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  • Bill will be in LA THIS FRIDAY April 27th to teach his Level One Commercial Class. SIGN UP on the SIGN UP page. 

  • Despite 10 years of booking commercials and 1000 auditions, I learned a TON of stuff. And I BOOKED three new spots because of this class!
    -Kevin G. 

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LINCOLN HOPPE

What was the job?

Volkswagen. It turned into a Super Bowl spot!

What was the audition like and what 101 tools did you get to use?

 I was booked out for the day of the audition! but my agent called to see if I could make it in, and somehow I was released from a short film shoot early and in time to drive the 2 1/2 hours from the mountain shooting location above Bakersfield and make it 5 minutes before they closed the audition for the day! I had that funny feeling, if I go through all this craziness to get there, I'll bet I book it. Ha! I signed in, got the assistant's name (#11), visualized someone in the camera who thought I was amazing (#3), and felt great about my read. In all the craziness of rushing into the audition, I FORGOT to take the copy with me!!! I always take the copy with me. (#21) And as soon as I got the callback, I realized my mistake, because the spot was really wordy. Doh!

What was the callback like and what 101 tools did you get to use?

 I arrived quite early so I could work the lines, said hello to the assistant  (#11) (whose name I remembered even though I forgot my copy) and went to work. I really focused on centering myself, and relaxing. (#20) And it really worked for me. The wonderful casting director warned me as I went in "they are not laughing at anything. Don't let it throw you." So glad she said that, because I was able to shift my focus quickly to just serving their needs and not going for the funny. (#36)

Sure enough. not a single laugh from the large group of people. Didn't bother me. I wasn't there for the laughs anymore. 

I felt like I took the direction really well, and rocked the You-Turn! (#61) The directions were subtle, so I made sure I was on target. I read 3 times, they said they didn't need to see anymore, and I left, knowing I had done my best, but had no idea what they thought. They seemed so analytical and calculating. Of course that's where they were at the moment. 

I rocked my tags at the callback and first call! (#35)  In fact, on set we shot the script as written, and then the directors gave me permission to play with the ending. OF COURSE, the tag in the final spot was a tag I nailed in the callback, with some variations in delivery. 

I booked it!

What was the set like and what 101 tools did you get to use?

Met the director on set, thanked him (#75) for allowing me to serve them in that role, and he said "Thanks for making our job of casting so incredibly easy." Ha! That made my day.For the shoot I knew my lines, and was able to serve them incredibly well when they re-wrote the script many different times. (#71) And I was able to serve them as they had me do multiple versions of the dialogue on the spot. (#)

What’s one thing you would keep and one thing you would leave behind?

One thing I would keep: my joy throughout the whole process! It's so easy to get caught up in less important things, but I love to remember I can make my own job hard and miserable, or easy and joyous. 

One thing I would change: Remember to write on and take home my darn copy!! This time I got the job, but my pre-callback night could have been less stressful if I had my copy to play with. 

Here's another wonderful thing I feel I owe entirely to service:

After my shoot day, I got a call from my agent saying they wanted to book me for three more days of shooting for web spots and shorts, because I had inspired their Agency and PR team with what I brought to the set with my work and my character. They may have been being nice and had it planned all along, but I'm glad that my service was so on target that it led to immediate work.