Friday, October 12, 2012

5 Questions with Brevard Talent Group’s President and Owner, Traci Danielle Part 2

1. Q: What do you say to actors who think the only way to have a career is to pick up and move
to Los Angeles? Is it possible to take your career to a high level living in Orlando?

A:  I would say good luck! Orlando is a great place to start your career and build up your credits before you move to a larger market. In the long run it really depends on what type of work an actor wants to pursue.  For film and television Los Angeles is the place to move to further your career.  For theater it is New York. Before an actor decides to move they need to be prepared financially and must have the talent to compete. The Southeast has more film incentives than anywhere else in the country.  It is a great place to build your resume and reel before you make the decision to relocate. It is also a great place to make a living as an actor and have a quality of life that most actors can’t afford in California. Actors are moving to the Southeast for opportunities they don’t have in Los Angeles.  Los Angeles and New York are both tough markets to break into. You need to be realistic and know the level of competition you will be competing with.  It could take years to get established and find the right team behind you in order for you to be a successful working actor.  

2. Q: If an actor is dead-set on moving to LA, what do you recommend they do beforehand in a smaller market like Orlando to prepare?

A: Save money, build up your resume and reel, continue to train and save more money. Make all the connections you can so you can build up a list of contacts. 

3. Q: Can you describe the “it” factor of your top booking talent and what you believe contributes to
their success?

A:  Actors are born with the “it” factor.  I believe either you have “it” or you don’t. They light up a room and the camera loves them.  If I could bottle and sell “it” I would not be an agent. 

4. Q: What things do you look for when you meet with a potential talent for representation?

A:  The process starts with submitting your headshot and resume to the agency. Find out who you should submit to. If I get a submission addressed to "Whom It May Concern" it leaves me to believe that the actor did not put a lot of effort into their submission.  Strike one against you with the submission ending up in the trash can. I do not accept on-line submissions.  Submission information can be found at Send a brief cover letter with your headshot, resume and contact information.  If I am interested I will schedule an appointment.  I interview each actor and depending on their type and goals I will have them read a scene or two. I evaluate if they would be a good fit for the agency.  They must be as good or better than whom I currently represent in order for me to work with them.  Their essence plays a big role in deciding if I want to represent them.  I think it should be a law for agents to interview actors that they are interested in representing. It baffles me an actor would put his career in the hands of an agent whom they have never met. 

5. Q: What are your hopes for the future of film in Florida?

A:   I wish we could compete with other states who have an unlimited cap on incentives. One of the main reasons Florida’s incentive is limited  is because we do not have a state income tax to help fund the program.  I believe the market would explode if we had an unlimited cap like Georgia and Louisiana.  Florida has fantastic locations.  From the beaches to the Space Center to South Beach to small town America. We also have great actors and crew. Florida started as a location state and continues to be a location state. Over time it has become apparent that the studios in Orlando are theme parks and not working studios. The days of Florida being “Hollywood East” have come and gone. Is it possible to get that back? Yes, but it is a constant struggle with our government to keep the incentive funded. Our fantastic film commissioners work hard to promote Florida. The bottom line is, if a producer can film elsewhere and save money by taking advantage of a better incentive, they will. 

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