Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Image and the Business

No matter what anyone wants to admit or believe, the way you look is the number one factor in getting or not getting work in the acting world whether on stage or on screen.  Especially on screen.  The screen is completely unforgiving.  At least on stage an actor has some distance from the audience and can hide/fake appearance.  But on screen, what you look like is what you look like, often with an unflattering extra 15 pounds that the camera somehow adds.  So being thin and pretty can give an actor or actress a leg up on the competition, especially when that competition is already thin and pretty

I'm not saying that talent doesn't have anything to do with getting cast or not, because it certainly does.  But if you don't fit the look the production is going for you never get an audition to show off your talent.  If a casting director is looking for a 20's to 30's actress for a part, they're looking for a skinny/fit 20's to 30's actress (they won't come out and say they're looking for skinny, but they are), so if I were to submit for that part, they'd see an average (i.e. not thin or fat, i.e. too fat for thin parts and to thin for fat parts) 20's to 30's actress and I'd get put in the dump pile.  Likewise, if a casting director were looking for a fat 20's to 30's actress I'd also make it into the dump pile, thus not getting any auditions to show off my talent and possibly getting cast.

I don't really like the fact that this industry is so focused on looks.  But I can't change how the system works; I can't take on the entire entertainment industry and try to change how it's always worked.  I'm not a crusader; I'm an actress trying to get work.

So, what can I do?  Change my image!  Loose weight!  Get in better shape!  Update my look!  Become fashionable!  So that's what I am going to do.  There are a lot of things I need to do to get my career back on track.  I need to take some lessons on film acting to perfect my technique.  I need auditioning workshops to get over the anxiety of getting back to auditioning.  I need to get new headshots to better market myself.  I need to start going back to mixers and screenings to meet people and network.  None of these things would be worth much if I don't change the way I look.  I don't need to drastically change things--at least I don't think I need to drastically change, but I do need to change them.  So that's exactly what I'll do.

1 comment:

Lisa Combest said...

I completely agree with your assessment. I am sick to death of that "girl next door" blonde leading lady sterotype. They're all sticks with a mop of fake blonde hair on top. Yick. I like my women with curves and real faces and real boobs. I have always thought you are a pretty gal. I think you should take these industry types by the nads and squeeze. Go get 'em, tiger.

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