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
Want to start an acting career and move to Hollywood? Youve come to the right place.
A few years ago I took one of the most intense acting classes I have ever taken to date. The class was led by an acting teacher from Los Angeles named Bernard Hiller. Not only did I learn things about myself to make my acting more compelling, I was also very inspired by his technique and by his ability to help actors reach new heights in their acting ability. Since that class, I refer to him as The Great Motivator. Given the many questions I receive about how to start an acting career in Hollywood, I decided to ask Bernard to shed some light on the subject. The following is an exclusive interview for ActingCareerStartUp.com with one of LAs premier acting teachers.
Tony: Heres a hypothetical question for starters. There is a young woman, who just graduated from high-school and who wants to start an acting career. She has decided that she wants to go to Hollywood to start her acting career, but she doesnt know where to start. What would you tell her?
Bernard: First start with money. Be sure to have enough money to survive for the first six months. Without money you cannot start a business of being an actor. You must run your business like a business, or youll run yourself out of business. You need a very strong base, which consists first and foremost of finances so that you can concentrate on getting your career started. Finances are so important because you must have enough money to do four things:
1) You need to be able to get yourself a place to stay - You need to have a place to stay in town and not out of town, which means in the Los Angeles area and not someplace outside of the city limits. Some people tell me that they found a place thats only one hour away. If thats the case, as far as Im concerned, you might as well be ten hours away. Thats too far. You need to have a place thats in town so that you can get to auditions, and other places you need to be, relatively quickly.
2) You need to get a reliable car - LA is a city that is very spread out. Its completely different from New York. In New York you can get around easily using the subway or by taxi for example. LA is not like that. A car is essential.
3) You need to build yourself a life - This means having enough money to live comfortably so that you can concentrate fully on doing what you came here to do: become a working actor. You should also make it a priority to build yourself a base of positive friends and acquaintances that inspire you. They will sustain you while getting your career started.
4) Youll need to find a mentor and an acting coach. You need to find someone who has the inside scoop and can guide you in your career choices as well as your choices as a performer. A coach is your personal magic mirror who lets you know how you are really doing.
Tony: How would you describe what its like to start an acting career in LA?
5) Bernard: You have to understand that LA is the Olympics of acting. The best actors in the world come here and make their careers. To come here without preparation isnt very smart. 5) You need to have a plan of action. They say If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
There are some people who move to LA to start an acting career and they end up forgetting why they came here. They get sidetracked and get trapped into working for a regular job so they can pay the rent and they end up working all the time and then dont have time to study or work on their acting career. Or they get so involved with their personal lives and lose sight of their acting careers altogether.
6) The best thing I could tell someone is to keep your eye on the prize otherwise youll forget. LA is very tempting and alluring and very accommodating and it can easily distract you if you let it. Some young people come here for acting and get distracted from their careers and then one day they wake up and suddenly remember why they came here. They wasted all that time not to mention a lot of opportunities, because they took their eye off the prize.
Tony: I can only imagine how important connections are in Hollywood as an actor!
Bernard: Its important to know that in Hollywood its not who you know its more about, who wants to know you?. If you are going to come to LA to start an acting career, what are you going to bring with you? Its really important that people think not about what they are going to get when they come here, but rather what are they going to give?
People would like to meet Brad Pitt for example, which is understandable. But the real question you have to ask yourself is, would Brad Pitt want to meet you? Its really all about how interesting a person you are that makes people want to get to know you. The energy you give out. Once they know you and like you, they will help you.
7) In my opinion, if you want to start an acting career, you have to become a dynamic person. Dynamic people make dynamic actors and they attract the right people into their lives.
Tony: So lets sum it up.
1) In order to start an acting career in LA, you need to have money to start it off in the right way.
2) Find yourself a nice clean place to stay in Los Angeles.
3) When you move to LA, you will need a reliable car.
4) Find yourself a mentor and a great acting teacher.
5) Create a plan for your acting career.
6) Stay focused!
7) And develop a dynamic personality!
You won't want to miss part II of this written interview with Mr. Hiller.
Bernard Hiller is an acting teacher in Los Angeles who has been teaching acting and success coaching for more than thirty years. For more information on Bernard Hiller, his classes and how to contact him, see this exclusive video interview right here on ActingCareerStartUp.com.
For more help on how to prepare for your trip to LA and what to do once you get there, have a look at this guide. While it is not specific to LA, it will hopefully give you some insight as to how to handle some of the logistical aspects of moving to La to start an acting career such as planning your trip, budgeting, finding housing, USA visa information and more.
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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