Those That Have Acting Showreels and Those That Don’t

I’ve had a really exciting couple of months, creating showreels for actors who are all in very different stages of their careers. Some are just starting out, wanting showreels to show people what they can do. Others are established in theatre, but find themselves without proof of their talents for the screen. And then there are actors who’ve done plenty of screen work but want additional footage to show what else they can do.

A showreel isn’t any one thing. There’s no correct way to do it.

A showreel is a piece of art much like anything else – it’s a chance to put a piece of work out there that showcases who you are and what you’re about.

And it boggles my mind that some actors who want to do screen work still have nothing to show for themselves. And sure, they can point at the costs. But what does it cost to NOT have a showreel? How many jobs are you missing out on?

If you don’t have a reel, it’s unlikely you’re getting cast in anything soon. Of course, there are exceptions. But in an industry where an up to date reel is becoming more essential than a headshot, you really need to think about your priorities.

Because sure, getting a showreel edited, or new footage filmed is an expense, but it’s also an income generator. Actors get work based on what they’ve done, what they can show for themselves. Yes you can show yourself in the audition room, but you’re much more likely to get into that room with an up-to-date-reel, with a video that shows your talent, that reveals your versatility as a performer.

The more I work with actors the more I notice what stops them from getting new reels completed, and it’s rarely the financial aspect. Often they’re ashamed of the work they’ve got to show for themselves. All to often a talented actor, with ten years experience, has not a single clip they’re proud of. They think it’s their own fault, they’re embarrassed by the failures.

But it’s so common you have no idea! Every great actor has tons of terrible projects they wish you’d never get to see, so do us film directors! It’s all part of the learning curve.

You don’t need to be trapped by your bad footage, you can create new stuff! You can hire me to create showreel scenes from scratch, which I will write and direct specifically for you. Or you can hire someone else. Or do them yourself. However you decide to do it, it’s possible. It takes just a little bit of time and effort, and then you’ll have an abundance of new material that can show casting directors and agents who you are.

A lot of my showreels have helped actors get agents. There are always opportunities to get new agents, but they are inundated with so many enquiries, so many emails. You need to be able to give them something, and it needs to be fresh, interesting, and uniquely you.

That’s why I’m here.

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Tweet Me: @danieljohnsonuk

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Daniel Johnson
Writer, Director, Author