IN THE NEWS
“The Crowd Source Pivot: Proving that pivoting is a universal concept, it happens in the world of art as well. Game of One is a company putting together an independent film about The Tarot, described by the company as “teaching the concept of oneness in everything.” The primary creator of the project, Tamid, started out wanting to make an independent sci-fi movie on the topic without any A-list actors. But his plans have changed. Instead of traditional casting, the Game of One website accepts applications and auditions for music contributions, acting, fashion designing, and virtually every component of the project. It is essentially a crowd-sourced film project. How can you enlist the wisdom of the crowd to modify your approach to your market?
As you can see, there is almost no limitation to the catalysts for mid-course corrections. Stay curious about all of the ways you might modify your operations, no matter how small. They might add up to one big difference.”
“Movies take their inspiration from lots of sources, including news events, childhood memories, chance encounters and dreams. Some movie ideas are not so much inspired as they are borrowed or recycled.
Original ideas and unusual sources of inspiration are rare in Hollywood. But some surprises remain.
The Game of One, a sci-fi/fantasy film in pre-production in Los Angeles, was inspired by a Ouija board.
A few decades ago, five friends who lived in Carmel, California were doing what came naturally in the 60s and 70s – partying hard and taking psychedelic journeys together. One dark and stormy night – yes, really – one of the friends found a Ouija board in the closet of a house where they were hanging out.
Did his pals want to take a different kind of journey together — a trip to the spirit world?
Sure, why not? They’d done a lot of crazy things together so communicating with the Great Beyond seemed like an entertaining way to spend an evening… (continue reading)”
Original article from Newark Patch (June 8, 2015 ) by Dave G.
“Now more than ever, it makes sense for actors and other aspiring movie professionals to think like entrepreneurs.
One pioneering production company is paving a new way. Global Stage Project is reframing auditions as a business expense via their latest film,Game of One, a sci-fi adventure exploring the realm of tarot. The metaphysical story centers on 12 expert players who navigate 22 tarot portals via an interactive computer game, leading them on a journey toward self-awakening.The producers of Game of One are seeking entrepreneurs wanting to invest in their careers. For a nominal fee of $20, on-screen and behind-the-scenes talent from all over the world can audition or submit work samples, circumventing the need for an agent to get in the door. Additionally, the $20 fee includes a review of the submitted work, promotion of the submission on Facebook and a permanent backlink from The Game of One website to the performer’s own site. This twist on traditional auditions offers easier access and more return on investment for those aspiring to break into the business of making movies.”
Original article from Medium (5/11/2015) by Amanda Blair. See full article here.
Should Movie Producers Charge Talent to Audition?
Technology and Global Market Pose Threat to Hollywood Tradition
Milo Dakota, Yahoo Contributor Network
Henry Ford pioneered the Industrial Revolution and Ray Kroc championed the fast food industry by contesting the status quo. An independent Los Angeles film company is similarly challenging a longstanding Hollywood tradition: free auditions.
And just as Ford and Kroc faced controversy when they dared to be different, the Global Stage Project is drawing both praise and criticism for its decision to charge a $20 fee to actors and other performers who want to appear in The Game of One, a science fiction/fantasy film.
Auditions as Business Expense
Julie Austin, who runs a Los Angeles-based site called IndieSponsor, says she doesn’t think the concept of free auditions will disappear but also sees the value of paid ones. She teaches artists how to run their careers like businesses and says entrepreneurs in any industry face expenses.
“In every creative industry, there are always going to be costs involved in getting in front of decision makers,” Austin says. “Whether that means traveling to Hollywood or moving here, which is very expensive. Just because someone pays for an audition or pays to take a class with a casting director doesn’t mean they don’t have talent. Competition for actors is enormous, but talent will always rise to the top.”
Paid Auditions Prey on the Untalented
Halie Rosenberg, a Detroit-based talent scout, is among those in the entertainment industry who say that paid auditions prey on people without talent.
“I’m in favor of any process that will yield the widest pool of potential talent available – to that end we audition talent remotely via Skype and video all the time, for free. If someone works in casting, it’s their job to find the right person for an opportunity, Rosenberg says. “They’re being paid to do so by a producer or client, so I’d consider it to be not only ‘preying’ on those who would be unlikely to land a role, but also ‘double dipping’ to charge the talent.”
Rosenberg, of Productions Plus, also says that a producer who skirts the talent scout process either lacks industry connections or doesn’t trust agents to do their jobs.
Global Talent Search Demands New Approach
Neither is the case, says the producer of “The Game of One.” He is a Hollywood veteran who well understands the traditional audition process. But, he says, he is looking for non-traditional talent from around the globe and believes that successful casting demands a new approach. He is looking for multi-cultural talent across a wide age range — teens to 70s — and one leading role will go to someone who can play a 13-year-old girl. He doesn’t want to restrict his choices to someone whose parents can afford acting classes, coaches and the price of living in or traveling to Los Angeles. His ideal lead could be someone who’s never acted before and who lives in Nepal or Zimbabwe.
Audition Fee Includes Showcase
The $20 fee includes a review of the performer’s work, promotion of the submission on Facebook and a permanent back link from “The Game of One” website to the performer’s. Dancers, musicians, artists, computer programmers with gaming experience and costume designers are also being asked to submit samples of their work to the website. Actors do not need to have previous acting credits and musicians and dancers can have backgrounds in a far-reaching styles, including Native American, South American, Japanese, New Age, rave, ballet and techno.
The producer of “The Game of One” anticipated criticism of his fee-based approach to finding talent for his big-budget film. He’s not surprised that agents and talent scouts object to his approach — their fees depend on landing roles for their clients — but says a $20 audition fee is better for actors than paying agents 10 percent of their earnings.
Steven Lowell, who has worked for voice-over casting websites for 7 years and in the entertainment industry for 14 years, says technology has changed the business model for performers. Actors can find and book auditions online and pay a fee for the service. Actors, in some way or another, have always paid for auditions, he says.
“Auditions have never been ‘free.” Nothing is ever free in this business. Some just may market it better to create the perceived value that something is free,” Lowell says. Actors pay for commuting, clothes and head shots, for example. Paying for these things does not guarantee an actor will get a part any more than paying for an audition will.
Lowell says it’s up to performers to decide whether paying for an audition is a good investment or a waste of money.
“People are not ‘prey’ for trying new business ideas. They are ‘prey’ for not showing the due diligence to research if the idea is a good one for them financially, or if someone is ripping them off.”
Steven Lowell, interview using HARO (helpareporter.com) service, April 28, 2014
Halie Rosenberg, Interview using HARO (helpareporter.com) service, May 1, 2014
Julie Austin, interview using HARO (helpareporter.com) service, April 38, 2014
Tamid Milan, producer, “The Game of One,” In-person and phone interviews April 3, 10 and 27th.