|CHILD ACTING TIPS AND ADVICE FOR PARENTS OF CHILD ACTORS
So before setting out to starting or continuing your child's acting career, following these advice for parents of child actors will help ensure your child actor's safety. Parents should read them and always be prepared before going to each and every child acting auditions.
- Work Permit and other Paperwork for Child Acting Jobs
Child labor laws were set up to help protect your children and to make sure they get paid properly. Your child actor will need a social security number and a work permit before going to any modeling or child acting audition. You should not trust any casting companies or child acting agencies that does not follow these rules. Some casting companies and child acting agencies actually employ social workers and teachers who can sign a work permit at the child acting auditions.
- Child Acting Heashots, Child Acting Resume, Kids Comp or Zed Cards
If you are trying to get a child acting agency to represent your child actor, make sure to have their child acting headshots, child acting resume and kids comp card or zed cards ready. Finding a child acting agent is even harder. An child acting agency will want to make sure that the parents and the child actor will be deeply committed. The child acting agent will their child acting headshots, child acting resumes an kids comp card or zed cards to all the child acting auditions available.
- Research and advice tfor Child Actors
Before going to any child acting audition, do a little research on the casting company. Make sure they have a good reputation. Find out what their policies are concerning rehearsals, discipline, and casting. Make sure this will be a positive experience.
- Don’t be a Pushy Child Actor Parent
Many children may be shy and need a lot of encouragement. Start gently and do not keep pushing if your child resists. Not all children made for fame and stardom. Actually many children are wary of social situations and being in front of strangers.
- Help Build the Confidence of your Child Actor
To build confidence, let your child actor know all the good things they are doing. Of course, true confidence is built through accomplishment - not words. If their good at acting, but not at singing, do not lie to them about their acting talents or other abilities.
- Help your child actor Improve their Acting Abilities and other Talents
Classes, practice, and going to child acting auditions will help your child actor improve his or her talents. Find out what your child actor is most interested in and would like to improve on. If your child actor would like to sing better, take him/her to a voice coach and singing classes.
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- Be Supportive and Protective, but don’t be Overprotective
Your child will be turned down at most acting and modeling auditions so it is also important for you and your child to learn to deal with rejection. Never tell them that they should have gotten a role they didn’t (even if you fell that this is true.) Your child will always look up to you, so set a good example. Always stay calm and objective. Child actors have been known to not be cast in a show so that directors can avoid dealing with their pushy parents.
- Let Everyone else do their jobs
Try not to interfere with acting teachers and casting directors. You can watch during the child acting auditions, but don’t stand on the side coaching them or mouthing off words.
Children should have different opportunities. Try not to focus on one “specialty.” If your child is really interested in performing, send them to dance classes, singing lessons, acting classes, etc. This doesn’t mean you should overload their schedule or that they should attend them all at once. But trying out different skills and letting your child focus themselves will be a better experience for everyone.
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- Top Children Acting Agency
Signing up with a top children acting agency can help you make the right connections in the industry. An agency can get information about auditions for roles,
either directly from casting directors and producers or from
an insiders-only fax service. If you and your child actor are ready to make the commitment, this is definitely the way to go.
Find Local Child Acting Agencies in your area >
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TIPS TO PROTECT YOUR CHILD IN THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY
In addition to predators and crazy fans, the entertainment industry is a very cutthroat and complicated business. Parents of child actors often worry their safety. Whether your child is in small-town theatre productions or movies and television shows, following these tips will help protect them.
1. Don’t put your child’s social security number on the resume.
Producers, directors and casting directors no longer use the social security number as a reference. The audition forms have a spot for a child actor’s Screen Actors Guild or SAG number. If your child is not a SAG member, ask if there’s another number you could use for the acting audition or just leave the box empty.
2. Change your phone number and keep it unlisted.
If your phone number is listed, you can be located easily on telephone and online directories. Changing your number and keeping it unlisted will help others from finding out your address.
3. Check your child actor's fan mail carefully.
All actors get fan mail, especially those in movies and popular TV shows. While this may seem neat at first, you must be careful when allowing your child to read the letters that come in. Check the envelopes and addresses carefully. Letters from prisons oftentimes are marked “Inmate Mail” or have a strange address that looks like a PO box. You should read the letters first to make sure they are appropriate.
4. Protect your child actor's photographs.
Ask the photographer if you can bring your digital card when getting their headshots and portfolio pictures. If the photographer still shoots on film, ask to keep the negative. Protecting the raw images of your child actor will help keep their likeness from being used inappropriately online.
5. Audit their acting classes.
Most acting classes for children will allow parents to sit in on a class or two. Your should do this before deciding to pay for an entire session of classes
Read books on child actors, auditioning, acting technique, and biographies of former and current child stars. Attend workshops and seminars in your area. Learning everything you can about the entertainment industry will not only help keep your child safe but can be beneficial to his/her career.
7. Be Supportive.
Remember, your child will probably be turned down many times for different reasons after their acting auditions. The rejection can be damaging to a child’s self esteem. As a parent, you need to learn how to reassure and support them every step of the way.
8. Be wary of fans or other strangers
Do not communicate with people you do not know well about your child. Avoid fan sites dedicated to your child actor. Leaving comments or joining the forum will allow others to track down your information through the computer, and even get additional personal information.
9. Register your child’s name as a web site domain name.
As soon as your child books that new commercial, TV show or movie, register your child’s name as a “dot com” immediately so somebody cannot steal it out from under you. Registration services are under $10/year at most places, so it will be a cheap investment in your child’s safety.
Most of these items involve common sense, but you will be surprised how easily they are forgotten when your child has a chance at stardom. Keep your wits about you and remember your number one priority is the welfare of your child, not booking the part.
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