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The Director’s Chair Issue #113 – Nov. 26, 2010 (Casting Guidelines for Directors )

Free Monthly Ezine for Film and Television Directors

November 26, 2010                Scene 11 – Take 10

Published once a month.

Publisher: Peter D. Marshall
Email: mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com
Website: http://actioncutprint.com
Blog: http://filmdirectingtips.com


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1. Introduction
2. Two Bonuses for Subscribing to The Director’s Chair
3. Facebook – The Director’s Chair Fan Page
4. FEATURE ARTICLE: Casting Guidelines for Directors
5. Write an Article for The Director’s Chair
6. Product Promotion and Film Workshops
7. Subscriber Shameless Self-Promotion
8. Filmmaking Workshops
9. Suggestions and Comments
10. Share this Ezine
11. Reprint this Ezine
12. Copyright Information

1. Introduction

Welcome to Issue #113 of The Director’s Chair November 26, 2010

1) 4837 Filmmakers in 107 Countries Subscribe to this Ezine:

NOTE: If your country is not represented here, please let me
know and I will add it to this ever growing list.

Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Bahamas,
Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina,
Botswana, Brazil, Bhutan, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile,
China, Colombia, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic,
Denmark, Dominican Republic, East Timor, Egypt, Estonia,
Ethiopia, Faroe Islands, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana,
Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran,
Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kenya,
Republic of Korea, Republic of Kosova, Kurdistan, Kuwait,
Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Malawi,
Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Morocco, Namibia, Nepal,
Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Peru,
Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Romania,
Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Serbia and
Montenegro, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan,
Sweden, Swaziland, Switzerland, Syria, Taiwan, Tanzania,
Thailand, Trinidad and Tabago, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, United
Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay,
Venezuela, Vietnam, Yugoslavia, Zambia, Zimbabwe

2) Feature Article – The feature article this month is
called “Casting Guidelines for Directors. “How can you decide,
in less than 10 minutes, who is right for a particular part?
Because you never have enough time to work with the actors in
a casting session, here are some casting guidelines that will
help you with the audition process.” (Read article below.)

3) Film Directing Tips – Please take a look at the many
articles on my blog, http://FilmDirectingTips.com and make
some comments on the posts. Your feedback is important to me
because they will help me decide on the content of this blog.

4) Twitter – If you have a Twitter account, let’s follow each
other. You can follow me at http://twitter.com/bcfilmmaker.

5) To Subscribe or Unsubscribe to this Ezine, send a blank
email to: mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com

6) To Change Your Email Address, send an email with your old
and new email address to mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com

7) To Read Back Issues of The Director’s Chair, visit:


Peter D. Marshall

2. Two Bonuses For Subscribing To The Director’s Chair

Thank you very much for subscribing to this ezine.

BONUS #1 – Here is the link to download the first 28 pages of
“The Art and Craft of the Director Audio Seminar.”

BONUS #2 – Here is the link to download the first 24 pages of
the “Script Breakdown and Film Scheduling Online Course.”

3. Facebook – The Director’s Chair Fan Page

The Director’s Chair has it’s own page on Facebook. If you
haven’t signed up to Facebook yet, I sincerely recommend you
think about doing it. Facebook is a fabulous place to meet
people who share your passions and it is one of the top Social
Networking sites on the Internet.

Here’s the Facebook home page: http://www.facebook.com Once
you are signed up, type in “The Directors Chair” and the page
should come up. Sign up as a fan and then start to join the
discussion forums, post photos, videos and write on the Walls.

If you are already a member of Facebook, here is the direct
link to the page: http://snipurl.com/923qh

4. FEATURE ARTICLE: Casting Guidelines for Directors

“Casting Guidelines for Directors” by Peter D. Marshall

The Casting session (actors call it “the audition”) can be a
terrifying place for any actor. It takes a lot of guts to walk
into a small, windowless room and have about 10 minutes to
“show your stuff” in front of complete strangers – some of
whom could make or break your career!

But it is just as tough for the Director as well! How can you
decide, in less than 10 minutes, who is right for a particular
part? Because you never have enough time to work with the
actors in a casting session, here are some casting guidelines
that will help you with the audition process.

(1) When casting, you want to look for: acting ability,
physical characteristics, subtleties in style and the
chemistry between actors.

(2) Here are the top three qualities you look for in any

1. Do they look the part? (The 50% Rule)

2. Do they have range? (Laugh to Cry. Is it believable?)

3. Can they take direction? (Listen to you, process, change)

NOTE: You find out 2 & 3 by making adjustments. Adjustments
are notes you give the actors that change their objective. You
do this by using verbs to change the subtext.

EXAMPLE: If the scene is about a man (or woman) asking their
boss for a raise, you want to increase the stakes for the
character. You do this by changing the character’s subtext to
something stronger like:

EX: Try begging the boss for the raise, or
EX: Try demanding the boss give you the raise, or
EX: Try seducing the boss to get the raise

(3) Here are some other qualities you want to look for as well:

1. Is the character type in the actor? (Does he look like a

2. What is the persona/image of the character? (In the script)

3. What is the persona/image of the actor? (What do they think
of themselves?)

4. Does the actor make active choices? (Action – Reaction)

5. Judge the actor by what he does – not what he says

6. What is the actor’s rhythm and movement pattern? (Body

7. Describe the character objective

8. Have the actor play the objective

9. Have the actor up the stakes in the objective (to beg; to
demand; to threaten)

10. Make note of all the negative qualities of the actor

11. Never cast an actor who cannot play the objectives (cannot
find the scene beats ‚Äì can’t take direction)

(4) What to look for in an actor for a Good Performance:

– do you believe them
– do they incorporate changes well
– concentrates
– listens
– gives & takes
Рclear sense of character (5W’s)
– acts on impulse (not cues)
– reacts well to catalysts & problems
– is a good ensemble actor
– is good at starting & ending scenes
– is good entrances & exits
– knows what is important
– has charisma
– good chemistry
– sense of truth
– knows his environment
– knows his props
– can play the moment
– fits into the skin of the character easily

(5) For Casting Character Descriptions: these descriptions
should explain a bit about the character, but also establish
some conflict so the actor can play with it.

EX: John is a 45 year old dishwasher still living at home with
his mother and step-father who abused him when he was a child.

5. Do You Want To Write An Article For The Director’s Chair?

If you would like to contribute articles, tips, links of
interest, industry news, interviews, special event dates or
other resources to The Director’s Chair, please email me at:

6. Product Promotion And Film Workshops

From time to time, I will contact you to inform you of film
workshops, filmmaking products or Online courses that I feel
are beneficial to filmmakers like yourself. Of course, you are
under no obligation to purchase anything – I only offer this
information as a service to subscribers of this free ezine.

7. Subscriber Shameless Self-Promotion (Free Advertising)

The Director’s Chair gives you an incredible opportunity to
get Free Advertising for your services and your films.

Each month, I give two subscribers an opportunity to promote
themselves, their company or their productions in this

So if you want over 4800 filmmakers around the world to know
about you and your films, please send me your “shameless
self-promotion” to: mailto:pdm@actioncutprint.com.

Please limit your promotion to 200 words. I reserve the right
to edit the promotion for length, spelling and formatting.

NOTE: There are no Shameless Self-Promotions this month!
Please send me your Shameless Self-Promotion so I can include
it in the next issues.

8. Filmmaking Workshops – Peter D. Marshall

I have worked in the Film and Television Industry for over
37 years – as a Film Director, Television Producer, First
Assistant Director and Series Creative Consultant. I’ve been
asked many times to share my Film and TV production
knowledge with others. As a result, I developed several
workshops that I have successfully presented over the past
15 years.

To find out more about these workshops, just click on the
link below. If you are interested in any of these four
workshops for yourself or your organization, please contact
me to discuss how we can bring these workshops to you.

9. Suggestions And Comments

Send any comments, suggestions, questions or advice to:

10. Share This Ezine

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11. Reprint This Ezine

This Ezine may be reprinted with permission. Email me at:

12. Copyright Information

Copyright (c) 2000-2010
Peter D. Marshall
All Rights Reserved