5 essential tips to help you get an acting agent

Actors starting out tend to want to jump straight into getting an agent – but the reality is having representation is only really worthwhile if you've got the work to back it up. There are thousands of budding actors out there, armed with showreels and numerous completing projects, all looking for their first agent, or to change representation. Competition is fierce, and you need to make sure you've got everything in order and that you are ready.

29th January 2018
/ By Matthew Whitehouse

Acting agent tips PIXABAY

Mandy News walks you through five essentials you need to know before approaching an acting agent.

Start small
If you've got a CV that's steadily growing, you've done your fair share of local auditions and you're ready to take the next step, start getting in touch with local agencies. Keeping it local and small at first is no bad thing, they can help you land regional TV shows and help you get small starting roles – all these things will make your CV more robust and help you get to that next step in your career.

That said, if you have connections with a larger agency, then go for it. 

Excellent CV and headshots
The headshot is your calling card. It's the first thing an agent will look at and is well worth spending money on. A good set of headshots can be the difference between landing a job and ending up in the bin. Similarly, make sure your CV is up to date, and has any relevant acting experience in TV, film, shorts and plays. Keeping it up to date shows you're constantly working and your latest credit might just be the one that catches an eye and gets you the next gig. Maybe leave the four years of barista work out, though.

Approach specific agents
Take at a look at who represents the people you feel you share an affinity with, rather than just blanket emailing everybody. Do you you do weird dark comedy? Want to focus on drama? Maybe you're looking for a sitcom or soap opera. Different agents represent different types of actors. Research them all and show whoever you contact that you've done the work to find out who would be best for you.

Follow up
So you've reached out to a number of agencies that you feel will work well for you. If it's been a reasonable amount of time since your sent out your CV and headshots – 2-3 weeks – it's time for a follow up email. Keep it simple, nothing's more off-putting than the stench of desperation, all you're doing is reminding them you exist and trying to get a dialogue going.

Found this useful? Check out our top tips on approaching an acting agent.

Based in London? Here are the top London acting agents for TV and film.