How to Get on TV

AUGUST 8, 2022
A principal actor and Background Actors on set of Law and Order: SVU.
Law & Order: SVU (NBC)

Do you have dreams of being the next TV star? Or just want a chance to see how your favorite shows get made? If you want to get on TV, Central Casting is a great place to start.

What is Central Casting?

Central Casting is the leading background casting company in the entertainment industry. Since 1925, we've been casting Background Actors, Stand-Ins, doubles, and other roles in blockbuster hits, Oscar-winning films, your favorite TV shows, Emmy-winning series, and everything in between. With offices in Los Angeles, New York, Georgia, and Louisiana, there are plenty of opportunities for you to get booked and on set.

New to the industry and unfamiliar with background work? Here's an overview on common roles we cast.

  • Background Actors are non-speaking roles that typically appear in the background of scenes. Without Background Actors, football stadiums in All American, New York streets in Law & Order, and classrooms in The Wonder Years would all look like Hollywood sets instead of authentic scenes.
  • Stand-Ins take the place of principal actors for blocking, lighting, and camera set-ups. Depending on the type of production and role, a Stand-In may need to match the actor's height, build, hair color, and complexion.
  • Doubles replace a principal actor on screen, though their faces are rarely (if ever) seen. Doubles are used when a character is in a scene but not the focus, when an actor can't convincingly portray a skill, and a variety of other reasons.

Make a reservation for Talent Onboarding

Ready to become a Central Casting Background Actor? You can learn more about signing up by visiting your location's Sign Up page.

Want to register your minor? Central Casting onboards minors from 15 days old to 17 years old to work on our productions. the Kids Sign Up page has everything you need to know about completing Talent Onboarding with your minor and finding them background work.

Update your online profile

After completing Talent Onboarding, you will gain access to your Central Casting online profile. By filling out your profile completely and accurately, you can help Casting Directors determine the types of roles you can portray. Please be honest about the information you add, including your sizes, appearance, skills, and other details. When you're booked, you will be expected to show up to set with the same look described in your online profile. If you need help figuring out your correct sizes, watch our easy-to-follow guides on the Measurements page.

The headshot and fully body shot you take at Talent Onboarding are the main photos in your profile, but we recommend adding additional photos of you in unique and distinct looks, cars you own, and pets you are willing to work with. It's also important to add a photo that represents your current looks anytime your look changes so Casting Directors always know what you look like right now.

Now that you know how to get on TV, learn how to find work through Central Casting and how to prepare for set.

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By Meghan Dubitsky

Article Category:

Industry Essentials