How to Become a Child Actor the Easy Way
It's really easy to become a child actor or actress. You just have to be in the right place at the right time. So Mom & Dad, here's your crash course in Child Stardom 101.
Why do we say it's easy? A few reasons:
Kids are naturally talented. Kids have a wonderful capacity for imagination. (Much better than adults.) And a good imagination leads to great acting talent.
Kids also have less inhibitions. They behave on instinct rather than logic. This is another key component of acting talent.
We have yet to meet the child who didn't possess these two traits in spades.
There's less competition. That's right. Less competition. Why? Because kids grow up. Fast.
For example: When little Johnny booked the part two months ago, he was a beautiful boy soprano. But now, his voice has changed and he's out. Next thing you know, casting directors are calling about your son.
We've seen it happen a million times.
The industry needs them. Do you have any idea how many professional roles are available for kids? Everything from soaps to musicals, from Law & Order to CSI, prime time television, film studios, and much more. The Disney Channel alone hires approximately 1,200 child actors every year.
Compared to us poor and deprived grown ups, kids have got it made!
Become a Child Actor by Making the Right Moves
Now that you know that your child can absolutely be a working actor, how do you make it happen? So glad you asked:
1. Get an agent or manager. This is vital to your child's success. In a perfect world, you want to sign with a manager for two reasons. One, they're actually invested in your child's career. Two, they can get you working with several talent agents.
We discuss how to get an agent or manager in the article about auditions for kids.
2. Get some professional headshots. You'd think this step would come first, right? Not true. Because whatever agent or manager you sign with will immediately ask you to get your child new headshots. (This is true for adult actors as well.)
Don't worry, this is a standard practice. You're not being swindled, we promise.
3. Get into some classes. Like we said before, children are already expert actors from birth. So the value of acting class is not what they learn, but what they can put on their resumé. Casting directors want to see phrases like commercial voiceover and acting for the camera on your kid's CV.
Acting studios are also a great place to network with other parents of child actors. (But don't throw say too much. Stay quiet and listen more than you talk. You'd be surprised what you can learn...)
4. Get some monologues ready. Most of the time, your child will have to prepare a few pages from the script. But it's not a bad idea to brush up a monologue or two, just in case.
The last step? Rinse and repeat. It's a never ending, very rewarding process for you and your kid. If they become a child actor, there's a good chance they'll progress into a long and fulfilling acting career as an adult.