Getting a phone call from your agent can be like being at the doctor’s office. We can get very excited and a little nervous, and sometimes we forget to ask some very important questions during our meeting.
One of the first thing all talent must do, especially if you are calling the agent back is to make sure you have a pen, paper and a calendar in front of you. You don’t want to call an agent back and then make him and her wait while you get things in order to take important notes.
The very first question I would highly recommend you ask your agent is what is the project all about. If it is a commercial, I want to know the company or product being advertised. The reason why this is so important is because you might not want to be associated or support certain products. I know some actors who will not do ads for meat products, furs, alcohol, cigarettes or anything that has to do with gambling. Or, you could be asked to audition for a commercial that is a political spot for a politician or a policy you don’t want to help promote.
If you find yourself in that situation, simply thank the agent for the opportunity, and tell the agent you are not comfortable working on this project, so you will need to turn down the audition.
You also need to ask the agent the exact dates of the audition and job. You might not be available for one or both of those dates. This might save the agent from spending a lot of time going through all of the details with you only to have you say at the end of your conversation that you aren’t available.
If you are auditioning for a film, it is important that you ask who is directing the project. Knowing the name of the director, and then doing some research in order to become familiar with his or her style, will give you a much better idea of how to read your lines during the audition. It is easy to find out about the previous work of a director by visiting IMDb. Just type in the director’s name, and a list of credits will appear.
To end this article I will add a short section about what you might not want to ask the agent when discussing an audition. Some people start off the conversation with their agent by asking how much the job pays. That is your call. Personally, I have never accepted or turned down a job based on money. To me, I just love to work, and I don’t worry about the financial aspects of the job. I never ask the agent about the fees involved until after I have booked the job.