How To Get Into Acting: Complete Guide for Beginners!

Have you ever stood in front of a mirror enacting a scene from a recently watches TV show or a film? Do you really want to know how to get into acting?

Well, stop dreaming and start preparing to become a part of this glamorous industry. Getting into the acting world is not easy, but with the right tools, hard work, and help, you can get become the lead cast of a film or TV show. In this, know-how guide, learn basic steps to begin your acting career.

I Want To Get Into Acting: Where Do I Start?

Here is how to get into the acting field on your own:

1. Read books on acting.

You can start by reading books on acting, plays, and skits to step into the world of acting.

2. Study great performances.

Learn and take notes by watching classic films and plays to learn many things about acting.

3. Consider your schedule.

Spend more time learning the art of acting.

4. Be financially prepared. 

Work as a part-timer to earn money to be financially independent and have savings to pay your bills.

How To Get Into Acting

5. Join acting classes and workshops.

Find and join acting workshops, classes, or schools near you.

6. Talk to other actors. 

Be in touch with other actors to get an insight into the acting world, auditions, struggles, and much more.

7. Get headshots taken.

Headshots help the casting directors to have a basic idea of who you are so make sure to do professional headshots.

8. Create an acting resume.

Build a strong resume that has no errors. Mention your height, body measurements, hair color, eye color, weight, skills, past experiences, schools, and colleges visited, as well as hobbies.

9. Write a cover letter.

Add a personal connection to your auditions by writing a cover letter that caters to the specific job profile you are hunting for.

10. Put together a portfolio.

Add the best photos like headshots, cover letters, business cards, and your resume in a folder or a binder to organize everything in one place.

11. Find an acting agent.

Look for the best acting agent that can find the best acting gigs for you with the help of their contacts.

12. Find auditions on your own.

If you don’t find any agents, then look for the auditions on city websites and casting calls in your local production houses.

13. Prepare for an audition.

While preparing for the auditions, memorize the script, be professional, understand the character, and practice with confidence.

14. Have good manners.

Manners and etiquettes make a man stand out from the crowd so be respectful to everyone around you, be thankful, and change any odd personal habits.

15. Consider moving to a location with more acting opportunities.

If you don’t find any acting gigs in your city, then move to another city to build your acting career.

Pro And Cons Of Being An Actor

How To Get Into Acting

Pros Of Being An Actor

  • Actor is famous
  • You earn a good amount of money.
  • An actor gets invited to or has easy access to exclusive events.
  • The life of an actor is quite a lot of fun.
  • Your family and friends will be impressed by your acting skills.
  • You can act in different films and play different roles.
  • An actor never gets bored by his acting career.
  • The actor gets to learn many things about herself or himself.
  • You will learn how to deal with and tackle the on-set pressure.
  • The actor becomes a role model for many children.
  • The actor meets new interesting people in his or her life.
  • You don’t require a college degree to become an actor.
  • The actor gets a chance to travel the world with his team.

Cons Of Being An Actor

  • Some actors don’t get rich because they don’t get roles in big-budget films.
  • The work pressure in the acting world is quite enormous and tiring for an actor.
  • An actor has a lot of competitors, so they always have to be one step ahead of others in terms of skills.
  • Getting cast in a particular role can be difficult.
  • The actor’s job security is quite questionable. 
  • Actors tend to suffer from alcohol or drug problems. 
  • One bad performance in a film can ruin an actor’s career.
  • Things can turn upside down on their social media if they have haters.
  • The actors need to have a stable mindset to succeed in the long run.
  • The actors mostly spend their time alone with their families because they have to travel a lot.
  • An actor’s kids might be constantly surrounded by other kids which might give them a hard time.
  • Actors are at a huge risk of accidents while performing on the set.

What To Know Before Starting Your Acting Career

How To Get Into Acting

Check out our six points to know before starting your acting career:

Don’t Move Yet

Cities like New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago have a lot of opportunities for acting. But you can also find acting gigs in smaller cities which have less competition and save you money.

Take Acting Classes

Get yourself enrolled in acting classes and develop the right technique with the help of your instructor.

Further Your Formal Education

If you have more time, then get some foundational knowledge by searching for more formal education in acting.

Join A Local Theater

Become a part of your community theater to build your confidence in acting.

Learn about the industry

Know the acting industry in and out through an agent or talent agency to prepare yourself for the future.

Create A Demo reel

After you gain some experience then develop a demo reel where you need to showcase the club more like a commercial and short.

How To Gain Experience As An Actor

How To Get Into Acting

Take a look at five tips to:

learn more and gain experience to grow as a successful actor:

1.  First of all, look for acting gigs in your local area to get acting experience.

2. Look for acting workshops and classes to improve your skills and build connections.

3. Becoming an actor is not just about acting, you will also have to attend voice training and dance classes.

4. Make yourself ready for auditions and casting calls before going for auditions.

5. If you want to pursue acting as your career, then make a list of cities you would want to move to at some point in your life.

How To Book Work As An Actor

Below, we have shared five steps and strategies for bookwork in the acting industry:

1. Hone your skills regularly and try to learn new things related to acting.

2. Gain some experience through casting sites, Facebook groups, and job boards, then build your resume.

3. Know your type (character suitable for you) by looking at yourself and take help from a branding coach to do some branding.

4. Have killer marketing materials or promotional pieces to pitch yourself. These materials include:

  • Headshot
  • Resume
  • Reel
  • Online profiles
  • Personal Website
  • Postcards
  1. While giving an audition, be phenomenal at it by using self-tapes and other tactics.

How To Get Into Acting At 16?

How To Get Into Acting

These days, small kids are getting inspiration from other child actors to become an actor. If you want to step into this field, then here are the things you need to do:

  • Think about why you want to become an actor in the first place and what is your motivation.
  • Get professional full-body shots as well as headshots.
  • Take acting classes by a professional to gain experience.
  • Create an updated portfolio to show to your clients and agents.
  • Take the help of an adult to research agencies or agents suitable for you.
  • If you don’t want any agent, then you can take the help of your guardian who can help you to find any auditions in your city.
  • Lastly, be confident and go into auditions for television commercials and small roles, such as an extra, in advertisements or movies.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. Is it hard to become an actor?

Yes. It is really difficult to become a successful actor, but it is not impossible. Only a few out of many actors can make it because their goals are already set and they work hard on themselves to achieve what they aspire to become. So an acting career is only for those who are willing to make sacrifices like shifting to other cities and working under a tight schedule, then you can become a successful actor in the future.

Q2. How much do actors get paid?

The average salary of an experienced actor is $43,760 a year. And the highest and the lowest income of the actor is around $60,760 and $28,080, respectively. Moreover, the lowest paid actors make 10 percent which is $9.39 on an hourly basis, and the highest earned is over $100 per hour. Besides, an average actor makes between $50.88 and $44.46 per hour.

Q3. How can I audition for Netflix?

If you are searching for an audition for Netflix, you should know that this streaming platform doesn’t conduct any in-house auditions because this is not its job. The auditioning work is mostly handled by production companies, hired by the streaming giants to create their films or shows. Moreover, the platform’s casting directors are then sent out to find talent.

Q4. Can you be a self-taught actor?

Yes, why not? In today’s generation, an actor can learn from anywhere he or she wants. There is a lot of online content and resources available on the internet. Plus, there are community theaters too to help the aspiring actors to do everything remotely. Now, they can learn the research roles and basics to analyze scripts, study roles, as well as techniques.

Q5. How do you cry when acting?

Actors use many physical tricks and acting techniques to employ to cry at a particular moment. If an actor wants to convey their strong emotions on the screen, they use these techniques:

  1. Yawn. As we all know yawning releases tears because it stimulates the lacrimal glands that produce tears.
  2. Drink a lot of water before the shoot.
  3. Do not blink or keep your eyes open for 20 to 30 seconds.
  4. Use a menthol tear stick that is infused with wax and gives you natural tears without harming your eyes.
  5. Cut onions right before the shoot.
  6. Connect the scenario or the circumstances in the shoot with your personal life.
  7. Put on headphones and listen to some sad songs.
  8. Watch a short sad story or an inspiring video
  9. Read a book or an article that is quite moving.
  10. Act as if the character you are playing is actually the real you.

Q6. Where can I audition for acting?

You can go for acting auditions, and apply for acting roles online or offline at studios like Backstage, IMDbPRO, Actors Access, Now Casting, Casting Networks, Casting Frontier, Playbill, as well as NYCastings.