Casting Director Neely Gurman gives her two-cents

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Neely Gurman has been working on her own for 3 years now and sheís loving it. From being an intern, assistant and associate at a talent agency and at the prestigious Universal Studios, to wrapping a music video and a short film about the holocaust, she certainly broke out on her own and worked her way up. Apart from being a great person, she is known and considered to be a great casting director. Her highly recommended workshops are held every couple of months and she always tries to call in former workshoppers for any of her projects. Neely casts both union and non-union projects, and though a job isnít guaranteed, she promises lots of good information and great insight about this challenging business, especially how to help them get their own work and the proper steps to take to being a successful actor. Constant hustle and bustle is what it takes for her to get those jobs, as well as knowing a lot of people and doing a lot of networking. She compares it to living a nomadic lifestyle, just like being in an actorís shoes.


Actors coming in during casting without a picture and a resume (or an unstapled resume at that!) is a big no-no for Neely Gurman. Saying that you got the script yesterday is also a huge drawback, and so she advises actors to prepare because someone who just got the script may nail it over someone whoís had it for a week. But for her the most unnecessary thing to do in castings is to get to close to the casting director, apart from it being distracting, you will most likely wonít get the job. So, keep your distance and it will definitely pay off. She also recommends for actors to put their personal contact information on their resume, contradicting agentsí usual belief to never include them. There are lots of times when casting directors need to call actors after hours, when the agents are closed, and they have no way of getting in touch with them. So, contact information is a definite must.

A lot of new and aspiring actors are not aware that they should be responsible and go out of their way to learn about this business. When they first get to town, they should take Neely Gurmanís class, which not only teaches the business side of this industry and proper steps to do it, but the responsibility side of it as well. This casting director also uses Actors Access to get out her breakdowns. But she stresses out that if people are on Actors Access and their going to submit themselves on a project, they have to make sure they constantly check their C-Mail to see if they didnít get an audition. And if they did get one, most of the time, people confirm but they never show up, and that is terribly annoying, especially during producers session. And this will lead to not wanting to call them back in.


And in this day and age of modern technology, Neely Gurman prefers to receive postcards once every couple of months as a way of keeping in touch and to remind her. But do not overdo it, just like when an actor sent her a postcard once a week and she had to email the actor and tell her to stop! Definitely, a big waste of time and postage. When she has the luxury of time, she like to watch reels online, particularly when casting a project.

Last thing that Neely Gurman wants to impart to actors is that they donít need to be off book for auditions, itís not about that. She believes people get to stumbled up on trying to learn the lines instead of having the paper in their hands. Itís not a screen test so they donít need to memorize everything. She thinks actors need to focus on the sides and lines so they can get the material right. And also, donít start changing the lines, especially if its comedy because the writers work so hard on the script and if actors start switching up the lines, then the jokes donít work.

Lance Carter is the editor of Daily Actor. which is one of the fastest growing acting and actor related websites on the internet. This site became live on June 30th, 2008. Originally, the goal was to help promote actors and post acting and actor news that he found on the web. For more information, including site statistics, ad locations and pricing visit Daily Actor.

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