There’s plenty of online talent directories these days promising to make people instant stars. Many of them offer free signup but then ask you to pay a monthly fee to become a full member.
None of the casting consultants we speak to waste their time with these directories. In the film and television industry, time is money and posting a job on these public directories opens the production up to thousands of irrelevant applications. Many of those are from people who don’t meet the criteria for the role. The casting consultant needs to spend days sifting through all the results and then hope that the people they pick from there are reliable. Any consultants that try these directories, give up on them pretty quickly.
When the casting consultants call MCTV for talent, we find the people who match the brief and only send those. We also know that our talent are reliable and will turn up if asked. We also handle all the communication with the talent which is another massive timesaving on any large production. That’s why all the serious productions use an agent like MCTV.
So what do you end up with on online talent directories? Unpaid work and small productions where the chance of landing a paid role are very small. Then, if you do get a paid role, you don’t have an agent to negotiate the right fees and rollovers and other terms and conditions that are part of working as an actor. There’s a place for online talent directories for sure, but it’s important to understand what you are getting into. You should also be careful that you are not being taken advantage of. You can find out more information on the Fair Work Website.