Do I need an acting agent? [Expanded]
Every actor asks themselves this question at some point in their career, and today we will answer it for you as simply as possible. There are three variables that you have to consider.
Firstly, where do you reside? If you live in a large city with a very competitive industry, then it would be ideal to get represented. However, if you live in a small city, representation may not be needed. In some places, there aren’t even agencies because there is no need for it.
The second variable is the amount of time you have at hand to look for your own gigs and market yourself. It would cost very little to do everything yourself, but it would take quite a bit of time to be keeping tabs on casting calls, reaching out to people of interest, and trying to warm up a cold prospect. On the other hand, an agency will have the resources and manpower to market and pitch you to clients, with the trade-off of taking a percentage of your fee from the jobs they help you get. Whether you pick the fore or the latter depends entirely on the amount of time and energy you have.
The third thing you have to consider is the caliber of work you are hoping to get. It is not impossible to find great work when you go at it yourself, but the chances are slimmer than if you are with an agency. Agencies have a reputation and industry connections that they have spent time and money working on and maintaining for years. Therefore, casting needs for larger productions usually get funneled to agencies simply because as a body, they already have a track record of producing a certain standard of work and have more at stake to uphold it.