How To Impress A Talent Manager – Backstage.com Article

Here is a Great Article I wrote for Backstage Magazine.com

Wendy Alane Wright, Talent Manager

Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood talent manager and the president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared on television networks such as ABC, NBC, TNT, CBS, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, and more. They have booked TV shows including “Modern Family,” “Blackish,” “Extant,” “The Colony,” “Animal Kingdom,” “My Haunted House,” and “Henry Danger,” as well as hundreds of commercials for major spots including Shutterfly, Mercedes, Visa, Taco Bell, Honda, Legos, Hot Wheels, and many more. Prior to being a manager and a talent agent at Burn Down Entertainment, Wright assisted many high profile managers, agents, and publicists. For 20 years she was a recording artist, actor, and music producer, and is now the author of five books called, “Secrets of a Hollywood Talent Manager.” Wright teaches the business of acting all over the country and is on the faculty of schools including the New York Studio for Stage and Screen in North Carolina and LA Acting Academy in Phoenix, Arizona. For years she has appeared in numerous magazines, and on radio shows and talk shows including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

To submit to WAW Entertainment 
please email the following:
Headshots (smiling and serious)
Resume in PDF format
30 second Acting clips or
2 minute Demo Reels
Short Cover Note
Link to your Actors Access and LA Casting Profiles
Contact information
Height, Weight, Age
City You Live in.
to WAWENTERTAINMENT@YAHOO.COM
We accept submission from kids ages 4-17
Young Adults Ages 18- 22
Character Actors, Comedic Actors, Beautiful Faces.
All Ethnicities, shapes and sizes.
Please NOTE: Any submissions that don’t have the information we just requested will be deleted without review.  We will only respond to actors that currently fit what we are looking to add to our roster.
Good Luck!

SUMMER in LA: What Parents Can Expect

Talent Manager Wendy Alane Wright
Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood talent manager and the president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared on television networks such as ABC, NBC, TNT, CBS, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, and more. They have booked TV shows including “Modern Family,” “Blackish,” “Extant,” “The Colony,” “Animal Kingdom,” “My Haunted House,” and “Henry Danger,” as well as hundreds of commercials for major spots including Shutterfly, Mercedes, Visa, Taco Bell, Honda, Legos, Hot Wheels, and many more. Prior to being a manager and a talent agent at Burn Down Entertainment, Wright assisted many high profile managers, agents, and publicists. For 20 years she was a recording artist, actor, and music producer, and is now the author of five books called, “Secrets of a Hollywood Talent Manager.” Wright teaches the business of acting all over the country and is on the faculty of schools including the New York Studio for Stage and Screen in North Carolina and LA Acting Academy in Phoenix, Arizona. For years she has appeared in numerous magazines, and on radio shows and talk shows including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

PARENTS COMING TO LA DURING SUMMER I just want you know that coming to LA in the summer for two or three weeks doesn’t really do much for an actor’s career in terms of getting them jobs.

Kids get jobs on television and film because they audition for the same casting directors so many times that eventually they book projects here and there.

Casting Director’s get to know them and know what to bring them in for. Of course you have got to start building those relationships some time. You just need to know that being here for only two or three weeks might mean not even seeing anything in the breakdowns that fits the description of your children.

Every day descriptions come out explaining what Casting is looking for. Often weeks go by and they don’t really even want that many children for television show or films and are casting a lot of adults. Some seasons are heavier with kids auditions. Typically  the summer time is usually very slow for actors in general because almost all shows are on hiatus.

WHY COME TO LA IN THE SUMMER? Usually when parents bring their kids out to LA for the summer, they come out to take acting training in Los Angeles to get better skills, superb headshots,  and they take workshops and classes with casting directors to start meeting the Casting Directors.

HEADSHOT PHOTOGRAPHERS
I recommend MARC CARTWRIGHT, TIHANY, ALEX KRUK, KENNETH DOLIN and FLY GIRL PHOTOGRAPHY.

Plus excellent kids acting training is offered at ACTORSITE, ACTOR TRAINING IN LA (ATLA) and with Andrew Magarian at SIMPLY ACTING and ZAK BARNETT STUDIOS (ZBS.) Fir commercial training I suggest Judy Kain at KEEP IT REAL ACTING.

It’s also an opportunity to get familiar with the lay of the land, go to the few auditions that they get and enjoy the time in Southern California.

Don’t forget we have Disneyland, Universal Studios, the Dogers, the Angels and the beautiful coastlines of Malibu, Santa Barbara and Laguna Beach!

I just want all of you hard working and sacrificing patents to have realistic expectations.

While you are in LA meet with Agents. Know that commercial agents in LA won’t sign you if you are not going to be here full time. However, Theatrical Agents may sign you if are are planning on coming back for several months at a time and can go on take for film auditions.

And know that if your child gets lucky enough to meet the description of a breakdown, get called in for an audition out of hundreds of submissions, and BOOK the job…yes it’s very exciting!!!

Making the trip itself shows your child that you believe in their talents and you support their dreams. And seriously…what better thing can a parent do?

Recently I spoke with a terrific parent from South Carolina who has a really great perspective on this!

“My daughter wants this experience and I think that it would be good for her. She has a fire for this and we both just want to support her in her goals. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. If she doesn’t book anything she will be surrounded by her family who loves her and will give her the courage she may need to keep fighting for her dream of being in the spotlight. She hasn’t quit and lost her desire to model and act prior to this summer and I don’t think that will change after a cool trip to California where she will meet some pretty cool people and make memories that will last her entire lifetime. Her experience will be priceless!!!”

That’s awesome and exactly the right attitude to make the summer trip to LA worth it.

To all the parents and kids good luck while you’re here in LA, stay safe and have lots of fun!

Wendy Alane Wright is a Talent Manager in LA and author of 5 Books on breaking into Show Business. She is a Backstage Expert and host of the popular Blog and You Tube channel “Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager” which has over 20,000 subscribers and almost 1 Million viewers. To instantly download her 100 + page ebook “How To Break Your Kids Into Show Business” to learn her Manager’s secrets visit Wendy’s coaching website http://www.secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager.com

Should I bring my kid to LA for the Summer?

Talent Manager Wendy Alane Wright
Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood talent manager and the president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared on television networks such as ABC, NBC, TNT, CBS, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, and more. They have booked TV shows including “Modern Family,” “Blackish,” “Extant,” “The Colony,” “Animal Kingdom,” “My Haunted House,” and “Henry Danger,” as well as hundreds of commercials for major spots including Shutterfly, Mercedes, Visa, Taco Bell, Honda, Legos, Hot Wheels, and many more. Prior to being a manager and a talent agent at Burn Down Entertainment, Wright assisted many high profile managers, agents, and publicists. For 20 years she was a recording artist, actor, and music producer, and is now the author of five books called, “Secrets of a Hollywood Talent Manager.” Wright teaches the business of acting all over the country and is on the faculty of schools including the New York Studio for Stage and Screen in North Carolina and LA Acting Academy in Phoenix, Arizona. For years she has appeared in numerous magazines, and on radio shows and talk shows including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

PARENTS COMING TO LA DURING SUMMER I just want you know that coming to LA in the summer for two or three weeks doesn’t really do much for an actor’s career in terms of getting them jobs.

Kids get jobs on television and film because they audition for the same casting directors so many times that eventually they book projects here and there.

Casting Director’s get to know them and know what to bring them in for. Of course you have got to start building those relationships some time. You just need to know that being here for only two or three weeks might mean not even seeing anything in the breakdowns that fits the description of your children.

Every day descriptions come out explaining what Casting is looking for. Often weeks go by and they don’t really even want that many children for television show or films and are casting a lot of adults. Some seasons are heavier with kids auditions. Typically  the summer time is usually very slow for actors in general because almost all shows are on hiatus.

WHY COME TO LA IN THE SUMMER? Usually when parents bring their kids out to LA for the summer, they come out to take acting training in Los Angeles to get better skills, superb headshots,  and they take workshops and classes with casting directors to start meeting the Casting Directors.

HEADSHOT PHOTOGRAPHERS
I recommend MARC CARTWRIGHT, TIHANY, ALEX KRUK, KENNETH DOLIN and FLY GIRL PHOTOGRAPHY.

Plus excellent kids acting training is offered at ACTORSITE, ACTOR TRAINING IN LA (ATLA) and with Andrew Magarian at SIMPLY ACTING and ZAK BARNETT STUDIOS (ZBS.) Fir commercial training I suggest Judy Kain at KEEP IT REAL ACTING.

It’s also an opportunity to get familiar with the lay of the land, go to the few auditions that they get and enjoy the time in Southern California.

Don’t forget we have Disneyland, Universal Studios, the Dodgers, the Angels and the beautiful coastlines of Malibu, Santa Barbara and Laguna Beach!

I just want all of you hard working and sacrificing patents to have realistic expectations.

While you are in LA meet with Agents. Know that commercial agents in LA won’t sign you if you are not going to be here full time. However, Theatrical Agents may sign you if are are planning on coming back for several months at a time and can go on take for film auditions.

And know that if your child gets lucky enough to meet the description of a breakdown, get called in for an audition out of hundreds of submissions, and BOOK the job…yes it’s very exciting!!!

Making the trip itself shows your child that you believe in their talents and you support their dreams. And seriously…what better thing can a parent do?

FromHiddenPainToFreedom written @ToniNubby #MoviePremire #RedCarpet @JohnLSanders
 @CorneliusJeffers @ChinaraFerguson

Recently I spoke with a terrific parent from South Carolina who has a really great perspective on this!

“My daughter wants this experience and I think that it would be good for her. She has a fire for this and we both just want to support her in her goals. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. If she doesn’t book anything she will be surrounded by her family who loves her and will give her the courage she may need to keep fighting for her dream of being in the spotlight. She hasn’t quit and lost her desire to model and act prior to this summer and I don’t think that will change after a cool trip to California where she will meet some pretty cool people and make memories that will last her entire lifetime. Her experience will be priceless!!!”

That’s awesome and exactly the right attitude to make the summer trip to LA worth it.

To all the parents and kids good luck while you’re here in LA, stay safe and have lots of fun!

Read more here:

http://www.secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager.com/

Wendy Alane Wright
 Talent Manager
————————-

Wendy Alane Wright is a Talent Manager at WAW Entertainment in LA and author of 5 Books on breaking into Show Business. She is a Backstage Expert and host of the popular Blog and You Tube channel “Secrets Of A Hollywood Talent Manager” which has over 20,000 subscribers and almost 1 Million viewers. To instantly download her 100 + page ebook “How To Break Your Kids Into Show Business” to learn her Manager’s secrets visit Wendy’s coaching website http://www.secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager.com

HOW TALENT MANAGERS REALLY SEE ACTORS

Recently I was made an Expert Contributor for Backstage.com. It is a great honor for me as I grew up reading the publication and recommending it to every actor I know. It is the number #1 information resource for actors. I am proud to be a writer for Backstage now, it is a dream come true.

To read the first 2 articles: click the following links on Backstage.com

HOW TALENT MANAGERS REALLY SEE ACTORS  by Wendy Alane Wright
http://www.backstage.com/advice-for-actors/backstage-experts/how-talent-managers-really-see-actors/

and

HOW TO FIND A MANAGER ON BACKSTAGE (Featuring Wendy Alane Wright & Tammy Hunt) Writen by Rebecca Strassberg

http://www.backstage.com/advice-for-actors/how-find-manager-backstage/

 

Backstage.com lists projects all over the country and is great for finding short films, student films, web series, and regional theater casting notices. Set up an an actors profile and submit yourself for every project you are right for. Backstage also has great show business articles and I suggest you read every article you can, including the back issues.
Happy Reading!

Wendy Alane Wright
President WAW Entertainment
wawentertainment@yahoo.com
http://www.wawentertainment.com

Wendy Alane Wright Bio

Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood talent manager and the president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared on television networks such as ABC, NBC, TNT, CBS, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, and more. They have booked TV shows including “Modern Family,” “Blackish,” “Extant,” “The Colony,” “Animal Kingdom,” “My Haunted House,” and “Henry Danger,” as well as hundreds of commercials for major spots including Shutterfly, Mercedes, Visa, Taco Bell, Honda, Legos, Hot Wheels, and many more.

Prior to being a manager and a talent agent at Burn Down Entertainment, Wright assisted many high profile managers, agents, and publicists. For 20 years she was a recording artist, actor, and music producer, and is now the author of five books called, “Secrets of a Hollywood Talent Manager.” Wright teaches the business of acting all over the country and is on the faculty of schools including the New York Studio for Stage and Screen in North Carolina and LA Acting Academy in Phoenix, Arizona. For years she has appeared in numerous magazines, and on radio shows and talk shows including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

Are There Opportunities In Hollywood For My Child?

                                              

Talent Manager Wendy Alane Wright

Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood talent manager and the president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared on television networks such as ABC, NBC, TNT, CBS, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, and more. They have booked TV shows including “Modern Family,” “Blackish,” “Extant,” “The Colony,” “Animal Kingdom,” “My Haunted House,” and “Henry Danger,” as well as hundreds of commercials for major spots including Shutterfly, Mercedes, Visa, Taco Bell, Honda, Legos, Hot Wheels, and many more. Prior to being a manager and a talent agent at Burn Down Entertainment, Wright assisted many high profile managers, agents, and publicists. For 20 years she was a recording artist, actor, and music producer, and is now the author of five books called, “Secrets of a Hollywood Talent Manager.” Wright teaches the business of acting all over the country and is on the faculty of schools including the New York Studio for Stage and Screen in North Carolina and LA Acting Academy in Phoenix, Arizona. For years she has appeared in numerous magazines, and on radio shows and talk shows including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

Are There Opportunities In Hollywood For My Child?

Every year Agents and Managers go to Showcases throughout the country looking for new talent. We are looking for the best kids in the bunch. They can be all types nerdy kids, athletic, teens, little kids, outgoing, big energy, charismatic personalities, dorky, fat and bullyish, goth, strange looking kids, gorgeous or really unique looking… all types and all ethnicities.

But the one thing in common that we are looking for is actors who are BELIEVABLE and seriously committed to building an acting career. We are not looking for the curious, we are looking for the serious. We want actors who will come to LA to spend 3-4 months every year auditioning for projects, getting to know casting directors, taking acting classes here in LA and working their way up the ladder of success so we can make money together.

 
 Child actress Savanah Liles Hanging with the director of ‘The Breakout: A Rock Opera’ at the 
Dances With Films film festival at The Chinese Theater in Hollywood.

Actors under 18 need their parents to be fully committed as well because 99% of the work actually falls upon the parent. The parent is the one driving the actor back and forth to auditions, callbacks, and the sets of the jobs their kids book. The parents are the ones paying for acting classes, dance classes, voice classes and new headshots every few years as the kids grow and change and always need new pictures to reflect their child’s current look.

The struggle is real. Parents often have other children and have to be away from those children for long periods of time, and away from their spouses. That’s not easy. It is expensive to live in LA and the traffic is horrendous. Literally, it could be 5 miles from your audition and it can take an hour & 1/2 to get there. As a parent of an actor you will spend all day in traffic.

Many of the parents I talk to ask “What I am looking for?” When I tell them I want kids who are going to be in LA 3-4 months every year some are shocked and certainly are not going to be doing that. That’s fine and I say get a local agent in your own state for film and TV auditions they may have there. Have your child do plays there and audition for student films in your local colleges. And have them takes lots of acting classes where you live.

The majority of opportunities for pro acting jobs for TV are in LA and some are in the certain hubs like New York, Chicago, and Atlanta. If you are not in those big cities you have to find opportunities where you live, I discuss that in detail in my ebook HOW TO BE A STAR RIGHT WHERE YOU ARE which you can instantly download here: http://www.secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager.com

Wendy and her future star client JAYDEN HEDDEN



PARENTS OFTEN ASK WHAT OPPORTUNITIES YOU CAN GIVE MY CHILD?

Many parents say, “I will come to LA if you have opportunities for my child.”
Or “I can come for 2 weeks in June. Can you get him auditions during that 2 weeks?”

Because I hear that comment so often I felt it would really be helpful for parents if I explained very clearly why that is NOT the way opportunities work. 

The fact is we don’t know what opportunities your child will get and here is why:

Every Talent Agent and Talent Manager gets a daily list of projects that are being cast. That list is called The Breakdowns. It describes the characters that Casting Directors are looking for in every project that is currently being cast that day. The descriptions might be:
 
[TOBY STEVENS] Male, 30s, angry and confused. Social Worker. GUEST STAR
[CINDY] Female, 8-10. African-American. Spiteful. Devious. RECURRING CO-STAR
[VI] Female, 7-9. Caucasian. Soccer player, rude.  RECURRING CO-STAR.
[BRANDON] Any ethnicity. Can play 12- 13. An aggressive and competitive basketball player. 3 lines, 2 speeches.

(Note: Somedays or weeks there will be no descriptions that fit your child)

Agents and Managers look at these daily descriptions and see which of their clients fit those descriptions. If we have a client that fits the description of what the casting director is looking for that day, we submit our client’s headshot, resume and acting clips to the Casting Director. The Casting Director will receive about 2,000 submissions for the role from every Talent Manager and Talent Agent in town that has a client that fits the description. The Casting Director and their Associates and Assistants will go through the pictures and resumes they have time to review and set up appointments to see the actors in person.

The Casting office will email Managers and Agents a pre-read/audition appointment time for the actors they want to see along with the part of the script the actor needs to learn – that is called the “sides.”  Casting schedules those audition 5 minutes apart and see every actor they have time to see. 

For TV Episodics (weekly shows) casting only has 2-3 days to find the actor they need because it shoots the following week. For films they can cast for months and casting has time to see everyone they want to.

The selected actors go in to audition whichever actors they think were CLOSEST to the description of the character will be called back for a 2nd audition. Sometimes they call back 10 actors, sometimes just 2 or 3. That 2nd audition is called the Producers Session because show’s producers, writers and directors will be coming to watch the auditions to see the actors the casting director is suggesting to them. 

There will also be actors who have gone straight to the producer session and skipped the 1st pre-read audition because casting already knows they are right for the role because they have auditioned them many times before or have hired them before for certain roles.

We never know what characters/roles are needed until the day the breakdown comes out therefor we can’t predict opportunities. Also don’t know who will get callbacks or get the job. We all gamble around here 🙂 If our client gets the job they get paid $585 for a Co Star which is 1 day of work or $2,800 for a Guest Star which work 3-5 days. If they book a Series Regular role they could earn $5,000 – $25,000 an episode. Every Agent and Manager hopes that the clients they sign will get auditions and that their clients will book a Series Regular role. And if it gets picked up and it’s a HIT actors can get paid $100,000 – $300,000 and episode or become a spokesperson for a product like LEE Jeans which may pay $1 – $3 Million Dollars for the campaign which pays the REAL money we are all in this for.

There is one final stage of auditioning called Network Testing where the final 2 or 3 choices for each role are brought into together to TEST. If our client gets called back from a producers session to TEST that means producers and the Network executives are seriously considering our client for the role. Now everyone wants to see the actors work together to determine what the chemistry is between the actors. Most actors are let go during this process and the final actors who Producers and the Network feel have the best fit together will be cast in the series. All of this is a process totally out of our hands and yours.

The Producers will decide who gets the role and casting will call the Agent or Manager who represents that actor and tells us the good news. They do not call and tells us which actors did not get the part. Also they do not call and tell every single Agents and Manager why the clients they submitted did not get a callback or go to Producers. People are WAY to BUSY for that. 

Everyone just moves on to the next auditions…and so should YOU.

Since auditions come up out of the blue and are totally unpredictable, sometimes our clients are called in the same day for a role, maybe the day before, or even a few days before. Actors that live here are available for every audition they may get. Actors who don’t live here will never be called in for Co star or Guest Star roles. Show audition and book locals for those roles because they are cast very quickly and they want to see people right away. 

Actors who live out of state could be asked to go on tape for Series regular roles and if the casting director wants to bring them in the actor/parent will pay the expense themselves. If the actor is asked to test, then the network will pay the cost to bring the actor in.

 

WHEN ARE THE AUDITIONS?

Episodic Season is Sept – November 
That’s when shows that are already picked up and given airdates show their programs. Those shows are looking for actors every week to be in the next weeks show.

Pilot Season is end of Jan-end of April 
That’s when the majority of new SERIES REGULARS are cast. This is the gold mine we are all digging in.

Summer Season June- Aug 
Because there are so many cable channels now many shows that cast year round and hold auditions even in the summer. Of course in summer there are considerably less opportunities for TV outside of pilot season – but summer is a great chance to:

  • Come out and get LA training
  • Get some really good headshots with LA photographers
  • Meet some casting directors in classes they teach during the summer at places 
  • like Actor Training in LA and Actorsite
  • and go on some auditions for short films, student films, feature films and commercials. 
  • It’s a time test the waters while your child is out of school and see if this is even right for you or your child.

Commercials and Films cast all year round. For Commercials actors MUST be in LA to get any commercial audition whatsoever. Commercials don’t ever ask actors to go on tape.

Films audition year round. Film Casting Directors can ask out of state actors to go on tape and again the actor will have to pay for their way to LA to audition in person if they are asked.

So you see, being in LA for longer period of time you have the most opportunities. Many actors come in just for pilot season to take a chance on being called in for auditions. Obviously, the actors who are here throughout the year have probably already seen the casting directors for other the smaller roles and casting has had a chance to get to know them throughout the year. That is an advantage.

When pilot season comes around in January, Casting will bring in the actors they already know and often bring them straight to producers. They bring actors who have tested before straight to producers and actors who have been on a Series before will go straight to producers.That is an advantage.

The miracle is when an actor who no one has ever seen before goes in to audition and gets tested and cast as a Series Regular ! 

That is like winning the lottery and we all want to win the lottery right?

Wendy Alane Wright

See You On The Red Carpet!




Wendy Alane Wright is a Talent Manager and president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients work in TV, Film, Commercials and Print. She is the author of 5 books on breaking into show business in her series “Secrets of A Hollywood Talent Manager” She has been on numerous radio shows and is asked to coach actors and parents throughout the country.
Coaching Website: http://www.secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager.com
Management website http://www.wawentertainment.com

For more helpful information subscribe to her You Tube channel SECRETS OF A HOLLYWOOD TALENT MANAGER. Click here for her videos just for Parents:


The Frustrations Of A Talent Agent

Wendy Alane Wright Talent Manager in Los Angeles Offers critical insider advice to actors and parents of actors who are looking to succeed in show business.
Hi folks! Today I am sharing a post from Atlanta Talent Agent Dorecia Carr. She shares many of the same issues Agents and Managers face in LA and NYC.
THE FRUSTRATIONS OF A TALENT AGENCY
I’m a talent agent. Our agency has 2 branches; 1 in Atlanta and 1 in Chicago. We represent actors for television/film, commercial and Print. I take pride in the fact that I’ve built a very strong roster of actors, but the issues I run into everyday are nearly unbelievable. I wonder if other agents have the same problems.
There are so many things I’d like to address, but today, let’s talk about the kids. We represent actors of all ages, but truth be told, the kids are our favorites (I hope my adult actors don’t get jealous). Kids are so very interesting to me. They are extremely talented, and they are fearless. We have some AMAZING child actors! Some of our child actors have better reels than our adults. Sometimes we sign kids who may not be as experienced, because we see potential in them, and we know what they can accomplish. We may love their look, and their charisma.

We have signed multiple kids with no experience who have gone on to book national commercials and feature films within a month of being signed to us. But unfortunately, we’ve recently made the decision to only accept children who are experienced young actors. Because for some reason, we almost ALWAYS have issues with the parents of the inexperienced kids. Some of these parents want the agents and the managers to do so much for them, and they think we can magically wave a wand to get their child on television. However, THEY DO NOT WANT TO LISTEN!!!

I’m an agent. I have the capability to provide your child with opportunities to
get in front of major casting directors, producers, & directors. You do not have that capability. You came to me for this reason. Why won’t you LISTEN to me? For example, headshots! HEADSHOTS, HEADSHOTS, HEADSHOTS! I refer actors to successful, respected photographers who have gotten actors booked on major television/film projects from their headshots. I do this, because clearly THOSE photographers know what works in whatever market they have been successful in.

We always get the parents who say “oh I know a photographer who only charges $100”. Well guess what, that photographer may not be a photographer for THIS industry. Maybe they are a photographer who usually does family portraits. Or maybe they are a photographer who usually takes school photos. We need you to have strong commercial and theatrical, and even character headshots for THIS industry. You know how there are different types of doctors? Or different types of lawyers? Well, there are also different types of photographers.

LISTEN TO YOUR AGENT. Then, there are the parents who won’t UPDATE their child’s headshots, but they expect their child to book! I have parents who sign with us, then 3 months later their child gets braces, and they don’t notify us. Other parents whose child has headshots from over a year ago, and now looks way older. Kids grow very fast.

My son looked 12 years old 6 months ago, he now looks 14! Here’s another thing, there are actually parents who for some reason think their child does not need acting classes. We always run into this problem. Your child should CONSTANTLY be training. They should be taking their craft serious and getting guidance to help cultivate their talent. There is so much to learn, and you can never learn too much. And they should be training with the best. Just because someone says they are a coach and charges less than everyone else in town, doesn’t mean they are the right coach for your child.  I go by results.

If I see an acting school that has students who ALWAYS book, I’m going to refer you to THAT acting school. Your child should have a successful well respected acting coach. Acting coaches are very important. There are many acting coaches who have connections and can actually get you booked! But again, we get parents who don’t want to pay for classes. Then there is the issue of sending in terrible taped auditions. We send our actors auditions for television shows on major networks such as Disney.

I guarantee you the Disney execs are NOT going to sit and watch a terrible cell phone video. Use a professional taping service. The parents will try to tape the audition themselves, send it to us at the last minute, and it ends up being a poor quality audition. The parents also don’t follow the taping instructions that are provided by the casting directors. And when I try to explain what’s wrong with the audition, they feel there’s nothing wrong with it.

We refer our actors to wonderful companies that provide taping services and they charge anywhere from $10-40 depending on how much time it takes. The great thing about using a taping service is they are professionals, and they know how to follow the instructions we send them. They always send great quality auditions, and most of them are familiar with the casting directors in town and know what they expect.

Then there are the parents who complain about not getting enough auditions, but when they get the auditions, THEY DECLINE THEM!!! “Oh my child can’t make it to that audition they have a birthday party to go to…oh we will be going out of town that day…oh I won’t have time to tape my child because my child has swimming lessons at that time”. When you submit your child to an agency, the agent is under the impression that you want your child to WORK. I don’t know how many times I have to tell parents to give me their book out dates. Notify me when you will be out of town. That way, I know not to submit your child on those dates.

Now the BIGGEST problem I run into, are the parents who expect me to answer every call they make to me, even if their call is not important. To expect an agent to answer every call is a very false expectation. Your child is not the only child on the roster. I’ve had parents call me over and over asking “is my child going to get submitted for this?….have you heard back from the casting director?…what has my child been submitted for this week?…” LET ME DO MY JOB.

I have over 200 actors. I’m on the phone with casting directors, production companies, accounting, I rarely have time to talk on the phone. I am very very transparent with my actors. I provide them with a talent report every 6 months showing them what they have been submitted for, and most of my experienced actors LOVE that. Because the experienced actors know that ALL agents don’t provide a talent report, but I do. If you don’t trust me to do my job, you should find someone you trust. Now, with all that being said, I understand that being an actor can be costly; headshots, acting classes, traveling for auditions, paying to get auditions taped. However, that’s something that comes with the territory. Consider it an investment. I am not trying to be mean, and I hope I’m not coming off that way. But if you are not ready to invest in your child’s career, then you may not be ready to start searching for an agent or manager right now.

Remember, there are hundreds of other kids casting directors see everyday who have the FULL PACKAGE. They have amazing headshots that make them stand out. They have a reel or amazing video clips. They can travel for in person auditions. Their taped auditions are professional. We have great success with our kids. Our agency receives hundreds of submissions every month. Parents submit their children to the agency because of word of mouth, social media, or workshops we’ve  done. So although I hate to do it, I have no problem with removing a young actor from my roster because of issues with the parents. You are ruining your child’s career before it even starts. Relationships are very important in this industry. The moral of the story is, LISTEN TO YOUR AGENT!

Dorecia Carr
Owner/Agent at YJB Talent

“There is purpose in your pain….”


Is My Agent Really Working For Me?

 Wendy Alane Wright Talent Manager

Wendy Alane Wright is a Hollywood talent manager and the president of WAW Entertainment. Her clients have appeared on television networks such as ABC, NBC, TNT, CBS, Comedy Central, BIO, Lifetime, and more. They have booked TV shows including “Modern Family,” “Blackish,” “Extant,” “The Colony,” “Animal Kingdom,” “My Haunted House,” and “Henry Danger,” as well as hundreds of commercials for major spots including Shutterfly, Mercedes, Visa, Taco Bell, Honda, Legos, Hot Wheels, and many more. Prior to being a manager and a talent agent at Burn Down Entertainment, Wright assisted many high profile managers, agents, and publicists. For 20 years she was a recording artist, actor, and music producer, and is now the author of five books called, “Secrets of a Hollywood Talent Manager.” Wright teaches the business of acting all over the country and is on the faculty of schools including the New York Studio for Stage and Screen in North Carolina and LA Acting Academy in Phoenix, Arizona. For years she has appeared in numerous magazines, and on radio shows and talk shows including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

ACTOR QUESTION: HOW DO YOU KNOW IF YOUR AGENT IS COMMITTED AND SUBMITTING FOR YOU?

WENDY’S ANSWER: Communication with your agent is key. Establish a Rapore early on. Get to know them a little in your early meetings. (What are their hobbies?) Send them clips from NEW work you do, let them know what CDs Know your work, send them a birthday card, holiday gift, follow them in Twitter, stay in touch with their assistant, get involved in their passions and charities, stay in touch with them every few months. If you build a Rapore you should be able to feel if they are passionate about you.

But understand no matter what you do, with RARE exceptions, you will almost always be a number to Agents because they play a numbers game.

AND… EVERY Agent (and Talent Manager) on Breakdowns can print a TALENT REPORT that tells you exactly what they are submitting you on. I have attached one of my clients reports below. Some Agents will be happy to send you yours some won’t. I send them to my clients regularly. I’m doing my job, and if I’m doing my job I should have no problem showing my talent reports to my clients. And I don’t feel offended if they want to know if I am doing my job. My clients use their reports to inform their CD Target list and build relationships with CDs.

But YOU have to be working for your Agent MORE than they are  working for you. You need to make sure you give them great acting clips that represent your type,and great head shots that represent the types of characters / roles you play, and constantly be networking with filmmakers, and submit yourself for every single project you can find that you’re right for.

It’s a TEAM. Teamwork makes the dream work. They only make 10% of what you earn because they only do 10% of the work. An actor’s career is their responsibility!

You should be getting a strong % of callbacks and if you are not you need to figure out why. When DROP SEASON comes around every year and Agents are deciding who to cut on their rosters, they will cut actors who don’t book or get callbacks.

This is a business and they want to make MONEYYYYY. If you aren’t making them money you are useless to them.

Learn about this business, train your acting skills like an Olympic athlete, build your connections, shoot your own projects and stay POSITIVE and FOCUSED. Be BOLD, take chances, BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. There are good things ahead of you! #secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager

If you are interested in speaking with me directly I do acting career consultations on Skype and I’m happy to discuss your career and help you map out a 2 to 5 year plan. Just visit my coaching website

http://www.secretsofahollywoodtalentmanager.com

See you on the Red Carpet!

Wendy Alane Wright
Talent Manager

Advice for Parents from Talent Manager Wendy Liles of WAW Entertainment


Wendy Liles, Talent Manager 
WAW Entertainment, Los Angeles


Talent Manager Wendy Liles has lots of insight and experience to share. Kids that sign with WAW ENTERTAINMENT Talent Management are in good hands!

Let me begin by telling you a little bit about myself. My daughter is 9 years old and we have been in LA since February and have been through all that you will be experiencing.

My daughter and I have gone from knowing absolutely nothing, to now she is the lead in an independent feature film Prodigy and has been on an episode of a top Nickelodeon show and a major FX show! I will be able to give you advice from my own experience as a mom of a child actor. 

  
             The Cast & Crew Of Prodigy

You will definitely want a car out here. Everything is really far away from everything else and the bus service is not as great as it is in cities lie New York or Chicago. You just have to be careful to read the street signs and meter signs because the cops are ticket happy. There’s always lots of back street parking which requires a fair amount of walking, so good shoes are important.


I personally enjoy showing up an hour early for auditions and exploring the different areas of the city that we end up in. It’s an adventure. Bring a sock or small purse full of quarters for the meters, extra headshots and resumes along with water a snacks.

As far as headshot photographers go, we highly recommend Fly Girl photography and Olesja Mueller-Astraukas, Alex Kruk, Thiyani, Kenneth Dolin and Marc Cartright. Some are more expensive than others, of course, so call around until you find one that fits your budget. (pictured Savannah with Alex Kruk)


    I homeschool my daughter and we use Bridgeway Academy, which provides books rather than all online. That works best for my tactile kid. But a lot of parents use K-12 or Connections Academy. You should check with whatever school your child is in now to see who they recommend. There might be a program that their school will accept grades from or who they work well with that will allow them to go back to school they choose.

There are also a couple of acting schools that offer daytime ACTING classes for homeschoolers. These are Actorsite and Lisa Picotte’s Young Actors Studio. Both are very good. Actorsite is more affordable for beginners and offers a monthly rate for unlimited classes, which you won’t find too often. My daughter loves it there, so we supplement the more expensive classes with that. Most classes will be between $50 and $100 per 1.5-2 hour class.

At Actorsite, you can take about 5-6 hours a week for something like $250/month. I can’t remember the exact amount. Google awesome acting club or Actorsite (they are the same thing). They also offer online classes for when you aren’t in LA. I hope this information is helpful. This is an exciting adventure. Enjoy the journey!

Wendy Liles
Talent Manager
WAW Entertainment

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