With the success of such films as “Harry Potter,” “Spy Kids” and the “Chronicles of Narnia,” more and more youngsters are turning to their parents and asking if they can make movies like the kids they see on the screen. Becoming a child actor or actress is not something to be taken lightly, and there is a lot for the children – and their parents – to learn.

As a parent, your first duty is to make sure your child is happy and well-adjusted. You have probably heard the horror stories of over-zealous stage parents hoarding all of their child’s money, or even the stereotypical “child star” terrorizing the set. While some parents and children fail to handle success very well, the parents who are informed and never stop learning about the profession very often do succeed.

If your child is serious about becoming an actor or actress, there are several steps you can take to get them started right their in your home town.

First, sit down with your child and make sure they know that becoming an actor or actress is a commitment that will take months and probably years before they see any real results. There are a lot of actors, but very few “stars” in the entertainment industry.

Once it is clear your child understands their commitment, go ahead and contact the local community theatre to find out what shows are coming up and when the auditions are. Community theatres are great opportunities to get young people started in acting. You should also contact your state film office to find out where the nearest acting workshops are located and schedule a time to audit one or more of the classes.

Your child should build up some theatre credits before trying to get their first professional talent agent. Once you think your child is ready, do your homework and find the agencies near you. Search the Internet for what people say about the agency. When you approach an agency, you will need to send a picture and resume along with a short letter explaining your child is seeking representation. The photo you provide at this point in your child’s career does not have to be professional – but it does have to actually look like your child. The agent may or may not contact you to arrange an interview.

Becoming a young performer like your child sees on TV and in movies is a long process filled with pitfalls, scams, and yes even some very satisfying moments. Take the time to read books on child actors and other books in the field so you can be as prepared as you can when presented with the challenges facing parents of young performers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *