This 20-part series, written by Team J’s Bjorn Munson, covers the lessons learned during the casting of The Broken Continent web series pilot in 2012. You can find the full Table of Contents in Part 1.
This series is meant to help other independent filmmakers, primarily those who are casting a large ensemble (10+ speaking parts, multiple background actors, etc.). Individual articles may be useful to production companies looking to cast other work such as commercials. There are also a number of articles specifically for actors on how to better submit for auditions, do the auditions, and deal with the statistically inevitable rejections.
The lessons learned have been applied to Team J’s Stonehenge Casting service, an online tool for producers to find actors and actors to find work.
The Top Two “Good Things to Remember”
One of my goals for this series is to give people far more in-depth information about casting than I’ve been able to do in interviews and panel discussions in the past. However, I am not ignorant of the attention span of many surfers on the interwebs. So, even though I’ve tried to break the information into many shorter articles, I know that’s not enough (or rather, too much) for some folks.
Therefore, for those people, and for the more patient readers looking for a throughline in the articles ahead, here are the top two “Good Things to Remember About Casting.”
Whatever you can do to make the casting director’s job easier is a good thing.
We’ll touch on techniques to achieve this and — often more importantly — what to avoid by both action and inaction. None of what we’ll advocate is unethical or even unusual. However, it might burst some actors’ bubbles.
Whatever you can do to respect the actor and make their audition experience more pleasant is a good thing.
Assembling a good cast takes a lot of work — and from what all of us on The Broken Continent team have seen as actors, a lot of filmmakers don’t do that work. We break down a lot of different tactics we used to impress the actors and make the auditions run smoother (and the actors noticed!).
I’d say, “That’s it” but that wouldn’t be true. There’s a whole lot of “how?” and “why” to support those two Good Things. And that’s what we’ll start exploring in Part Three.