Talent can either be in the form of extras or career stage actors.
Extras or ‘background actors’ are the people hired to fill out a set to make a scene more realistic, such as the audience at a basketball game, pedestrians on the street, or patrons at a restaurant. There are MANY opportunities to work as an extra throughout South Louisiana. All you need is some free time and initiative! For more information on landing word as an extra, conducting yourself on set, and some helpful rules of thumb, visit our Becoming an Extra page.
The road to becoming a career stage actor is a bit different. Most people think it’s glamorous but the profession of acting is hard work. Especially to break into. Most actors do not make millions and don’t think that becoming famous is necessarily the path to becoming successful. Here are some helpful tips to becoming a stage actor:
Get some on-set experience by becoming an extra. This won’t make you a star but it will help you learn about how movies are made, and give you an opportunity to see how professional actors work.
Establish relationships with other people in film, not just other aspiring actors. Your connections with aspiring directors, screenwriters, cameramen, editors may prove to be essential in your quest to work.
Work on short or “no-budget” films with these aspiring filmmakers. It’s fun, good creative practice on a number of levels, and gives you a chance to see yourself on film.
Make a reel. Get footage of yourself from these short films and cut together a reel to send to casting directors and talent agents.
Get an agent. You’ll find that to even audition for “speaking” roles (aka SAG roles), you will need an agent to book the audition, so this is a major step towards moving from extra work to SAG work! Look for agents close to New Orleans.
Here are a few local resources you may want to check out to see if you can find an entry level job that’s right for you: