How to Film in Nigeria and still be human by Niyi Akinmolayan

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Oya this is how to create a headshot and actor profile

I posted a casting call on facebook recently for AreaFC, a TV series about to be made by my oga Emmanuel Uduma. It requested for a profile/resume and a headshot. While there was a lot of response particularly from young wanna-be actors, most didn’t understand what a headshot meant or even an actor resume. At first it was very funny, we saw all sorts from Instagram selfies to party photos. We made fun and laughed about them, we even insulted them until I realize, wait…the joke is on us. Why don’t we just show these young folks how it’s done once and for all. We keep telling them to “google it” as if na we put am for google. We might loose that good talent because we assumed he’s an idiot for not doing a good resume or headshot. So I decided this had to be my first post for actors.

Vicky Akujobi (Anthill’s Senior Editor) and Akay Ilozobhie (Anthill’s content writer/producer) agreed for me to use them for this tutorial.guys

So, Whats a Headshot?

Wikipedia: A head shot or headshot is a specific type of portrait (usually a photograph) that realistically demonstrates a person’s appearance for branding or casting.

Basically a headshot is almost like a passport photograph but shot with the intent to appeal to a casting director or producer. Meaning..you have to be fine but not too fine…pose a little…but not too much. Nobody wants to see you pout or look like mammywater. Here are some tips I know will give you good headshots.

  1. For females, minimal make up. If you look too hot and you Photoshop the photos and you now appear at the audition looking like chinko phone, that alone will annoy everyone and your performance won’t matter. A little make up is fine. No big eyelashes and juju mascara. The point is to look like you. But a fine you. For males…thank God all we need to do is comb our hair well. If your face is too oily, add small power and you are fine.
  2. Always do portrait. If you can’t afford a professional photographer (You should though except you really have no option or you are just too broke) You can use your phone…but biko, use a good phone…borrow your friend’s iphone or Samsung galaxy. Portraits look professional and you fill the frame. Also make sure you use a plain background as other stuff might be distracting. Plain colours like dark gray, deep blue or black are good choice because your skin will pop better on them. I couldn’t get a better background, but it still worked.
  3. vicky-smile headshot

    everyone loves a smiling face

    akay-smile headshot

    everyone loves a smiling face

  4. If you are using a phone, my advice is to shoot outdoors with good light. Now most of your phone lenses are wide angle lenses. What this means is that if you move it too close to you, you will be slightly distorted and look ugly…which is why front camera selfies suck and we all look ugly skyping . In this example, Akay and Vicky were shot standing full frame and I cropped the photo to fit.
  5. For naija purposes, I’ll advice you Take two shots. A smiling one (for romance and comedy) and a serious but not frowny one (drama and juju…lol)
    akay-smile-full

    If you are using a phone, take a full frame and crop it. moving a phone camera too close to you will make you look ugly

    vicky-serious headshot

    serious face for drama

    akay-serious headshot

    serious face for drama

  6. Look at the camera always. Its like you are looking at the casting director. For females, a little cleavage won’t hurt…most males in the industry are ashawos…they will like it …lol.
  7. Do a little color correction if you can…most phones have good tools for this. Don’t overdo it and end up looking like a witch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whats an Actor Profile/Resume?resume profile full

It’s basically like any other resume. It’s just laziness that’s worrying all of you. An actor resume is a way to quickly give all the information about who you are, what you’ve done and other vital stats. That way, when they call you for an audition, it’s just to audition you. I am attaching two different templates here; one for a male and the other for a female. Feel free to download and re-use. After all I took it from the internet too and tweaked. But reuse with sense. Reminds me of how one yeye boy copied my Chemistry test in SS2 and copied my name with it…chai. By the way some of you still can’t use a computer…Chisos!…sha go to a business centre and have them do it for you.

Download these Microsoft Word files.

Acting Resume male

Acting Resume female

So lemme break it down especially for those who don’t have any experience at all.

THE SUMMARY

resume profileThis is the part where if you know you cant write good english, ask for help. Akay wrote this one for me…he is awesome. Make it simple and straightforward. Add a photo, that way the producers can easily remember you while reading your profile after the audition. For those who don’t have any experience, here a sample of what you might write “Lora Mason is a young talented individual with a burning passion for acting and has been in love with the craft ever since she was a little girl. While she is yet to debut professionally on stage or on screen, she has put together a series of impressive of performances in school plays as well as theater exercises. She is a raw talent willing to break her back in order achieve the director’s vision for the character. She is looking forward to her debut as a professional actor and can’t wait to show the industry, as well as the world, what she is capable of doing.”

 

 

 

THE CREDITS

resume profile 3This is probably the most important part of the resume: What have you done and when. I would advice that if there is a youtube trailer link or an IrokoTv/IbakaTv link to a film you’ve done, Add it to this part or add it in email. If you add it in the word document, they can quickly click on it since Microsoft word will highlight it blue. Please List your films from the latest to the earliest. For those of you who haven’t acted professionally, I’m sure you must have done some plays in school or even in church. Add it there…you can lie a little sef. its allowed…hehehe

 

 

 

PERSONAL DETAILS

resume profile 7Because some of you are only tall and slim  in photos, its important that you give all your statistics in your resume. Some people still don’t know their height. you should never lie about your age. Its important to state age ranges you believe you can play.

Other bits include Contact details. Please add all the phone number you have. You can also add your Instagram and twitter handles. I love to check actors on social media a lot before deciding to use them so you cant afford to be social media illiterate.

While academic qualifications are good, they are not too compulsory, a diploma from film school is good advantage though and you should add it if you have one.

I want to advice all actors too to try record video monologues of themselves and put online and add the link when sending their resumes. you can get half of the work done that way. maybe i’ll do a video tutorial soon on creating fine monologue reels. I also think its time for some people in the IT industry to build platforms where we can have a huge database of actor profiles including headshots and reels. Is anyone thinking already. Go for it…the industry needs it now more than ever and you will even make money…Auditions are headaches.

So i hope next time you see a call to send your headshot and resume, you know what to do. And remember, if you do get called for a role after using these techniques, you owe me jollof rice.

Categories:   Acting

Comments

  • Posted: July 4, 2016 20:43

    Priye Diri

    We really do owe you jollof!!!
  • Posted: July 4, 2016 20:57

    Temitayo Adewle Stella

    You are so hilarious. The message was well disseminated. You did not speify the type of Jollof you want...Ghanian or togolese
    • Posted: July 5, 2016 11:57

      admin

      nigerian jollof of course
      • Posted: March 31, 2017 22:01

        Jessybumight

        I just love you.. You're incredible.
  • Posted: July 4, 2016 21:01

    Bola haastrup

    Kudos
  • Posted: July 4, 2016 21:09

    Temitayo Adewle Stella

    You are so hilarious. The message was well disseminated. You did not specify the type of Jollof you want...Ghanaian or togolese?
    • Posted: July 4, 2016 21:25

      admin

      Nigerian jollof joo
  • Posted: July 4, 2016 22:01

    Peace Oni

    This. Is. Awesome. I had fun reading. Perhaps with these few points you've made I can start my journey as an actor!
    • Posted: July 4, 2016 22:11

      admin

      Lol...perhaps!
  • Posted: July 4, 2016 22:19

    O'Fresh

    Waoh... All for free, amazing!
  • Posted: July 4, 2016 22:36

    Sinmi

    Time to get to work. Thank you sir
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 01:33

    Benedict Freeman

    Uncle, how do you like your jollof? Do you like to add dodo? *coming through *
    • Posted: July 5, 2016 02:29

      admin

      Dodo will makes sense
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 02:51

    Bobby Rak

    coolness...
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 04:35

    Harriet Okoh

    Even me sef f**k up! Chai! Look at me assuming you guys just wanted a quick/brief glance thru o! Love the article... had fun reading aaand it will be a lot of help! Thanks! Walahi when I bring the jollof enn... you fit bite your tongue join sef! Lol.
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 05:43

    Abe Yemisi

    Comment After reading something like this ....The reaction you get is"awwwww....mi o de mo o" with ur two hands on your head thank sir
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 07:28

    meegan bertrand O

    Thanks this is really helpful ,God bless your soul.
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 07:32

    Miriam

    Niyi, please create a feature for topic suggestions...and a forum wont be bad either to create a community for discussions
    • Posted: July 5, 2016 08:04

      admin

      Ok...working on it asap
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 08:09

    ms fun

    Thanks but I can't open the files..
    • Posted: July 5, 2016 08:24

      admin

      Open in Microsoft word...or send me ur email and I'll mail u an attachment
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 09:17

    Wittytayor

    Wow! Bros mi, you're really appreciated for this. While this is the time I'll be getting something so closely infomative. You really deserve a treat beyond Jolof... But I assumed it's your favorite. Anyways, I'll order am for u with lots of savoury
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 09:28

    Nkemdy

    Wow, this is exactly what we Naijans need. Niyi you're the best.
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 10:17

    Sheffy Bello

    I am so impressed by this. It has solved alot of issues tumps up!
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 11:36

    Alberta

    Thank you sir
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 12:24

    AbalisS

    Amazing write up. I totally agree with you about "actors" just being lazy. I used to be that. Just imagined it to be hard and stressful until I scolded myself and contacted my amazing old friend Google. I sat down and got myself a real good bio. And about the site for audit ions est. I and a couple of friends are already working on that. Something like backstage yea... thumbs up man. Nice.
    • Posted: July 5, 2016 12:30

      admin

      Great...make sure you let us know when its up and ready
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 21:10

    Toritse

    God will keep blessing you! In fact lemme go-an cook the jollof rice...... Ops! Tomato price shaaaaa....
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 22:11

    Francisca

    Nice, really good. Would love to work with you. I owe you Nigerian jollof rice and chicken. Hope you are not a vegetarian. Thank you
  • Posted: July 5, 2016 23:47

    hala

    The best lessons are usually the most simple ones....which is what you have done sire....Thanks for the knowledge
  • Posted: July 6, 2016 07:48

    williams

    Well delivered and educative, I would have payied thousands of naira for this information's, but got it in free and open team of Anthills. I must say thank you so much. Kudos guys
  • Posted: July 6, 2016 08:38

    jennine

    Very useful information. Looking forward to the creating a good monologue. And for the jollof rice...... would the my grand mama she's the best at cooking it.
  • Posted: July 6, 2016 10:10

    kingsteph

    Infact I will ask my wife to add moi moi elemi meje to the jolof when bringing it, I hope you like moi moi oooo. You too gbaski
  • Posted: July 6, 2016 19:57

    Vickie

    Omg, i love ur down to earth presentation, felt more like gist/chat, didnt knw wen i got to the end. Awesome tips, by d way.. Time to giddy up and get busy. Ur jollof/coconut/fried rice... Quietly waiting for u.. and me
    • Posted: July 7, 2016 05:21

      admin

      Thanks...I want the combination
  • Posted: July 10, 2016 18:20

    Olakunle Idowu

    Awwww.....utterly speechless, jus what I needed to know. Thanks a million for this info...About d jollof, I ll jus invite u to my sisters wedding in 3wks time wia u can av enough........Mmh, Nollywood get ready, ur boy is about to hit d screen
  • Posted: July 13, 2016 14:31

    grace

    i just pray am among the candidate that made it to the next phase, and thanks for this article because i have been able to put some correction to my resume/Cv.thanks and God bless
  • Posted: July 14, 2016 12:44

    Ladeeey

    Hi this has been very helpful . God bless you for putting effort in helping us. I just want you to know what someone that does not have an experince shld put in the personal summary paragraph. Because he/she has to impress anyone reading the acting profile. Thanks
    • Posted: July 16, 2016 07:52

      admin

      here's a sample “Lora Mason is a young talented individual with a burning passion for acting and has been in love with the craft ever since she was a little girl. While she is yet to debut professionally on stage or on screen, she has put together a series of impressive of performances in school plays as well as theater exercises. She is a raw talent willing to break her back in order achieve the director’s vision for the character. She is looking forward to her debut as a professional actor and can’t wait to show the industry, as well as the world, what she is capable of doing.”
  • Posted: July 21, 2016 22:39

    Abosi Ogba

    Lol. Most movie guys are ashawos. Na true joor. Thank you again for this information.
  • Posted: July 23, 2016 00:09

    ojo moleeky

    This do really help. But I read from a mindset of a crew. I hope to use this to get job as crew. Continual Blessings to you Mr akinmolayan, brighter knowledge and wisdom man.
  • Posted: July 25, 2016 18:45

    Precious

    Just discovered your blog, just wanted to express how helpful this is . I'm moving back in September to face acting, as in to put trouser in one leg with it. Information relating to the Nigerian film industry is so scarce to come by, and I didn't want to keep reading without saying thank you... so Thank you, sooo much.
  • Posted: July 27, 2016 11:40

    sola

    thanks a lot. God bless you for this one fam
  • Posted: July 29, 2016 09:58

    Bernie Wills

    Simply written, but well understood. Little wonder I'm stuck where I am with all the talent for over 10years. Hmmm, thank you Sir. I can say, my career just began professionally. Thanks
  • Posted: July 29, 2016 10:03

    Bernie Wills

    Pls, I'm seriously awaiting the video tutorial on fine monologue reels. Hopefully, I'll make and pass you audition and casting soonest. Thanks
  • Posted: August 7, 2016 09:35

    Frank

    Does your site have a contact page? I'm having problems locating it but, I'd like to send you an e-mail. I've got some creative ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great website and I look forward to seeing it grow over time. http://Www.yahoo.net/
    • Posted: August 7, 2016 09:46

      admin

      Niyiakinmolayan@gmail.com
  • Posted: August 10, 2016 20:08

    Nnamdi Kanaga

    ahhahhaha! Really good stuff! No wonder i did not get a response from the Area FC thingy!!! Lmao!! I owe you Edikangikong!!!! Duly Noted!
  • Posted: August 10, 2016 20:41

    Chrinstine

    I’ve been surfing on-line greater than three hours these days, but I by no means discovered any attention-grabbing article like yours. It is beautiful worth sufficient for me. Personally, if all web owners and bloggers made excellent content as you did, the internet will be a lot more useful than ever before. http://yahoo.co.uk
  • Posted: August 24, 2016 00:29

    Tongryang

    Thank you for this great post. I owe you a plate of jollof. Please Holla when you are in Abuja, my jollof is bad ass
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  • Posted: September 11, 2016 17:07

    Dotun

    Thanks Niyi for the tips
  • Posted: September 15, 2016 06:17

    NWAGBARAOCHA EMEKA

    Oh Pastor Niyi... you reallh cracked me open and i learnt great deal... hope to pit it to good use.... especially the CV update area....
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    • Posted: September 17, 2016 07:11

      admin

      Thanks a lot. Appreciate it!
  • Posted: September 27, 2016 13:09

    Toluwah

    I seriously wished i saw this before I shelved away a roll call asking for Actor's profile. I tried using google it got me more confused?? God bless you for this sir
  • Posted: October 4, 2016 17:07

    Oga J

    At least I tried. Maybe my score was like 55%, and I'm talented. I'm sad I wasn't called for the audition. Pls epp me.
  • Posted: November 3, 2016 13:29

    Tola

    You are simply amazing,please kindly forward the template my email.temmyturla@yahoo.com