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5 Ways to Increase Your Chances of Being Cast as a Supporting Artist

Learn how to increase your chances of being cast as a supporting artist in films and TV shows with these useful tips.
April 14, 2024

The Entertainment Partners Casting Portal is used by the UK’s top casting agents to find, book, manage and pay supporting artists on major films and TV shows.

Working as a supporting artist is a great way to make some extra money and be part of the exciting world of film and TV.

Anyone can sign up to the Casting Portal, and no former experience is required. That said, those with a strong profile, which they update regularly, are much more likely to be booked.

Here are our top tips for creating a standout profile, which will help you to appear in as many agent searches as possible and increase your chances of being cast!

1. Update your profile every three months (seriously)

If you do nothing else, do this!

Casting agents are given specific briefs by production, and they need to be confident that the people they book for a scene fit the director’s vision. Imagine if they were asked to provide 50 people with long hair for a medieval scene and 10 showed up with shaved heads!

To avoid this, casting agents will look to see when your profile was last updated, with a particular focus on your photos and measurements. Even if nothing has changed since you last updated your profile, casting agents won’t know that! That’s why we recommend that you upload new photos and confirm your measurements (and all other information on your profile) every three months to give yourself the best chance of being cast.

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2. Follow our photo guidelines

Photos are one of the main ways casting agents decide whether you’re the right fit for a particular scene. That’s why we require a minimum of a ‘Main’ and ‘Face’ photo when you sign up.

Your Main photo should be a full-length photo, so your entire body – from the top of your head to your feet – should be in frame. Your Face photo should be taken from the shoulders up (just like a passport photo).

You might think that you need to pay to have professional photos taken, but this is not the case. In fact, candid shots are often best because they let agents know what you really look like.

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Regardless of who takes your photos, our team will need to approve them to ensure they're suitable. You can speed up the photo approval process and improve your chances of being cast by following these tips:

  • Use recent photos (ideally from the last three months)
  • Get someone else to take the picture so that you’re face on to the camera (no selfies!)
  • Make sure you’re well lit, with no dark shadows or harsh sunlight obscuring your face
  • Stand against a solid background (ideally a plain white wall)
  • Stand up straight and look directly at the camera
  • Wear a neutral outfit and avoid wearing lots of makeup (so agents can get a proper sense of what you look like)
  • Avoid using filters and make sure the photo is in focus
  • Maintain a neutral expression – don’t be tempted to pull a face or strike a pose!

3. Provide as much detail on your profile as possible

When you sign up to the Casting Portal, we’ll ask for basic information to get you up and running. Once you have a profile, we recommend that you log in and complete all of the additional fields to help you stand out from the crowd.

Casting briefings are diverse, and agents may be looking for any number of characteristics, such as ethnicity, hair, eyes, skin tone, build, piercings, tattoos, body augmentation and religious clothing.

These fields are all optional on the platform, but the more information you provide, the more likely you are to appear in a specific search.

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4. Use the fields provided

The Entertainment Partners Casting Portal has advanced search functionality which allows agents to pinpoint the exact people they need to meet a particular brief. They do this using particular search fields like age, height, hair length, eye colour… the list goes on!

While it can be helpful to include a short bio on your profile, the Casting Portal will trawl the data included in the various fields on your profile during an agent search. So, the more fields you’ve filled in, the more searches you’ll appear in and the more chances you have of being cast.

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5. Think outside the box

While appearance plays a big part in the casting process, agents frequently need supporting artists who have certain skills or experience to bring a scene to life.

Some skills are niche and will put you in hot demand, like sword fighting, archery, body building or ballet.

Other things are so common you might not even think of them, but are still sought after by casting agents. These include having:

  • A driver’s licence or vehicle (or bike) you can bring to set  
  • A (friendly) pet, like a cat, dog or rabbit  
  • Career experience, perhaps as a nurse, firefighter, bartender, barista, hairdresser, mechanic or waiter
  • Special outfits, such as a business suit, ballgown or uniform
  • Family members or children who would be interested in working alongside you (in case the scene requires a family resemblance)
  • Physical skills, such as dancing, martial arts, yoga or sports
  • Accents or languages
  • Stunt skills

The list really is endless, so think carefully about what you could bring to a scene and make sure to include it in the Casting Information section of your profile.

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If you’re looking to increase your chances of being cast as a supporting artist, the best thing you can do is create a strong profile and update it every three months. While it may seem like a lot of work, taking 10 minutes to give agents confidence in the accuracy of your profile will go a long way.

Want to learn more about creating and maintaining your Entertainment Partners profile? See our Guide to Becoming a Supporting Artist.

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