You have options and you know how each agency on
your list prefers to be contacted. Now what should you include in your
submission? Good question!
Again, most agencies will tell you what to include,
but here is general list of suggested material:
For the green talent:Talent new to the industry should not try to know
too much. Agents can tell when someone is blowing smoke, so be honest and
transparent about your experience.
Cover Letter – only 3-5 sentences maximum! Agents do not have time
to read a dissertation on your dreams. The agent will understand your
position if you end up working together, but show them that you value their
time. Keep your words direct and concise.
Snapshots – show us who you are physically. A smiling image of
just your face, a non-smiling image of just your face, and two images that show
your body (one straight on and one side profile usually work). No more
than 4 pictures. It’s important that the images are flattering, yes, but
please do NOT use too much makeup or put your hair in your eyes. Pull
hair out of face (it can still be down) and use only light powder, light
mascara, and lip-gloss. They won’t be your favorite pictures, but it’s
important for the agent to be able to see a clean slate.
Resume – green talent like to think that they don’t have a resume, but 9
times out of 10, I can sit down with a new talent and put one together in only
a few hours of talking with them. Include anything you’ve ever done (and
you’ve been doing free projects and student films, so add those)! It
doesn’t have to pay . . . and you don’t have to show us the final product if
it’s bad. If you were in front of people or a camera, it counts.
Show the agent that you have drive and are making an effort – the agent can
help edit the resume to fit their needs down the road.
For the working talent:
Talent who have been working in the industry should
not try to show off too much. Agents expect working actors and models to
know how hectic things can become and to respect the demands on the agent’s
Cover Letter -- only 3-5 sentences maximum! Agents do not have
time to read a dissertation on who you are and what you’ve done. The
agent will glean the necessary information from your marketing materials.
Keep your words direct and concise.
Headshot/Comp Cards – a talent’s headshot is the one image that
represents their skill set across the board. It should be real,
flattering, and inviting. Comp cards should give a concise and diverse
appeal to the talent’s ability. It’s the model’s resume of relevant
experience. Most likely, this will give the first impression – be
Resume – Be honest, be professional, be all inclusive. If you can
do a back flip or cry on command, write it down under special skills!
Agents frequently browse special skills and hobby categories to find talents
they don’t already represent. Credits are important and training is a
space-filler, but agents don’t usually spend much time considering these
A Professional Reel – if you have one, send it. If you
don’t, do not try to put one together. You either have the footage of
real work or you don’t. A bad reel will do far more harm than no reel at
all. Your mom may love it, but that doesn’t make it professional
What piece of material are you unsure about submitting? Ask first!