This page is dedicated to “things you should know” info for talent, including: registration and update info, rush casting calls, FAQs (frequently asked questions, from calls to the office and on our Facebook page), and any info we feel is pertinent to your success in the industry!
REGISTRATION: Currently, we do not have any dates planned for new registrations. However, you can submit for any project that you see posted on this website or on our Facebook page.
Information on Minors and Employment
BACKSTAGE Article: Jeff Olan on Casting Background Actors
SAG FOUNDATION VIDEOS featuring Jeff Olan
Casting info every background actor should know – The casting process, how to submit for projects, your “current” head shots, bringing wardrobe to set, how to book more work, what “not” to do, etc.:
The Business: Foregrounding the Background – The Life of a Background Actor
Background Actors Front and Center: An Evening with Casting Directors
- How can I register for Jeff Olan Casting? Currently, we are not registering. It will be posted on this website and our Facebook page when we decide to bring in new talent. In the meantime, you can still submit for any project you see on our website.
- How do I submit for projects? There are many ways to submit for projects (including, submitting via the submissions email address, being submitted by your calling service, submitting via LAC, etc), however the BEST way to submit is via the submission form on this website. This way you cannot forget to provide all info and photos requested. 90% of the reason some talent is not considered for projects is not because they don’t have the “look”, it’s because they do not submit the proper photos and info requested. We have to move quickly, so having to re-request info is very time-consuming. Also, do not submit additional info that is not requested. It takes more time to get through each submission if we have to search for the info we need. As far as photos, they should be CLEAR, and closeup. Solid backgrounds are best, so that you don’t blend into the background. No sunglasses, cell phones in front of the face, scenic backgrounds, other people in the photo, dark and far away, no pets, odd poses, holding objects or children, winking, flexing, inappropriate clothing, or no clothing at all! Yes – we get it all!!! Please note below how they should be submitted when we request them.NOTE: firstname.lastname@example.org is NOT for talent. It is for production only. DO NOT send any emails to this email address.
- I have new headshots; can I email them to you? Do not submit any photos (or, videos, resumes, links to websites, promos for shows you’re in, etc.), unless requested to do so. It clogs our in box and we have to weed through them to find legitimate submissions. You can submit your new headshots when you submit for a project. We will also request current “selfies”. This is to insure that we are providing production with the most recent and truest representation of what our talent looks like. At times (at production’s request), we will request additional photos in certain wardrobe.
- I don’t have (3) options of wardrobe to bring; the wardrobe dept. can provide wardrobe for me, right? NO! This is one of the biggest misconceptions. Unless you have been fitted for specific wardrobe, or have been told that wardrobe will be provided (ex: police uniform), it is not the responsibility of the wardrobe dept. to provide wardrobe for the background actors. You MUST ALWAYS bring the wardrobe that is requested. Most of the time, the wardrobe dept. may only have backups for when they need to switch out wardrobe. By not having the proper wardrobe, you delay the wardrobe process, your fellow actors, and in some cases the entire production. The more wardrobe you have, the more opportunities you will have to get on sets. Always play it safe and bring the best options you have.
- Where is the non-union work? The majority of productions have a required number of SAG talent that must be booked per day. Once we reach that number, we can start booking non-union talent. For example, if a production requires 24 SAG per day on a show, and on one particular day, production only needs 26 people, there are only 2 non-union spots available for that day.
- I’m non-union, but only need one more voucher to be eligible to join the union. Can you book me as SAG? As noted above, production has a set SAG count that must be met. We only book (“taft”) non-union talent as SAG if there is no SAG person to fill a certain role. On set, if there is a SAG “no-show”, production may be able to upgrade you at that time. *DO NOT ask the casting directors or the production crew if they have SAG vouchers.* Read more here: Get a Taft-Hartley, etc.
- Anyone can play a pedestrian. My friend submitted two hours after I did. Why was she booked and I wasn’t? We don’t cast by the order in which submissions come in . We cast by what production requests. If production requests a 40-50 year old brunette to play a pedestrian, and you’re a 20-30 year old blonde, we cannot use you for this particular role (most likely because we’ve already reached our quota on 20-30 year old blondes or production did not request any).
- I worked on a couple of your shows through my calling service; so, that means I’m already registered with JOC, correct? No. Unless you have physically been to our office, taken a photo and filled out paperwork in our office, you are not in our database. Throughout the year, we will usually schedule a specific day, or days, for those with calling services to come in and register….Also, for those already in our database, if you submit for work, and we see in your file that you have a calling service, we will contact them directly to book you (instead of calling you), to avoid you being double-booked.
- You have me on hold for a project. When will I find out if I’m actually booked? Production will sometimes ask to see photos of talent that is available for a certain day, or days. Once we submit your photo, we have to wait until they make a selection before we can book you. Sometimes this process can take days (especially, if they’re in the middle of the production). We will book you or release you as soon as they make their selections.
- I’m booked on your project, but I just got offered a 3-day gig. You’ll understand if I cancel, right? Although we want all of our talent to work as much as possible, once you are booked with us (or any agency) you must honor your commitment. If you were picked by production, it could take hours to find a replacement, or even days if you have a very “specific” look or skill. This delays the process for us and production, and will also make us think twice before selecting you the next time.
- I worked on a project weeks ago and still haven’t been paid. Where’s my check? Jeff Olan Casting is not your employer. We do not have access to payroll information. Your pay comes directly from production. Each production uses a different payroll company. Their contact information is listed on your voucher. Make sure you keep all of your vouchers in a safe, easily accessible place, so that you can contact them should your check take longer than expected to arrive.
⇒ REMEMBER: Always make sure to show up on time, with valid ID’s, men arrive properly groomed and ladies have your hair and makeup done, arrive in your first look, bring proper “clean” and “pressed” wardrobe options, and most importantly – be professional on set. Also, at times production will call us directly and say, “xxx was great. Can we have them back?” We take note and will provide you with as many opportunities as possible to get you out on set!