An acting career is like any other business start up. Rule of thumb is a successful new business cannot expect to break even for two years. Worse with acting. If you start a taco stand, have good food and advertise properly to a two mile radius around your stand, you will attract customers immediately.
In the acting business there are as many as 30,000 actors available for any part offered. In this business you have to be very well trained, creative and co-operative to even get into the running for the job.
The good news is that because of the odds, the fallout is phenomenal. If you can bite the bullet and persevere for two years, you WILL start to book jobs.
Meanwhile you will spend a fortune on gas. You will have an outrageous phone bill calling your agent and manager. Nawadays you can get cell phones with unlimited talk and text. This is a wonderful thing.
You will have to have a cell phone on every minute at home AND away. You will need a RELIABLE car. You’ll kill a beater car in the first four months of consistent auditions. You will always need to have gas in your car's tank.
You will have to get used to CHEAP food and RENT.
You will be paying for pictures (150 -500 per photo session) head sheets (150 -250 per 100) workshop (150-500 per month). You may want to invest in weekly facials if you are prone to facial blemishes (20-100 per). You will need to keep your nails nice.
If you are a one car family, you will have to buy a second car. You may need to arrange a reliable, last minute, no notice, child care situation. A single parent cannot take a child to their audition. You will never book as the casting director won’t book an actor who has “baggage”.
A two car family may have to become a one car and one van (camper) family like Margo Harshman's family did.
There’s is no way to get around it, acting is costly. But so is any business start up. The problem is that most people don’t realise that's what this is. You are a business start up.
I know a actor actor who has a 7 figure bank account waiting for his college years. But the first years were a real struggle for his single parent. He was earning a ton as a regular on a hit series, but SAG deducted half of his earnings and put them in trust. The rest was taken in management, agent commissions and expenses.
A vehicle you can live in rent free is a really good investment.
The more you do your homework, the better you invest in your career, the higher the likely hood of a return on your investment.
But the real question is. “Do you really want to do this? Is this my passion or my ego?”
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