I often get asked by fellow actors where I find opportunities for roles. When I was starting out a couple of years ago I had no idea, so I thought it was about time I summarised a list of websites and companies you can look into for networking, education and opportunities. Many of these are UK-specific, though some are also global. Some you’ll probably already know, while others you might not. I hope you find it useful.
- London Actors Workshop: Education
Organised by Jonathan Sidgwick, this is the UK’s most successful and longest-running weekend acting course and has been in operation since 2005. They offer a 12-week course suitable for beginners and anybody who wants to brush up on various techniques. Their next course starts on 24 September 2023 and they are offering a discount if you sign up using LAWSEP23. More details on the website. They also offer a 5-week advanced course which starts a week later on 30 September 2023 (and there’s a discount). Entry is restricted to Spotlight/Mandy registered actors for the advanced program and may require an interview. At the end of both courses, you will receive a professionally edited showreel that will be submitted to 400+ Agents and 200+ Casting Directors on your behalf. I have done both courses and can recommend them wholeheartedly. Each course covers many bases and will push you to perform.
- Stage32: Networking & Education & Opportunities
Over 1 million global creatives in the film and TV industry, with different “lounges” discussing all aspects of the business, from the craft to the business itself. Free to join, and with a premium Writers Room specifically aimed at writers (though there are free screenwriting lounges). Lots of great training content too. You can connect with me by clicking the link above.
- Shooting People: Networking & Opportunities
A vibrant community of independent filmmakers who connect and collaborate to make feature films, shorts, documentaries, web series, and more. SP exists because they believe that the best way to get independent films made and out into the world is to learn from others doing it themselves. Yearly membership is £39.95 and monthly is £9.95.
- Spotlight: Opportunities & Education
The home of casting. You need to meet certain criteria to be eligible to have a Spotlight membership, and when you do you will get access to more opportunities from TV to film to commercials to theatre. Many opportunities only appear on Spotlight so it’s considered the “gold standard.” Spotlight also offers workshops to help you improve your craft.
- Mandy: Opportunities
If you don’t have enough credits to be eligible for Spotlight, Mandy is a great site to sign up for. You can have a free profile, but you need to pay to be able to apply for job opportunities. They also have 2 sites – one for actors and one for crew, so you’d need to pay twice if you work in both camps. However, if you are a member of Equity you get a discount on their membership plans.
- vShowcards: Opportunities
The one-stop shop marketing tool for worldwide cast and crew that makes it easy for the casting professional to navigate all the information needed for them to cast or hire you. It collates everything into an online CV for you – your reel(s), headshots, agent, measurements, resumé and links to all your other places like Spotlight, IMDb, etc. You can create up to 3 profiles if you want to target specific genres like comedy, drama, villain, crew, etc. They also post castings for members and are hugely supportive. It was built and designed by two actors based on ongoing consultation with the entertainment industry to deliver what casting and agents are looking for in one place.
- Facebook: Networking & Opportunities
Don’t overlook this one. There are a myriad of actors and crew groups where conversations and job postings occur. If you’re starting out on your journey or looking to network, this is a great place to find opportunities.
- Raindance: Festival & Networking & Education
Considered the home of independent film and was founded in 1992 by Elliot Grove. It is home to the world-renowned Raindance Film Festival and also operates the Raindance Film School. It has locations worldwide plus a plethora of online and in-person training, plus monthly networking meets in London for a very affordable £5. Membership is free, though if you pay a little more (£50 or £100) you get a host of benefits including some free courses and consultancy.
- Run At It Shouting: Education
Since 1999, RAIS has grown to become one of the UK’s leading platforms for creating and producing industry workshops, entertainment and events. You don’t have to be a member to attend, though members do get discounts. I have been to one director’s workshop organised by RAIS and it was excellent.
- Act On This: Education
This is the TV Actor’s Network founded by Ross Grant. As a member, you get 7 online coaching sessions each month for £27 (or £23.25 if you pay annually) plus access to recordings of previous sessions. It’s all about the business of show business. Check out the intro video by Ross on the site for more. I have attended a few of his free Zoom sessions (which are excellent and fast-paced) but haven’t yet joined the program – not because I don’t think it’s amazing value, but just because I don’t have the time at the moment to engage with the content. Plus they have a fully-categorised list of UK agents available to annual members.
- Actors Fast Track: Education
Valorie Hubbard, a busy working actor in the USA, operates this training and mentorship network. It’s not specifically focused on the USA and I have met actors from the UK engaged in her Accelerate program who have said positive things and I have seen a change in their approach to the business also. I have attended a couple of the free 2-week challenges she runs occasionally and learned a great deal about the business side of acting. Her approach may be at odds with what you have been told, but it does work.
- The London Horror Society: Festival & Networking & Education
The loudest voice for independent horror in the UK. They have a free mailing list and an inexpensive membership for professionals (actors, writers, filmmakers). They operate a film festival plus live and online events and have a dedicated networking platform for professional members so you can interact with other professionals in the (horror) industry. Professional members gain access to some training as well as searchable directories of cast, crew, locations and more. I recently joined (since I write horror too) and am still exploring their options.
- Sci-Fi London: Festival
Sci-Fi London is a London-based international film festival exclusively for science fiction. There are no other services here, but if you’re in the science fiction genre, you need to be aware of this one. I won’t go into lists of festivals (other than this one since I love my sci-fi), but there are hundreds of small and large festivals year-round.
- Actors Pro Expo: Networking & Education
Regional events around the UK as well as online access to seminars.
- CineCircle: Networking & Education & Opportunities
CineCircle operates a number of events and networking evenings, along with online and in-person events and a Film & TV Job Fair aimed at newer entrants in the business. These cover everything from distribution to funding to production. Paid members get access to discounts and a library of pre-recorded courses and seminars, but you don’t need to become a member to access their ongoing events. I have enjoyed their seminars and you might find me at their networking evenings too.
- Slated: Marketplace & Opportunities
Geared towards production, Slated offers a way to help you get your projects produced, and also a way to connect yourself with producers and potentially become attached to features as an actor or in production. It’s free to join and you can connect with me on the link above. They also run a weekly chat room on Clubhouse every Tuesday – so that’s great to listen in to and ask questions.
- WeAudition: Networking & Opportunities
The main reason most people join is that you can find “on-demand” readers when you have a self-tape to submit. But, you can potentially earn money as a reader too (because people can hire you to read for them – some readers read for free, some for tips and some for a flat fee). Plus the site also has coaches so you can get coached online too. Plus casting directors, agents and managers host auditions on the platform too. Is that too many plusses?
- Casting Club UK: Opportunities
aka Casting Calls UK. For £4.99 per month (or less if paid annually) you get access to a wealth of paid and non-paid casting and crew calls in the UK for film, TV, commercials, background work, modelling, web series and theatre – basically everything!
- Casting Talent: Opportunities [Added – 25 Sept]
I recently came across this website that lists global opportunities, but you can filter on your region, and this link is for the UK.
I hope you found these useful. And if you have any additional networks, training programs or schools you’d like to add let me know in the comments. And check back periodically as there may be new sites added or comments to check out.
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