TIME FRAMES ARE FOR EMERGENCIES ONLY

Time frames are for EMERGENCIES only. Emergency meaning that you ABSOLUTELY have to decline the audition at the scheduled time (perhaps because of another audition or better yet, a last-minute BOOKING!). If someone asks for a time frame, CD's assume that the actor ABSOLUTELY CANNOT make the original time (due to a TRUE emergency) and if they don't have a time frame available they will automatically CANCEL your original time and take you off the schedule completely and make room for another actor.  


Unfortunately, people have been abusing time frames because "they don't like to drive in traffic" or "they're not morning people" and casting directors are not putting up with it anymore. We are also getting more and more "job-related" excuses. We understand that everyone has to work for a living, but remember that if you cannot take time off for an audition, what is casting going to think about you being able to get the time off work if you happen to book the job? 


Also, more actors have been requesting time frames and get them and still MISS the audition for one reason or another. THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE. We will no longer be requesting time frames unless the CD has provided them on the notice.


So please look at your audition notice and if CD's post a time frame on there, you may request to use it FOR EMERGENCIES ONLY. CD's know that there are at least a thousand other people out there (who look like you and are possibly as talented as you are) who would be glad to take that appointment off your hands. And please do not ""fib" to them about having another audition at the same time if you really don't -- CD's sometimes ask "which audition?" just out of curiosity (or to help you with scheduling) and you will just dig yourself into a hole.



And PLEASE DON'T BE LATE FOR YOUR AUDITION. Casting directors get to work on time. Why can't everyone else?











Respect!



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AGENCY REMINDERS



- Auditions not confirmed within the hour will be CANCELED.
Confirm ASAP.

- Emergency cancellations (illness) = TEXT/EMAIL US IMMEDIATELY, 24/7.

- Consistent declines/unavailability for auditions = SUSPENSION.

- Missed audition due to unavailability without booking out = SUSPENSION.

- "No-shows" for confirmed auditions = SUSPENSION
.

- "SUSPENSION" = mandatory book out or termination.

- Missing a booking = immediate TERMINATION from the agency.


- Not listing the agency at sign-in at auditions or on paperwork at bookings = TERMINATION from agency.



Clients can be terminated at any time due to misconduct. The above infractions are forms of misconduct.










Any questions?




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TWITTER UPDATES

Follow us on twitter at MelodyLLTALENT and LARALLTALENT



TEXT & INTERNET-ENABLED SMARTPHONES. WITHIN REACH.







Policy: All clients must have text-and-internet-enabled smartphones within reach as well as access to a computer with internet and email.







Before we sign anyone, we tell them that three things are required (well, besides incredible talent, a great resume and a winning attitude!).


One: A text-and-internet-enabled smartphone. (iPhone, Samsung, BlackBerry, HTC, Nokia, etc.)

Two: Access to a computer with email and internet.


Three: Did I mention a text-and-internet-enabled smartphone? I did? OK, then -- number three is "your text-and-internet-enabled phone must be on your person and accessible at all times."

Here's the deal. As you know, we send out your audition notices by email and text messaging. Our agency also communicates electronically -- primarily by text and email. (Please see Melody's previous post "The Importance of a Smartphone") All day, every day. Actually, some days it is 24/7. I'm not even kidding. Although most casting directors and production people also communicate electro
nically, we do spend a considerable amount of time every day on the phone with them. So while we are on the phone with them, you can send us your questions and concerns via email and text. We will answer them quicker and easier than if we have to go through a hundred voicemails and then try to call you back. I just read an agent's (from another agency) post somewhere that "THE TIME YOU SPEND TALKING ON THE PHONE TO YOUR AGENT IS TIME THEY CAN'T USE TO SUBMIT YOU." That statement couldn't be truer. So, you can send your more urgent "time-is-of-the-essence" messages via text and general or lengthy questions or concerns by email. You will always get a reply.

As you know, casting notices are sent via email and text. And we understand that not everyone can get to their computers 24/7 and some of you have told us that email access is not always convenient (those in school, etc.) but hey! You have a text-enabled smartphone. If you aren't by your computer and for some reason you can't access LA Casting on your smartphone, you can always confirm with us via text. All Actors Access auditions are confirmed directly with me via text/email/cmail anyway. See how this works?

Now, about the "within reach" part. I know an actor whose agent made her carry her phone at all times. Well, she couldn't carry her purse around at work and she didn't always have pockets so ---
her agent made her carry her phone in her bra. And if this actor didn't call her back within five minutes, there would be hell to pay. This policy was brutal, but effective. (She never failed to call her agent back and she never missed an audition.) Keeping your phone within reach is extremely important --- especially since same-day, last minute auditions or straight-to-callbacks are almost becoming the norm rather than the exception. (We don't want to hear that your phone was in your purse and your purse was in your car...and your car was four blocks away so you didn't get the audition info in time!)

It isn't that hard to keep your phone with you at all times. As some of you know, I wear my phone on a lanyard around my neck so I don't misplace it (and believe me, I would!). Not quite the fashion statement but who cares? It works. It is always with me.





We are happy to report that because of text-messaging to smartphones within reach, this instant exchange of information has made it possible for most of you to make these same-day auditions!















We've had some awesome auditions lately. Keep up the great work!







* * * * *

Some people have said that "their phone doesn't receive text messages" but I think it means that texting on their phone has been blocked. You need to unblock texting on your phone. This is the 21st century, folks! Every cell phone these days is capable of receiving a text message. I had a Motorola Star-Tac back in 1999 that had no color screen, no photos, no music, no ringtones, no camera, no games, no apps. Nada. Not a single lux-u-ry. We were just happy to have a mobile phone back then. But guess what it did have? Text messaging! This is over ten years ago and my Motorola dinosaur had text messaging. I loved that little Star-Tac...









Text me!









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Relax

Just Breathe!
Before you walk into an casting directors office...take a deep breathe! Relax. Be yourself!  Now that we have been auditioning clients for the agency for a few years now, we can see that the actors that are relaxed and are comfortable do the best. Pilot season is a great opportunity to get out there and show casting directors who you are. But if you let your nerves take over, you may just show them a nervous shaky actor not yet ready to be on prime time. If you have a bad audition, you may not get another audition!
Speaking of auditions, L & L clients are really getting out there! Great film, pilot and commercial auditions so far in 2010.  Remember its not the amount of auditions you get that is important... it is what you make of the ones you get. Do a great job when you get out there.  If you are a nervous Nelly, try taking a yoga class or meditate before you go in.

Also for the non L & L clients that read our blog: we are currently only taking SAG adults with 2 or more Co-Star credits and you must have a reel! If you meet this criteria please email us with your head shot, resume and reel. We are always seeking babies and toddlers! We need multiples!
Congrats to all of our bookings last month! 2 movie of the weeks, multiple commercials and print jobs!

CONFIRM AUDITIONS WITHIN THE HOUR. NO EXCEPTIONS.

Policy: CONFIRM YOUR AUDITIONS (or text us and ask us to confirm for you) WITHIN THE HOUR OR THEY WILL BE CANCELED. No exceptions.

Please be courteous to your casting directors by confirming your auditions ASAP!!!


In a perfect world, everyone would confirm as soon as they received their audition notice. (A lot of you guys do this and we LOVE it!!) In the real world, most of you are able to confirm within a half an hour. We love and totally dig that too (does a
nyone even say "dig it" anymore? Yikes.). But confirming within the hour is agency policy. Why one hour? Because that is about how long it usually takes for an annoyed casting director or assistant to call and ask why our client hasn't confirmed yet. We don't like getting those types of calls. But unfortunately, we do get them, and we don't dig that at all. And we have to tell them that our client just hasn't gotten back to us yet. AND. THEN. THEY. TAKE. YOUR. AUDITION AWAY.


Is the "one-hour or cancel" confirmation policy being too tough on you guys? We think not. I read about an agent who will DROP a client if they don't confirm an audition within a half an hour. Tough, but very effective policy. And that agent just mentioned that he met another agent who will drop clients from the agency (kaput!) if they don't confirm an audition within five minutes. FIVE MINUTES? Now THAT is brtual.


CONFIRM YOUR AUDITIONS (or text us and ask us to confirm for you) WITHIN THE HOUR OR THEY WILL BE CANCELED. No exceptions. "I wasn't near a computer" is not a valid excuse. If you are on a plane flying back to LA and cannot text us within the hour (and well, we would know that you were on a plane because you would have BOOKED OUT with us!) then you have a valid excuse. (Although some flights do have wi-fi...more on that subject later!)


For LA Casting auditions, log in to your account and confirm (green check mark). If you cannot get to a computer to confirm, TEXT US IMMEDIATELY and we will confirm for you. For auditions received through Actors Access -- you MUST confirm by contacting us because we have to co
nfirm online on our end. If there is a very good reason why you must decline the audition, please text or email us IMMEDIATELY so we can decline the audition and hopefully send in a replacement and give another L & L family member the opportunity. Also, please check callback and shoot dates to make sure you are indeed available on those dates before confirming.


I can't think of any reason why anyone wouldn't confirm an audition within the hour. OK, so if you are driving home and are more than an hour away from LA, you can call us (hands-free, of course) to say, "Hey, remember when I booked out and said I'd be out-of town today? Well, I'm driving back home at the moment and just received a text from you and can't check it since it is against the law to do so and simply cannot pull over for one second even if my career is at stake -- so, is it an audition notice?" And then we can tell you the project and time and you can give us a quick yes or no. Easy-peasy. You can get the rest of the details when you get to a computer...or you can check your texts the next time you use a rest-area.


So, if anyone can think of any other reason why one wouldn't confirm within the hour and risk losing the audition, text me and we'll discuss! Which brings us to the next policy...









Confirmed
!













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DIGITAL SIZE CARDS

In addition to CF barcodes, many casting companies are using the digital size cards through Breakdown Express and Actors Access.


Please fill out your virtual size card through your Actors Access Account. There is no charge to have the Basic Actors Access Account. There are additional enhanced services available for fees. But for what most casting directors need, it is totally FREE to talent and only takes a few minutes. The following instructions are from the Actors Access "how-to" section, but the cmail via text messaging instructions can be used for regular email as well.


STEP 1: Go to actorsaccess.com. Enter username and password. Click on 'Manage My Contact Info' and make sure everything with a red star is completed. Fill in your cell phone and email where it says to list personal contact number and e-mail address. This is for cmail notifications only. You do not need to list your home address. You may be required to fill in the postal zip code, if so, use your agency's zip code: L & L Talent's zip code is 90274.

If you do not have email access on your phone, you can still get cmail delivered to your cell via text messaging.

Do you have a cell phone that allows Text Messaging? YES! So, you can get an alert anytime your agent, manager or a casting director use our new online CMAIL to send you important information. CMAIL connects casting directors together with agents and managers and their clients. CMAIL allows casting directors to contact you directly when you submit yourself through Actors AccessSM. With this service you always know when to check Actors AccessSM for appointment information for an interview no matter where you are.

If you use AT&T, Cingular, Nextel, SBC, Sprint, T Mobile or Verizon you can take advantage of this service. When you fill out your contact information in Actors AccessSM, use the Alternate Email Box to put in your text messaging address.

What's your Text Messaging Address? That's easy, just take a look at the list below based on your carrier and input your 10 digit phone number followed by the @ symbol and the specific address listed below.

AT&T: your 10 digit number@txt.att.net

Cingular and SBC: your 10 digit number@cingularme.com

Nextel: your 10 digit number@messaging.nextel.com

Sprint: your 10 digit number@messaging.sprintpcs.com

T Mobile: your 10 digit number@tmomail.net

Verizon: your 10 digit number@vtext.com

Now you will get a text message alert for you to logon to www.actorsaccess.com to view a pending interview or an urgent request to contact your agent.



Next click on ‘Manage Profile’ and complete everything in the ‘About Me’ section. (In the ‘Manage Profile’ section you can also upload headshots, your resume, etc.)

If your profile is not already linked to your agents and managers, go to ‘Manage Representation’ for instructions on how to do this.


STEP 2: You will need to fill in your virtual size card info. THIS IS IN A DIFFERENT WINDOW WITH A SEPARATE LOGIN PAGE which uses your same Actor Access username and password. To fill out your virtual size card, you need to log into the following web address: actorsaccess.com/sizecard


You need to have the most current version of FLASH on your computer to access the site. At the very bottom of the sizecard login page is a link to download FLASH at no charge. Do this first if you don’t have flash or need to update to the current version.


There are two sections here. The first one, "information we need" relates to your sizes. Complete everything here. The second, "information we have" shows your contact info along with your height, weight, hair and eye color. If anything is missing here refer to Step 1 above to complete. Before exiting, click on preview which will save all your changes and also list out in red on the top of the page any other information you are missing that needs to be completed.


Once your info is in, you never have to re-enter it unless something changes. No barcodes, etc. When you audition, they will simply type your name in and all of your info should pop up.


While you're at it, please make sure to fill out and/or update your size information on LA Casting and CF as well!


This system will allow casting directors to get actors in and out quicker and more efficiently, cut down on errors caused by illegible handwriting, and save a lot of trees.










Dapper.






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NEW YEAR, NEW PICTURES

Please make sure to update your online accounts on a regular basis. This includes LA Casting, Actors Access and also your CF account (the one with the barcode which is required for some auditions). Make sure your stats, skills, resume, etc., are current! Please make sure to update your photos, especially if you cut or color your hair recently -- and HIGHLIGHT your best features!! If you have a fantastic smile please have some smiley shots! Swimsuit figure, great legs? Show us! And if you gained or lost weight, or grew or shrunk three inches, please make sure to update your stats!

Please EMAIL us ASAP if you have any questions or problems with your online accounts.









Yo.












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SOCIAL NETWORKING

POLICY: Use discretion and keep audition and booking details to yourself.


Tweeting, facebooking, blogging. Social networking. Great tools for passing on information, opinions, ideas, news, etc. We at L & L TALENT do it too. We send out quick updates, status messages, comments, congrats and other fun stuff on twitter and we have a client-and-industry-only facebook account for business memos, notices and special casting requests. And on this blog, we post tips, reminders, musings, observations, ideas, rants, photos and best of all, some of our actors' commercials or clips that we are able to post online.



Please remember that the key to successful tweeting/facebooking/blogging is DISCRETION! General info is listed on those p
ages and clients can email or text us for more details. People have gotten fired, banned and blacklisted (or worse) for revealing too much information online. Did I mention that discretion is key? Some people like to tweet about auditions, but wouldn't you rather wait until you actually book the job? 


And it's ok to tweet or post that you got a "national commercial booking" or an "episodic booking". But no details whatsoever. This protects everybody! 


But you can (and should!) announce air dates! 


(Update 2012) We used to make general congratulatory tweets ("woohoos!") about fabulous bookings (without mentioning product or episode names or details) but now we no longer release any information at all especially the actors names until the spot or episode airs. Unfortunately, our actors were getting harassed by random people and other actors were becoming resentful and envious of the numerous bookings. Le sigh.


Also, a lot of people have been sharing audition info with their "friends" -- friends who crash auditions (a major DON'T), piss off casting directors and if they happen to be able to get in, lessen your chances of getting the booking. Plus, you don't want a thousand people crashing YOUR audition, right? ("Yay, I'm SO excited!!! I have an audition for the new iPhone commercial tomorrow at 2 at Sunrise Casting for the role of Mary!!!") I don't think so. You blab, you lose. Why would anyone do such a thing? This is a very competitive and cut-throat business. Do yourself a favor -- keep audition details to yourself. And book the job!


Now let's get to work!!!


P.S. Speaking of iPhones, does everyone have a smartphone yet? (See Melody's previous post, "Importance of a Smartphone") iPhone, BlackBerry, Samsung, Nokia, HTC, whatever - CHOOSE YOUR FAVORITE! Text and email access righ
t at your fingertips!!! Having a text-enabled smartphone is MANDATORY for all clients. It will make your life easier! Plus, you can tweet/facebook/blog from it! ;-)


Another option is Apple's iPod Touch. No monthly service required. Great for going online and getting email. Texting is available as well and some of these apps are free of charge. Check it out!
(Disclaimer: Melody and I do NOT work for any phone carriers/companies, RIM, Apple, etc. We are not endorsing or selling any products and are not advertising or receiving any type of compensation or discounts for mentioning these products. We just LOVE smartphones.)








Word.












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ACCOUTREMENTS

One of our clients auditioned for the role of a "real" guitar player the other day. There were about seven people waiting to audition and only one person brought a guitar. Guess which one? Yup, OUR guy. What is wrong with this picture??? The casting director actually came into the room and asked the others, "What's wrong with you guys?? We're looking for REAL guitar players. WHY didn't you ALL bring guitars???" And one guy actually said, "Well, it didn't say to bring a guitar on the audition notes." It didn't say to wear pants either but he managed to wear a pair. Eeeegads! This reminds me of the lady who drove her car into the lake because her GPS said to drive straight ahead for 0.7 miles...so she did.


Anywho...


As always, read ALL audition notes and follow directions. But please make sure to bring any necessary tools, props -- WHATEVER you may need. (And have I mentioned lately to always bring headshots, resumes, and your barcode??? Just checking...) I know I don't have to worry about you guys...after all, the one guy who brought his guitar was from L & L TALENT!!!!


ac·cou·tre·ment ( -k t r-m nt, -tr -). n. 1. An accessory item of equipment, apparatus or dress.
(Usually used in the plural form.)


In our business, this step is NOT optional!




'Nuff said.










Quoi?








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