Yep, that happened.
My finger pushed send, I was cast, AND on set just 4 hours later.
Can we say…”Like Whoa.”
The story of how it all went down…
I was attending the Premiere of Diana Leigh, a short I was cast in as a nurse from the 60’s. After the credits rolled, we all exited the theater beaming with a sigh of relief because the film was a success.
Afterwards, during the reception – it was me, an actress friend, and the casting director of the film – all in the ladies restroom, chit chatting it up outside the stalls. Yep, it was a setting to remember.
No rules, just right can lead you to your destiny…
You get to a point in your acting career where you trust you are enough, become more confident, and let the chips fall where they may. I gave it only about 5 mins. of thought if I should go to the premiere with straight hair since the CD, director, and the producer got to know me and my “look” with straight hair.
I decided to save myself the trouble of straightening my hair and took advantage of showing them my everyday look. Oh, how fun it is to play different types of characters. ; – )
Done with getting stressed out about the little things that we “think” can make or break us in this career – I showed up rocking my curls on premiere night.
Taking a risk is sexy…
Admittedly so, I did throw the CD off a little as we greeted one another. BUT boy was I glad I did. It gave me the perfect “in” to stay in touch with her later. ; )
After she gave me a look of – hold on, I know you, but you look different – I happily said, “I know, you know me with straight hair…I decided to show up with my natural curls tonight. I’ll have to email you a curly headshot for your files + I want to send you a little something to thank you for casting me in the film.”
She responded…“Yes please send me a curly headshot.” And even said it with a smile.
I felt empowered as I put to test the lesson I had learned that – one of the keys to making your way to success as an actress, especially in the LA market, is to build and nurture relationships with fellow actors, your representation, casting directors, directors, producers, writers and etc.
Then you gotta follow – up and follow through.
The balancing act of my story…
Finding my flow with going to acting class, on auditions, running my biz and tending to my personal life is a fun and necessary juggling act. Thank God my perfectionist side was chilling out so I wouldn’t feel it kicking me in the shins with guilt, reminding me that I still needed to follow-up with the CD from the night of the premiere, ya know…just over a month ago!
When it’s meant to be…oh, it shall be.
Learning and putting into practice that I don’t have to be perfect and to stop beating myself up over the little things, has been one of life’s lessons that’s a gift.
I promise, the world doesn’t end and things actually fall into place the way they divinely are supposed to. You see, I didn’t follow – up with her until nearly 3 months later. And once again, so glad I didn’t!
Oh, how the timing was just right – little did I know.
One afternoon, around noon I finally followed – up with an email to see how her summer was going and included a theatrical and commercial curly headshot. As additional gratitude, I went to the post office to drop her a thank you gift in the mail. Finally, YES – it felt good to check that “to–do” off my list…done!
Later that after noon around 4:00, I just sat down to begin creating content for my biz and I received a direct phone call and message from the casting director asking me if I wanted to be part of the 48 hr. Film Festival as they needed to make a last min. cast change – what?! Get out!!!
I couldn’t believe it. I was settling into my creative mind to get work done and just like that, with one phone call, I’m switching up gears. I knew then I was in my flow.
I had to hit the breaks on creating content. Thank God I’m my own boss – my permission to leave work at that very moment was easily and of course granted! I wasn’t gonna let that opportunity get a way. I’ve had my eye on the 48 Hr. Film Fest for a min. now – it was like a milestone dream come true.
I called the CD back, still in disbelief, to get all the deets – making sure it was a SAG project, not trying to get fined, and wanted to know more about the role I would be playing before I gave her an excited YES, count me in!
48 Hr. filming in full effect…
Arriving to set later that evening around 7:30pm, I was excited to have the opportunity to be apart of the 48 hr film project. Right after a quick cast and crew meet and greet, we got the genre we had to play, the one liner we had to include in the script, and the prop we had to use in the film to give us a shot at an award and to earn our way into the next film festival.
Me, cast and crew were all up for the challenge.
Filming with the cast and crew was super fun and loved that they treated us like professionals – providing us with food to eat(I stayed away from the candy + tempting fried chicken to keep up my energy ; ), drinks, and they kept an overall fair shooting schedule.
As an actor, the skills you learn in class are put to the test with little to no prep time before shooting. It was exhilarating. I shot my scene at 12:30am, got home around 2:30am with a 5:45am call time the next morning, whew! The lack of sleep was the most challenging part, but it too was part of the thrill. Day 2 was also a success, we met the 48 hr. deadline!
That part of my acting journey and story, I’ll never forget.
I planted a seed, watered it, and getting cast – grew out of it.
As I reflected on how all this went down…I was smiling ear to ear. Just like that, from a follow-up email I was cast in a film for the 48 hr Film Project in LA – literally just 4 hours later.
As they say, the fortune is in the follow-up.
Have an awesome follow-up story? Share in the comments below how you followed-up and what amazing thing happened because of it.