Hollywood talent agents are turning to social media to find the next big star. Agents’ rosters are no longer just full of trained actors, but also include internet sensations and YouTube stars. Gone are the days of D-list actors waiting in line to audition for a walk-on role in a TV series. Now, anyone with a webcam can submit an audition in minutes, from the comfort of their own couch. Social media casting has become the latest trend in cable and network television casting.
In a social casting campaign, agents and producers set up a forum through a social networking platform (like YouTube), and aspiring talents upload a video as their audition. Casting directors feel that these campaigns are more simple, manageable and effective than traditional castings for certain roles. For wannabe-stars, this new type of interaction with casting agents has facilitated the path to connect with a Hollywood executive.
A prominent example of this occurred in April with the hit American TV show Glee. Producers invited any aspiring ”gleeks” (as the show’s die-hard fans are called) to submit a video on the Glee Auditions Myspace page. Producers and casting directors are sorting through the thousands of submissions to determine who will be given a role on the next season.
These casting campaigns are yet another example of how social media is revolutionising our world. Numerous industries are using social media to add entirely new dimensions to their business. For casting directors and talent agents, social media has become an invaluable tool that helps them fill roles from the comfort of their computer screen.