Tag Archives: AMP Talent Blog

6 Tips To Ace A Cold Read Audition


Ahhh the dreaded cold read. It’s something that a lot of actors fear. That’s because usually there is no opportunity for preparation. A script is thrown in front of you moments before you’re to appear on camera, and panic can set in. You worry that you’re going to deliver the lines completely flat, you aren’t […]

Ahhh the dreaded cold read. It’s something that a lot of actors fear. That’s because usually there is no opportunity for preparation. A script is thrown in front of you moments before you’re to appear on camera, and panic can set in. You worry that you’re going to deliver the lines completely flat, you aren’t going to figure out what’s going on in the scene fast enough to deliver a satisfactory performance, and it’s just going to be painful and you’re going to be terrible. Yes it might not be the most comfortable thing you’ll have to do, but it’s a big part of the audition process and something that you’re going to have to get a handle on if you want to book acting jobs.

At AMP Talent Group, we want our clients and talent to excel in every opportunity so we recommend you keep these tips in mind to help you improve your cold reading skills for audition purposes, we’ve highlighted 6 important keys to cold read success:

Arrive early for your audition: Sometimes if you arrive early you will have the opportunity to read over the sides and begin your preparation early. This way you can at least be familiar with what you’re going to be saying and doing. If you are able to get the material beforehand, spend less time on the actual lines that you are going to be delivering, instead focus on the story and situation, as well as try and get a feel for the character that you’re going to be reading. This way you can at least ground yourself in the world of the scene and you won’t require quite as much attention on the actual words, so you can feel yourself as the character in that environment.

Research the project you’re auditioning for: Even if you know you’re going in to do a cold read audition, you can still go online and find out some details about the audition. You can also ask your agent to provide you with some more information if possible as well. You should find out the type of project that you’re going out for (commercial, feature film, TV show), as well as the time period of the piece, and what the story is. While you might not be able to find a ton of information on the project, you will definitely be able to get some background information that will at least put you ahead of most of the actors who will be walking into the audition blind.

Be Flexible: When you’re going through your cold read, it might not be blatantly clear from the outset if you’re reading a comedy or a drama. I mean, hopefully it is, but there is a possibility that you won’t get the tone of the script right away. This is why you need to enter into your reading with complete flexibility. Go in with the mindset that they might ask you to read the script in a certain way that you weren’t expecting, or maybe you’ll even discover things in the middle of the reading that take it to a whole different place than you expected. Considering that this will be one of the first times you’ve read through this passage of the script in its entirety, you definitely can’t be opposed to figuring out certain things from the inside. So be loose, flexible, and ready to go in any direction.

Take risks and do more than just read: Even though it’s a cold read, you don’t want to sit there like a pile of concrete and just read the lines in a voice that will put the people holding the audition to sleep. You still want to be lively, take action with your body, and use your voice as an instrument to get yourself into character and convey emotion. Even though it’s just a cold read, that doesn’t mean you can’t make strong choices and go with them. In fact, you will standout more at your audition if you make a decision and try something out. Even if it’s wacky, there are no wrong artistic choices during a cold read. You want to show them that you were able to read over the script, and in just a couple of quick minutes, be able to make a strong artistic decision and do something with the character that nobody else has done. They want to see how you interpret the script, just as much as they want to gage your actual performance.

Look up at the reader: Unless this is the first time you’ve ever acted or been to an audition before, you will know that you must always look up at the reader when you deliver the lines. You should never read directly from the page, but be following along with your finger and make sure that you use the person reading with you as a reference to get yourself into the moment and be authentic. Try and look up and connect with the reader as often as possible. Just be sure that you keep your thumb on the page and follow along so you don’t lose your place during the read. The people running the audition understand that the material is completely new to you; therefore they don’t expect the audition to be perfect. Also, taking your few minutes before the audition starts to get a good grasp of the scene, story, and your character is going to be hugely instrumental in allowing you to go with the scene and connect with the reader, instead of having your eyes married to the page the whole time.

Practice your cold reads: If you want to take it one step further and work on your cold reading skills, then you should practice reading passages and memorizing as many of the words, as quickly as you can. At least learn to memorize important points, or key phrases that you can use and rely on so that you don’t have to be looking down at the page every two seconds during your audition. By practicing this technique, you will slowly start to improve your ability to retain words and dialogue very quickly so that you can be that little bit more off book when it comes time for your audition. By working on your cold reading skills on your own time, you will be miles ahead of the competition when it comes to stepping up and delivering a great cold read performance.

Cold reading only has to be a painful experience if you make it one. You can decide to ignore it and just do your best on the day of the audition, or you can take matters into your own hands and prepare yourself so that when a cold read audition comes your way, you’re ready to attack it and destroy it. Casting directors are testing you when they give you a cold read; they want to see how you handle it and what you do with it. So make sure you do everything in your power to show them that cold reads don’t faze you, in fact you look forward to them.

Remember, audition for your career, not for the job and you will feel more confident about your performance!

 

 

5 Must-See Canadian Movies During TIFF


One of the great parts about the Toronto International Film Festival it’s that it’s not only another opportunity for Hollywood to flaunt their endless talent and pockets, but it’s also a great stage to feature great films and world-class talent from all corners of the globe. Particularly our home soil talent here in Canada. So […]

Canadian Made Film Movies at TIFFOne of the great parts about the Toronto International Film Festival it’s that it’s not only another opportunity for Hollywood to flaunt their endless talent and pockets, but it’s also a great stage to feature great films and world-class talent from all corners of the globe. Particularly our home soil talent here in Canada. So while there are so many great American films at this year’s festival, I encourage you to check out some of this year’s highly anticipated films that came from your own country.

There are so many great Canadian films at this year’s festival, but we had to decide on 5 of the most buzz worthy:

Mommy-by-xavier-dolan-cannes-poster1. Mommy

Directed by 25-year-old Quebecquois filmmaker, Xavier Dolan (who is also at the festival as an actor for Elephant Song), Mommy is right at the top of the Canadian film must-see list. Dolan already took home the Jury Prize for the film at this year’s Cannes Festival, so it definitely has some fire behind it heading into TIFF. The story follows a widow who struggles to raise her sometimes-violent teenager.

 

 

Bang Bang Baby movie2. Bang Bang Baby

Definitely geared to be one of the most bizarre films at this year’s festival, Bang Bang Baby adopts its own fused genre of musical meets 1950’s sci-fi. Probably not what you were expecting, right? Well this is the first feature film from short-film veteran, Jeffrey St. Jules, and it’s definitely being anticipated with much curiosity. The story follows a young teenager, Stepphy (Jane Levy) in a small fictional town in Canada who has lofty aspirations of making it in the music business as a singer. She’s then accepted to a singing competition in the states, but her father refuses to let her go. Then things get interesting when the local plant appears to have a strange leak, which brings the sleepy town into a frenzy, just when Stepphy’s crush and hero, singer Bobby Shore (Justin Chatwin) arrives in town with his broke down car. Regardless of the film’s reception or outcome, that description alone must be enough to completely throw you with curiosity.

Monsoon movie 2014 sturla gunnarsson3. Monsoon

Sturla Gunnarsson’s Monsoon is supposed to be a complete spectacle and exploration of the annual monsoons that soak India. The film is intended to highlight and capture both the beneficial and disastrous effects the monsoons have on India’s agriculture, society, economy, and personal lives of its inhabitants. The film was shot during an actual monsoon during the rainy season in India and has been described as “part road movie, part spectacle, and part drama.”

Elephant Song/Melenny4. Elephant Song

Elephant Song is the big-screen adaptation of Nicolas Billon’s play about a psychiatrist who is drawn into a complex mind game when he questions a disturbed patient (Xavier Dolan) about the disappearance of a colleague. The film sees veteran Canadian actor Bruce Greenwood going toe-to-toe with the young industry prodigy Dolan (who’s also at the festival with his film Mommy), in a very suspenseful and manipulative film that will leave your palms in a pool of sweat. Also appearing in Elephant Song is veteran American actress, Catherine Keener.

Preggoland movie james caan5. Preggoland

No the title is not trying to mislead you at all; Preggoland describes this movie in a nutshell. It’s clearly a comedy and the story is about a 35 year-old woman named Ruth (Sonja Bennett) who fakes being pregnant so she can fit in with her friends who are all baby-obsessed. The film is intended to poke fun of society’s baby-craze and show the lengths that some women will go to feel apart of the club. Based off a very hilarious script written by the star of the film, Sonja Bennett, as well as starring James Caan as her dad, Preggoland is bound to be a good laugh. I mean…if the title alone didn’t hook you, then I don’t know what will.

Every year the Canadian talent gets even stronger, which is great for our film industry and all the young Canadian up-and-comers. Lets also not forget two other big films that have Canadian directors at the helm — Wild with Reese Witherspoon and David Cronenberg’s Map To The Stars.

Get your tickets on the TIFF website and check out these great films!

5 Reasons Why You Should Never Pursue Acting To Be Famous


  “I want to be an actor!” Even just admitting those words is a huge step in the direction of your dreams. For a lot of people it’s a scary step because it finally becomes real when you say it out loud. All your fears, doubts, insecurities, and disapproving opinions of others come rushing to […]

 

AMP Talent Group Blog Actors Models Toronto“I want to be an actor!” Even just admitting those words is a huge step in the direction of your dreams. For a lot of people it’s a scary step because it finally becomes real when you say it out loud. All your fears, doubts, insecurities, and disapproving opinions of others come rushing to the forefront. But it’s that all too important first step. Just before you go any further, you have to ask yourself this very important question:

“Why do I want to become an actor?”

If your answer is that you want to be in magazines, date supermodels, own an island in the Caribbean, and walk red carpets, then you probably need to think again before you walk down the acting path. The biggest mistake you can make is get into the business because you want to be famous or you want to be a celebrity. You have to be in this business for the love of the craft. For the love of taking on new roles and characters, for the pure joy that you get from telling stories and helping play a small part in telling some important ones. You goal has to be in service of the craft and the art form you’re cultivating. Ultimately, your drive in this business has to stem from a place of pure passion.

So what are some of the dangers of pursuing an acting career when you’re chasing fame?

AMP_Talent_Group_Blog_Almost-Famous-PosterReaching the level of A-list Hollywood movie star is rare: The harsh reality is that very few actors will ever reach that A-list Hollywood movie star level. The term “starving artist” has to be a label that you aren’t afraid of, because for a period of time you will struggle to make a living as an actor. There are very few actors out there who were lucky enough to drop right into it and be successful immediately. I’m sure you’ll hear stories of guys like Johnny Depp, Leo Dicaprio, and James Franco who killed it from the start, but they’re rare cases. You need to dream big, so there’s no problem with wanting to be an A-list Hollywood movie star because you’ll know you achieved great success in the business if you get there. But you have to love it enough that you’d be willing to put in a lot of work and push through the years of being a struggling actor, or a middle class actor and not get depressed and discouraged. If you want to be famous, you will give up or get angry when things don’t work out the way you fantasized them in your head.

Your role selection might lead you down a bad path: Let’s just say, if you’re in it for the money and fame, you might take some roles that are “artistic suicide’. Yes you need to pay the bills, so of course you will take whatever role you can get in the beginning, but once you start to see some success, you can go after those roles that really challenge you as an artist. If you’re in the business for the wrong reasons, you might take the more commercial role that pays you more money and gets more attention, but doesn’t really challenge you or interest you as a performer. So if your intentions aren’t coming from an authentic place, you might end up with a career that isn’t all that respectable. When you see a lot of big name actors taking time away from film careers to do a play, or taking a smaller and grittier role in an indie film, you know they’re really in the business for the love of the game.

The business is a grind: There’s no way to sugarcoat it, the film industry is amazing, but it’s cutthroat and it’s a grind. Being an actor isn’t all about having assistants and people doting on you all the time. Days on set are long and they can be exhausting. If you don’t love it, it might be a nightmare for you when your call time on set is 6am. You have to love the process of what it takes to create something, whether it’s a film, a show, or a commercial. Acting is all about the process and being a vessel to help execute a creative vision. It will be easy to lose sight of these things, or not even be aware of them, if you’re only concerned with being “the next big thing”.

AMP_Talent_Group_Toronto_Agency_Blog_Overnight_SuccessYou won’t put in the time: They say that it takes 10 years to really create a body of work as an actor. That’s an entire decade if you weren’t aware. For somebody who’s just starting out in the business, that number can look more daunting than Everest during a windstorm. So it doesn’t seem normal for somebody who doesn’t love it to invest that amount of time for a superficial outcome. Also, you need to train and put in a lot of your own time to build your skills as a performer. Someone who is chasing fame probably won’t go that extra mile to improve the same way somebody who truly loved it would. For this reason, they probably won’t ever be as good and book as many roles. So make sure you love it and are prepared to dedicate yourself to it.

Understandably, an actor needs to crave the spotlight and love the attention to a certain extent. That will require a certain amount of the ego to be involved. There has to be that element in someone who is pursuing this as their career. If there isn’t, you probably won’t be able to rise to the occasion and separate yourself from the competition. And, underneath that dream of seeing your name in lights has to be a completely head over heels love affair for the craft of acting and art of storytelling. 

 

 

How To Handle Rejection


  “As actors, we have to deal with rejection so much more than any other business. So I don’t care how much of a genius you are, if you don’t have the propensity to be able to get back up every time you get knocked down, then you’re not going to survive.” — Ryan Kwanten […]

 

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“As actors, we have to deal with rejection so much more than any other business. So I don’t care how much of a genius you are, if you don’t have the propensity to be able to get back up every time you get knocked down, then you’re not going to survive.” — Ryan Kwanten

If you looked in the manual for “How to Become an Actor”, being able to handle rejection would probably be somewhere on the first page. Being an actor, or trying to become an actor is going to require you to face rejection dead in the face on a regular basis. Rejection just comes with the territory of wanting to be an actor. The only thing you can control is how you handle it, how you move on from it and take it with a grain of salt, without a damaged psyche and dwindling self-confidence.

So what are some of the steps in ensuing damaged control and making sure rejection doesn’t break you? We’ve listed some of the ways to go about it below.

Try not to take it personal:  One of the biggest things in the film industry is that there are so many people vying for the same roles and the same opportunities. The industry is a competitive beast. So when you’re going out for a part, there are most likely 1,000 others who look like you and have the same level of talent. Actor, Sylvester Stallone (Rambo) says “I take rejection as someone blowing a bugle in my ear to wake me up and get me going, rather than retreat. You can’t take it personally when you aren’t selected for the part, or didn’t get a callback. The casting director’s job is to find the right person for the role; it’s not to make sure nobody’s feelings get hurt. It doesn’t mean they didn’t like you, in fact they may have loved you, but you just didn’t fit the exact criteria for what they were looking for in that role. Its up to you to deliver your best performance and leave the audition at the door.

Listen to what they’re saying: The most honest things are often the hardest for us to take. So when an acting coach, or somebody that sees our work gives us some unpleasant feedback, we really need to do our best to listen to what they’re saying. Bare in mind, there’s a difference between constructive criticism and somebody who’s just trying to break you apart. It’s important that you listen to their feedback and distinguish between the two yourself. If it’s from a trusted source, or somebody you respect, it’s definitely going to be worthwhile to listen to what they said and see what you can apply for the next time to make it better. This is easier said than done, but do your best to not get super emotional and sensitive when somebody rejects you or turns you away. Find out what they think you need to work on, so you can get better.

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Get Better: Drake has a famous line from one of his songs, “don’t get bitter, just get better”. This definitely applies to actors as well. When you get rejected, instead of responding with anger and resentment that does nothing but boil your own blood, you need to work on your stuff and become better. Use it as fuel to your fire in improving your craft and becoming a better actor. You need to say to yourself, “Okay, what can I do to get better?” If you can walk away from rejection with that sort of positivity and action, you will eventually start to succeed in a very big way. At the very least, you won’t sit in a pity stooper when you get rejected, but instead, keep your head up and make the best of the situation.

Stay Persistent: Every successful person will tell you that they had to handle rejection on countless occasions. They had to deal with doors being slammed in their face, people telling them they weren’t talented, or were crazy, or people who didn’t believe in them. If you don’t have the ability to bounce back from rejection with unwavering enthusiasm, then you will have a tough time succeeding in an industry as tough as the film industry. Talent Agent, Anne Marie Perrault says, “Prepare yourself that the rejection will come, but be sure that you love what you’re doing and you’re going to continue to work at it and get better until those “No’s” starting turning into Yes’s”. If you commit yourself to it, work hard through training and stay persistent, your success will only be a matter of time.”

Sure rejection sucks and forces us to retreat back into our shells for a while, but it’s all about the bounce back. It’s all about working at it, getting the right mind set, working on your skills, and making sure you have the right attitude so that bounce back time is faster every time. Pretty soon you will develop the thick skin that is required of an actor, and rejection will be nothing more than an opportunity for you to go through another door with someone else who sees the potential in you.

It’s up to you and how you let it affect you. Rejection will only break you if you let it.

AMP Talent Group Agency Toronto Blog Quote

 

8 Ways To Boost Your Acting Career


  So summer is officially here, and what better time to boost your career, brush up on your skills, and make sure you’re taking advantage of these months, instead of chomping down on high-calorie picnic food and developing a beer gut that would only make you marketable if Mall Cop 2 was ever made. Acting […]

 

AMP_Talent_Group_Agency_Blog_Boost_Your_Acting_CareerSo summer is officially here, and what better time to boost your career, brush up on your skills, and make sure you’re taking advantage of these months, instead of chomping down on high-calorie picnic food and developing a beer gut that would only make you marketable if Mall Cop 2 was ever made.

Acting is all about the continuous strive to learn, to grow and to become better. If you’re not constantly evolving, then you’re remaining stagnant with your feet in the mud. So with that in mind, it’s of utmost importance that every actor constantly finds ways to boost their skills, and thus, their career. There a whole host of ways that you can boost your career this summer, anywhere from taking classes, to finding new performing methods to try, networking at summer barbeques, as well as just making sure all your marketing materials are up to date and ready to go when called upon. So what are some of the best ways to boost your career now that summer is here?  We’ve outlined some of the most important.

AMP_Talent_Group_Agency_Blog_8_Ways_To_Boost_Your_Acting_Career_FitnessGet In Shape: It’s the summer, so there is absolutely no excuse! The only thing you can blame your frumpy, dumpling shaped body on is the fact that you have chosen to undo your belt and let yourself go. Instead, use the summer as a time to get yourself in your best shape yet! The weather is fantastic — it’s a great time to start running, to partake in one of many boot camps that will be happening all over your city, or get the most bang for your buck out of that gym membership that is sitting on your desk accumulating dust. Acting is just as much about your look as it is your actual skills and talent. If you don’t look the part, you won’t book the part.  So unless you’re dead set on becoming the next best character actor, or beefy best friend, then it’s in your best interest to grocery shop at Whole Foods and become a summer fitness fanatic.  Being in a shape with a slim figure will do nothing but increase your value and marketability, as well as help you to look fantastic on camera.

Work when other actors aren’t working: By placing your acting career as a top priority this summer, you’re already a cut above the rest. A lot of actors will use the summer as their downtime — they won’t invest their money in acting classes, or any form of training, instead opting for binge cottage weekends and the perfect time to laze away on those long summer evenings.  So it’s a great time to get ahead of the program by putting in a lot of hard work. Basically, just continue to work on your skills in whatever form that may be. It could be a summer intensive that you enroll in for two weeks during the heat of the summer, or it could be an ongoing weekly class that you sign up for to make sure you’re fine-tuning your craft on a weekly basis. Just work as much as you can, in whatever form it may be. By making that simple decision, you’re already ahead of lot of people in your industry.

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Make sure all your marketing materials are in place: While you’re waiting around for the call and your next audition, you should always make sure that your marketing materials are in tiptop shape. This obviously begins with your headshots. Summer is a great time to get new photos done if your old ones are outdated. You can also build your website, or brush up and spend time cultivating your online presence. Obviously the thought of logging countless hours on your computer this summer is mildly depressing, but find ways to treat yourself with more sunny activities if you get the work done. You can create your own little rewards system, which will probably be the only way you’ll actually get anything accomplished. You can also spend some time and design your own business cards that will promote you as an actor, or whatever skills you may have. Summer is a great time for meeting people and making connections, so it’s also a smart idea to have all your marketing ducks in place including business cards, because you never know who you are going to meet or be introduced to.

Keep a Journal: Even if you’re going to be spending half of your summer travelling around Europe, you can still make some strides in your career, at least from a creativity standpoint.  In a recent study conducted at Harvard business school, it became apparent that those who journaled at the end of the day had a 22.8% increase in performance in comparison to those who didn’t.  It has also been discovered that journals will improve your creativity and help you make better decisions. This is because writing your experiences and emotions down on paper, help you to articulate and pinpoint the key lessons that you learn in life. This directly relates to acting, as so much of acting is drawing from your own experiences and applying them to the circumstances that your character is facing. So by devoting your summer to keeping a journal every day, you’re going to come into your fall auditions with a much greater understanding of yourself and your own experiences, that will help make you a better, and more emotive actor.

Do Extra Work:  Perhaps you’re looking for another job this summer, or another revenue stream. Instead of going out and applying for some other dead-end bar job, you should sign up with an extras agency. Even if you consider yourself “above” extra work, it’s a great way to stay in the game through the summer. There should be tons of big productions coming through your city, so there will be countless opportunities to be on set. This is just another way to get yourself closer to what it is you really want to be doing. Also, this relates to networking, but the opportunity to meet other like-minded industry people will be there every single day that you’re on a set. Don’t count it out, but rather look at all the benefits it will bring you, as there are many!

Network. Network. Network:  Summer is a great time to be social. There are parties, barbeques, small film festivals, and industry functions happening on a regular basis. That’s why it’s essential that all your marketing materials are updated, so that you can feel confident going out there and promoting yourself. I would suggest taking a look online and seeing what is happening in your industry, in your city for the summer, that way you can schedule out some of the most important events that you may want to attend. You should find another actor friend or two that is interested and can make a point that you’re going to attend the events together, which is a great way to have someone to lean on for social support when you’re at a party where you potentially don’t know anyone. Just by being social this summer, meeting and talking to as many people as possible, you’re surely going to make some headway in your career.

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Take an Improv Class: It’s understandable that enlisting in a demanding scene study class that will require you to memorize pages of dialogue on a weekly basis might be a little too much to ask out of you this summer. So another alternative that would require much less out-of-class practice is to sign up for an improv class. This way all you’ll really have to do is show up for the classes when they’re scheduled and be present in the moment. That’s a much more realistic expectation of yourself when the weather is hot, and the outdoors are so darn inviting. Plus improv training is essential in helping you improve as an actor in ways such as, helping you with the audition process, helping to diminish your fear of failure, as well as helping you learn to relax, listen, and be present in the moment of your scene.

Shoot your own passion project: A lot of filmmakers, writers, and actors will be looking for stuff to work on this summer. So finally taking the initiative and putting your own project in action is a great thing to do. The days are long, the weather is great, it’s the best time of year to get out there and shoot stuff of your own. There’s no excuse for not getting some of your film friends together and creating a short film, or starting to shoot your own web series. Dedicate your summer to making things happen, particularly those projects that you’d previously thrown way back on the back burner.

Summer 2014 is here and before you know it, it will be gone. Do you want to create the best Facebook photo album ever from that wild trip you and your friends took? Or would you rather do the work that most people aren’t willing to put in and get yourself closer to your dreams so you’re in a better place come the fall?  While the first option might seem like the golden goose right now when you see beautiful people scantily dressed everywhere, but you don’t want to look back on your summer and be overcome with regret. Plus, regret doesn’t feel very good with a sunburn.

Carpe Diem!

 

How Actors Can Build A Brand Online


It is no secret that we’re in a digital revolution.  Everybody is engaging online so frequently, that it’s becoming one of the most dominating forms of communication.  For this reason it’s absolutely essential that actors are building and maintaining their brand online.  Just simply going to your auditions is not enough anymore. You have to […]

It is no secret that we’re in a digital revolution.  Everybody is engaging online so frequently, that it’s becoming one of the most dominating forms of communication.  For this reason it’s absolutely essential that actors are building and maintaining their brand online.  Just simply going to your auditions is not enough anymore. You have to be online, engaging in some way of self-promotion and making sure that you’re pushing your work as much as you can.  Talent Agents, Managers, and Casting Directors are now going online to find that new secret talent that will take their business to the next level.  Just look at how many new musicians and pop stars are being discovered on YouTube. The same goes for actors and models. You could be the next big thing that is waiting to be discovered. But this can only happen if you have a platform that showcases all your work and talents.

So why exactly should every actor be creating an online brand? Is it really that important?

That’s definitely a fair question, as a lot of people will feel it’s too much work for not enough reward, or that it’s going to feel awkward, narcissistic, and a little self-indulgent to create an online presence that is ALL ABOUT them. But you have to think of it that you are the product, you’re the vehicle that is going to make or break your career. When you’re an actor, it’s you as a person that is going to be the moneymaker, so you need to make sure you push that product as much as you can. Do not be afraid to stand out.  Because only those who are willing to be vulnerable and put themselves out there have the opportunity to achieve big success.

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Creating your online brand is another important tool available to you.  Trying to make it as an actor is hard enough, so you need to give yourself whatever edge you can. By focusing on building and creating your online brand, you’re going to begin to separate yourself from other actors who can’t be bothered with the time and energy needed to build their platform. You have to become an entrepreneur of the craft, and your own hard-driving sales person. It’s essential for success.

Times are different now; producers want to know how much publicity you can get them for a TV series or movie. If you have a large following online, a producer will see you as a very valuable asset to them. It might help you in separating yourself from other competing actors in the casting process.  Also, a lot of the top US and Canadian talent agencies such as CAA, ICM, AMP and WME have at least one staff member constantly scrolling the Internet, scouting for the next big star their agency can sign. Gaining an online presence has become huge for comedians in getting discovered as well, by posting gag videos, parodies, and creations that help get them potential viral exposure. You could even potentially book roles from your online brand. If you have enough videos, pictures, and quality work online, you might discover you have some important industry people sending you messages and emails saying they want to meet you, or even cast you in their next project.

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Basically, why wouldn’t you start investing in your online Social Media brand?  Social media is available to us everywhere and anytime. It also allows people to figure out who you are and what potential roles you would be good at playing, so you can choose to brand yourself in whatever way you want to get known for.  Talk to your agent or manger and figure out your strengths and maximize on them by creating a presence online that will help give you that extra boost needed to stand out from the crowd.

Now that you’re aware and understand the importance of your online brand, what are some online tools available to actors and ones they should be engaging with on a regular basis? Listed below are some of the most important:

 

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Build A Website:  This is one of the most common and standard tools that most actors have now.  Build a Basic Website that has your headshots, resume, and a show reel (when you have one). This is definitely the most important first ingredient when it comes to creating an online portfolio that will promote you as an artist.  Standard actor’s websites will have a catalog style showing of their headshots that allow potential casting directors to see exactly what they look like.  Provide reviews from directors or producers you have worked for on your page. Also keeping an updated resume is essential, as well as a demo showreel of your most recent work. A website concentrates all your information in one place, so it makes it very easy for someone to look you up and see exactly what you’re talents are.

YouTube Videos:  A prime example of somebody who has promoted their wide-array of talents through viral YouTube videos is Taryn Southern. A very talented comedian, writer, actor, host, and singer, she’s managed to become quite the webutante, which has helped her to book many mainstream acting roles. She’s appeared on various TV shows such as New Girl and Rules of Engagement. While you don’t need to become the next viral sensation to be successful as an actor, she’s just an example of somebody who created a personal brand online and her career flourished because of it. If you’re more of an established actor, you can use YouTube to post trailers to new movies you’re appearing in, or links to notable scenes that you have done. You can have a link from your website to your YouTube videos, and vice versa.

Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram: It’s important that everyone who’s trying to build a career is using social media to some extent. If you’re a more established actor, then a Facebook fan page is a great way to build an audience and keep your fans up to date with new projects you’re working on, as well as push through all your professional marketing and press materials. Tons of comedy writers are being discovered through Twitter, which is essential for actors as well.  Even if you don’t think you’re funny, or don’t like confessing all your personal feelings to the world, Twitter is a great way to get in touch with other performers, talent agents, casting directors, and managers. You can also follow accounts that are related to the film and entertainment industry, which can keep you informed with everything that’s happening. Tweeting is something that most people are doing and it’s another avenue for you to help get your words, face, and name out there. Creating an Instagram account is another great way to build followers and create an online presence. Tons of models and actors are creating accounts and posting behind the scenes pictures from various photo shoots and film sets they’re working on.  Just make sure you have permission from someone on set before you snap photos.  You can also go one step further and post inspiring quotes and information related to the industry. This is a great way to build a voice, a brand, and become known in the industry, which may also help to boost your career. Keep in mind that it is important not to tweet or talk about jobs that you are doing unless you have permission from the producer or your agent. You can say you have a audition or callback, but do not mention the client or job name.

Show Reel / Demo Reel:  This is another one of the standard tools for actors. As soon as you have enough experience under your belt, you should be creating a reel that highlights some of your best work. This is a quick 2-3 minute video that your Talent Agent sends to a casting director or producer so they can see your work.  While it’s not completely commonplace, some actors have been chosen for roles based entirely off their reel. This is why it’s essential that you have one (once you have enough experience) on your website, and upload to YouTube as well, which will actually show people that you have talent and should be taken seriously as an actor. Besides, having a demo reel helps to market you and your seen as a professional.

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IMDB:  It’s a very important branding tool that every talent should have.  Casting directors, talent agents, and managers, may look you up on IMDB and see what your working on or your credits are like before they cast you. If you have a good chunk of credits, you will come across as established and professional.  If you can’t be found online, most people will assume that you’re green and not established as a performer.  Make sure that you create an IMDB account and work towards stacking those credits up!

Creating a strong online brand is a no-brainer.  You can start off small (a Twitter account, LinkedIn, build a free website and or get help to edit together a solid showreel) and work towards creating more significant platforms once you’re more established. By investing in the online marketing presence early in your career, you will start to tell your peers and important people in the industry that you’re serious about your acting career.

Figure out what your brand is, create it online, and connect with like-minded people. The Internet and social media gives everyone an opportunity to build a voice and to connect.  Start by building your online brand today!

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Watch for AMP Actor Conroy Stewart on Rookie Blue TV Series


Jamaican born, Toronto based actor, Conroy Stewart (Da Kink in My Hair) of AMP Talent Group can be seen this month on the hit television series, Rookie Blue on Global Television.  Conroy plays Blair, a young student who becomes a person of interest with the Rookie Blue police. The gritty role was a fun and challenging role for Conroy to […]

Jamaican born, Toronto based actor, Conroy Stewart (Da Kink in My Hair) of AMP Talent Group can be seen this month on the hit television series, Rookie Blue on Global Television.  Conroy plays Blair, a young student who becomes a person of interest with the Rookie Blue police. The gritty role was a fun and challenging role for Conroy to play and he said the experience working with the cast and director was exciting and rewarding. His love of acting began at age 13 in plays and local stage productions. To pursue his dream of becoming an actor,  Conroy signed with long time agent Anne Marie Perrault of AMP Talent Group https://www.amptalent.com. He has accomplished great success since his first job modeling. He began getting experience on camera having modeled for Sears, Zellers and The Bay, followed by acting in national TV commercials and then independent films.  After a nationwide audition search, he landed the lead series role, playing Dre in the television series, Da Kink In My Hair for Global TV.  A year playing Dre was rewarding he says the experience of stardom was a fun perk, yet remaining humble, his love of acting expanded to creating new film projects with friends in his downtime. Conroy formed a production company called, Your Dreams Melody. Co-writing, directing and producing small music videos and short films with local artists.  Not shy of a challenge, Conroy’s newest venture begins as a radio host on his own independent radio show called “Next Generation Weekly” on The Lake FM.ca Toronto. Conroy talks about youth life, including music, Filmmaking, and technology. With a growing fan base, Conroy Stewart is truly living his dream!