Film Courage: Robin, for any actor who wants to be a working actor in Hollywood, what are some things that they need to know, not just about the business but also themselves?
Robin Riker, actor/author: You have to have a good sense of yourself and a good thick skin. It’s very odd that an actor needs to be able to shed that skin immediately and be able to be vulnerable and express feelings. You must have thick skin because you are not going to get more jobs that you get. Even the most famous actors, the ones who you think work all the time, don’t get every job they want and as a working actor (we working actors) don’t get more jobs than we do. So you have to know that, you just have to know that.
And then you have to act. I encourage (alas equity is making this a little difficult for equity actors) but you have to perform. So find a class to go to that keeps your instrument lubricated and working so you know you’re not going in and trying to read for Macbeth after not doing anything for six months or doing cereal commercials. So find a workshop some place where you can work and do scenes and scene study and that sort of thing.
You have to be very careful of becoming a professional student. A lot of people come here and take classes and that satisfies them in a way. Even doing really good work in a class is not the same as working and so you have to do that work in order to be able to be good enough to land work. This is not the same as working.
And so you have to do that work in order to be able to be good enough to land that work. So you have to get on stage as often as you can. There are lots of little theaters here that do plays. If you’re not equity you can do that. If you are equity you have to do some workarounds to get that happening now alas. But get on stage as much as you can so you are warmed up.
You should always (before you go out on an audition) you should be as prepared as you can possibly be but for yourself (this is not so much for the audition) but for the person, go somewhere in public before you go to the audition. Because you are a human who is trying to display emotions. If you make this audition the most important thing of your day I’m getting ready for this. I can’t do anything before this. This is it, the focus, the focus, the focus, then you get in the room and you’re not limber…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).
BUY THE BOOK – A SURVIVOR’S GUIDE TO HOLLYWOOD: How To Play The Game Without Losing Your Soul
Advertisement – contains affiliate links
GIRL LOST by Filmmaker Robin Bain – tackles the very real issue of underage prostitution as told through the eyes of a wayward teen. Groomed by her own mother to work in the underbelly of Los Angeles, the young girl struggles to survive in this dark world. Stream GIRL LOST on Amazon Prime Video today.