Getting an agent for your acting career is essential to becoming a professional working actor. Getting a strong agent to represent you, however, can seem like a monumental task because the most reputable acting agencies require you to have strong film and TV credits.
But then, too often you find can’t even get auditions for the big film and TV projects without a strong agent or manager. Right?
The real question then is, what can you do to increase your chances of getting a better agent than your credits might qualify you for?
Here are a five tips up your chances of getting with a talent agent who is stronger than your credits when you do your Agent Mailing.
1. Be in a class to show you are keeping your acting skills sharp.
Any talent agent you meet with wants to be confident that you know how to audition and that you know what to do on the job. Even if you don’t have many credits yet, when you’re taken classes, it helps them have confidence in you.
Also, if you’ve been in a class for over a year, put (1 Year) beside the class type under training. Example: Scene Study (2Years). This indicates you are more serious when you’ve studied for a while at one place.
2. Get fantastic headshots that look like you at your most castable.
Get professional headshots that look like you and suggest what your casting is. Too many photographers do not do lighting well, so be sure to get professional shots with a photographer who knows lighting.
Also, make sure that your photos don’t only look good, but that they actually suggest your casting. For instance, they should suggest that you would play either more upscale or downscale types, and so forth.
3. Present your resume to highlight your most outstanding credits or background.
Having good credits from current TV shows or films on your resume is the number one thing that will sell you. Of course, many of you who are reading this don’t have strong, current network credits, so you need a couple other tips.
For one, make sure that if you have done any network TV that you list the network in the third column. Even if the show is old, it gives credibility when you list a network.
If you’ve done a TV Pilot – even if it was a low-budget bootstrap pilot – put the word (Pilot) beside the title.
Although some people say not to do the following, I think it’s fine to put extra work on your resume initially if you don’t have other credits. If you’ve done a lot of it, just pick a 3 to 5 projects you were most featured in. At least this shows you know your way around a set.
If an agent calls you in, don’t lie to them, just tell them you were featured. Let them know you put it on to show that you had worked on a set, even if not the main talent. If they tell you to take it off once you’re in the meeting, then go on and do that.
4. Write a strong cover letter to highlight the most important things about you.
Whenever you send your headshot and resume to an agent, be sure to have a cover letter introducing yourself. But even more than that, tell them something about yourself that goes beyond your resume and brings you to life as an interesting person. This will help them relate to you as a person rather than “just another actor.”
5. Show your initiative by creating your own projects in collaboration with others.
The best agents want to know that you are bringing more than just your talent and your desire to be an actor. They want to know that you have initiative and that you are not passively sitting around waiting to have someone discover you.
You might create your own internet series. Produce your own film. Collaborate with others on their projects. Show that you’ve got “something going on,” and that will go a long way toward getting an agent or manager interested.
For more tips like these, check my ebook Hollywood Actors Crash Course.
If you’re ready to go after a strong agent or manager and would like to have the entire mailing prepared, get started by placing your agent mailing order online or call the Smart Girls Office at 818/907-6511 to get started.