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The Casting Couch.

 

 

I love acting. It is what I have wanted to do since I was little. This past year I have spent auditioning like crazy. I came to find out how hard Hollywood can be at times. Yes you hear about the rejection,etc. But nobody really warns you about the type of people that prey on naive young actors/actresses. I came to find out about it in two weeks.

 

So I of course had been mailing out my head shot like crazy to different casting agents, agents, managers, etc. One day I get an email from a producer that says he wants to have a meeting in his office to discuss upcoming projects he could use me for. Right away I do my research on him. He is a legitimate producer who has worked with many well known actors. "This is it" I think to myself. I am going to meet this guy, my talent will shine through, and I will be on my way. So I go to his office. Very nice building. Inside I am greeted by a skinny young kid. I tell him I'm here to see Mr. producer guy. He smiles, tells me to have a seat. I look around at all the posters on the wall. Wow. He really has worked with so many people. Out he comes. He is very friendly and asks me back to his office. In there he starts talking about how he has at least 5 movies coming out this year. He wants to start filming his next 5 very soon. He asks me if I have a passport. "Yes." "Great!" He says that he films most of his movies in Canada. He then talks about how a girl who just booked a million dollar role in a horror movie was sitting in my exact seat. Will call her Willa. Willa got her start because of him. She had not one credit to her name. But he saw the talent in her. Now look where she is. He says he sees the same talent in me. Wow!..... Of course he hasn't seen me act yet. He must mean my charisma.;) Anyway, he asks me what kind of roles I would be interested in. I say how I could of done the role that Willa had done last year. "Yeah, I can see you in that role. Except you wouldn't have to wear a push up bra." he says with a giggle. "Oh." I say. At this point in my life I am use to men making remarks about my chest.... but this is a business meeting. I start to feel a little uneasy. He says that he is going to make a couple of calls and could have me working as early as Monday. He will text me to let me know when we can get together again to discuss. Great I think. I thank him and leave.

 

When I get home I tell my boyfriend at the time everything he said. "So he wasn't weird at all?" He asks. I decide not to tell my possessive and jealous boyfriend that he did seem at little..forward at times. After all, it could of just been my imagination.

 

Two days later I get a text from Mr producer guy. He says he wants to meet for dinner. And to wear something sexy. Uh-oh. Okay, that is really pushing it. So..... I decide I will meet him for dinner, with my 60 year old acting teacher. My acting teacher is the one who warned me of people like him. He told me that If I ever had ran into a bad situation, to give him a call. He told me of all the girls he had seen through the years get used by people who promised them parts, and then threw them away. All that happens to them is that they are passed around, and eventually go done some very dark paths. I call David, he says he will be ready at 7. I pick him up, and we are on the way to the restaurant.

 

We arrive and are told he is seated and waiting. As we approach the table I see Mr producer guy's jaw drop. "This is my acting teacher, David." I say. "Hello" David quips. "Uhhhh Hii." Mr producer guy wasn't planning on dinner for three. But if his intentions were right, he wouldn't have a problem with it. We all sit down. David told me to order the most expensive thing on the menu. "I'LL have the steak!" :) We then continue to chit chat. "So, isn't Amy a great actress?" David says with a smirk. "Oh yes. She really has something." Mr producer says. David excuses himself to the bathroom. I turn to Mr producer. "So, have you found a part that you want me to read for?" I ask. "Well that depends." Says Mr. Producer guy. "Depends on what?" " Depends If you want to spend time with me. Alone. On my boat....." At this point I want to take his sleazy head and push it through the wall..."You are such a jerk." I say. "You never had any intention on giving me a part." I can feel that lump swelling up in my throat. I'm starting to push back tears."Well, what do you expect sweetheart. This is  Hollywood. And a beautiful girl like you, a dime a dozen," he says with a smirk. But this is where he is wrong. I'm not a dime a dozen. I'm not going to let myself be used or exploited. I abruptly get up, and throw the water glass in his face. (I had always seen it in movies.) It felt really good. I recommend trying it sometime. I walked out to the lobby to find David waiting for me. "I am very proud of you" he says. And gives me a hug." Now lets get the hell out of here!"

 

***That happened to me six months ago. As hard as it was to have been lied to, I knew that I could never forgive myself if I gave into being taken advantage off. No matter who you meet in this business, always trust your instincts. If someone gives you a bad vibe, don't be afraid to stand up for yourself. I am so glad I did.

aejactress aejactress 22-25, F 4 Responses Mar 22, 2009

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I write, produce, and direct microbudget independent films. I also have a fiancee that I love very much. Due to experience she now acts as casting director for my projects for the exact opposite reason of what you mention here. On a couple of ocassions we have put out casting calls only to have an actress state in their e-mail response that they would be willing to "do anything" to get a part in a movie. Since my fiancee has taken over casting those e-mails have totally stopped, much to my relief.

ya right ,,,,,i agree i have a friend who is casting agent ,,,we see all tose girls coming through his office ,,to work in **** movies,,,,and all these 15 yrs of our friendship and his work,,,,cant even count how many girls we have toAUDITION,,,,lol....

Good for you. Producers like this are the scum of the earth, they deserve to be exposed. I wish people with stories like yours would name names for the sake of others who aren't as smart / brave as you.

I always wonder if it's easier to try to do independent films with people outside of Hollywood that are fresh out of filmschool. I'm not fresh out of filmschool, but so far I've avoided Hollywood, just for the pure simple fact that cretins like these are all around in Hollywood. My sense is that most of these types are the ones that never really worked for much and were handed a lot so working on films, from a creative standpoint, just doesn't mean much to them, but they know it means a lot to other people and abuse that. I'm not an actor...I'm a director, but not in a privileged class so I'm always trying to figure out a way Move through the politics of how things work.