Actors Deserve to Know That Their Self-Tapes Have Been Received and Viewed
A little acknowledgement would go a long way, in this new self-taping world
(By AM Staff)
(Photo: Andrea Piacquadio | Pexels)
Just as actors are having to adjust to the new Covid-19 era, where self-taping has become the dominant form of auditions, the casting community should also consider adjusting. The casting community should consider ways of ensuring that actors know their self-tapes have been received and seen.
Sure, it’s not a normal thing for casting professionals to do. But what’s also not normal is for actors to be forced to set up an at-home self-taping studio, in order to audition. That’s an adjust that all actors have had to make.
Why shouldn’t the casting community make a little adjustment to their normal activities, as well?
There are a number of possibilities. Here’s one:
They could avoid receiving self-tapes via file-sharing platforms that don’t offer an automated notification to the actor when their self-tape has been viewed. They could, instead, use casting websites with a built-in notification feature.
It would make a huge difference, according to a recent poll we conducted on our Twitter account. The poll was unscientific. Nevertheless, an overwhelming 80% of actors said it would be helpful to know that their tape was received and seen.
Would it be helpful to actors if there was a way for casting directors to acknowledge that they have received and viewed your self-tape?
— Acting Magazine (@ActingMagazine) February 4, 2022
A self-tape can take hours for an actor to complete. Unless they’re selected for the callback, actors usually have no clue whether or not their tape was ever seen at all. That’s a shocking amount of time to put into a project, to get zero response from it!
When in-person auditions were still the norm, you at least got some response. You were redirected. You were given a chance to improve on a bad take. The person conducting the audition often gave you a sense that you were appreciated. They smiled at you and told you, “Thanks,” at the end.
The process felt worthwhile.
Today, actors submit their self-tapes into a dark vacuum, never to be heard from again. Most never know if their effort was in vain.
It’s often a lonely and unfulfilling task.
Casting professionals should consider matching the effort that actors are putting into self-tapes and find more ways to appreciate that effort. Nothing major! Nothing too time-consuming. Just a small way to make this new self-tape auditioning life worthwhile.
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POLL: Actors Prefer to Know When Their Self-Tape was Received and Viewed