Hometown To Hollywood w/ Bonnie J Wallace
EP 103: Cindy Osbrink, Youth Talent Agent, Founder & CEO of Osbrink Agency

EP 103: Cindy Osbrink, Youth Talent Agent, Founder & CEO of Osbrink Agency

January 22, 2020

My guest on this episode of the Hometown to Hollywood podcast is Cindy Osbrink, CEO of The Osbrink Agency which she founded in 1993.

Today Osbrink is one of the most esteemed Youth Talent Agencies in Hollywood, and the company is a full-service agency with Theatrical, Commercial, Print and Voice Over departments for adults and youths alike. Cindy has represented many of the most acclaimed young actors in Hollywood including Brie Larson, Dakota & Elle Fanning, Tyler James Williams, Raven Symoné and Jake Lloyd.

Cindy is also respected among her peers, twice winning The Talent Manager Association’s Youth Theatrical Agent of the Year award.

Cindy Osbrink’s experience and expertise are priceless, and she rarely does interviews. Join us for her thoughts on how she can spot star quality, advice for parents of young actors, how to communicate with your agent, parents as managers, college for actors, how to prepare for success before you ever come to LA and when to come out, and much more.

 

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

 

  • “I can tell when they walk in the room… there is that confidence, that light. It’s not a performance. It’s who they ARE.”
  • “If you can be true to yourself, then you can be the most amazing actor out there. You’re not always ‘acting’ and having a mask on.”
  • “Each one of us has different gifts. And our job is to find those gifts.”
  • “It’s easier to get Taft-Hartleyed into the union on a commercial vs. a TV show.”
  • “Turn that nervous energy into excitement.”
  • “If you manage your child, we’re not the agency for you.”
  • “Seeing our clients shine… doing what they love and doing it well… there’s nothing better.”
  • “It’s your job as a parent to provide that path for them… but they have to do the work.”
  • “If you’re 22 and can play younger, I’d definitely find an agency that has youth/adult, so you have the best of both worlds.”
  • “It’s a marriage between the agent, the manager, and the parent.”
  • “For Pilot Season… they don’t start casting kids 'til March. Usually they cast the parents first.”
  • “Community theatre is awesome.”
  • “Take baby steps. People make this so complicated, and it’s not. Make it fun.”

 

 

Follow Cindy Osbrink here:

 

Website:                     https://www.osbrinkagency.com/

 

So much of what Cindy shared confirms my own experience, and yet runs counter to conventional wisdom. The entertainment industry can be confusing to navigate! If you could use some help cutting through the confusion, book a consultation with me, either online or in Los Angeles. A single session can save you months or years of frustration, and thousands of dollars spent going in the wrong direction.

 

EP 102: Toni Long, Entertainment Lawyer

EP 102: Toni Long, Entertainment Lawyer

January 4, 2020

Do you ever wonder what an entertainment attorney would tell you if you could sit down and talk? What advice they might give you? If so—you are in for a treat, because today’s podcast features Los Angeles Entertainment Attorney Toni Long.

If you or someone you love is getting into professional performing of any sort, you would do well to take advantage of this free hour with Toni. We discuss some of the biggest mistakes actors make with lawyers, when to reach out to one, what an entertainment lawyer can do for an actor, and much more.

Toni’s advice is useful for actors of any age, as well as parents of young actors. Join us!

 

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

 

  • “You should never sign a management contract without having an attorney review it.”
  • “Do not put your personal address on documents that are filed.”
  • “When you set up your loan-out corporation, it should be an S-Corp.”
  • “Trying to have a personal injury attorney work as your entertainment attorney would be like going to the dentist for a lobotomy.”
  • “There are a lot of things that are very specific to the entertainment industry that other attorneys don’t know.”
  • “I need to know who you are as a person. It helps me know how I’m going to negotiate for you.”
  • “Labor and employment laws are different in every state, and California is VERY different.”
  • “If the contracts says it’s going to be covered by CA law, have a CA lawyer look at it.”
  • “Your integrity should never be for sale.”
  • “Sometimes the best advice for parents is to get out of your own way.”

  

Find Toni Long HERE:

https://tyllaw.com/attorney/toni-y-long/

https://tyllaw.com

 

Talking with Toni is a great reminder of all things that we don’t know that we don’t know, and how consequential those things can be. If you’d like to save some time and money getting over the learning curve of the entertainment industry and how it actually works so you can be better positioned for success (or so your young actor can be), book a consultation with me online or in person. A single session can make all the difference.

 

EP 101: Abby Johnson, Talent Manager

EP 101: Abby Johnson, Talent Manager

December 20, 2019

My guest on this episode of the Hometown to Hollywood podcast is Abby Johnson. Abby is a Talent Manager with Green Room Management in Los Angeles.

We discuss how talent managers work, what they do and don’t do for their clients, the difference between agents and managers, what makes for a great manager, advice for actors trying to get a manager and advice for how to best work with your manager once you have one, and MUCH more. This is a candid and wonderful conversation for anyone interested in having a manager, now or in the future. Join us!

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

 

  • “I don’t want to work with someone 1 or 2 years… I want to work with them their entire career.”
  • “Getting a manager or an agent is just the beginning.”
  • “What are you bringing to the table that’s different?”
  • “I’m on your team. If you’re on my roster, I believe in you 100%.”
  • “We’re just as excited when you book the pilot, or when the offer comes through, as you are.”
  • “When you have the agent, the manager, and the lawyer on the phone, you know good news is coming.”
  • “Being realistic about the time commitment and the financial commitment (with acting) is really important.”
  • “Let the manager manage.”
  • “Be positive and realistic.”
  • “Trusting that the right opportunities will eventually come will lead to a happier life.”

 

Follow Abby HERE:

Instagram: ­­­­­­­@abbymariej

FaceBook : The Green Room Management

 

There is so much to learn about this business, and the more you understand, the better your chances of success. Talent is a necessary component, but after that, what often separates the ones who make it from the ones who don’t is an understanding of the terrain. If you could use some help navigating this journey, book a consultation with me, either online or in person in Los Angeles. A single session can give you peace of mind and an action plan, as well as save you thousands of dollars and months or years of time.

Encore: Sarah Jeffery (Episode 5)

Encore: Sarah Jeffery (Episode 5)

November 28, 2019

My guest on this encore podcast episode of Hometown to Hollywood is actress Sarah Jeffrey.

Sarah is best known for her work on Shades of Blue, Wayward PinesDisney Descendants, and Descendants 3, The X-Files, Daphne and Velma, and Charmed. This conversation was originally recorded in June of 2016.

In our conversation we discuss what’s important for success, the challenges of getting a visa for actors who are not U.S. citizens (Jeffery is Canadian), how to stay positive when the going gets tough, and MUCH more.

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

 

  • "Getting started can sometimes be a little scary.”
  • “Getting comfortable using my voice in front of people and being in front of the camera was a big part of my training.”
  • “I think it’s very useful to see what works for you, and what doesn’t.”
  • “For me, there’s a fine balance between knowing your lines, and being comfortable with the character, and overdoing it.”
  • “Auditioning can be nerve-wracking; sometimes when you’re in the thick of it, you have multiple auditions in a day.”
  • “That’s a big thing for me: recognizing where it’s good to draw inspiration, and where you need to stay true to yourself.”
  • “You just have to go in and do your thing and have your own personal flair.”
  • “Hollywood seems like this huge thing, but once you’re here, it’s tiny.”
  • “Descendants was such an amazing experience… it was actually magical.”
  • “I get to do what I love, and I get to meet incredible people.”
  • “If it’s something you really want and it’s meant to happen for you, it absolutely will.”

 

Join us!

 

Follow Sarah Jeffery HERE:

Twitter: @sarahmjeffery3

On Instagram:  @sarahmjeffery

And on Facebook: OfficialSarahJeffery

 

Want to know more about getting a young actor up and running in Hollywood?

Buy my book, The Hollywood Parents Guide, on Amazon!

If you’re ready to get some coaching on how to help your kid break into acting for film or TV, or are already down the road but stuck, book a consultation with me on my consultation page. For not much more than the price of an hour with an acting coach, you can get peace of mind, and a detailed action plan.

EP 100: Kristin Chenoweth: Emmy & Tony Award Winning Actress & Singer

EP 100: Kristin Chenoweth: Emmy & Tony Award Winning Actress & Singer

November 13, 2019

Today my guest on this very special 100th episode of the Hometown to Hollywood podcast is the legendary Kristin Chenoweth.

Kristin is one of those rare performers who truly excels in multiple mediums: musical theatre, film, TV, voiceover, and concert performances, and she has the awards to prove it, with both an Emmy and a Tony among others. Perhaps best known for originating the role of Galinda in Wicked, some of her other Broadway and Off-Broadway runs have included You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown, Promises, Promises, On the Twentieth Century, and Candide. She has starred in scores of TV shows and films including Pushing Daisies, Glee, Descendants, Hairspray Live, BoJack Horseman, Trial and Error, GCB, and many more. For the Girls is her seventh album.

Kristin currently is performing in her Broadway concert run, For the Girls, where she performs songs from her most recent album of the same name. She is the only other woman my daughter Dove Cameron calls “Mama.” And I am proud to call her my friend.

Listen in for an authentic, heartfelt conversation, where Kristin generously shares experience, advice, and wisdom from her extraordinary career… and makes it clear that she is still learning and evolving too.

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

  • “Sometimes our plans aren’t God’s plans, and we have to get to what we’re meant to do in a different way.”
  • There are no limits, besides the ones we put on ourselves.”
  • University, for me, was that time to not only train, but to grow up a little bit.”
  • “If I know that my audiences are touched, that’s the most important part for me.”
  • “As life changes, and your voice changes, it opens you up to new material and new things to say.”
  • “If you stay in the moment—the true moment—nobody can get too mad at you.”
  • “If you see yourself doing anything else, & being happy at it, then you should go do that thing. But if you don’t… please go for it.”
  • “Own who you are, and do YOU.”

The quote Kristin and I both referenced in the podcast is from Martha Graham to Agnes de Mille, both legendary choreographers:

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open.”

Follow Kristin HERE:

Website: https://www.officialkristinchenoweth.com/

Instagram: @kchenoweth

Twitter: @kchenoweth

Facebook: @kristinchenoweth

Purchase For the Girls HERE

 

Kristin Chenoweth’s approach to life and art is humble, heart-based, and generous.

Our conversation reminded me of how important it is to continue to evolve, as artists, as well as humans. The minute we think we know everything we need to know is when we stop growing. By positioning herself as a lifelong learner, Kristin is embracing new opportunities to use her voice… literally as well as figuratively.

If you know you could use some help learning what you need to put in place for a successful acting career—for yourself or for your kid—invest in a consultation with me. A single session can save you many times over the investment, as well as give you peace of mind.

EP 99: Fatmata Kamara, CAA Theatrical Agent

EP 99: Fatmata Kamara, CAA Theatrical Agent

October 31, 2019

Today my guest on the Hometown to Hollywood podcast is Fatmata Kamara. Fatmata is a theatrical talent agent at Creative Artists Agency, or CAA, one of the biggest agencies in Los Angeles. Her clients include Gabrielle Union, Ksenia Solo, Anna Diop, Matt McGorry, and Winston Duke, among others.

We discuss when actors should come out to LA, how to get the attention of an agent in Hollywood, whether to pursue a youth agent or an adult agent if you land in LA after college, and much, much more. As a former youth agent with Abrams and a current adult agent with CAA, Fatmata has some incredible insight into the industry.

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

  • “The biggest compliment I can get is, ‘You don’t feel like an agent!’”
  • “As cheesy as it sounds, we’re making people’s dreams come true.”
  • “One of the best parts of the job is truly growing with every client.”
  • “Relationships are the basis for everything we do.”
  • “I do believe when you do the work, and surround yourself with the right people… good things come.”
  • “There are so many paths to your destination! Some might even take a detour.”
  • “It can happen; it will happen; just take your time and make smart decisions.”
  • “I can get you in the room, but you’re the one that books the job.”
  • “TV doesn’t really have seasons anymore… there’s so much more opportunity now.”
  • “Do your research and really know who you’re meeting with, what they’ve done, their reputation, and who their clients are.”
  • “We’re all just figuring it out, and I think everyone’s path is going to be different so just make it your own.”

 

Follow Fatmata here:

Instagram: @fatmata81

Twitter: @fatmata81

 

Fatmata’s care for her clients is evident in everything she says and does.

Hollywood may seem impossible to break into, but it’s made up of real people, and is definitely accessible. If you’re trying to figure out how to navigate an acting career for yourself or your kid, book a consultation session with me, either online or in person in LA. One session can save you months or years or time, and thousands of dollars going in the wrong direction.

EP 98: Sara Isaacson, Casting Director

EP 98: Sara Isaacson, Casting Director

October 17, 2019

Today my guest on the Hometown to Hollywood podcast is casting director Sara Isaacson.

Sara is best known for casting Law and Order: True Crime, Bates Motel, Fringe, The Arrangement, Famous in Love, The Mentalist, Motive, Almost Human, and State of Affairs. She is a member of the Casting Society of America.

We discussed a wide range of subjects over the course of our conversation, including how to get on a casting director’s radar, what she wishes actors would and would NOT do in auditions, how casting actually works, tips for parents of young actors, and some excellent philosophical advice that applies to pretty much everyone, not just actors!

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

  • “At the end of the day, I think we’re just looking for the best actor to play every role.”
  • “Casting is very time-consuming, and it also moves very quickly.”
  • “I’m probably not going to watch unsolicited self-tapes.”
  • “I just want an actor to be prepared, and be awesome.”
  • “I want you to be confident, understand the tone of the show, and if you’re unclear, you ASK.”
  • “I can 100% guarantee that if a casting directors says to an actor, ‘Do you have any questions?’ we mean it!”
  • “Don’t apologize, don’t feel like you’re not meant to be there… come in with confidence.”
  • “Don’t tell me you just got the sides last night; everyone else did also.”
  • “I’m looking for an actor that’s prepared, and feels like they belong there.”
  • “Your behavior in the audition room and the lobby is how you will be on set.”
  • “Trust that I will find you and meet you when and if I’m working on a project that you’re right for.”
  • “Create your own content. And if I’m meant to meet you, I promise you I will.”
  • “Be a nice, good person. Who also happens to be an actor.”

 

Follow Sara HERE:

Twitter: @saraisaacson

Instagram: @saraisaacsoncasting

 

Sara’s twenty years as a casting director in Hollywood has earned her a wealth of experience and understanding of this industry. As I enter my tenth year here, I am still learning every day! If you are trying to make it as an actor, or trying to help your kid make it, give yourself the advantage of experience and insight by booking a consultation with me, either online or in person in Los Angeles. I look forward to helping you increase your odds of success!

EP 97: Actor’s Dialect Coach, Scott Alan Moffitt

EP 97: Actor’s Dialect Coach, Scott Alan Moffitt

October 2, 2019

Today my guest on Hometown to Hollywood is The Actor’s Dialect Coach, Scott Alan Moffitt.

Scott teaches both an introductory and an ongoing class in dialects at the Young Actors Space, which is located in Los Angeles. He is also available for one-on-one coaching via Skype or here in LA.

We had a fun and fascinating conversation around how Scott teaches actors dialects and accents, and the importance of accents and dialects as special skills to increase an actor’s chance of booking roles. We even got into the social implications of certain dialects, which is something everyone experiences, whether they are an actor or not. Scott uses the International Phonetic Alphabet, also known as the IPA in his classes and coaching.

There are so many universal truths in this interview, and one of the biggest is the importance of talent and being right for the role. You can’t know if you’re right for the role, but you can work on your talent. Similarly, you can’t know what opportunities will come your way, but you can do your best to increase your odds by understanding how the industry works, and being as well prepared for success as you can.

If you need help getting your young actor started in the industry safely and successfully, or moving through a stuck spot, book a consultation with me online or in Los Angeles. One session can save you thousands of dollars and months or years of time.

Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

 

  • “The IPA is like music theory for dialects.”
  • “Your acting needs to be good, or you’re not going to book that role no matter how good your dialect is.”
  • “When you’re studying a foreign accent, go listen to that NPR station.”
  • “There are as many dialects as there are people on earth who speak.”
  • “General American English is the most understood dialect of English worldwide.”
  • “I do not, and never will, aim to remove someone’s native dialect.”
  • “If you really are the best actor for the role, and your dialect’s not quite up to snuff, they’re going to work with you.”
  • “There are so many opportunities for dialect and accented actors… we want that variety for our ears, because it’s beautiful music.”
  • “At the end of the day, the acting’s got to come first.”
  • “That’s my whole goal. To teach actors how to teach themselves dialects.”
  • “Don’t try to fool casting. Be honest with who you are.”
  • “Do the work, be confident in the work, then let it go.”

 

Follow Scott Alan Moffitt HERE:

 

Website: https://www.actorsdialectcoach.com/

Twitter: @ReelScottAlan

Instagram: @reelscottalan

FaceBook: @ScottAlanMoffitt

EP 96: Cozi Zuehlsdorff: Actress, Singer, Writer

EP 96: Cozi Zuehlsdorff: Actress, Singer, Writer

September 11, 2019

Today my guest on this podcast is actress, singer, and writer Cozi Zuehlsdorff. Cozi is best known for her work on Dolphin Tale and Dolphin Tale 2, Freaky Friday, Pure Country Pure Heart, Mighty Med, and Sophia the First.

Cozi has some exceptionally thoughtful advice for anyone who wants to be in this industry, and a wisdom that is beyond her 21 years. Some of my favorite quotes from our conversation:

  • “Do things that scare you. If you’re afraid to dive, just dive afraid.”
  • “Imagine driving 2 ½ hours each way for a 3 minute audition.”
  • “I put together specific playlists of what the character would listen to.”
  • “There’s such a thing as over-rehearsing.”
  • “True humility is enjoying someone else’s gifts as much as you enjoy your own.”
  • “Follow your intuition… follow what’s going to make you happy.”
  • “The only thing you can control is your life outside of work, so make it full of things you love, and give you a sense of completion.”
  • “You have to be really brave sometimes, and really put yourself out there.”
  • “Your anxiety and your shame won’t teach you anything.”
  • “An object in motions tends to stay in motion. Be productive. Write something. Go to class.”
  • “Success does not equal happiness.”

 

Follow Cozi HERE:

Twitter: @cozizuehlsdorff

Instagram: @cozizuehlsdorff

Facebook: @cozizuehlsdorff

 (All verified)

  

Cozi’s story shows how important faith and persistence are to success. Success is never guaranteed, but your odds of find it increase greatly if you are willing to be patient and true to yourself.

Persistence is critical in this industry. But ironically, persisting in the wrong direction can take you further away from your goals. If you need help figuring out how to approach an acting career for yourself or your child, book a consultation with me online or in person. A single session can provide clarity, direction, and a map to help you navigate more effectively.

 

EP95: Taylor Bright, Talent Manager

EP95: Taylor Bright, Talent Manager

August 28, 2019

If you’ve ever wanted to get the inside scoop on talent management, this podcast is a must-listen. My guest on this episode of Hometown to Hollywood is Taylor Bright, a Talent Manager with Stagecoach Entertainment in Los Angeles. Prior to becoming a manager, she worked in casting offices at Bullock & Snow Casting and Aufiero/Horn Casting on projects for Disney, Nickelodeon, MTV & CW.

We discuss a wide range of subjects, including how talent management works, the difference between agents and managers, what makes a great manager, advice for actors (and parents of young actors), how to get a manager, the best and worst times of the year to come to Los Angeles, advice for beginning actors, and much more.

A few of my favorite quotes from the podcast:

  • "If you're self-taping you can do it as many times as you want, so why isn't it perfect?"
  • "Find the person who's most passionate about you."
  • "As a manager I'm here to oversee your whole career and guide your brand."
  • "With agents you typically have a theatrical agent, and a commercial agent, and a social media or digital agent, and a voiceover agent, and my job [as manager] is to make everyone work together."
  • "When pins are released? When tests don't go our way? On to the next."
  • "Are you doing something every day that makes you a better actor?"
  • "You don't show up to Wrigley Field and knock on the door and demand to pitch that day. You start with t-ball."
  • "If you're not getting calls back [from your reps] that's a bigger conversation. It needs to be addressed."
  • "Don't come out without a plan. Take acting classes. Do something fun. Go to Disneyland!"
  • "Do Community Theater. Do plays. Do musicals. Expose yourself to the craft."
  • "Go to the AFI Top 100 films list and start at the beginning. Find actors who inspire you and watch their work."
  • "If you're going to take the time to self-tape, watch it. Take notes."
  • "Hard work wins out. Always."
  • "Your parents can guide you, but at the end of the day it's your career."

 

Follow Taylor HERE:

Instagram: @taylormariebright