Advice and Tips for Actors Helpful thoughts on acting from someone who wasn't the least successful actor of all time.

February 27, 2008

Conan Carroll and Associates Skips Town

Filed under: agents/managers — Eitan @ 10:46 pm

A fair number of people find this website after searching for Conan Carroll and Associates so I want to repost this in case people find this having Googled for CCA.  Apparently they skipped town leaving checks to bounce and unpaid bills.  They were my agency years ago and it’s a shame they went belly up and left so many people in the lurch.  I won’t bore you with stories about how badly the place was run but I’ll just say none of this really surprises me.  The following notice was released by AFTRA today:

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IMPORTANT NOTICE
Clients of Conan Carroll & Associates, Los Angeles
The AFTRA National Agency Department has been informed that there may
be a problem with the agency you are currently working through, Conan
Carroll & Associates. Recently, we received information that the
license of Conan Carroll & Associates has lapsed, and that the agency’s
bond has expired. The National Agency Department and the Los Angeles
Local Agency Department have attempted to contact Conan Carroll &
Associates several times and our calls have gone unanswered; we have
been told by clients of the agency that they have also been unable to
reach anyone. We have written to this agency, advising them that if we
did not hear from them by this week, their franchise would be
considered surrendered. Since that letter was delivered, we have not
received any response to our inquiry.

Based on the foregoing information, AFTRA has changed the status of
this agency’s franchise to SURRENDERED as of February 19, 2008.
We have heard from at least one member that a check issued by Conan
Carroll has bounced. At this time, we are advising clients of this
agency to withdraw any and all check authorizations you may have on
file with your current employers immediately. If you are owed money by
the agency, or if there are any problems with checks issued by Conan
Carroll and Associates, please contact us immediately.

If you have any questions regarding this memo, please feel free to
contact Megan Capuano, National Director, Agent Relations, at (212)
532-0800, Extension 4305, or by e-mail at mcapuano@aftra.com or Denise
Mazzocco, AFTRA Los Angeles Agency Administrator, at (323) 634-8188 or
dmazzoco@aftra.com.

Thank you for your immediate attention to this matter.

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Don’t Be an Actor

Filed under: eitan's writings — Eitan @ 2:55 pm

Please, don’t do it.  Don’t be an actor.  Be anything else in the world.

I’m not talking about not being a professional actor.  I’m talking about being an actor in italics.  You see, actors are wonderfully creative people who are generally fun to be around actors are miserable, annoying and come off as crazy.

What is the difference between an actor and an actor besides the italics?

Actors are selfish.  They don’t help their partners with their parts.  They refuse to run lines after “they got it” and they won’t ever move a single piece of scenery.  Actors are happy to help out people in need, they’re always there for their scene partners and they’re willing to help out a production any way they can because they undestand their star rises and falls along with the productions they’re associated with.

Actors are often overly competitive.  It’s funny to see this at auditions.  Actors feel the need to try to throw their competition off.  They’ll give “advise” on how to do the part.  They’ll tell other people auditioning “You look totally different than everyone else here.”   I’ve even heard stories of people throwing away sides so the other actors can’t learn their lines.  And does any of this help their chances at getting the part?  Of course not.  Actors, on the other hand, are gracious and friendly to people they audition with.  If they can help out, they will.  They put their best work out there and let the casting people do their job.  It’s the person best suited for the job that gets it not the cattiest, unless you’re auditioning for Project Runway.

Actors consider themselves artists.  I’m not saying acitng isn’t an art form, of course it is.  But there’s a major difference between being a poet/painter and an actor.  Poets and painters don’t depend on anyone else to keep doing their jobs.  Actors need to be hired (or be accepted into a class) to keep working.  Actors don’t get this and make themselves so difficult to work with that no one will ever want to hire them.

Actors are insane.  Don’t know why but a large number of people giving Actors a bad name have something wrong with them.  It’s like someone hung a sign at LAX saying “If you’re crazy, think about being an actor.”  Actors are usually well balanced normal folks who can hold normal conversations and pass off at parties as normal people with normal jobs.  The funny thing is, some of the people I know who work the most are very laid back and regular.  They’re not overly theatrical or difficult to be around.  Isn’t it funny how that works?

The reason this came up was that we recently cast the latest version of the Cricket Feet Showcase one of the first things we considered when casting actors was if they’d be hard to work with.  We can’t focus 90% of our time on making one person happy, there’s just too much else to do.  So if the actors auditioning were actors then we didn’t cast them.

I love working with Actors, I hate working with Actors.  I feel like a white, Jewish, non-stand up comedian version of Chris Rock.

February 12, 2008

Post-Strike To Do List

Filed under: eitan's writings,projects — Eitan @ 6:42 pm

You probably heard the strike is ending tomorrow. That is unless there’s some silent majority in the writers camp that hates the new deal. No, I don’t think that’s going to happen either. So with the strike over that means your (and my) phone will suddenly start ringing of the hook with auditions and offers for TV and Film parts. I’ll let you know if that happens.

Unless something major happened to you over the past few months chances are you’ll be sticking to the same old grind that you went through before the strike. Well, I want to charge you to create a strategy, a “to do list.” Make yourself a list of five or ten good actionable goals you want to accomplish now that the strike is over. They could be new projects, improvements on old projects or simply something you’ve done before and want to do again.

To get you off on the right foot I’m going to share my very own post-strike to do list. Feel free to bug me in a few weeks if I haven’t done any of them.

  1. Shoot some new headshots of myself. The ones I have now still look like me, but I want something fresher.
  2. Raise as much money as I can for my half-marathon. Seriously, contribute. Help me out here kids. It’s all part of fighting the good fight.
  3. Post a whole lot of useful articles on this blog.
  4. Do the two billion things I need to do to make sure the showcase goes well.
  5. Get a good mailing routine going. I used to be better at this, I want to make sure my stuff is in the hands of casting people more often.

That takes care of most of the stuff I want to do. Within each of those goals are a bunch of little things I need to get done. That should keep me busy for quite a while.

Get a piece of paper, blog or just a text document and write yourself a list. I get 10x more done when I make lists than when I just say “oh yeah, I got stuff to do.” They don’t even all have to be acting related. It’s just a good time to step it up and get your life in order.

February 1, 2008

Eitan is Running for Charity

Filed under: message to the readers — Biographer @ 12:32 am

Team in TrainingEitan will be running in the June 2008 Rock ‘n Roll Marathon in San Diego to raise money for leukemia and lymphoma research and treatment through Team in Training.
Eitan will be running the 26.2 miles in memory of a friend who passed away after a year long battle with leukemia.

If you wish to contribute to this very worthy cause please visit Eitan’s fundraising page.

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