Why going to open castings is a big waste of time – an opinion piece

Long cues are part of any open casting

What is an Open Casting?

Open Castings mean that just about anybody is invited to go to this particular casting. White, black, Asian, Caucasian, mixed, men, women, any age, any nationality, cats, dogs, fleas, dust mites. It is very easy to see what that leads to.

Open Castings = Endless Cues

An open casting leads to tons of people. Anybody that has a dream of becoming an actor or getting the money for that particular job will run through the door; qualified or not. As they say in german “Hienz und Kunz”. And this leads to endless cues.

Speaking from Experience on Open Castings

The day before yesterday an agent called me twice to urge me to go to this urgent casting. When I got there it turned out to be an open casting. The moment I walked in I immediately felt out of place. All of the other people in the room were models. I consider myself above average looking (like anybody), but definitely not a model.  With a height of 170cm I am way too short to go for jobs that require models.

I was number 25 in line. The casting was supposed to start at 11 am, but when I turned up at 11.15, the casting director still had not shown up, and was still missing in action when I left at 11.30.

Do something else instead of just waiting in the cue for your open casting

I went to the bank did some business there. I went shopping, had breakfast with my wife, went to another casting (which was a lot of fun). Then I returned to that particular casting at 3pm. By that time the cue had moved to number 20. I thought, since I went there twice, I could wait another 30 minutes or so just to give it a try.

“I always bring books to castings or other reading materials, if you have sides definitely bring those since you can use the time to prepare yourself. Do something useful with the time that you spend waiting.” – My personal tip

By the time I got back there, the cue had added up to more than 100 people. The casting director started to send people that were over the number of 60 back home, since they would not be able to finish the casting on time. Although the people took it on themselves to go through Bangkok traffic to show up at the casting. Apparently, the time of the casting director was more important than that of the talent – showing up late and leaving on time, while indiscriminately calling people to the casting.

As I went into the door for hair and make-up, they called my name for costume. When I went into the casting room, the casting director asked me, “Where are you from?”, I said, “Germany.” She said “So you have an accent in your English.” I said, “Yes, a little.” And she turned away, indicating that it was my fault that I had shown up at her casting. It appears that the casting was not as open as my agent had made it out to be.

Both casting director and agent should have in this case been more specific about their requirements. If the client needs native speakers without accent, that is a very simple requirement and will immediately reduce the people in the waiting room.

Open Castings – The Director Without a Plan

I am avoiding open castings at all cost. In my opinion an open casting just shows that the director does not know what he wants. He is fishing for something, that he does not know yet, to walk into the door. Chances are high that this is not you. And chances are even higher that the director will not be happy with what he gets, because he does not know yet what he is looking for.

Even if you have nothing better to do, sitting around for hours is a waste of time that you could spend more productive like exercising or improving your skills.

 

Do you want to know how to become an actor / model in Thailand? Check out this video or this article How To Become an Actor in Thailand:

Do you want to learn more about me? Check out my website: http://www.robinschroeter.de

 

By Robin Schroeter

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