Colleen's thoughts on writing, directing and coaching, and her unique take on life itself!

Friday, September 29, 2006


The one thing that has killed more acting careers than anything else?


Actors who come in desperate to get the job can't let go of their fears enough to become totally immersed in their character - to be someone else.

One actress I know, who has actually booked a lot of work over the years, helped another actor who didn't have a full script in their audition. She was upset that the director didn't give her the part, especially considering she - who had the whole script and more experience - actually helped out the other actor in the audition.

I said, "It sounds like you weren't completely in character if you were concentrating on solving problems at an audition.

"Your character doesn't know he or she is at an audition, let alone helping someone at an audition."

When she thought about it, she realized that she couldn't completely commit to the character because she was also focused on the other actor and trying to make the audition work.

When I cast, I want to give most of the actors who audition a good and simple piece of advice of how to gain a foot up on getting a role - just be totally in character. There is a little spark of desperation in the eyes of too many actors that screams, "Please pick me!" "I can do this!" "I need the job!" "God, I hope I'm giving her what she wants!" "What does she want?"

All we want is for you to come in prepared, to give us strong choices for your character that you've developed for your own reasons based on the character's personality. Then let it go.

Recently one of my actors auditioned for a film role.

The casting director and film director asked if she knew another actor who had auditioned several days earlier.

My actor said she did - it was another of my actors.

The casting duo asked, "What's with people who work with Colleen Patrick? You two were the only actors who really impressed us .. and you're so ... happy. The other actors ..."

Apparently not so much.

Actors who understand that the work is its own reward, who work to be and stay in character and who aren't desperate to "make it" find their life much more peaceful and they are much happier making the most of their personal lives and their art.

I hope you have the opportunity to read the column I wrote for the upcoming movieScope magazine -- an interview with CCH Pounder.

She's a tremendous role model for actors who want to make the most of their careers and personal lives. She's a happy, optimistic person who laughs easily and often - while playing tough, don't-mess-with-me characters who either lay down the law -- or enforce it!


Post a Comment

<< Home