I’ve got some tough love for you today. And I hope you take it seriously.
As artists, we feel deeply about and we want to be active in the causes we believe in.
At the same time, as actors and VO artists, we run businesses we want to be successful.
Mixing the two is dangerous, and I want you to stop. Here’s why.
I make no bones about the fact that I am an objectivist. If you don’t know what that is, it’s more libertarian than libertarians.
But…I don’t, other than here in this article, mention it in my professional life as an actor, when selling my wares, when auditioning, when working.
It’s not appropriate.
An actor contacted me after a recent article I wrote on enhancing actor websites. And the actor asked me to review her site.
What I found was a fairly fast loading site, with 5 links that promoted her headshot, resume, reel etc, and 8 links promoting her activism with Wikileaks, various anti-death penalty causes, taking a knee for the National Anthem, immigration reform and more.
I wrote her back immediately about that.
That kind of material does not belong on a business site. Acting sites are business sites.
Stuff like that should have a home on your personal site, your facebook page, your twitter stream, if you insist.
But not on your professional acting promotion site. Or casting profile, or demo page, or anything having to do with your career.
As I wrote to her, this is not a suggestion, or a maybe. This is a requirement.
If you want to link to your personal site through a page that says that your opinions are not necessarily those of your employers, fine. I wouldn’t even do that.
Absolutely express your activism in the appropriate arena. Not in a professional setting.
Casting directors are not looking to create problems – they shy away from people who might potentially be hard to deal with on set because of their political, social, religious or other divisive views. It’s hard enough to get their attention to consider you – don’t give them a reason to abandon you.
Maximize your opportunities for someone to find your materials and not be distracted by your personal beliefs. Don’t give anyone a reason to say, “Hmmmm….pass.”
Agree? Disagree? Do you insist you won’t be told when and where to keep your mouth shut on important social issues by the likes of me? Tell me what you think about this in the comments.
Hope this helps.