casting call can be a pivotal moment in an actor’s career, the gateway to a new role and, potentially, a new level of fame and success. But what is a casting call? This article aims to shed light on the process of acting auditions, demystifying the intensity and anticipation surrounding casting calls. From the initial call to the heart-pounding moments before stepping into the spotlight, we’ll take you on a journey into the heart of the acting world.

What is a Casting Call in Film and Television

First, let’s define casting call

Let's first clarify the concept at the core of this journey — what exactly is a casting call?


What is a casting call?

A casting call is an invitation extended to actors and performers to audition for various roles in a film, TV show, theater production, or other entertainment mediums. It serves as a platform where casting directors and producers can meticulously evaluate the vast talent pool, considering factors such as acting skills, versatility, charisma, and suitability for the specific character. This intricate process ensures that the selected actor is not only capable but also the ideal fit for bringing the character to life on screen or stage.


What is a Casting Call Used For?

  • Identify potential talent
  • Ensure character fit
  • Shape creative direction

Casting Call Meaning

Casting call vs. audition

While the terms "casting call" and "audition" are often used interchangeably, there are subtle differences between the two. A casting call typically refers to the broad initial process, where a wide range of talents are screened. 

This is usually an open invitation for anyone to come and demonstrate their skills. An audition, on the other hand, is the next stage of the process. After the casting call, actors who showed potential are invited back for an audition, which is often a more specific and intense examination of an actor's suitability for a role.


Where to find casting calls

Casting calls can be found through a variety of sources. Talent agencies are often the first to know about casting calls and are a reliable source for actors represented by them. 

Online platforms and websites, such as Backstage, Actors Access, or Casting Networks, are also valuable resources for finding casting calls. These websites often provide listings of casting calls from across the world, classified by location, role type, and project type.

Here is a solid video full of tips on what to expect from casting calls and more resources on where to find them.

Everything You Need to Know About Open Casting Calls & Where to Find Them

In addition, aspiring actors can find casting calls through local theater networks, drama schools, and industry publications. Social media platforms are also becoming an increasingly popular medium for casting calls, especially for independent or lower-budget projects.

What is a Casting Call for Actors?

Tips for attending a casting call

Navigating a casting call can be daunting, especially if you're new to the acting world. However, with the right preparation and mindset, you can turn this opportunity into a positive and productive experience.

In this section, we offer tips and advice to help you make a strong impression at your next casting call.

How To Impress a Casting Director | Tips From an Acting Coach

Be Prepared: Have your performance material well-rehearsed and ready. Bring copies of your resume and headshots if possible.

Dress Appropriately: Your attire should reflect the character for which you are auditioning. Avoid overly flashy or distracting clothing.

Arrive Early: Punctuality shows professionalism and provides you with time to relax and prepare mentally.

Stay Focused: Concentrate on your performance, not the people in the room. The casting panel is there to observe, not to intimidate.

Show Confidence: Confidence is key in portraying your ability and showing the casting directors that you are capable of handling the role.


How to create a casting call

Creating a well-crafted casting call is crucial for attracting the right talent for your project. Here, we discuss the steps to create a compelling and effective casting call.

All of these can be found on our free casting call template found below.

Casting Call Sheet Template PDF Download

Click to view and download the entire Casting Call Sheet Template PDF below.

Step 1: Define your Project

Before you start crafting your casting call, it's important to have a clear understanding of your project. This includes the type of project (film, theater, commercial, etc.), the roles you're looking to cast, plot summary, and the time commitment required from the actors.

Step 2: Create a Role Description

Each casting call should include a detailed description of the role. This includes the character's name, age, gender, and any significant traits or characteristics that are integral to the role. Be as clear and concise as possible while providing all necessary details.

Step 3: Add the Project Details

Provide details about the project such as its title, director, production company, and any notable people attached to it. Also, indicate whether it's a paid or unpaid job, the dates and location of the shoot, and any other relevant specifics.

Step 4: Include the Audition Details

Specify the format of the audition, whether it's a live audition, a video submission, or both. Include the date, time, and location for live auditions, and the deadline for video submissions. 

Step 5: Set Up a Casting Call Template

A casting call template can streamline the process of creating a casting call. Typically, it should include:

Step 6: Distribute the Casting Call

Once you've created your casting call, spread it far and wide. Post it on casting websites and social media platforms, send it to talent agencies, or distribute it through your professional network. The more visibility your casting call has, the higher the chance of finding the perfect actor for your role. 

Remember, the key to a successful casting call is clarity and detail. Providing comprehensive information about the role and project will help attract the right talent and make the casting process smoother and more efficient.

Entering the world of casting calls whether you are an actor, casting director, or filmmaker can be thrilling and nerve-racking at the same time. Just remember, with preparation and persistence, every casting call or audition becomes a stepping stone towards a successful acting career or great film.


Best Free Casting Websites

Now that we've explored the world of casting calls and auditions, let's move our focus to practical resources. In the following article, we'll delve into the best free-casting websites you can use as an actor or filmmaker. 

Up Next: Best Casting Sites →
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  • Kyle DeGuzman graduated from San Diego State University with a Bachelor of Science in Television, Film, & New Media. He currently resides in Denver, Colorado spending his time writing, filmmaking, and traveling.

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