How to Get into Film and TV.
Dressing Down Disguise.
How it's Done...
Did you ever think that you might like to be famous? Well I did it and I can give you a few pointers on how it can be done. It takes a bit of planning and a bit of time, but what have you got to lose? Give it a try if you want a little taste of the life of a superstar. I'll tell you how it's done...
It started when I suddenly realised that my professional life was too familiar, too mundane, too - well...unfulfilling. I wanted some excitement in my life, so I embarked upon a project to become 'famous'. No particular reason other than that it was a challenge, but it worked.
I'm not interested in politics, so that was out, but most famous people I know are in film or television, so that was to be my starting point. I had studied drama at college many years ago but had never taken it any further. So I signed up with an agency for film extras hoping to get a few background shots, but as luck would have it, within a month of my going on their books, I was called for an audition for an advert for a very well known beer. To my surprise (and delight) I got a part playing a German tourist (apparantly I look German!).
Which brings me to my next point; the 'quirkier' you look the better. The film industry is chock full of 'beautiful people', what they need is people full of 'character'. Ultra thin, ultra fat, bald, bearded (for the men obviously). Thin, fat, cropped hair, aesthetically challenged in fact anything that you think the film directors would NOT want. Just notice next time you are watching a film how many actors are far from perfect in appearance.
Anyway, back to my advert. Filming took a whole week of fourteen hour days and it was shot in two locations. I don't speak German, but I had to learn a few lines by rote. We were put up in the finest hotels and were identified as actors with the particular film company. That was the first time I was ever known as an 'actor'. The hotel staff certainly treated me different than usual. On location, various shots were done and re-done, where we had to walk into a bar. A large circle of spectators soon built up outside because of all the lights and cameras and we were asked what we were filming. I even got asked for an autograph, again another first for me! The advert was for the international screen and would be shown around the world but not in my country. I soon discovered that the advert would be on youtube, so I told all my friends and colleagues about it and word soon got around after they'd seen it.
Fast on the tail of that advert, an offer of a part in a TV series came up. It was a small part, but hey - anything is good for the CV. A few friends saw it on TV and word got further around.
Then came the dream job - a part in a feature length film. I grabbed the offer with both hands and accepted the part of a Parish Priest. Anybody that knows me would tell you that that took some real acting, as I'm about as un-priestly as you can get! The film was shown on the national TV network and my face was all over the country. I got loads of phone calls asking if that was me in the film, so my profile rose quite quickly. That film is now on international release.
Next came a part in a UK TV series. I played a barman in that. I was mixing with some internationally known actors, even though I only had a small part. Onlookers saw me chatting with high profile international stars and assumed I must be one of them. The attention I got was quite surprising. I have signed many an autograph, posed with many members of the public, been treated as a star by hotel staff, drivers and onlookers - and quite frankly - I like it! I've even got my name on the credits of two productions!
I've another audition lined-up, as well as a screen-test, so who knows where I'll be showing up next?
I'm now known as an actor in my town and by anybody who knows me. The sad thing is, I have to keep on the 'day job' to keep the regular income. As all the famous actors say: "I'm resting between jobs".
If you fancy a taste of what it's like to be famous, sign up with an agency for film extras. Who knows where it will take you.
The photo above is of me 'au naturelle' but you might still recognise me if you've seen me on screen, and by the way, I'M STILL OPEN TO OFFERS! That is, while I'm waiting for my book to be published...