Your site is so great, it makes researching the business sooo much easier having all the info in one place! thankyou thankyou thankyou.
Amada, aspiring actress, Sydney, Australia
Just wanted to say that this site is FANTASTIC! It's helped me quite a bit and it's now my #1 bookmarked item, which means I'm going to be visiting here regularly :) Thanks again,
Rob, aspiring actor, Canada
I absolutely love your site - it's SOOOO helpful and very impressive!
I am a frequent visitor and have signed up for the newsletter, plus I think it's so good I have recommended it to all my acting friends! Thank you for creating such a wonderful website!
Wow Tony! I would just like to comment on how much you have affected my life.
First of all, any questions I have are answered extremely fast, and not only that, you give me a very helpful answer every time. Also, by reading your newsletters, I obtain just the right information that I need to succeed in the acting business. I am so happy I discovered your site, and I hope you know how much we actors appreciate you. Thanks again, and I can't wait to read your next newsletter!
Laura Doukas, Actress
I did what you said and I got two interviews with two agents! Thank you! Sorry but can I ask you how do I prepare to go meet the agent? What do I have to do?
Marsha P., New York, NY, USA
This site has taught me a lot that I needed to know without dragging me all over the place.
Lauren, actress, Atlanta, GA
The Acting Resume Format: Part I
First of all, you should know that an acting resume must follow a certain format. Its important to remember that the people who will be reading your resume (casting directors and agents) have three things in common that you need to be aware of when preparing it:
1. They are very, very busy.
2. They get tons of mail from actors every single day, much of which they might not even open for several days if sometimes not longer.
3. Because they are so busy, when they do look at an actors résumé, they look for specific things right away and they want to be able to find them in a standardized format. Making them look for the information they are interested in learning about you, could mean getting your résumé trashed.
Acting Resume Format: Part II
Below you will find an example of an acting résumé, which I will comment on about its different sections.
Lets take note of a few things:
1. Below I will direct you to see some examples. Just be aware that actor resume format can change slightly between NY and LA for example. The main things to remember though are as follows:
2. Make sure that the contact information (phone number and e-mail address) are up to date. Make sure you have an answering machine hooked up to be able to receive messages from the people you want to contact you. If they miss you once, they might not call back.
3. Your personal data should be listed at the top of the page. I dont think it matters much whether it is listed vertically or horizontally, but if you dont have much space, then I would imagine it would better doing it horizontally.
4. Dont give your age, but your age range. If you are not sure, ask around to people you know. More than your actual age, people in this industry are more interested in the ages you can play.
Acting Resume Format: Part III
5. Your primary interest in either Film acting, Television, Theatre, Industrials, On-Camera Commercials will determine the order in which you list your categories. Your most important ones, or rather, the ones you want to draw the most attention to should be listed first in order.
6. In actor resumes you will see that there are three columns in each section.
a. Column 1 - The name of the project
b. Column 2 - The role you played (name of character and type of role; i.e. principle, lead, supporting, feature, etc.) In theory, casting directors dont like to see background roles on your résumé.
c. Column 3- The name of the director, theatre or company that produced the work. This is a very important column. It is my understanding that a smaller, less important role in a project produced by a reputable theatre company or directed by a big name could weigh much more with a casting director than seeing that you had the lead in a small project that was produced by a lesser known company.
7. New actors dont always have lots of things to put on their professional actor resume. Going back to what we talked about earlier, training is important. Anyone who is serious about becoming an actor knows that and casting directors and agents know that too. Having some good on-going training on your résumé is a good thing and is a chance for you to show to anyone that looks at it, that even though you might not have the best credits yet, at least you are trying your best to become the best actor you can be. Once again, just like in the third column, training at reputable institutions with reputable teachers can also get you points. Certain schools and teachers are known to turn out good, solid talent.
Acting Resume Format: Part IV
8. Industrials, On-Camera Commercials and Commercial print section. Here you only list the types of projects as you see below. Never put in the name of the company you did the work for. The reason for this is that since you neither put the dates down on which you did the projects (advertising for example) nor the conditions of the contract (some companies say that if you do a commercial for them for example, that you cant work for the competition for x number of years after that), whoever is reading your résumé could jump to conclusions and rule you out of a project, because they dont want to pick up the phone and check with you first. You can avoid that by sticking with the industry standard and just saying that if they want to know who you did some advertising work for, they can ask you for your list. Thats perfectly normal.
Acting Resume Format: Part V
9. Special skills section. This is important for lots of different types of acting work. Commercial casting directors are particularly interested in this section as they get requests all the time for on-camera commercials especially, for actors with special skills. In down times or periods when you are not doing much acting work, it could be a good time to take a class to learn a new skill to add to your résumé.
10. Never lie! Always tell the truth. Lying will only catch up to you. If you are not a skilled actor yet, when you go into an audition or even an interview with a talent agent, you will already have enough things to think about without having to worry about what you have to say about the lie you told on your résumé if they ask. Just tell the truth. Its better.
Acting Resume Format: Part VI
Sample Actor Resumes
The absolute best resource in my opinion is Brian O'Neil's book Acting As A Business: Strategies For Success. It gives different examples of the correct acting resume format.
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I want to say you changed my life. I want to be an actress so bad, but i began losing motivation when I couldn't figure out what to do. And then I found you! Thanks to you, I'm taking my first acting classes next month! Yippee!
Sara, Pasadena, CA
Just wanted to thank you for bringing me in to [audition for the video], meet you and chat this Saturday. I was really excited to hear about your working on actingcareerstartup.com and even took a look at it today - it's awesome! You are very well-spoken, knowledgeable and enthusiastic, and it shows through the work that you do! I hope our paths in the industry will cross again and really enjoyed meeting you. Thanks, again and best wishes with your very important work!
Gretchen, NY, NY