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UPDATE MAY 2021: This article was originally published early 2020 as “11 FREE Casting Sites Every New Actor Need to Know About” …. things have changed. In some cases the sites simply aren’t free anymore, and others just weren’t up front about fees to submit. I’ve gone through these sites one by one and updates the listings with current prices and my feedback on the site overall. 🙂 H.
For actors, there are a two main questions that run your acting career; “Where do I find acting work?” and “Where do I find more auditions?”. This can be especially challenging if you are a new actor and you don’t have any experience or credits or an agent or a manager. This is one of those catch 22 situations; the more work you’ve booked, the easier it is go to get auditions and therefore more work. This also helps in signing with an an agent or a manager.
Ultimately you need experience, credits and footage. And to get any of them, you’re going to first need to audition.
Like everything else in your career, the quality and quantity of your auditions will really improve with time and experience. Getting an audition for a network series out of the gate may be tough, but you have just got to jump in and start!
Commercials, are an excellent way to get your foot in the door, and indie films and student projects are the best way to build your resume, get demo reel footage and your hone your skills, both on-camera and in the audition process.
If you don’t have an agent or manager to look out for you, be smart and do your research first; if a project sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If they are promising to make you a star overnight or are asking for money to audition, really, seriously, just consider walking away!
Below I’ve listed 16 casting sites that all new actors should know about.
Thinking about submitting to a casting call?
Watch this first!
Professional Casting Sites: The Big Three
Entry Level Casting Sites
Need audition tips? Also read: 10 Audition Tips for Actors Who Want to Work
Reality TV & Showcases
When you’re a new actor it can be tempting to look for audition opportunities anywhere and everywhere and to take any job that comes your way. While I understand your eagerness to get going, there are a lot of unscrupulous people out there who will try to take advantage of your enthusiasm and lack of knowledge in the business. Be extremely cautious when looking for jobs on Craigslist and other “gig” sites that don’t properly vet their job listings or screen the clients.
Here are a few ground rules for staying safe and making sure the project is legit!
- Legitimate casting companies and production companies have legitimate websites, business contact information, and project history.
- Legitimate companies or industry professionals will never hide their identity in any way, or have auditions in non-professional settings.
- If the contact information seems weird in any way, it’s probably a scam.
- If it’s not a major company, Google them first. Red flags tend to pop up pretty fast.
- If you aren’t 100% positive it’s legit, just don’t do it.
- Promises of “high pay, no experience necessary” should be an immediate red flag. There are hundreds of thousands of working actors in the US alone, and if “high pay” is in the budget, they will go with experienced talent almost every time
- Non-Union gigs don’t pay more than union gigs, ever. There are fees and paperwork and accountability involved in signing with the union. There are completely legitimate productions that don’t have the budget for union procedures or union talent, but they definitely pay less.
- Major studios don’t cast on Craigslist or send out random emails or messages on social media. They always use reputable casting directors and websites with clear instructions and specific qualifications for applicants to follow.
Be sure to bookmark this page and go through the sites and at least set-up the free online profiles for yourself with whatever materials you have, (headshots etc.) to get your name and image out there. And although they are a great place to start, please note that I am not endorsing any of these sites, but I have researched whatever is here. They are the best I’ve found so far and only included ones that are legit. So jump in, try this out, and start building your career.
I’d love to hear your thoughts!
- What audition challenges do you face?
- What stage of your career are you at?
- Where do you live? What city or town?
- And what are your big audition questions?
Head to the comments sections and post your answers below. I promise to respond to every one!
Did you like or love this post? Be sure to share it on Facebook, send it to actor friends, Pin it or Tweet it! It’s a tough business and we could all use a little help out there!
* Please Note: I am not an agent, manager, or casting director. I do not procure work for actors. All information, workshops and coaching are for educational purposes only and are not a guarantee or promise of employment. Thank you for being here!