I read this awesome post in Backstage and loved it. Secret Agent Man is pretty straightforward. Read why Your Agent Doesn't Hate You . In fact, they probably like you quite a lot. What they don't like, is what is known in this industry as flakiness. And yes, everyone experiences it in every walk of life but actors are a special brand. You would think that in a field where the competition is so intense for so few jobs, we'd be the most reliable people on the planet. But we're not. And we give a bad name to ourselves because of it.
I first ran into this problem, actually, outside of the film industry. I was interviewing at a temp agency for that ever needed survival job (see My Other Job as to why I don't need to do that anymore) and when the question of acting came up, it was like something the size of the Berlin Wall sprang up. My interviewer's face became cold and our rapport immediately fell flat. She resolutely told me, "We don't work with your sort of people". I remember a moment of silence and then some awkwardness as the interview came to it's obvious end. And when I got home, I got mad. You don't work with my sort of people? You. Don't. Work. With. MY. Sort. Of. People. Well, screw you. Not all of my people are like that. Some of the hardest working and reliable people I know are actors and film industry people. Who else willing works 14 hour days for a teeny tiny bit of money (if anything at all) for months at a time and loves it? No one, I say, no one.
But as I've gotten to know more people in this industry, I see where this stereotype comes from. And it sucks. We are flaky and it's just not fair to those on our teams. Our agents, managers, publicists, favourite casting directors go to bat for us everyday. They depend on our performance for a living. Maybe we owe it to them to man up and treat this like a career. You know, one where you actually have to be disciplined and show up. And then, maybe you'll stop wondering if your agent hates you.