One of the things that can get me incensed as a career coach is when casting websites pop up promising to give actors access to stardom. Some sites make it sounds like an actor’s big break is just around the corner, and all they need to do is pay a fee and they’re in! But most actors know that success comes with good training, strong relationship building, and the ability & wherewithal to seize an opportunity when it presents itself (also known as tenacity.) The trouble is, even the smartest actor has heard at least one rags-to-riches story, and the allure of a quick win sometimes overshadows common sense.
So, to combat the many unscrupulous characters baiting actors with empty promises, below you’ll find 8 of my favorite reputable and best casting websites websites where you can submit to casting notices.
Any of the others not listed here typically have the same notices that are on the above sites. If you are in LA or NY, I would caution you if paying to use any website other than these listed, it probably wouldn’t be worth the money. Of course, there are exceptions and I am sure a new trusted casting website will come along and blow away the competition. But as of now, the above sites are the most reputable for those in the major markets.
Please note: Not every website has a vetting process, so it is up to the actor to research the casting notice to make sure the project is legitimate. Even for a casting website like Actors Access, which is probably the most professional and popular service, unsavory notices can get listed (especially on public forums like Craigslist.) It is up to the actor to keep themselves safe, so use caution when submitting your materials.
A side note: Any website that claims to have notices for principal roles on TV and studio film projects is probably not being truthful. I notice these sites all the time, saying things like, “Find auditions for Grey’s Anatomy here!” or “Breakdowns for CSI just posted!” … only to find out that they are simply posting the general address for the casting directors (who accept submissions via mail EVERY DAY.) Just because you can post your headshot and resume on their service doesn’t mean it’s worth the price.
Occasionally, Actors Access and Backstage will show roles for feature films and TV shows, but these are usually roles that are very hard to cast, like 70 year old Filipino twins. Principal roles for TV and studio features almost exclusively go through Breakdown Services, which are not accessible to actors OR these other casting sites.
As promised: Here are a few casting sites for other parts of the country:
Actors Alliance of San Diego
San Diego Theatre World
League of Chicago Theatres
Daily Actor Readers– if you know of casting websites from other cities that are reputable, post the links as a comment so that other actors can benefit from your experience.
Feel free to post any comments/questions you might have – and happy auditioning!
Erin Cronican’s career as a professional actor and career coach has spanned the last 25 years in New York City, Los Angeles and regionally. She is the founder of The Actors’ Enterprise (TAE), a fun and inspiring one-on-one coaching service that provides incredibly affordable business training to actors who want to feel more fulfilled and in control of their careers. With an approach that is hands-on and customized for each person, TAE helps actors set goals, organize their business, and create a plan of action with easy tools that can take them to the next level, no matter where they are starting from. TAE’s focus includes coaching on marketing/career development, business skills, and audition techniques that help actors work SMARTER, not HARDER.
Actors who are interested in coaching can receive a free 30 minute career consultation (by phone or in person.) Learn more at www.theactorsenterprise.org or www.erincronican.com.
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This was REALLY helpful. Thank you! I wish more artists believed in sharing with their contemporaries. It is how we become stronger as a community.
Actors Access website is antiquated. May be of value, but these sites need to up their user experience.
Breakdown Express doesn’t have a new user radio button or registration fields. And they require Flash! Seriously?
As a local site in Utah, I’ve found utahactors.ning.com to be helpful. It’s been primarily extra work with a principle in an independent or student film here or there. The emails and postings are professional and membership is free.
Thanks for the post- very helpful.
Really reputed casting resources and I prefer these top websites. If anyone looking for modeling and acting talent then easily use these websites.
actorsreport.com is the best,honest,free website.
backstage, delman and la casting work for me
Craigslist??? How can a blog about avoiding scams actually recommend Craigslist? Maybe the Union bus depot is also a good place.
Project Casting seems to use real casts mixed with fake cast quite often enough that I believe someone is working with the casting scams to legitimize their site and lure models and actors to secluded places or financial theft.
Project Casting and Casting Networks have gone downhill or antiquated. Neither updates their platform, nor responds to calls or emails for assistance anymore. Hence their absurdly low ratings. Only Actors Access and Now Casting are openly accessible resources for new and returning actors.
Project Casting is a SCAM!!!