Background Actor Do’s and Don’ts for Submitting

MAY 6, 2024
Hands holding a phone submitting for work on Central Casting jobs page.

As a Central Casting Background Actor, there are a variety of ways you can get booked. Our Casting Directors may search our casting platform and send you an availability inquiry or you can proactively look for work on our Jobs page. Here's what to keep in mind when submitting to help you get booked an on set.

Do read the whole post carefully

In their posts, Casting Directors will include specific requirements for the role, like portrayable age, portrayable ethnicity, hair color, hair length, sizes, SAG-AFTRA status, work dates, and more. Please read these posts fully and carefully to determine if you meet all the requirements before submitting. For example, if a Casting Director is looking for someone who can portray an African American man in his 60s with a gray mustache to work the next day, you must meet all the requirements to submit. If you mostly fit the description, but are clean shaven, you should not submit.

Do follow submission instructions

If you determine that you meet all the requirements and would like to submit for the role, another key detail to look for is how the Casting Director would like you to submit. The submission instructions can vary by Casting Director and show, so it's important to read through them carefully.

If instructed to send an email, be sure to include all the details asked for, like name, contact information, and email subject line. This makes it easier for Casting Directors to sort through submissions and look up your profile in our casting platform.

Do tell us if your availability changes

After you submit for a role, a Casting Director may then reach out with an availability inquiry. You can respond as available to multiple shows for the same work date. If you're on first avail or are booked and your availability changes, you must call Central Casting to let us know. You cannot change your first avail status or cancel a booking by responding to an availability inquiry or changing your availability on your online calendar.

We know many Background Actors worry about saying no to availability inquiries, but rest assured responding as unavailable has no impact on future messages you may receive. In fact, responding as unavailable when you can't work actually helps Casting Directors know if they need to reach out to additional Background Actors. It also shows that you are engaged and actively responding to messages.

Don't submit for roles you don't fit the requirements for

Some job posts may include requirements for special skills, wardrobe, or props. We know you're eager to get on set, but submitting for roles when you can't convincingly portray a skill on camera or cannot bring that wardrobe or prop to set, doesn't help you or the Casting Director. Please always be honest about your skill level and wardrobe/props you own and have access to.

Don't miss out on future opportunities

In addition to posting open roles on our Jobs page, Casting Directors use your photos and the information in your online profile to determine the types of roles you can portray. The more detailed and accurate information you add, the easier it is for them to find you when searching our casting platform. If it's been a while since you've updated your profile, now is a great opportunity to review your profile information to make any updates or to fill in additional details. This is especially important for sizes, which Casting Directors use in a variety of ways, like when booking doubles and when production provides wardrobe.

The photos in your profile should always reflect your current look. Any time you update your photos, you should also delete any pictures that are outdated.

Want to learn more about submitting for work and finding background jobs through Central Casting? Check out our articles 5 Tips for Getting Booked and Do's and Don'ts for Submitting Photos to Casting Directors.

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By Meghan Dubitsky

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