April 25, 2018
The First Feature

How Do You Attach Cast and Prep a Film? The First Feature: AMATEUR [Episode 5]

Amateur a Netflix Film
In this episode of our step-by-step podcast on how to get your first feature made, using my Netflix Film Amateur (out now on Netflix) as a case study, we dive into how to cast your movie—and what to expect when you go into prep.

Click the play button on the Soundcloud player above to listen, or listen to our other deep-dive episodes of The First Feature.

This episode covers my experiences attaching cast to Amateur, including Michael Rainey Jr. (POWER, LUV), Josh Charles (THE GOOD WIFE, SPORTS NIGHT), Sharon Leal (ADDICTED, DREAMGIRLS), and Brian White (RAY DONOVAN, SCANDAL). We then move into the prep process on the film, and  touch on:

  • How a short film can help with attaching cast
  • The two-part process of auditioning Michael Rainey Jr. (who came us to via Jason Berman, who had produced a film with Michael in it, LUV)
  • The value of a casting director (in Amateur's case, Jessica Kelly and Kate Geller)
  • What an "offer" is and why you can only offer the part to one actor at a time
  • Doing street casting to find "real people," in this case, several basketball players who had never acted before
  • Location scouting and tax credits
  • Scheduling and what a "company move" is (and why we needed to avoid them)
  • The challenges of working with a child actor and the resulting limitations on shooting hours
  • Rehearsing and read-throughs
  • Tech scouts

….and more.

Thank you to the Panavision New Filmmaker Program, SonyG-technology, and Vision Research for their help in providing equipment on the film (which we'll cover more of in our forthcoming production episodes).

If you have questions about the making of the Netflix Original Film Amateur — or about your own feature project — you can ask me at firstfeature@nofilmschool.com or find me on twitter @ryanbkoo.

Here's the trailer for the feature Amateur. Watch it now on Netflix!

This episode of The First Feature is sponsored by Musicbed. Get 20% off your next on-site license with coupon code "FirstFeature20."

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