Not abandoned…

February 27, 2012 | Filed Under General News 

…just been crazy busy with freelance work, play rehearsals, workshops and auditions!

This week: I have an audition for an advert (got to brush off my sleight of hand skills for the first time in a year), a scheduled meeting to discuss the latest draft of The Burden Of Proof (new working title for the never-ending screenplay) with someone to get feedback, more Shadow Formula rehearsals, and finally a week away from the freelance job, in which to learn my lines for the play, work on The Burden Of Proof, and record some voice-over samples for an audiobook publisher.

Last week was mental Рliterally four offers of lead/principal roles in short films in as many days. Sadly, I had to turn down one that I really liked the look of, because it was shooting on Saturday and I was already committed to doing a music video with Jog On Media for up-and-coming band Black Manila (which will apparently garner lots of exposure, even if it is exposure of me doing yet more escape-related work). The other three:

  • A sci-fi short film. ¬†Quite a mental one. Need to discuss the script with the director.
  • An oddball rom-com thing, on which I will make a decision purely on the strength of the script.
  • A charming-looking thing about a banker who gives away all his worldly possessions. I’d do it on the spot, but I need to see a script first.

Always, it should come down to the script. Otherwise, you can find yourself committed to saying lines which, in a worst-case scenario, include words that don’t exist and the director (or writer) is so adamant about his/her vision that he won’t accept any alternative to the gibberish syllables he’s laid down. Yes, this is from experience. No, that particular experience is not listed on my CV. Another reason to be wary of taking anything on is that I already have a ridiculous amount of dialogue to learn for the play, and there won’t be room in my head for all that AND a lead in a short film unless the dialogue really is quite spare.

Flattering though it may be to be offered a role purely on the strength of one’s showreel/natural charisma/flawless innate inner and outer beauty; if the script is shit, you’ll regret going near it. An actor acquaintance called Gabriel once gave me a very sound piece of advice: “Have the courage to turn down the work you don’t want to do.” I have never regretted following this advice, only ignoring it.

It’s not even that your reputation will suffer from being associated with something rubbish – it won’t, because nine times out of ten no-one who’ll ever have an impact on your career will ever see it. The damage will be to your faith in the career choice you’ve made, and your deep-rooted belief that it’s the job you should be doing. For the duration of the project, acting will not be the richest, most rewarding thing you could imagine doing with your life, it’ll be an agonising grind. It’ll call into question that career choice. Every moment that you spend wishing you were far away from that job will bring you a moment closer to the point where you give acting up altogether. And then where will you be?

In other news:

  • Shadow Formula proceeds apace. Venue nearly confirmed, scenes coming together nicely, a good rapport forming with the cast. Gonna be fun.
  • Auditioned for a sitcom pilot the other week, hopefully hear back from that soon. It looked like it might actually be funny, unlike a lot of the “comedy” scripts I’ve seen in the past.
  • I may be doing voices for a computer game!
  • Business cards/new headshots printed and ready to deploy.
  • Advert audition aside, still no paid roles in my immediate future.

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