By Lisa Steel
What does it take to make a good video? The first thing to do is decide on a goal. It turns into an interesting scenario, and as soon as it is ready, you can start looking for a professional crew, rent equipment, and hire actors. If you want to save time, there are a couple of simple options – hire a team of newbies with just a few clicks or try on the actor’s role yourself. But no matter how good your video’s production crew is, lousy acting will ruin any project. Therefore, you have to learn a little about the art of casting. Successful casting requires a lot of planning and preparation, both from you and the actors. Let’s look for the perfect candidate for the role in your video.
Where to find the crew?
Even if you are filming a short video, the process of finding a crew can be a stumbling rock and a lot of valuable time, especially if your budget is small. In this case, outsourcing your recruitment is a topical solution. We recommend that you start your search from specialized sites and use the services of an employer of record. Depending on your finances and free time, this is probably the best option for you.
Almost every city has an acting agency that will help you find the perfect candidate for your project for a fee. Acting agencies are companies responsible for finding talent and other casting details. Each agency has its database of actors, classified according to appearance, age, or skill and complemented by portfolios and videos of auditions. Working with an agency, you get a team of professionals who know how to organize the casting process. Fast and convenient, but it could be expensive. If your budget is fixed, then there are more economical options.
Facebook cast groups are one of the best ways to save on agency costs. Just type “Actors (your city)” in the site’s search bar and select the most significant community. Try other keywords for your search, such as “Video Production,” or “Film Crew,” and so on. Message the administrator and ask if any of the subscribers he knows are looking for movie auditions with no experience.
If you’ve already got a video production network, use them. Reach out to people you know and ask if they know someone who would be suitable for your roles. This method has two significant advantages at once – it’s free, and you may not have to waste time on-screen tests because you are unlikely to be advised of a bad actor.
How to properly conduct a casting?
First, choose a listening place and prepare it. The choice of location depends on your budget. Knowing how much you can spend can quickly weed out overly expensive options. You need a space with at least two spacious rooms. Make sure there is enough room for everyone in the waiting room. In the listening room, nothing should hinder the movement of the actors. Prepare the jury’s table and stage for the actors, don’t forget about the forms to fill out.
Then, read the scenario and character descriptions. Even casting for commercials requires the maximum participation of the entire video production crew. How can you demand high professionalism from actors if you do not know the details of your project? Reread the script several times in case you have to answer questions. You should know your characters better than anyone on your crew. This will give you a clearer idea of what type of actor you want.
Be respectful. Casting in a movie is not a corporate event. You don’t need to make friends here. It would help if you got used to saying NO. There is no need to comfort everyone who doesn’t come up with false hopes. But at the same time, the actors need to see that they are being treated well. To keep candidates from getting nervous, be polite and let them know that you value their work and talent.
Finally, take notes. Acting auditions can take a long time. You will have to listen to a lot of people, so don’t try to memorize everything. Please pay attention to some details and write them down. Observe how the actors move, whether their appearance suits the roles, how they play. Write down your thoughts and ideas to make room for new ones. Thus, you do not have to concentrate on something for a long time, missing important details. However, notes alone are not enough. Usually, auditions are filmed. Casting is 20% of listening and 80% of revising footage. To get everything into the frame, you need to prepare the site – draw a mark on which the actors will stand. This will make it easier to capture all of their movements, not just their faces. Before you start listening, ask them to say their names and show both profiles on camera.
Now that you know how and where to find a crew and actors and set up an audition, it shouldn’t be a problem. Be organized, treat both the actors and the crew with respect – and a boring event will be an enjoyable and rewarding experience.