For the first time on Tuesday, we’re going to hear our characters’ words come out of the mouths of actors, and that is an incredibly exciting proposition.
This coming Tuesday–July 19–there will be a casting session for The Nursery in the Milwaukee area, and Glenn, Jay, and I will be spending the day auditioning actors for the lead roles in the film: Ranae, Calista, Grace, Jeremy, and Ray. There are a few other key speaking and non-speaking roles in the film, but those five characters are on our plate for Tuesday, and we’re hoping to see a good mix of actors for each role.
Truthfully, though, I think it’s safe to say that none of us are sure exactly what to expect.
The three of us have been through plenty of casting sessions before for the work we do at Visuality, but those have been different propositions altogether. More often than not, those have been arranged through talent agencies and have been for ads or videos for various clients across the country. Talent comes in, they read a few lines, you get a sense of whether or not they can take direction, you try to figure out if they can convey exactly what you’re looking for, and–sometimes most importantly–you just want to get a sense of whether this is someone you’re willing to work with for a day or two or whatever it entails. It’s important work, yeah, but the stakes on Tuesday are significantly higher, for sure.
On Tuesday we’re going to be looking for much the same things, but we also want to see if these people can bring our characters to life. Can they get to the emotional core of the characters? Can they be funny when they need to be, terrified when necessary, and believable in the context of the movie? And can they bring something to the role(s) that maybe we aren’t expecting, that adds depth to the movie, that raises the stakes of the film for the audience to get them more invested and pulls them deeper into the story and–of course–the horror.
And it’s a horror movie, after all, so can they scream?!?!
From a writer’s perspective, I’m just curious to hear the dialogue interpreted by various actors. Between the different roles we’ll be casting and the specific pages of dialogue that we’ll be utilizing for the auditions, we’ll be covering a wide range of moments and emotions. We’ll hear how some of the humor sounds when spoken out loud. We’ll get a sense for whether or not the quieter, more reflective moments land or if they just don’t work. We’ll hear if the urgent warnings and excited exclamations fall flat or if they will serve to ramp up the tension. And, I suppose, we’ll start to get a sense of whether or not the dialogue written for each character actually helps lead our actors down the path toward fully-realized, well-rounded characters…or not.
Now that I’m into this blog post, I realize that most of my thinking about this at this point (obviously) is speculative and basically just a reflection of my own curiosity and anxiety in leading up to Tuesday’s session. I suspect that for the reader, the blog post on casting will be significantly more interesting AFTER Tuesday…so perhaps I’ll just leave it here for now and pick it up again Tuesday night!
Just a reminder:
While this is an open casting call, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to see everyone who shows up on Tuesday, July 19 at The Alchemist (2569 S Kinnickinnic Ave, Bay View, WI). We will, however, reserve a limited number of audition spaces for those who contact us prior to the session.
If you are interested in being considered for a reserved audition time, please send the following to Jay Sapiro (Jay@visuality.com):
- Links to sample work
- Availability in September and October
And, if you need it, you can get a PDF of this casting call notice here: TheNursery_Casting-Call_ACT .
Wish us luck on Tuesday!