80% of Directing Is Casting

That’s a saying I’ve read that’s been attributed to a number of directors.  It makes sense.  If the actor is right for the part, contributes creatively and can take direction, your job as a director will be much easier.  That’s the latest chore on my directorial to-do list.  We are now actively casting.

Our two leads have been set from day one.  The male lead, is me.  We’ve covered that.  The female lead, my co-producer, co-writer and a terrific friend.  She’s an excellent actor and I wrote the part for her.  We work well together so that gives us a nice solid foundation.   We are now working on the other three speaking roles.

We have a supporting role that is important to the success of the film.  The character is a handsome, playboy movie star.  His looks are a result of capped teeth and plastic surgery, so we need an actor who can play the role with the nebbish still inside.  My co-star had a friend in mind who was a good fit, but he’s not available, so we’re looking.

The other two are bit parts, or under 5’s as they are known.  Two women in the brief, but important opening scene.  It’s strictly expository but it sets the tone for entire story.  I don’t view them as throwaway parts.  I want good actors.

We’ve set a date for auditions and I’ve got a notice up on a casting web site.  I’m really getting into this.  I feel like a director.  We’ve gotten a number of submissions and several that look promising.  I’m amazed at the training and experience some of them have.  Why are they interested in my little film?  Just goes to show you how tough show business is!

The auditions are not for a couple of weeks, but I’ve already started my research.  Using modern technology, I’ve been checking resumes and locating some of the shorts the actors have been in online.  That way, I can get a look at their work and get a jump on the casting process.  I’m also finding contact information for the directors of the films so I can inquire about what the actors are like to work with.  Great idea, right?  I’m a genius.  (Not really.  I got the idea from a book on casting.  But kudos to me for making the effort to learn how to cast correctly.)

The other 20% of the job is going pretty well.  If I can nail the 80%, I just may pull this off!


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