The term “Open Casting Call” is an industry term used in Hollywood meaning “anyone can audition.”
Huge talent shows like “American Idol,” “The Voice” and “America’s Next Top Model” are just a few examples of television shows that hold open casting calls. Commonly, dates for open casting calls are announced to talents through media or social networks and are usually a few different days. For the bigger shows like, “Americas Got Talent” open casting calls are held in every major US state for over 3 weeks! The bigger the show, the longer the casting calls are going to last because of the turnout that’s going to show up. For example, a casting call for the new Harry Potter movie is going to be a bit longer than the casting call for the new play opening up in town. The more potential that shows up, the bigger the casting call is going to be.
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Understanding the Casting Calls Process
A date or a series of dates is usually released through media. Casting directors want to get the information out to as many aspiring actors as possible in as many locations as possible. They usually do this by writing and releasing a press release, having a radio host announce it or contacting people via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
It would read something like this, “Huge Open Casting Call audition for new talent. If you are a male actor between the ages of 18 and 25 and live in the greater Los Angeles area please bring your resume and headshot to 1234 Main St. Open casting auditions for “The New Biggest Movie of the Year” will be held promptly at 9:30 am.” It will then tell you if you need to be part of a union, what type of look they are going for or what to wear.
A lot of movie producers, writers, and casting agents use these open casting calls to find undiscovered, fresh talent and new faces to introduce to the Hollywood world. Open auditions also give a performer who is might be thinking about acting, a chance to try out their talents, without needing an agent or very much experience. That’s why these open calls are great for someone who has been waiting for their big break! Anytime you see an opening casting call in your neighborhood, don’t miss it. It could be the opportunity you’ve been looking for.
These open casting calls can be really intimidating. At some of the bigger ones like for “American Idol” an average of 26,000 people show up to any given audition! That’s a lot of competition. Don’t let that number scare you. Use it to motivate yourself. You have just as much of a chance to land the gig as anyone else there. Just prepare yourself for it. When you arrive, you’ll probably have to wait in line, a very long line. Bring reading material like your favorite script or acting advice book to keep you busy while at the same time staying prepared. Listening to music or just playing on your phone could distract you, de-motivate you and tire you. You want to keep your spirits high and your talent sharp for when you are finally called in for your turn with the judges.
After you’ve finally gotten your chance to read your piece in front of the judges, hold your head high knowing you did your best. If you had a good time and auditioned to the best of your ability at the casting call, a casting agent may call you back to read for a second time, or even ask you to read for another part. Open casting calls can open many doors of opportunity for aspiring actors and could eventually lead you to find jobs that give you the experience and confidence needed to join unions like SAG (Screen Actors Guild) or AFTRA (American Federation of Television and Radio Arts.)
Always look in local papers, online and in magazines for open calls or information about upcoming auditions. If you fit the criteria of what they’re looking for, Go for it and try it out. It can never hurt your career to attend these auditions and hey, you never know who you might meet or whose attention you might catch.
You can find open casting calls and auditions here at ExploreTalent.com.
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