What Parents Should Know About Kids Casting
Interested in getting your child background work with Central Casting? Parts of the booking process and being on set with children are different than they are for adults, so even if you’ve worked as a Background Actor, you may not know the ins and outs of kids casting.
Make a Reservation for Minors Talent Onboarding
Central Casting books babies from 15 days old to teenagers 17 years old to work in movies, TV shows, and many other productions. Before we can cast your child, you will need to make a reservation to attend a Minors Talent Onboarding session at one of our offices in Los Angeles, New York, Georgia, or Louisiana. During Talent Onboarding, we will review your minor’s required Form I-9 documentation then you’ll fill out paperwork and your child will have their photo taken for our casting platform. To learn more about Minors Talent Onboarding, visit the Kids Sign Up page.
Fill out or update your minor’s online profile
Casting Directors book their projects based off the photos and information in your child’s online profile. We know kids can grow quickly; keeping your minor’s profile updated as they grow is a great way to set them up for success and help our Casting Directors determine if they are right for roles. To change their sizes and other details, log in to their profile, open the “appearance” section, and update any incorrect information.
We also recommend uploading new photos every six months or any time their look changes so Casting Directors always have an accurate representation of your child’s current appearance. Photos don’t need to be professional, but should be well-lit and clear, not include other people or touch ups, and (if possible) be taken against a solid or white background. You can upload your child’s photos in the “photographs” section of their profile.
Keep your minor’s work permit up to date
One of the most important documents in kids casting is the work permit. All minors need a valid work permit to be booked on our productions. The process for obtaining and updating minor work permits varies by state. You can learn more about permit requirements by reading our guide or by visiting your state’s department of labor website.
In Los Angeles and New York, always bring a tangible photocopy of your minor’s work permit to set. You will need to show this every time your child works. In Georgia and Louisiana, Central Casting will secure a work permit for your child. Be sure to read all communications from the Casting Director as you will often need to submit documentation to us to complete this process.
Be professional and follow production’s directions
Being on set is exciting and gives your child a front row seat to how movies and TV shows are made. Please be aware and help your child understand that while being on set can be fun, it’s also a work environment. There are strict laws governing how long children can be on set and production is trying to get all their work in while managing the limitations on their minor Background Actors and any principal minors in the scene. Your child should remain in your sight at all times and should not be left in the care of another child’s parent or any crew member. It is your job to make sure they are safe and behaving on set.
During filming, production will have a designated area for parents and guardians behind the scenes, but still within sight of the child. Please stay in the designated area so you don’t disrupt the cast and crew.
When your child is not filming, you may be sent to Holding, a school area, or craft services. Studio lots and location sets are busy places, so for everyone’s safety, stay within your designated area.
Now that you know what to expect on set, you’ll be prepared the next time your child is booked by Central Casting. Keep an eye on our job posts and brush up on our common messaging questions so you’ll know what to do if you get a message from a Casting Director.