3 Things to Do After Getting Dumped by Your Agent

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At the end of last year, the relationship with my agent ended with a conversation like, “We just can’t keep you on the roster.” I’ve since learned that this is agent speak for, “You’re not bringing in the cash, kid.” I was stunned. I had been booking. I had checked every box they had: updating my résumé and IMDb credits, new headshots, etc. Still, the guillotine had dropped and I was now rep-less.

I won’t lie, it took me two weeks to get out of my depressed funk. (I’m an actor! I get to feel things). But here are three things that helped me through that moment and onto the rest of my career.

1. Mourn and move on.
I called people. I cried. I drank. I complained. (Official apologies to my wife.) I kept thinking about what I could have done differently. It was beginning to resemble a breakup I had when I first moved to New York. Oh right. It was a breakup; they broke up with me.

And then, the clouds broke. What good was I doing my career living in this past experience? It was time to move on and find new management. In my classes, I teach students a system for finding a new agent, something I hadn’t had to do in years. Now I was able to take my own advice. And it worked! I had two meetings with new agents within two weeks. It was time to move on.

READ: Why Agents Drop Talent + How Not To Be One of Them

2. Stay in touch with casting directors.
I keep a record of every casting director who has seen me in a play, audition room, or workshop. I also keep a record of every casting director I want to be seen by. As soon as the relationship with my agent was terminated, I immediately sent out a notice via email and snail mail. The message went something like, “I’m in between representation right now, you can contact me at this email and this phone number.” I changed all my contact info on IMDb, my website, and all the casting websites. It was a slight ordeal, no doubt, but a month later I got a call on my cell phone from a casting office calling me in for two projects.

3. Stay in shape.
I don’t necessarily mean the cardio, but that never hurts. What I mean is your audition room skills. Keep reading scripts. Keep watching TV and film to keep up with the tone of new projects. Read Backstage. Read Deadline. Meet with fellow actors to practice and keep those skills sharp. If you do find another agent (which you will), you want to re-enter those audition rooms ready and sharp. What you do in your own room will dictate what you do in the audition room.

These three things are helping me through the rough storm. If you ever get that phone call like I did, know there are many things to do to keep your skills sharp and your career moving forward. Rep-less does not equal hopeless.

Bill Coelius is a working actor who has booked over 50 national commercials and is still auditioning in today’s market. He is hosting a live webinar called How To Book A Commercial In Five Minutes Or Less on May 10. To sign up, go to imabookingmachine.com/book-in-5/.

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Bill Coelius
Bill Coelius has been in numerous television, movies, and over 50 national commercials. He also teaches acting in New York, Los Angeles, Portland, and Detroit.
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