Everyone knows that making it as an actor is easier said than done. And while many people think that simply “being” an actor is easy; it is also something easier said than done. Actors are a rare breed. Those dedicated to their craft and in constant pursuit of their dreams must possess qualities that aren’t always essential to that of other professions. Here is a look at some of the common personality traits of the aspiring and working actor.
Must Be Agreeable
When you are a banker there are strict parameters for your job, but when you are an actor you have no parameters. Work comes when it comes. One minute you are out of a job, the next you are being asked to play aboard a cruise ship for months. Every actor knows that one job can easily lead to another. Disappointing casting directors and agents won’t get you more work. You have to know how to say yes to just about project. Even when things are going well you can’t rest thinking work will come along.
Must Be Insecure
This doesn’t seem like a favorable trait for most people, but it’s common for most actors and can be a benefit to them professionally. With the constant competition that goes on between the thousands of actors nationally and locally there is a strong sense of insecurity for most actors. For every role for which you are turned down is the bigger question of whether or not you are meant to do this. Every poor review causes intense examination. For the friends and family of these Thespians it can be maddening. For the actors themselves it is fuel to make sure that every performance is better than the last. It’s the reason they take classes and love notes from their directors.
Must Be Passionate
There is nothing easy about the life or the craft of being an actor. Very few fail upward and skate by. Almost all actors have to put in time and effort into their craft. They must often deal with long hours, odd hours and missing out on moments with their friends and family other professions would afford them to see. Being an actor is a lifetime of learning and getting better at the craft. It’s knowing that if you don’t work hard, someone is right around the corner who will.
Must Be Talented
There are more than enough below-average actors out there, so the serious actor must also be talented. All the aforementioned traits are important to have, but without talent these things seem hollow and pointless. An actor must, to a certain degree, possess the ability to captivate an audience and move them with and without words. Whether it is felt from the stage in a play, or through the screen in a TV show, DVD or download on a VLC player, the performance must be authentic. Without talent, an actor could take on the most beautiful scripts in the world, and the audience would still feel bored and deflated. Talent must be in there somewhere.
Being an actor is an all-the-time job. It’s a job that isn’t for everyone. It takes a particular mix of personality traits to do it and sometimes that isn’t enough.