|Top Nollywood actress, Genevieve Nnaji|
If you want to start an acting career you have to ask yourself some essential questions. You need to ask yourself before you decide to become an actor or actress are if you have the skill, passion and patience required to be successful. You must be entirely sure that becoming an actor is indeed what you want to do. You must also understand that it will not be an easy task. Your passion for the job must be matched by your ability to be able to show patience. You should also be prepared for failed auditions and rejections, be sure that you will be able to take these knocks on the chin and carry on in your quest to becoming an actor. Most people assume that at the moment they decide to start an acting career work will come by easily and they will have the choice of what jobs they want to go fir. This is not the case, as the journey to becoming a successful actor is a very long and hard one.
Having a good step-by-step plan on how to start an acting career and how to “get to your destination” will put you ahead of many other acting wannabes who are uncertain about what to do and how they can achieve those goals they set for themselves. In this article, BEBEAKINBOADE.COM presents to you step-by-step plan on how to start an acting career.
QUICK REALITY CHECK
Once you have decided that you want to become an actor, you should take some time out to do some research about what exactly it is that being one is all about. Have you ever seen statistics on working actors? They’re not pretty. About 95% of actors are out of work all year round, while the rest 5% work continuously. So the goal is to be in that 5% figure. How you do this? By having a plan, and working smart and consistently.
No smart business person ever launches a business without doing market research and creating a plan of where this venture is going. This is no different.
CREATE AN ACTION PLAN
Once you decided to start an acting career, it’s time to open your Word and type out your plan of actions. This will mostly be based on the knowledge of how the acting industry works. Where do you get that knowledge?
Take some time to figure out whether this is really something you want to do. Consider pros and cons, your chances of success and what you believe you can achieve, what the current state of the business is, and so on.To get the better idea of what this journey entails, read everything you can about the acting business.
Putting acting training as your first priority makes you a better actor and also become better at auditioning in general.
You don’t have control over who hires you as an actor for their project. You don’t have control over what auditions you can get, what gigs you can book and what people you can work with. But what you do have control over is your acting training.If you have a little money to spend every month on an acting class, then this would be the best way to confirm whether you truly enjoy this craft.
Acting training is also a very important part of your acting resume. Casting directors, producers, directors, and all the talent agencies will pay attention at how much training you have under your belt.
So get yourself into an acting class as soon as you can. Try to meet other actors, ask for their advice on how to start an acting career or move it forward and check for yourself what this whole “acting” thing is about.
GET THAT ACTING EXPERIENCE
After you’re done with the planning phase on how to start an acting career, it’s time to begin taking action. Your first two goals should be getting experience and training under your actor’s belt.
As you would in any field, you’ll want to start meeting people in the industry as soon as possible.
Get on a set as an extra; it’s not glamorous, but it requires no previous experience and it’s a great way to remind yourself that the people doing this job are just human beings, not untouchable super heroes.
More importantly, talk to people while you’re there. Compare notes and figure out what other actors’ paths look like. There is no “one way” to break into the world of acting, and every actor will have his or her own unique story. But talking to each of them will help you get an idea of what options are available to you.
GET A GREAT HEADSHOT
As you start putting yourself out there, you need to get a good headshot.
Your headshots shouldn’t be made up too much and shouldn’t represent anything other than who you are. Bring different clothing options in flattering colors and styles that make you feel comfortable and at ease.
START PUTTING YOURSELF OUT THERE
Get yourself out there as much as possible—and don’t be afraid to submit to every project you are right for, no matter how big or small. Small student films can help build your reel and widen your network. Big projects just might be looking for someone like you—and you never know when you might be submitting to a casting director who just saw you in a workshop and wants to give you a shot. This truly happens all the time. It might not end up in a booking, but it could end up in a great audition. And making your mark in a big casting office is a milestone.
ATTEND EVERY LEGITIMATE AUDITION
Go to every legitimate audition you get, no matter what. Many actors skip auditions because they’re afraid, deep down, that they’re not good enough at their art, but you have to prove yourself wrong. Every auditioning experience—even one gone terribly wrong—is something you will learn from and can use to become a better actor. Show up scared and prepared, if you have to, but just show up. You will be miles ahead of a lot of actors who chicken out.
STAY POSITIVE AND FOCUSED
One thing that can be a pervasive problem while pursuing your dreams is keeping your mind on your ultimate goals while you’re struggling to make a living. The need for comfort and security can derail even a great artist—and wanting a nice car and clothing can really keep people from exploring their potential. So, if this is something that truly matters to your career, you’ll need to really prioritize, saving your extra money for classes and headshots instead of restaurants and vacations.
But you’ll also need to take care of yourself. Keep upbeat, positive music in your car or on your mobile device. When you feel a hard day coming on, combat this with a mandatory dance break or a happy sing-a-long. Surround yourself with supportive people who are on the same path or who understand your struggle. Take a walk and feel the sun on your face to get your head in the right place. Take a bath or read a book or do whatever you need to feel important and happy in this moment.
And above all, remember how lucky you are to be pursuing this dream. So many people out there don’t have the chance or don’t believe in themselves enough to even try. Just to be attempting your dream is a blessing.