If you are an actor or just starting to be one it is a very good idea for you to be represented by a person or an agency knowledgeable about the ins and outs of the movie industry. The agency or its representative that will act as your manager can schedule talent bookings for you, negotiate contracts, build your image and portfolio and generally take care of you and your career. Finding a good acting agency is very crucial as this can make or break your budding career. Acting agencies usually charge a percentage commission of your earnings and can either be fixed or variable depending on the terms of your contract. In some cases, if you are quite a bankable talent, the agency may even invest in your future by providing the initial funds to create a whole new image for you, including training in all aspects of being an actor. The tips below will help you find an acting agency.
- Determine what type of manager you are looking for by checking professional sites like the Talent Managers Association, which was formerly called the National Conference of Personal Managers. It is a non-profit organization that had been started in 1954 to organize talent managers of exemplary skills and knowledge and with considerable ethics recognized by their peers. This legitimizes the industry of managing talents.
- Talent agents belong to different unions depending on the industry they are engaged in. For TV and films, you can check out the AFTRA website. AFTRA is short for American Federation of Television and Radio Artists. You can get familiar with how the industry works and what is needed in an agent as well as download forms and contracts and have access to a directory of qualified agents.
- Prepare to be recognized by acting agencies by building your resume. You need to have ample experience and recognition to be taken in by an acting agency. It is very hard to break into the acting industry by asking your acting agency to do all the hard work for you. You need to invest in yourself initially. While honing your acting talents and beefing up your acting resume, you should also get your photographs taken professionally to build an impressive photo portfolio.
- Attend gatherings where people in the industry congregate. Arm yourself with business cards and seek invitation to these gatherings from your network of professionals and industry people. This will help you get used to these functions and help you network with acting agencies that are always on the lookout for budding talents. Make sure your connections know that you are looking for an acting agency so that they can introduce you to the right people. Be at your most impressive self, without being flamboyant and obnoxious.
- When asked to present your credentials, photos and your acting tapes, ensure that these are up to date and presented professionally. There are tips that you can follow by doing an Internet search on how to prepare these. Make several copies, ensure that the tape, VCD or DVD is working and you have made clear copies.
- Ask all the appropriate questions before you sign up with an acting agency. You have to know how they are going to handle your career, what you need to do and how much they will charge you. Seek guidance from the AFTRA website so that you have a more in-depth knowledge about the industry and how talent agencies work. Doing your homework will pay good dividends for you later.
Make sure you understand that the process of being a major acting talent depends on your hard work. The acting agency is there to ensure that you have continued bookings and representations but your talent is the thing that will speak for you and your career. It is imperative that you keep on learning and honing your craft to stay on top of the game, as you know that you are in a very fickle world.