We often ask actors to submit a self-tape and have complied the following tips and tricks to ensure you submit a decent one.
Rarely these will replace an actual audition but may help a Casting Director decide to meet with you and keep you in the running.
…self-taping can also help you prepare for a face-to-face audition – there’s no better way for you to judge your own on-camera audition technique than to watch it back [Puro Casting]
- Smartphone technology has come a long way and is more than adequate for this purpose. However, make sure the phone is placed on a steady surface or tripod – never handheld – and used in landscape mode.
- Choose your location and check your lighting in a test shoot. Preferably no distractions surrounding you or the viewer; a quiet, plain and closed room in your house will suffice.
- Ensure your head and shoulders are framed nicely and the camera is at eye level. Don’t fidget or wave your arms about.
- Be prepared and be off-book (no paper in sight). Learn your lines, dress appropriately, avoid props.
- Begin by introducing yourself and stating who your agent is (“TV Twins.uk”), name of the role and project you are auditioning for. If possible include a very brief full-length body shot (either at the end or beginning)
- Submit only your best *one* tape – we don’t have time to view all and decide for you!
Ultimately, what you are after is one decent interpretation of the role from start to finish in one unbroken take. Just one – not lots of different versions, and not cut together from a variety of takes [Puro Casting]
- Please trim anything non relevant, such as you moving around at the beginning/end to operate the camera. Do not include any personal contact details, just your name and agent, and our email address will suffice.
- Use ‘medium’ settings to save the file and label with the character you are playing and your name. Please title appropriately, e.g. “character-your_name”
- Upload directly from your smartphone to Vimeo (with the ability to download enabled), or use a service like Dropbox, We Transfer, You Send It or Mail Big File to send exported files to firstname.lastname@example.org
Don’t use showreel material in place of a self-tape, but they are a useful addition. Your showreels should only consist of clips from your films and TV productions. Do not use personally manufactured scenes [Ros Hubbard]
Now practice by recording an intro to yourselves…