How To Get Acting Experience

Category: Career Advice Subcategory: Acting

Step-by-step Instructions

Here is what you need to do...
Step 1

Here's a tip. When you do audition for something and they look at your resume and they see all the stuff you did. Doesn't matter if it is a feature film, a short, an independent, or a student film. And they ask, "How did you like working on A, B, C?" If you hated it, don't tell them you hated it. If you loved it, tell them you loved it. But, don't ever put anything down.

Step 2

Every experience can only help you grow and become a better actor. It doesn't mater where it was shot. It doesn't matter if you got paid. It doesn't matter if you were only in there for five lines or less or if you were featured in the whole movie. Everything, it doesn't matter if you are not getting paid. Is beneficial to you in the long run. Because the footage you can take and use it in your demo reel. It is experience. You learn while on set. You can't just go into a $200 Million film, never rehearsed, never done anything before and just nail it. Its not going to happen. So, you have to learn.

Step 3

There is a reason why we had to go through K through 12 grades and then to college. You learn a little bit as you go. Now, acting, you can be great quickly. You do not have to take 16 years to be great. But you still have to learn something. Its not a corporate thing. It is not structured so you have to go up the pyramid. You could get good or great fast. But you still have to learn. So, not everything is going to be paid.

Step 4

And initially, who is going to pay you if you have never done a thing? So, you are going to want the people who are not paying to film you. "Hey, put me on TV. Help me make your film great. Hey, you love me? Make me look good." And they will do that because they are in the same position as you. So you need the experience you need the footage, You need the resume credit. and you need to be there in front of the camera because not everyone is born to be in front of the camera. The first couple times, you may not be able to handle it. You need to be used to being in front of that camera with just a few people there.

Step 5

Now, if you are in Indiana and there is an independent filmmaker there, and he is doing a film, if you can do it, do it. And here is why: In LA, every house looks the same. Every street looks the same. The weather is always the same. So, if you have a demo reel of 20 different things, all in LA, your character might be different but everything looks the same.

Step 6

So, when you do get a big director who wants to shoot in Texas or Indiana, or Wisconsin, if you have nothing on your reel or no experience anywhere else besides LA, they don't know if you can handle it. They don't.

Step 7

So, you are in Indiana, and the settings different. There is no desert. There is humidity. There is all these different things and they all work for that character. Because at the end o the day, when you have your back story for your character, you have to have a place where you are from. What do your parents do, where do they work? What kind of schooling did you go to? Where you religious? Were you not? Your Income, all this stuff. And it makes a difference if you are from Indiana or LA. Big difference.

Step 8

If you do everything where you were born in LA, you may not be able to do Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Things like that because those people were not born in LA. They were born in the middle of Texas or they were born in Pennsylvania, or something like that. So, although it makes you more experienced, it helps you to work in different characters, different locations, and you can build around that and you can really harness your skills by doing independent films outside of LA and New York and all that stuff.

Special Attention

Difficulties people often experience or parts that need special attention to do it right.

Stuff You'll Need

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Thomas Mills L.A. from A to Z $17.95

The Student Author

The Student Author's Background

Funny or interesting story about this topic...

When did you first do this & how did you get started?

I have been an actor in Los Angeles.

Video

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