Here at StageMilk we get this question a lot, and it comes as no surprise. For many young actors around the world their dreams are to start in Hollywood or Bollywood movies, to tread the boards of Broadway or to create new and exciting works in the great theaters of Europe and Asia. But we all have to start somewhere, but it can be hard to know in which direction to aim and what kind of tools we need to make our dreams come true. So here are a few ideas to keep in mind when trying to get an acting job overseas.
Getting an acting job overseas comes down to following a few steps. You need to be able to audition for roles overseas. You need to land the role. And you need to legally be allowed to both enter, and work in the country you’ve booked a job in. But how do we do that? Well let’s break it down.
How Do I Get Auditions Overseas?
Years ago the answer to this question would’ve been to move overseas. But thanks to the wonderful world of the internet, it’s entirely possible for just about anyone to audition, for just about anything, from just about anywhere in the world. So long as you have a way to film yourself, and access to the internet.
Ideally you would have an agent or manager in the country you’re trying to work in, but if that isn’t possible for you just yet, some great alternatives are websites like BackStage and Actors Access for the USA, Mandy and Spotlight for the UK, and Casting Networks for Australia.
Do I Need Overseas Management?
The short answer is: it’s by no means necessary, but it can certainly help. As I said above there are a number of ways to submit yourself for roles yourself online. Where overseas management will help is that they have access and industry experience that isn’t available from where we sit.
How do you go about obtaining overseas management? Well in much the same way you would for any agency. By reaching out. But having some quality credits on your resúme will give you a huge leg up in obtaining meetings and eventually representation.
Read more about: How to Get An Agent.
What Visa Do I Need to Get an Acting Job Overseas?
The answer varies in as many ways as there are countries that make Film, TV and Theater, but the good news is that most Government websites will outline exactly which visas you need to work as an actor and how to obtain them.
However many people will be wondering what they need to work in the United States. The most commonly sought after Visa for actors is the O-Visa. This visa is granted to those who possess extraordinary skill in their field such as sciences, athletics or in our case arts and entertainment. Obtaining one of these you’ll need proof that you are a serious actor who is well renowned in their field. The other option is a P-Visa which is granted to actors and others alike for the period of their employment. To obtain one of these, you’ll need to book a job in the US.
How Much Does It Cost to Get an Acting Job Overseas?
The short answer is getting a job should, I repeat, should cost nothing. However there will be associated costs to do with applying for visas, travel, and accommodation. Ideally should you book a gig in a foreign country, the production will pay for everything including travel, accommodation and any per diems associated with your being away from home.
So now you know just how straight forward, but at the same time quite tough steps that you can take to start getting acting jobs overseas. Everyone’s journey is different and different steps and processes will vary from case to case, but hopefully now you should be a little more prepared when you’re ready to take that leap of faith.