Pre Production – Casting and Contact with Clients. 


For my short film the cast will consist of two main actors: a male who will play the abuser and a female who will play the victim as well as one main extra, a male who tries to help the victim in the end of the film and background extras. I want my main male and female actors to either be or look like they are in their early twenties. The age of the stranger (the second male character) isn’t as important however I would like them to be at least 20. The age of the background extras will range from 18+ as I will most likely ask people on my course.

I first put out a casting call on the 14th of March on StarNow[1], a website for local actors and filmmakers. Although it is a helpful website for younger filmmakers and students such as myself I know it is not 100% reliable and has some downfalls, such as having to pay in order to contact applicants or ‘boost’ your casting call. This is the listing I put out:

Although 4 people applied, only one was successful as he lives in Blackburn and fits the description of male character 1 (the abusive character.) His name is Chris Short and I think he will be good in this role as he is tall and has a large build which makes it easy to make him appear intimidating to the victim character and to the audience. In the few weeks since I have posted the casting call he has been the only applicant for the male role and as I am short on time I have decided to give him the role. In retrospect I should have put the casting call out earlier to avoid problems with finding actors, however I was still unsure of what type of characters (and therefore cast) I wanted. I will still audition him and anyone who applies for the female lead as this will give me the oppertunity to see how well they can act, get to know them more and explain the narrative of my film in more detail.

As I couldn’t contact Chris through StarNow I decided to message him via Facebook on the 27th March to see if he would still be available for the role and if we was willing to do an audition. He has not yet replied.

Around the same time I contacted Chris, I also contacted a friend who is an aspiring actress to see if she knew any actresses in their early 20’s. My friend directed me to a friend of hers called Niamh Mahoney, who I then contacted via Facebook messenger. Her response was great as Niamh seems interested in the role and although she is younger than I would have preferred she looks older and I think she will be able to handle the role well.

As she was interested I explained that I was currently working on pre production (a script) and explained the narrative to her so she would have a better understanding of the role.

We then discussed the narrative in more detail and as she is the only actress I have found so far I explained that she pretty much has the role. Niamh then told me that due to a recent injury her arm is currently in a cast but mentioned that it should be off by the time I am filming. This is worrying as I will now have to find a reserve actress incase her cast is still on. Originally I though about using the injury as part of my film but realised it wouldn’t fit with all of the flashback scenes and that it may be dangerous for Niamh to be running with an injured, bandaged arm.

I next contacted Niamh via Facebook messenger on the 27th of March to arrange an audition either in person or over the phone depending on when she is available. Ideally I would like to schedule it for Thursday the 30th, if her schedule permits and if filming equipment is free. If this isn’t possible I would like to arrange it for next Thursday, the 6th of April.

On the 28th March I contacted Chris via his phone number, which is posted on his StarNow profile, as he hadn’t replied to my Facebook message.

It is unfortunate that Chris didn’t intend to apply for the role as I think he is a good match for the character I imagined however I am grateful that he still wants to be a part of my project.

On the 29th March I contacted both my actors to ask wether they would be available to film on Saturday the 15th of April and Sunday the 16th. Niamh said she is free and will book the time off work and Chris took a while to reply, but confirmed that the dates would work for him. I will book these dates with Brian, the equipment technician, on Monday the 3rd of April if the equipment I need is free.

Originally I was supposed to film on Sunday the 16th, however due to bad weather I decided to cancel as the scenes were to be shot outside. I rescheduled with Niamh and my actor for Tuesday 18th April. Unfortunately we had to cancel and reschedule again as Niamh had a family emergency. We rescheduled for the 21st of April.

On the 21st of April I recieved a phone call from Niamh, who unfortunately had re injured her broken arm during the day and wouldn’t be available to film. I told her that I would speak to my other actor, crew and equipment technician (Brian) about re scheduling for sometime next week. 
After speaking with Brian and checking that my actors and crew would be free I chose Thursday 27th April to film. 

Fortunately filming went ahead and went well. The next time I contacted Niamh was on the 9th of May to tell her I had almost finished my edit and show her the poster I have created for the exhibtion. 

Later the same day I sent Niamh my final edit, which I had uploaded to YouTube and asked for feedback. She enjoyed watching it and liked the film poster I had made. Once the date is set for media’s seperate screening I will inform all my actors and make sure they have tickets. 


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