CASTING DIRECTOR BLOG

Casting Networks: The Lowdown

20 Apr 2020, Posted by Nicci in Casting Tips

I hope you are all keeping safe and honing your acting skills during these crazy times!

As I promised I am doing a deep dive across the whole of the casting industry across these next few weeks, chatting with ALL the platforms and tools in the casting space so you can all better understand how to use all the MANY amazing tools there are out there that can to help boost your career.

Wherever possible I will ask the same questions to everybody so you can compare their answers and filter out for yourself what resonates with you and what is marketing speak. I have put these into bullet points to make them more digestible, but I have tried hard not to put any editorial bias on this editing process.

For avoidance of doubt I must stress that NONE of these discussions with companies in this space are sponsored and there are no affiliate links or relationships.

Today we kick off with Casting Networks. There’s no reason why they are first, there’s no positional bias (good or bad) it’s just I came to this one on my “blogs todo” list first. Fate innit! So…

What is CNI?

Casting Networks® is a “technology-forward casting solution”, that enables casting directors and talent reps, to source and manage talent across film, television, digital, and commercial projects. They are based in Los Angeles (with offices in London, New York, and Sydney) and facilitate over a million auditions per year.

Although I use Casting Networks regularly and LOVE their service I thought it would be good to have a chat with Danielle from CNI to get to some more information straight from the source….

Casting Networks – The Lowdown

Nicci: Hey Danielle.Thanks for agreeing to chat with me. How’s things?

Danielle: Hi Nicci, my pleasure! All good thanks!

Nicci: So I have 6 questions.

Danielle: Fire away. 🙂

 

What are the benefits of being a CNI Member?

  • Casting Networks enables talent to discover opportunities for commercial, television, and theatrical projects. It also allows your representation to manage your auditions and profile with ease.
  • Communication between the actor and casting director or filmmaker has never been easier.
  • Receive audition information, scripts, and instructions all in one place through the system.
  • Casting directors use our audition software to send out links to decision makers that feature your profile.
  • Talent can find representation by making their profile searchable to top agents using Casting Networks’ Talent Scout® feature.

How do I get on CNI?

  • For represented actors, we encourage you to contact your agent to ensure you have a profile on the system that your agent can submit and you can keep up-to-date.
  • For freelance UK actors we offer a 30-day free trial that includes a professional online CV, unlimited access to Casting Billboard® (new jobs posted daily), unlimited photos, and media hosting for reels, skill clips, and more.
    • One time registration fee of £10 and £5 monthly subscription for freelance talent.
    • We also offer annual prepay that waives registration fees.

What are your top 5 tips for using CNI?

  • Once your CV is active, update your headshot at least once a year. Invest in your profile – first impressions mean everything.
  • Read everything on the casting brief and audition notices. The more informed you are the better.
  • Be professional when submitting to castings, write appropriate submission notes, and submit for projects that are right for you.
  • Keep your reel current. Your CV is available to casting directors and their clients when they review auditions.

What do you do to ensure fairness is undertaken as part of the casting process when casting directors submit briefs?

  • We ensure high standards by only working with accredited professional casting directors
  • We strive to provide casting directors with the tools to undertake the casting process in a fair and equitable manner and work with them to ensure that all briefs on our platform live up to standards of fairness.
  • Additionally, submissions are randomized so that there is a more level playing field for submitting talent and their reps.
  • Casting directors are empowered to filter submissions, and cast a wide net to as many actors and representatives as they wish.
  • We also welcome emerging talent and provide access to actors of all skill levels to join Casting Networks and seek opportunities on our system.

The industry is often criticised for being elitist and middle-class  – how have you seen the industry change over the past 5 years if at all?

  • The casting industry has seen an incredible amount of dynamic change over the last five years, and in many ways is becoming more accessible through technology.
  • Casting Networks values the technological advances – from self tapes to teleconferencing – that have created new opportunities for talent.
  • We’ve never set standards of eligibility based on where talent have trained, which may lead to restrictions in opportunities based on welfare.
  • By not restricting access to talent based on the number of TV/film credits they have we avoid the sort of catch-22 situation that often emerges with talent new to the industry.

How do you see the industry changing over the next 5 years?

  • We are committed to making sure that casting continues to grow more inclusive – if we continue down this path then we are confident that some of the outdated barriers to success will continue to erode.
  • Advancements in technology will continue to change the way the business of casting is conducted we hope to see considerably more opportunities for talent from previously underrepresented communities. The issues around remote working during this Corona Crisis have proved how valuable technology platforms such as ours are and we hope that we will be able to provide even more transformative tools going forward
  • We are committed to providing value and a voice to every user of our platform – from talent and their representatives to casting industry professionals. We believe that a story well cast is a story well told, and that increasingly inclusive casting will enable creators to tell even better stories.

Nicci: Thanks Danielle, where can people hear more about Casting Networks?

Danielle: My pleasure, I have attached some links below:

corp.castingnetworks.com/uk/
facebook.com/CastingNetworksUK/
twitter.com/cni_uk
instagram.com/castingnetworks/

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