There are a number of people who are interested in learning how to become an extra, and believe that it’s a complicated process. However, being an extra in a movie or TV show is one of the easiest ways to build experience and notoriety in the entertainment industry. Often times experience is not even required, and so to help those who want to be a movie extra or a featured extra on television we have six easy steps /tips you should remember.
The first step toward knowing how to become an extra is getting a headshot. Your headshot doesn’t have to be a professional picture, but they are not “selfies” and should at least appear professional. You can have a friend take your picture with a very good digital camera and blow it up to a 8 x 10 size.
Write a resume and attach it to the back of your 8 x 10 headshot. Include physical characteristics. For example; height, weight, hair color & eye color. Also include any hobbies & sport abilities. Do not forget special skills; dancing, horseback riding. Also, don’t forget to attach your contact information to your resume so that the casting directors have a way to get in contact with you.
Check the help wanted ads in the auditions section of the trade magazines and local newspapers. The busiest areas in the business are Los Angeles, New York, Toronto, & Vancouver. Even cities like Detroit, Chicago, and Atlanta are becoming more popular places to find acting jobs.
Consider signing with a casting agency or talent service company. You can find plenty of casting agency by searching on-line. One Source Talent is a very well known talent service company that helps actors and models find work in the entertainment industry. All you have to do is visit their website and fill out their application form. They will follow up with you in a few days with a phone call.
When you get your first roll ask what you need to bring. For example; do I have to bring my own clothes? If the environment makes you feel uncomfortable you may be eligible for a pay raise.
Behave yourself; never take pictures of yourself, or with the stars. Bring something with you to keep yourself busy. For example; a book or your iPad. Because you may be sitting around for hours.
We know that some people may not be thrilled about starting their acting career as an extra, but it’s always important to keep in mind that many successful actors have started where you are. Simply look at both Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, who both stared as movie extras in the Fenway Park scene of the movie “Field of Dreams”. These types of opportunities were available to them and now they are available to you to possibly follow in their foot steps.
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