Read This Before Complaining About Your Agent or Manager

Photo Source: @darby via Twenty20

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard these words from disgruntled actors: “My agent never gets me out.” Or, “My manager isn’t doing enough for me.”

And no matter what evidence they give, my answer is always the same: Before you go placing all the blame on your handlers, how about a long look in the mirror. What are you doing for yourself?

Let’s start with the basics. Is your resume up to date? Do your headshots represent you and your brand? Do they even look like you? Do you have a reel? Is it current? Is all this information up on casting sites?

If doing the basics is “too much,” don’t go any further. Pack it up and move back to Kansas or get a job in a movie theater. Acting is not for you.

Still here? Great. Let’s move on to the more advanced categories: How are you marketing yourself? Do you have a professional social media platform? How many followers do you have? What are you doing to get more organic followers? And what does your social media look like? Do you constantly complain about your career? Brag about your sexual conquests? Post pics of you and your bros drinking?

READ: How Frequently Should I Apply to Agencies for Representation?

How about your website? Do you have one? Is it up to date? Do you have a Youtube channel? Can we see your clips? Are you using search engine optimization so casting and producers can find you more easily? Are there links to your handlers on all your pages and sites?

Bet I lost even more of you there.

Finally, let’s talk about networking. How many casting directors and producers know you? How many are you reaching out to on a regular basis? How many events do you attend? Do you actively help others with their projects or help market projects you’re in? How often are you in touch with your handlers? Do they even know what you’re doing? If you don’t tell them, they are going to think you don’t care about your career.

A huge percentage of the work you get is going to come as a result of your own actions, not those of your agent or manager.
So before you go blaming your handlers for your lack of work, ask yourself if you’re doing everything you can to advance your career. After all, it’s your career, not your agent’s or manager’s. It’s up to you to be sure all your ducks are in a row. Because if you don’t care enough about your own career, why should your handlers?

*This post was originally published on Oct. 13, 2017. It has since been updated.

Matt Chassin is a talent manager and publicist in Los Angeles. His talent roster includes award-winning actors and actresses from around the globe.

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Matt Chassin
Matt Chassin is a talent manager and publicist in Los Angeles. His talent roster includes award-winning actors and actresses from around the globe.