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Occupational Profile

Casting Director

Casting directors are hired on contract by film, video, television and advertising companies to find suitable actors to audition for particular parts or characters. Directors or producers have the final say in who is hired for each part.

  • Avg. Salary $55,709.00
  • Avg. Wage $34.45
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook Up
  • Employed 1,800
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As

Director - Theatre and Film, Talent Scout

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

70%
70%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
NOC & Interest Codes
The Casting Director is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Directors
NOC code: 5131.2
INNOVATIVE

Interest in studying scripts to determine artistic interpretations; and in co-ordinating the activities of production staff to develop desired effects

DIRECTIVE

Interest in co-ordinating the activities of performers, extras and production personnel; and in advising them on the interpretation and delivery of performances, and in conferring with crew and specialists throughout production and post-production to achieve desired presentations

SOCIAL

Interest in instructing cast members and production personnel to develop and achieve presentations that reflect desired artistic interpretations

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Casting directors work closely with performers and film production people. In general, principal casting directors:

  • review performers' promotional materials such as photos, resumes, demo reels and voice over demo CDs
  • review scripts, prepare a succinct breakdown of the nature of each role that needs to be cast, describe characteristics and special requirements for each role, and distribute the information to appropriate talent agencies and self-represented performers
  • pre-screen candidates to select the most suitable performers for the director and the producer to see
  • facilitate the scheduling of callbacks (secondary auditions) for those performers the director and producer wish to work with further on a particular role
  • research organizations, associations or individuals in order to cast a role requiring a specific skill or unique talent - anything from a fire-breathing unicyclist to an Olympic-calibre athlete
  • negotiate contracts and scheduling between performers or their agents and the production company.

Background casting directors find background performers ("extras") including: stand-ins for lead performers, photo doubles, and performers for non-speaking parts and crowd scenes. They must often deal with scheduling changes.

Working Conditions
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Casting directors often work under tight schedules. Conditions vary depending on the director and producer. Travel may be required to audition new talent and meet television or film production people. To save on travel, delivery costs and time, auditions are often scheduled and held online, then uploaded to private sites.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Casting directors need to possess:

  • flexibility and adaptability
  • the ability to work long hours in fast-paced, varied environments
  • excellent communication skills, both in person and in writing
  • excellent interpersonal skills
  • the ability to recognize strong performances.

They should enjoy compiling information from scripts and signalling cues, taking charge of situations, and negotiating. People skills are essential; casting directors must be able to recognize the acting potential and ability in individuals during auditions.

Educational Requirements
Updated Mar 26, 2017

There is no particular educational route to enter this field. Casting directors come from diverse backgrounds including:

  • theatre and film
  • business
  • public relations.

Interested individuals may be able to arrange informal apprenticeships with established casting directors. Post-secondary education in the performing arts and contract negotiation skills are definite assets.

For union jobs, casting directors must be familiar with the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA) Independent Production Agreement for film and television productions and the ACTRA National Commercial Agreement for television and radio commercials. These agreements outline standards such as wage minimums and working conditions that must be followed by members of the Canadian Media Producers Association, the Institute of Communication Agencies and the Association of Canadian Advertisers.

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Above-average occupational growth is expected in Alberta for 2016 to 2020. Job openings are a result of employment turnover and newly created positions.

Casting directors are hired on contract for specific projects by:

  • film and video production companies
  • advertising agencies
  • television and radio stations and networks.

They usually have extensive experience with both acting and filmic technologies, as they function as a go-between among dramatic, technical and creative personnel.

Fewer than 10 casting directors are currently employed in Alberta.

Wage & Salary
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Casting directors negotiate each contract separately. They may negotiate a flat rate or have hourly, daily or weekly wage rates.

Producers, directors, choreographers and related occupations
NOC code: 5131

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $15.00 $37.58 $29.62 $23.39
Overall $19.23 $44.04 $34.45 $28.59
Top $20.00 $59.46 $38.70 $31.19

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

C: Lower Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Lower Reliability, represents a CV of between 15.01% and 33.00% and/or if fewer than 20 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 33% of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
Health Care & Social Assistance
ALBERTA, ALL INDUSTRIES
Information, Culture, Recreation

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

70%
70%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

14%
14%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

N/A

2015 Vacancy Rate

N/A
Related High School Subjects
  • Fine Arts
    • Drama
  • Media, Design and Communication Arts
    • Communication Technology
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Business, Management and Administrative Studies
  • Communications
  • Fine Arts and Performing Arts
  • Humanities and Languages
Other Sources of Information
Updated Mar 26, 2017

Alberta Media Production Industries Association website: ampia.org

Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists website: www.actra.ca

Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists Alberta website: www.actraalberta.com

Association of Canadian Advertisers website: www.acaweb.ca

Canadian Media Producers Association website: www.cmpa.ca

Casting Society of America website: www.castingsociety.com

Cultural Human Resources Council website: www.culturalhrc.ca

Institute of Communication Agencies website: www.icacanada.ca

Women in Film and Television - Alberta website: www.wifta.ca

Women in Film and Television - International website: www.wiftichapters.org

For more information on career planning, education and jobs, visit the Alberta Learning Information Service (ALIS) website, call the Alberta Career Information Hotline toll-free at 1-800-661-3753 or 780-422-4266 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Works Centre near you.

Updated Mar 20, 2017. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

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