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Advice for contacting a well-known actor


Jason Hinkle (RIP)
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I've been tasked with trying to hire a celebrity for a guest spot on a series. I've dealt with plenty of actors and managers but never had to reach out to a really well known actor before.

 

This actor's agent is at WMA and represents about 20 very high profile actors & I have no personal contacts that I can reach out to so I basically have no one to introduce me. Not wanting to introduce myself as a total idiot - should I call and ask to speak directly with the agent? I'm assuming they have assistants. Should I just mention the actor I wish to contact and my project to whoever answers the phone?

 

Thanks for any advice!

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I've been tasked with trying to hire a celebrity for a guest spot on a series. I've dealt with plenty of actors and managers but never had to reach out to a really well known actor before.

 

This actor's agent is at WMA and represents about 20 very high profile actors & I have no personal contacts that I can reach out to so I basically have no one to introduce me. Not wanting to introduce myself as a total idiot - should I call and ask to speak directly with the agent? I'm assuming they have assistants. Should I just mention the actor I wish to contact and my project to whoever answers the phone?

 

Thanks for any advice!

It all starts with a phone call to the agent.

 

 

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

It all starts with a phone call to the agent.

 

Sometimes you can get right through to the office where A-list megastar is sitting. He's right there and listening to his PA take the call. But getting past the very well trained PA is nigh on impossible without a little inside information. In other words, you won't get through but the call from the megastar's child's teacher in school will.

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Just call the agents office in the first instance - I just ask to speak with the person who represents Actor X, you will either be put throught to the main agent or assistant in the first instance.

 

The first thing I always ask is does the actor have any avalibly to work on any projects during the period of your shoot - since they could be on a 3 month shoot in another country and completly not avalible for your shoot. So get that bit out of the way before you even discuss your project, not point pitching it if its not going to happen.

 

Then just tell them what the project is and what the comittment in terms of time is, a good adgent will probably want to know more about the project and why its worth taking it too their client. If it goes well they will ask for a treament or script and then its in the lap of the gods...

 

I'd try to be vague about money up front, you don't want the adgent to close the doors based on the fee (if its a bit low), more likely you want them to like the script and get hooked on the idea - then its easier to negotiate on the money, if the actor wants to do it.

 

I've done this a few times and probably sounded like an idiot on some occasions, but I've had some success and got scripts to big(ish) actors, even on projects I did as a student. Ultimatly it was schedualing that let me down as good actors are often busy and even if they like the project, its difficult for them to fit everything in.

 

Of course it might be a bit more difficult in the USA with layers of people to get through, it might be a bit easier in the UK, but we have less mega-stars so UK actors in general are a bit more approachable.

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