditions for Television, Film, Commercial and Print projects are best sought by using photos that suggest the role by the wardrobe worn in the shot.  Until Casting KNOWS a Talent personally, through auditioning or hiring them on projects or by seeing their professional work on television, in films, on the internet or in commercials, Casting can only go by the photo and materials submitted to them. In Los Angeles, unknown Talent tend to get auditions for roles that are closely related to what is suggested in the photos submitted.  Casting needs to know what Talent looks like today.  Casting tends to pass over Talent who submit old photos that Casting has seen repeatedly over the years.  Casting presumes Talent no longer looks like they did in old photos taken years ago.  The BSTA way is to submit a RECENT photo that helps Casting easily see you playing that specific role.

3)  Share the Right Materials for Each Project:

Attach an updated Resume (as work attracts more work) and a recent demo or clip which closely relates to the type of project or role sought. Talent tend to want Casting to see they can do it all while Casting is actually focused on bringing in only those Talent who have the specific skills needed for the project they are currently casting.  If it is a comedic role, select a demo or clip showing  comedic timing.  If it is a dramatic role, show dramatic chops by submitting a dramatic demo or clip.  Additionally, if submitting for a light-hearted children's project or certain commercials, avoid submitting anything with swearing, partial nudity, sexual situations, smoking, drinking alcohol, depicting criminal activity or the like, as these might cause elimination from consideration for the project being cast.  The BSTA advice is to keep a variety of recent demos on your computer: a separate comedy demo, a separate dramatic demo and various clips that are more specific (voice over, dialects, commercials, sports, singing, dancing, etc.)  If Casting likes your self-submitted demo, they might ask for downloadable links of more of your materials to watch and send up to their director, producers or advertising agency clients.  Have all your recent materials available at a moment's notice so whenever opportunity knocks you are ready to open that door!


Profile photo of Lisa Berman

Lisa Berman, Award Winner of the National Talent Agent of the Month by the Screen Actors Guild, is the CEO/Talent Agent of Berman Sacks Talent Agency LLC of West Hollywood. Opened in 2008, Lisa runs a boutique across-the-board Talent Agency with roster spots highly sought after by actresses and actors from around the globe. Lisa is a former Entertainment Attorney for the Screen Actors Guild of Hollywood. Lisa also hosts the unique YouTube Channel LAdies which gives uplifting advice to LA actresses and actors from the female perspective. Lisa’s clients can be seen in television, feature films and advertise almost every type of product worldwide.

Author: Lisa Berman
Category: Tips for Actors
Date: September 12, 2016

2 Responses
  1. Great advice! Thank you for caring enough to take the time to inform and assist. All the best to you!

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