20 Outdated Acting Career Tools? | Answers for Actors

June 12, 2013 at 9:30 am | Posted in acting, actors | Leave a comment
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Actors soon becoming obsolete? Outmoded like the past acting career tools that are now yesterday’s Lady Gaga. The hot, new device on which you’re accessing this post is already a technological Rick Moranis before you end reading. Could actors one day diminish in need like toll collectors, postal workers, gas station attendants, or be obliterated entirely into the graves of jesters, lectors and vaudeville performers? “Nah, never…,” you say? Hmm. iActor and GoogleActors are in the wings…maybe.

Below are once vital needs (and fringe benefits) to the career of an actor that are now just charming antiquities of memory. Will you be next? Ask a lector (if you can find one living).

1. Status update:



2. An actor’s office:



3. Actor’s tablet/laptop:



4. Résumé desktop publishing:



5. Delete button:



6. Scanner:

Carbon Paper


7. This form of ‘modern’ headshot:



8. An actor promoting ‘variety’:



9. An actor’s reel on one of these:

VHS tape


10. An actor’s voice-over reel on one of these:



11. Actor’s reel and/or voice-over reel on this:



12. Sides or a script delivered by one of these…:



13. or by one of these:



14. Voice-mail:



15. Broadway social media:

Broadway Show jacket


16. Broadway try-outs:

Forrest TheatreSchubert


17. Pilot with a 24 episode pick-up:



18. This entertainment district:

42nd Street


19. Union audition line jumping:



20. A New York Times ‘Instagram’ marking “You’ve made it” (and knowing what the number after Al Hirschfeld’s signature indicated):


One vital aspect of acting will never be obsolete: education. Never be lulled into ignorance by an arrogance of “I know all that I need to know.” For if you follow such foolhardiness you’ll be surpassed by working actors who create opportunities via:

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Paul Russell’s career as a casting director, director, acting teacher and former actor has spanned nearly thirty years. He has worked on projects for major film studios, television networks, and Broadway. Paul has taught the business of acting and audition technique at NYU and has spoken at universities including Yale, Temple and the University of the Arts. He is the author of ACTING: Make It Your Business – How to Avoid Mistakes and Achieve Success as a Working Actor. For more information, please visit www.PaulRussell.net.

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