Wednesday, March 21, 2012

It Is Difficult Beyond Description, Yet Possible

The more I work with aspiring actors and the more I get into what
makes an actor successful, the more I am aware of just how terribly nearly
impossible it is to succeed at professional acting. There are lots of reasons
for that including the colossal number of aspiring actors and the nature of the

It is difficult to imagine how many
aspiring actors there are. Every year
in the US alone, more than ten thousand graduates of academic and professional
acting schools are added to the total. Then there are the thousands and thousands of those who do not go to school , but who just try
to become actors without that expense. And no wonder when the cost of college acting majors and acting schools
cost thirty to forty thousand dollars a year! But numbers and cost are not the
only obstacles to be overcome if one is to be an actor.

The acting business is a very closed
society that only allows newcomers when such newcomers have such a look,
personality, experience and talent as to make the business want to include
them. Each actor who gets into the
business does it in a little different way. The way professional plays and films are cast contributes to the closed
society. Except for small roles, films
and plays mostly are cast from the actors that the producers and directors know
and trust. Only rarely are they willing to give a newcomer a chance. Sure there
are sometimes ‘open’ auditions. But these are mostly sham. They are required by the actors’ union and
are really just ‘going though the motions’ rather than honestly looking for new
talent. But new talent is found.

In spite of all these things new talent
turns up on TV and on the stage and in the movies. There are some who call this luck, but honestly, it is when
preparation meets opportunity that new faces appear. This means that to become a professional actor, one needs a heap
of experience and training. I think the
experience is the more important. Even
when some people in the industry say that the actor’s look is most important,
they also say that charm, confidence and talent are also important for
success. Experience and training hone
one’s charm, confidence and talent. When the actor with these qualities meet the casting director looking
for the same type, new talent often is seen on TV and in the cinema or on


  1. The strange line lengths is due to a quirk that happens when I compose the post on a diffent program and then copy it and paste it here. I hope it is not too troubling. Doc

  2. Hi Doc, No worries on the Format! Was still a great read, although not as uplifting as your other posts. Based on you post, do you think acting school and other efforts are generally pointless then?

  3. No, not entirely. There are some good acting schools. But noone should thing that an acting school will make them a star or even ge them a job. All acting schools do is hone the talent the actor has and give the actor a chance to getr himself known. Write me there are schools I recommend.