I first met Casting Director Scott David at a workshop a couple of years ago. I had heard so many good things about him and his class that when I got the chance, I signed up immediately. In the class, we came in with a prepared monologue, he handed out scenes – long ones – and then improv. It was a really fun time and one of the best workshops I’ve attended.
Scott has been casting since 1996. He’s currently casting CBS’s Criminal Minds but he also casts for film, theater and web-series. In 2010, he was awarded the Heller Award for Favorite Television Casting Director from the Talent Managers Association.
He’s recently joined up with Beckinfield, the sci-fi mystery website where you can create and play a character, collaborate with others and showcase yourself as an actor. Each month, Scott watches the actor’s videos, chooses his favorites and gives comments on their performances. Check out my interview with the founders of Beckinfield here.
Scott is a truly great guy, he loves actors and if you ever have a chance to get in front of him, do it!
I talked to Scott about casting, actor’s being unprepared, how we can find our “type” and Beckinfield!
What should actors always remember when coming into your office for an audition?
Scott David: Oh, the first thing is always to be prepared. Dress appropriately and act professionally, those three are the most important things.
So, people actually come in with like inappropriate clothes?
Scott David: Sometimes, women will come in and be a little bit more suggestive when they don’t need to be. Sometimes guys will come in way to casual for a role meaning wearing jeans and t-shirt where the role might be something like playing a lawyer and you need to be wearing a suit and a tie. But the outlandish stuff is probably a little bit appropriate if the role is calling for not something a little bit outlandish.
This is a guest post by Dallas Travers
How familiar does this scenario sound to you? You decide that it’s time to cultivate solid relationships with television casting directors, so you sign up for a workshop service in order to meet these people face to face. Over the course of the next year, you meet two different casting directors each month totaling twenty-four first meetings. Yet no one really knows you because they’ve only met you once. I meet tons of actors every month who believe strongly that casting director workshops don’t work. Well, of course they don’t when you never really develop a relationship with the casting directors you meet.
A lot of actors make this mistake, and I understand why. It’s easy to fall into the trap that the more people you meet, the more opportunities you’ll have. But that’s just not true. It’s not about who you know in this town. It’s about who knows you. You cannot become known after just one meeting. It takes time to build a relationship.
So here’s how you can use The Rule of Seven to make casting director workshops work for you.
Create your target list. There are literally hundreds of casting directors in Hollywood, so it’s pretty impossible to effectively apply the Rule of Seven to all of them. Not to worry – you don’t have to. Just select a small (less than 12) list of casting directors and target them specifically and consistently.
Visit www.castingabout.com or www.imdbpro.com and research those television shows where the most opportunity for co-stars and guest stars exists. Please note that I did not just tell you to make a list of your favorite shows! I know, everybody loves The Office, but part of what makes that show so great is the fact that the cast is stuck together day in and day out working in an office, so new characters are rarely introduced. Instead, make a list of those shows that feature new characters on a consistent basis such as Cold Case, CSI, or any of the other countless procedural episodics.