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INTERVIEW WITH HAYLEY GILBERT
1. Could you tell me how “The Actors Handbook” can help young actors become successful?
The book is basically a guide to everything I have needed to know and learn to be a successful screen actress. There are many books but I wanted it to be simple yet informative. The idea is this is a book you can keep in your bag and use as a quick reference when you need that memory jog whilst onset. The book also talks about when you first receive a script and need to build your character, how to market yourself as an actor and quotes from famous actors giving their advice
2. Are you the actor yourself and what is your acting background?
Yes, I am an actress, I actually trained in Screen Acting at Redroofs Theatre school in England. I’ve have worked on many commercials and musical productions. I was also cast as a lead actress on the television series ‘Crime Team’, on Channel 4 in the U.K.
3. What inspired you to write this book?
I wanted a guide that gave me the information I needed in a quick and fun way. The most important information I was given when starting my career is just to remember ‘Acting is reacting’.
I sometimes think we take the fun out of being creative and using our imaginations by making things more technical. I want people to be passionate and play, we are all actors to some degree. Who has never told a lie and got away with it?
4. What is the most important advice you would give to inexperienced actors?
My advice is to keep believing in yourself. You will face a lot of rejection in this industry. But remain focused and always think of ways outside the box to market yourself. There are some many opportunities today for actors to create their own projects, such as a web series or short film. You also have platforms like Youtube and Facebook Live. Also, think about writing and pitching your own projects.
5. If you could go back in time and tell something to a younger version of yourself, what would it be?
Just get out there and do it. Go out and film. Buy a cheap camera and work. Don’t wait for the phone to ring from your agent. Don’t get me wrong having representation is important but keep working on your craft and when people see your passion doors will open.
6. What inspired you to write “The Actors Handbook”?
I was tired of having so many acting books. I just wanted all my books in one. I want the important information in one book so I can use that when I needed it. I wanted an actors Bible but easy to digest. Something fun and inspiring.
7. What are the most common mistakes among young actors, and how should they overcome them?
I hear so many people say they don’t need to train or have trained and are finished. But acting is a craft and you always can do better. There is no such thing as 100%. It’s like being a gymnast you have to keep training. Also never give up. I was told once by a director you will go on 10 auditions and book one. Never take the rejection personally. I remember once I went to an audition for a company that produces camping equipment. The casting director loved my audition and told my agent that they would have chosen me for the role. But the client wanted someone a little taller. It’s the reason that sometimes we do not think about and is out of our control. But just remember there is always another casting.
Also, remember there is no big part. Sometimes I feel actors feel having many lines is what makes them a great actor. But you can have one line or no lines and steal the show.
8. What was the turning point in your profession and what motivates you to keep going?
I love getting the feedback from a performance. That people loved what I did. That just motivates me to get better and better. The turning point in my life was just to believe in me. I am good enough. Just to be in the moment and connect with your scene partner. And to have fun and remember auditions are a chance to you to show your talent. It’s your business card.