While it is a more often than not a pleasure to work with highly experienced and well-trained actors, street casting has opened up a ton of possibilities to filmmakers. By breaking away from the usual selection of possible talents, you might be able to get a fresh perspective on the style and authenticity of your film. So when should (or shouldn’t) you consider street casting for your next film?
LOOKING FOR A SPECIFIC SKILL.
Sometimes, your character may have a unique skill or talent that drives your story forward. Be it cooking, martial arts, dance or a sport, if the skill is essential to the story, you might want to look for someone who is an actual professional in that field. It is possible to get a professional actor to play such roles, but it is unlikely to look as genuine as someone who is actually proficient in that skill. You will have more freedom in terms of camerawork as your talents flaunt their skills.
Streetcasting is generally cheaper than casting through a casting agency. There is also a lot more freedom in terms of handling payment and deals. If the actor or actress really believes in your project, they might even do it for free! However, do understand that in most cases, if you are hiring someone to act in your film, you are expected to pay.
LIKE A BOX OF CHOCOLATES.
…You’ll never know what you’re going to get! Working with people who are unfamiliar with sets might be a big hit or miss. It is much harder to anticipate how they are going to react to things on set. You have to become more flexible and pay more attention to their needs and state of mind.
In conclusion, street casting is a brilliant way to look for actors, especially if you are doing a low budget film, or if you are casting for characters with specific skills or jobs. Do take note that people that you get when street casting may not be as experienced in acting as compared to those you hire from casting agencies. So maybe spend a bit more time to rehearse with them before going out for shoot.