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Ms. Bubbette

Dear Ms. Bubbette: How to encourage Casting to audition you? • Managers in Texas? • Where to go for demo reels • Dallas audition connections • If actor doesn't fit the "star mold" what then?
by Ms. Bubbette

October 2001

Dear Ms. Bubbette;

Having stood in line under the scorching 100 degree sun for 1 1/2
hours then in the lobby for another 1/2 hour and then sitting for more than 3
hours JUST to get my picture taken last Saturday for the David Gale Open
Casting Call in Austin, I opted to leave (it was already past 6 PM) rather
than wait another 2 to 4 hours for a POSSIBILITY to read for the casting

My question: is there a way to "encourage" Third Coast Casting to
allow me to "read" for a role?

Thanks for you help! MLake

Dear MLake,

That is the question a hundred thousand actors are asking at this moment!

My heart bleeds for you and every other actor who opts to join the general public in any massive cattle call. But you never know do you, whether you may be the elusive actor they are looking for? So, crazy as we all are, there's always that glimmer of hope that that makes our insanity logical!

Suggestions for your question? Send the casting director a demo reel. Don't have one? Well send her your headshot and resumé. Already done that? Hmm! Have you tried chocolate chip cookies?
I'm afraid you may have stumped the oracle this time. Just keep trying. Don't give up. That's what acting is all about....pie in the sky!

May the Force be with you.

Ms. Bubbette.

Dear Ms. Bubbette,

I may be interested in seeking a manager for my daughter, she is 15 yrs old and already with an agent here in Austin. She sings, acts, and dances. Has done tons of theater and a little film. Is getting a manager a good idea? Should we look in Dallas...driving up for auditions there isn't a problem. Can you recommend any managers? Thanks so much for your help.

Mom of an aspiring actress

Dear Mom of an Aspiring Actress,

In all my years of being an actor I have only come across one Manager in Texas! So by that I gather it's not such a popular thing to have here. I guess once an actor's gotten so big and famous, they want their own personal manager rather than share an agent who handles hundreds of actors? This is more common in L.A.

Lee Peterson, who used to be an agent partner with Pastorini (and Bosby) in Houston has been managing a handful of talented kids for several years. I have a feeling she has moved to Dallas and maybe you can get info on her from her friend, Casting Director Toni Cobb of Brinkley/Cobb & Associates, Dallas (214) 349-4258. Failing this lead, how about contacting the Texas Film Commission here in Austin and ask them if they have a list of Managers. They have lists of Texas Agents so maybe they can supply you with managers.

Another thought is to get her an agent in Dallas (as well as Austin) to widen her field for auditions. You can either get this list from the Film Commission or find it in Mona Lee's Biz Directory (512) 323-2090.

Good luck to your versatile and talented daughter. And to you too for being such a helpful, caring Mom.

Ms. Bubbette.

Dear Ms. Bubbette,

I have been doing actors' demo reels for several years. In the next few weeks I am leaving Austin to retire/edit/write at my new home just south of Dallas. My main concern was leaving these wonderful actors in limbo but I now have an excellent 'replacement' to carry on the demo reels and would like to pass this on to my former clients and to other actors out there.

Marcos Gonzales of Demotapes Etc, (512) 447-4816 is offering a fully digital service at a price comparable to mine (the lowest in town!) and well within the serious actor's budget. He is definitely in the 'business' having directed two Feature Films and many documentaries.

Thank you Austin for a wonderful 17 years. See y'all in the movies!

Helen Griffiths
Director/Producer/Screenwriter "Once Upon a Wish" children's video series. Kiwi Video Prods.

Dear Helen,

I feel I have known you a long, long time! And knowing you so well, this will not be 'retirement.' Good luck!

And to all those actors out there, do you realize how important that 3rd tool is - the demo reel? (The first two of course being the headshot and the resumé). How else can a Casting Director know your work if they haven't seen it? Clips from existing movies/commercials/industrials can be the pivotal point that decides whether you are called in for a principal audition or not. You should send copies out to casting directors, your agent(s) and even directors especially of Independent movies.

You have to market yourself to the hilt - not just talk and dream about it. Those who do, get! You are the product. Let the demo do the talking. (keep it brief .. 5-6 minutes) And remember to always have your Biz Directory at your fingertips.

Break a leg!
Ms. Bubbette

Dear Ms. Bubbette,

Do you know of any resources that would give me access/information about upcoming auditions, projects, classes etc in the Dallas area? What about theatre?

I have just moved here from Austin and am trying to get my bearings... Is there any work here or is the only TV market in Austin?


Dear Melanie,

I have good news for you. The Dallas market is hot and thriving! Having just moved into the Dallas area myself I have had to answer these same questions for myself. Here are some contacts.

For movies/TV: * DFWauditions -
* Roger Burke - Exec. Director DFW Film Commission
504 Business Parkway, Richardson, TX 75081

For theatre: S.T.A.G.E. (214) 630-7722
e-mail (get on their mailing list)
They cover theatre auditions; showcases; casting director workshops and more.

Good luck, Melanie. Maybe we'll bump into each other at auditions?
Ms. Bubbette.

Dear Ms. Bubbette--

Every time I go to an audition, all the males seem to be 5'8" - 6'1" and skinnier than Calista Flockhart on safari. What gives? How many Brad Pitt lookalikes can they hire?

I am 5'11", 240 lbs and take after John Goodman more than Brad, I eat a lot and can move a couch or refrigerator in a single bound. I know I have lost some roles for being too big, as that is what some casting directors have told me. It doesn't fit the leading man look.

Am I doomed to never have my Big Mac's again because I have to lose the 60 lbs., or is there some hope for the fat & talented???

Super Sized in Austin..

Dear Super Sized in Austin,

Ouch! Join those of us on the side-lines restricted because of our 'short-comings'. I wish I could tell you otherwise - that you'll always fit that leading role character. Not! No more than the guy who refuses to shave off his beard or handlebar mustache; the gal with spiky orange hair; the extremely tall or short person; ones like me with two strokes against them - age and accent. And so the list goes on.

But the good news is - talent will overcome, charisma will overcome and a great sense of humor, which you obviously have, will also help to overcome obstacles. Ask yourself, why did overweight actors like Goodman, Beluche, Drew Carey & his co-star -you name them - become successful? One word - Talent! And you can throw charisma in there too.

Sometimes an actor can land a role quite unlike the character the directors are looking for. Take for instance, Dustin Hoffman. He was thrown in as a wildcard by his agent who knew they were looking for a tall, handsome, college boy-type for "The Graduate". Instead they sent this short, big-nosed, almost ugly unknown actor and begged the CD to 'please just read him'. One minute into the audition Dustin had them hooked with his intensity, talent and charisma and the role was his.

If you can't blow the CD over like that then, yes, sadly you'll have to think about giving up those Big Macs to fit more into the 'accepted mold' if you want a better shot at being cast. It's a cruel world out there, dictated to by the audience' conception of "beautiful -desirable -heroic- comedic, scary and even grossly disgusting characters". The Box Office rules!

Or you might join the ever-growing ranks and write, shoot and direct your own movie with you in it as the STAR!

Your fellow commiserator,
Ms. Bubbette

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