Find Your Paragon Actor

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  • Find Your Paragon Actor

    Don’t Be A Boat Without a Sail

    (by Jim Webb)


    (Photo: Tim Bogdanov/Unsplash)

    It is difficult to achieve any big dream. It is especially difficult to be a successful actor. Consider this:

  • Most Actors Never Earn a Living from Acting.
    With millionaire movie-star actors getting all the pub, it might be easy to forget that most actors never become working actors – that is, actors who earn a living exclusively from their craft and related activities, such as endorsement deals.

    Most Actors Are “Bit” Actors.
    That means, most actors rarely find steady, meaningful employment as actors. Most actors go weeks or months (sometimes years) between acting jobs.

    The Competition is Fierce!
    Acting is one of the few professions where you usually don’t just compete for one, long-term job. You compete for lots of jobs, with most jobs usually lasting only a short period of time. And the number of actors competing for one job could be in the hundreds (even thousands!).

    With such daunting odds it is important for actors to find a blueprint for success. The only problem is, there is no such blueprint! Go ahead, read all the books you want on the subject. And after reading all those books, you will surely come to the same conclusion all actors come to:

    Every actor must find their own path to success.

  • But, while there is no exact blueprint, that doesn’t mean you have to be a boat without a sail, floating aimlessly until you crash into reality.

    Here’s a suggestion:

    Find actors who are the most like you, in appearance and style, and try to follow a similar path to success. Call it, your “paragon actor”.

    Why does it make sense to find a paragon actor? Well, because they’ve been where you are. They have competed for the same types of roles you will be going for. They can be a beacon of light, showing you how far your type can go. And, heck, they’ve already kicked in the door for you!

    They’ve already opened the entertainment industry’s eyes to how bankable your type can be. It’s a lot easier to sell yourself to prospective agents, managers and others when you go in and say, “I see myself as being similar to (insert already successful actor here)”. If the comparison is justified, it gives you a better chance to make the sale.


    Find actors who are the most like you, in appearance and style, and try to follow a similar path to success. Call it, your “paragon actor”.


    Again, there’s no exact blueprint for success as an actor. But following a similar actor’s already-blazed path at least gives you a reference point…and a sense of hope that you can get where they are!

    So, who’s it going to be? Denzel Washington? Daniel Day Lewis? Meryl Streep? Bradley Cooper? Jennifer Lawrence? Michael Pena? Sandra Oh? Michael B. Jordan? Who is your paragon actor?


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