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So You Want To Be An Actor.....Straight Talk With Kimberly

Updated: Jan 23

Have you ever searched steps to becoming an actor? If so, you have probably seen the cookie cutter explanations like "take classes" "get involved in theatre" "update your resume"

"get an agent" "watch other actors." Does this sound familiar? Well, my approach is a little different. I am going to give you some advice that is a more common sense approach. All of the usual steps we are given are all well and good but how do you even get to the point to update your resume if you don't know what a actor resume looks like or the information that you should have on it? How do you add media to your "package" if you don't know what media really means and what do you do with it? Does watching other actors REALLY help YOU? You are unique and the way one actor delivers dialogue is not going to be the way that YOU deliver that same dialogue. I'm going to give you some advice here that I tell anyone interested in acting. This is especially good tips for all the parents out there who think "my kid is so cute and outgoing , he or she could do this!"

Tip One:

Write out a "slate" (this is information that a casting director will ask for you to give them when you audition. It is usually very basic "Name/Role/Agency" but sometimes casting will need your age, location, height, availability for the film dates. This seems pretty easy right?

I've seen actors be able to recite pages and pages of dialogue but when it comes to getting a slate down the first couple of takes, there is always something that seems to trip them up. It's hilarious actually but true! I've taped hundreds of auditions and this always happens, never fails. So I want you to write a slate out for yourself. Then I want you to have someone tape you, or you tape yourself (most actors use their phones these days if it has a really good camera). Tape yourself, see how many takes you have to film and ask yourself if you enjoyed this. Did you get frustrated? If you had someone tape you, did they get frustrated? Was it really easy? If you hated every minute of it, you may not really want to put the work and time in that it takes to learn pages and pages of dialogue (scripts) for a audition that odds are, you are not going to book. It's just reality.

Tip Two:

Find some "sides" (pages of scripts) and learn a few pages. See how long it took you to memorize the scenes. Was it easy to memorize? Did you enjoy the character you are playing?

Did you find it annoying and difficult to do? If you did not enjoy this process you are not going to enjoy being a actor. This business may look glamorous when you are watching actors pose on the red carpet but this is only 10% of the business. The rest is a LOT of work.

Tip Three:

This is a good one and probably the best indicator for you if you really want to be a actor. Find a project in your area and sign up to be a background performer "extra." See how you handle the "hurry up and wait" that you do on set. You will sit around for hours to film for maybe one hour. You are in a holding room with others background actors and you are kept in this room until you are needed on set. Often times you are not treated as well as the "principal" actors (lead actors) and in fact if you are working on a set with very well known actors you may even be told not to make eye contact. Yea, I know, ridiculous right? Well our biz can be ridiculous in many ways, so you must be a go with the flow type of person. Even lead actors do a lot of sitting around waiting to film. Try to be a background actor and see how your experience was. You will either love it or you will quickly find out that this isn't a career that you would like to pursue. At the end of the day, actors are just like you and I, just normal people who work in front of a camera reciting words that writers tell them to say.

I hope these very basic but important tips have given you some insight to the very first things you should do if you really want to give this acting thing a shot. I'm all for it and I'm rooting for you. I will be helping you along the way with more straight talk!

These are some of my favorite products that I've used and or have gotten good reviews from colleagues in the business. These products can help you film that slate! Take a look

Kimberly's Top Picks

Current specials on Audible

Really good books to check out! Book of Short Scenes for practice How to get started in acting Meisner on Acting Acting for Young Actors

In Home Studio Set Up

Tripod Economical

Tripod Top Seller

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