What Does it Mean When Agents Say They Have Too Many of ‘Your Type’?

Most of our posts here on Daily Actor focus on the perspective of the actor, but any experienced actor knows that an agent is essential for growth in the industry. 

In an interview with Yahoo!, agent Mark Measures of the commercial department at Abrams Artists Agency, answered questions about some of the more difficult parts of an actor-agent relationship.

When it comes to getting an agent, if an agent says he or she is already representing too many of your “type,” it probably means that the agent doesn’t see anything marketability-wise different from others that agent already represents.  He explains, “They don’t see money in you. That’s the excuse we’re using when we sit down and talk about it. We may say we have 4 other guys in your category that are getting out more. We don’t just come out and say, ‘Yeah, we don’t see it and we don’t think you’re going to work.’ We’re not in the business to hurt people’s feelings. That’s why agents have these excuses. What we’re saying is we don’t see a million dollars in you. While yes, that is absolutely what we’re saying, we’re not in it to perpetuate the stereotype that all agents are nasty and mean or that we are all Ari Gold types from Entourage.”

In fact, Measures says that the biggest mistake auditioning actors make is trying to be someone they are not and thus losing what is unique about them.  He says, “Actors come into the room trying to be something that they’re not. They come in thinking they’re going to be something that you want them to be or something that they think will please us. You should come into a room and just be yourself. Let’s look at what you’re really doing. The paradigm has shifted; and you’re coming into a room trying to get an agent to take you. The agent is providing a service and you’re paying for that service. You give the agent 10% of your money. In an ideal world you should be able to walk in and interview a bunch of agents and pick the one that you want to work for you just like you do with your accountant, your lawyer or anyone else that provides these services for you. We’ve shifted the paradigm and given all of the power to the agents; where we choose who we want. There are very few other service providers out there that pick and choose their clients. There are some that say I don’t want to take you or I can’t do your taxes because they are too complicated or a doctor says your case is too complicated and you need to go see this person. For the most part we’ve shifted the paradigm, so you need to come into the room as if you’re interviewing to hire an agent. You should not come into the room, ‘Ooh I hope you like me; oh, I hope you take me!'”

Lastly, Measures points out that a good client understands that if he or she isn’t landing parts it doesn’t necessary mean the agent is dropping the ball — they could be many other factors.  He says, “A good client books and they know how to book a job. A good agent does his/her job. I know it is kind of an ambiguous statement. As an agent we get calls from clients saying, ‘Why wasn’t I submitted on this?’ And we have to say, we probably did submit you on it, but casting didn’t see you. A good agent is doing their job and paying attention. If you are being submitted and not getting the times why is it? It’s following up with casting directors, looking at your pictures and saying do we need to revamp your pictures. It’ll happen where somebody will have a brand new picture and 8 months later they’ll come in and say, I’m not getting out. We’ll find out we don’t love the picture. We should’ve said to this person this picture isn’t working we need to pick a new picture. That’s why I say a good agent does his/her job.”

1 Comment

  1. Steve Bayorgeon via Facebook

    December 4, 2012 at 1:40 pm

    The funny thing is I was at my agent’s office a while ago and noticed some pictures in the garbage can. The one on top was a great picture with an attractive blonde. I said:” Looks like that one made the special file.” She replied; “Yeah, but we already have her type.” My agency has a smaller roster, so this really was the case.

Leave a Reply

Latest Videos

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/sag-foundation-conversation-with.jpg
SAG Foundation Conversation with the Cast of NBC’s ‘Marry Me’
Earlier this month NBC put in an order for five additional episodes of its freshman romantic comedy series, Marry Me. While that isn’t exactly the shot of confidence that a full-season renewal provides, it’s enough to keep fans of the comedy — which is about an engaged couple who are determined to get married despite […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/michael-caine.jpg
Michael Caine Talks About Acting With Your Eyes and Does an Amazing Cold Read of a Script
This week acting legend Michael Caine appears in his sixth film directed by Christopher Nolan, Interstellar. In an interview clip from The New York Times that was shot around the release of the last movie Caine worked on with Nolan, The Dark Knight Rises, reporter Melena Ryzik spoke to Caine about his six-decade career. In […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/director-dan-gilroy-narrates-a-s.jpg
Director Dan Gilroy Narrates a Scene from ‘Nightcrawler’ Featuring Jake Gyllenhaal and Rene Russo
Nightcrawler is easily one of the best movies of the year and its star, Jake Gyllenhaal, is outstanding. Definitely check this out when you have a chance. In the above clip, writer/director Dan Gilroy narrates a sequence from the film that features Gyllenhaal and Rene Russo. He talks about giving Gyllenhaal a small piece of […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/matthew-mcconaughey-talks-losing.png
Matthew McConaughey Talks Losing the Lead Role in ‘Bernie’ to Jack Black
Though Matthew McConaughey has increased his earned plenty of respect since he started taking on more substantive movie roles in the last few years (with Dallas Buyers Club even earning him an Oscar for Best Actor), one director that always has been a fan of McConaughey is Richard Linklater. Linklater gave McConaughey his first big […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/watch-benedict-cumberbatch-film.jpg
Watch: Benedict Cumberbatch Film the Smaug Motion Capture for ‘The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug’
Though Peter Jackson‘s movie adaptations of The Hobbit haven’t received the same critical acclaim as his films based on the book’s sequel, The Lord of the Rings (turning a 300 page book into 9+ hours of film tends to do that), fans are still eagerly anticipating the release of the final part of The Hobbit […]