Acting : Having a reel by Bobbie Wigginton

Bobbie Wigginton

Having a reel

What if you haven't had a speaking role on a movie/tv, yet, and you are asked to submit a reel. Can you video/tape a monologue and use that?

D Marcus

Yes you can.

Cheryl Texiera

Yes. You can do that. You can also create a reel at places like: &

Dan LaRoy

you can act in short films and student films to get scenes for a reel. a monologue is something. better than nothing but when they watch it they may think you are unexperienced. If you are talented that won't matter so much but having a good reel is much better.

Patti Nedham-Valero

I've got to make a reel but I do not have any acting friends.

LindaAnn Loschiavo

@ Patti in Tampa -- solution for you! Audition for Carrollwood Players Theatre, Tampa's community theatre group (estab 1981)!! Theatre groups in Florida always have roles for actresses. When you're in a play, get a camera crew to film you at a tech or dress rehearsal. Also follow the short play circuit in Florida. You'll be cast in six plays in one weekend, Patti. For an actress in a big city like Tampa there are many ways to get yourself in front of the footlights quicker than I can say, "Author! Author!" Do not write a play for yourself --- focus on what you are good at -- auditioning and ACTING. Books of monologues are available for under $5.

Andrew M. A. Spear

Go ahead and do a monologue, just remember to make it look professional. Good lighting good sound, good framing (we want to see your face). Even with a monologue don't look into the camera. If doing a scene, have your partner off camera, remember this is about you. And when choosing your words (script) make sure it is reflective of your TYPE. If you cannot have it done well, technically, don't do it at all. Rely on a good headshot (that in itself is another topic for discussion).

Stephen Anthony Bailey

I advise you to create your own short film that shows you off. It costs very little to do something good enough if you ask the right people for help with sound, camera, and editing. We live in a time where we must make our own way in this industry.

Thomas Bailey

Go the short film route. You can make scenes you want to showcase acting wise and can even shoot / edit the whole thing on your phone.

Wesam Keesh

I would recommend filming two scenes that market you the best as possible. For instance, if you're the type who would go out for the quirky best friend, film a 1 minute to 2 minute scene that showcases that type of archetypical character. And if you can't find a scene, write one!

Jorge J Prieto

Just go for it! Tape a monologue, 3 minutes max. What do you got to lose? Keep checking the JOBS section here at Stage 32, for short films casting in your neck of the woods. Good luck.

Regina Lee

I have to disagree. If the casting folks or reps specifically ask you for a reel, why do you want to tape a monologue instead of giving them what they have asked you for? Create a showreel like they've specifically asked for. You can create a reel almost just as easily as putting yourself on tape performing a monologue.

Regina Lee

Jorge, what is the reasoning behind specifically showing that you don't want to oblige the casting team's request? Is your intent to show that you know better than the decision-makers?

JD Hartman

A reel is supposed to be your work, not a monologue. You should be able to ask Producer/Director(s) who's projects you worked on for a clip of your choice.

Regina Lee

Yes to JD. A reel can be made "on spec." A Talent rep or Casting Director is going to feel like they've wasted their time with you. They extended an olive branch. "Send me your reel." Why ignore their olive branch and send a monologue instead? Make an extra effort. It's on you. Make the reel for them. This is an opportunity. Make the effort to deliver. Break a leg!! Go get the part!

Regina Lee

If you don't have clips to pull from, create the reel on spec. EDIT: I think the monologue should be a last resort. Try to mimic a reel if you can. Try to give them what they specifically asked for.

Suzanne Bronson

Absolutely don't do a monologue if they ask for a reel. It's not that hard to create your own if you don't have any film & tv that you've done. I am in the process of doing that myself. And I am doing what Wesam suggests. Ask your friends and family what kind of roles they see you playing and then find 2-4 contrasting scenes that showcase you. Yes you need other actors- that's where networking comes in. I use scenes from plays that having me playing the character type I want, (at this point I only use one other actor) than I use my networking skills to find an actor matching the description I need for the other character. I even found a cinematographer to film us thru networking. and he edits and the other actor gets a copy as well. It's a quid pro quo thing that is working out great for all involved and has not cost a thing. Each of the four scenes runs around 5 mins. Which after I have the four scenes shot I will have them edited into a 2 min reel. At the end of the day, my only real expense will be hiring an editor. And depending where you live, there are companies who write, cast, shoot, and edit a professional reel for you but that can be speedy.

Sidney Flack

Good discussion here. The only point I would stress is to keep your general reel to three minutes max, less is better, with your very best work at the front. If you want it there, have a two second name plate at the front. Each segment of the reel should be your best moments of whatever it is and should show you, not your scene partner. When you have enough to do so, then you can also split things up into one minute genre reels: e.g., drama, comedy, commercial, etc. That way, you can target the project. A thriller project doesn't need to see your comedy work, and visa versa. Casting directors will tell you over and over that they know within the first 5-15 seconds if they're going to keep watching or click the next submission. Don't waste their time. Give them your best work first and keep it short. They'll ask if they want to see more.

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