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Michael Donovan

Agents

Michael Donovan is a 5-time recipient of the Casting Society of America's Artios Award, given for Outstanding Achievement in Casting. Michael casts for film, television, commercials and theatre.

Questions

  1. Is it easier or harder to “consider” an actor you’ve gotten to know pretty well personally and why? And are they now limited by “how you see them” as a person?
  2. Do you ever recommend actors from the casting chair to representatives and what specific circumstances might that be?
  3. You have literally cast all types of performance jobs that most actors seek, and while I suspect this is really an unanswerable question, I still would like to hear whether Film, TV, Commercials or Theatre is your favorite medium in which to cast…and WHY?
  4. If you’ve brought an actor in, ironically 3-4 times in a six month span, and suddenly the actor feels safe and chummy with you…and then asks you to “get them an agent or recommend them” give us an idea of what type of reaction to expect?
  5. Do you think your love of the Theatre, and the amount of really good professional Equity contract theatre you’ve casts make you more sympathetic to actors who struggle with the awkward Film/TV casting room and process or less?
  6. Have you had an actor, for Film/TV physically engage you during their audition, and how do you handle that both in terms of your physical self, what you say to them, and how do you start over from that?
  7. Are there any representatives in Los Angeles that you simply will not ever see their clients due to some sort of past professional issue, or are you always able to set it aside for the actor’s sake?
  8. Do you typically in a Theatrical casting session ask an actor to “do it again” more often because you want to see IF they can take direction, or because they’re really good and just need to get closer to what you know the director wants, or lastly…because you’re just hoping they’re better than what they just showed you?
  9. What is the most ridiculous over the top “please call me in GIFT you’ve ever gotten” and what in all truth is really enough of a gesture for you to appreciate the actor’s professionalism?
  10. Do you feel that “most” of the contemporary highly regarded actors of our day could seamlessly audition well for a commercial, theatre role, drama TV role and a film back to back? And if not, why not?

About the Guru

Michael Donovan is a 5-time recipient of the Casting Society of America’s Artios Award, given for Outstanding Achievement in Casting. Michael casts for film, television, commercials and theatre. His theatre credits include shows produced at Pasadena Playhouse, the Hollywood Bowl, La Jolla Playhouse, Reprise Theatre Company, Shakespeare Festival/LA, Ebony Rep, International City Theatre, Arizona Theatre Company, Arkansas Rep, Kentucky Shakespeare Festival, and more – as well as several national tours. He has cast over 40 films, 1200 + commercials, and 9 series. Michael also directs and teaches, and is currently teaching a class at UCLA.