So you read THIS POST and decided you want to try out getting your kids in some commercials or modeling jobs. Maybe you have an older child who would really like to start working in the entertainment industry. What’s the next step?
The next step is to find a potential agent.
An agent is the person who works as a middleman between the client or casting director and the talent. Having a good agent is vital because this is what will book you or your child the most work and ensure you are only working on reputable projects. Agents work to diversify the types of talent they have (race, body type, age, different abilities) to satisfy the needs of their local markets and give their clients a large pool of people to pick from.
The two key factors are:
1. Finding an agent you work well with.
2. Finding an agent who has good business sense and strong client relations.
First go online and google the casting offices in your area. They will usually have a website. Somewhere in that website will be a list of the agencies they work with. This is the perfect place to find reputable agents. You can find a great resource page for the San Francisco Bay Area agencies HERE.
Once you have a list of the local agencies, go to each website and find out how to submit talent or what their submission process is.
Next, READ AND FOLLOW DIRECTIONS EXACTLY. Different agencies may have slightly different submission procedures, so you need to read the instructions carefully and do what it says. For kids it usually requires a few snapshots and their measurements. For adults you likely need a professional headshot, a full body snap shot and a resume. Submissions are usually by mail and some may be online. Just do exactly what it says. It will likely say on the agency’s website how long to expect to wait to get word back.
Things to keep in mind:
1. Do not submit to agencies who request you to pay them, EVER.
2. When taking photos of your child to submit, use natural light with no flash. Dress them in solid or mild patterns without logos or characters. Keep their hair simple and take any clutter out of the background.
3. I do not advise signing contracts with agencies who do not want to meet you face to face.
4. Do not get over-nervous or feel intimidated by an agent (or anyone in this industry) You are the one who is hiring the agent. They will get percentages (10-20%) of the jobs YOU work. It is you who are paying them to represent you and not the other way around. Have manners and be nice of course, but there is absolutely no reason to feel withdrawn.
So that’s the first step. Submit yourself or your child to reputable agencies in your area. I will follow this up with another post on what to do once they contact you.
Let me know if you have any other questions.