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What Is An Open Call ?


open callAn open call is a little bit different to a casting call. A casting call is when a particular model agent or photographer, generally a professional within the modelling industry, offers a particular type of job for a specific looking model - so only these types or looks of models apply.  With an open call , anyone can go. There is a call time - which is often in the morning, and models can show up to be seen between that time and whenever the open call finishes. Sometimes no ending time is given at all and the open call can simply finish if the company offering the modelling job has found someone they are looking for. If the call time runs out and the casting agent is ready to leave, it's possible you will be turned away without even being seen. Showing up never guarantees you will get work, but you never know unless you try. It's the same for casting calls too, the difference is with casting calls you will defintitely get seen whereas in an open call, you may not.

With open calls, any look or different types of model can arrive. There could be hundreds, sometimes thousands of you all waiting, waiting....... and more waiting!  It means a lot of standing about  - which is probably why they are affectionately called 'cattle calls' within the modelling industry.  Open Calls are common when applying for TV work, for reality shows like the X Factor or Britain's Got Talent.  Sometimes if you have a model agent who has connections with the company concerned, you can be given preference over those without and perhaps even given an  'appointment' time. This sort of 'appointment' at an open call may or may not be honoured. It may at least get you seen before others who have waited longer, which can also have its drawbacks. If you are seen to get preferential treatment over your modelling friends and peers, then be prepared for some gossip and some modelling backlash.

The other drawback with open calls is that you are often seen, if you have been lucky to have been seen at all, for a very short time and may not even finish performing your walk, your presentation before you are stopped and sent out. As soon as you enter the room, begin when you are told to. Never stutter, never stammer, never hesitate - time is money  as far as these people are concerned and it is first impressions which will get you the gig or not. Use the time you have to the best of your ability. Do it as quickly as you can and you will typically be released to leave, unless they want to see more of you or give you a call back.

Often in open calls you are not seen individually, but have to model alongside perhaps 10 to 15 other models, all doing what you have been explained to do as well. You will probably be given a form to fill in while you are waiting and you hand that in at that time too. You also may have to sign the forms agreeing that any footage taken of you at the audition can be shown and used for any purposes the company sees fit. If you don't sign these release papers, you may not be allowed to attend. It will certainly be an experience and one you won't forget in a hurr,y that's for sure!