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  • Writer's pictureArmen Dilanchian

The Struggles of New Actors in Building a Body of Work Today!

Updated: Oct 5, 2023

The entertainment industry has always been a challenging field to break into, but in recent years, it seems that new actors are facing even greater hurdles when it comes to building a substantial body of work. While actors who rose to fame in the '90s and are now in their late 40s and 60s, such as Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, and Denzel Washington, enjoyed a different era of Hollywood, the dynamics of the industry have significantly shifted. In this blog, we'll explore why new actors have a tougher time establishing themselves compared to their predecessors from the '90s.

Oversaturation of the Market

One of the primary challenges faced by new actors is the oversaturation of the market. In the '90s, there were fewer avenues for actors to showcase their talent. Television, film, and theater were the main mediums, and only a handful of actors could break through. Today, with the rise of streaming platforms, YouTube, social media, and web series, there's an abundance of content being produced. While this provides more opportunities, it also means that new actors must work harder to stand out in the crowd.

Shorter Attention Spans

In the '90s, audiences had longer attention spans and were more patient when it came to discovering new talent. Today, thanks to the internet and social media, attention spans have drastically shortened. New actors are often judged within seconds of their appearance, whether it's in an audition tape, a self-taped audition, or a viral video. This makes it challenging for them to make a lasting impression and secure roles that build their careers.

Pressure for Instant Success

In the '90s, actors like Morgan Freeman and Meryl Streep built their careers steadily over time, accumulating a diverse body of work. New actors, however, face immense pressure for instant success. Casting directors and producers are often looking for actors who can bring in a built-in audience or have already gone viral. This pressure for instant success can lead to a focus on quantity over quality, hindering the development of a strong body of work.

Lack of Originality in Scripts

Many argue that the '90s was a golden era of original storytelling in Hollywood. New actors today often find themselves in an industry that relies heavily on sequels, reboots, and adaptations. This limits the opportunities for fresh talent to showcase their skills in original and innovative projects. While there are exceptions, breaking through in an era of franchise-dominated cinema can be challenging.

Ageism in Hollywood

Ageism has always been an issue in Hollywood, but it's particularly challenging for new actors today. With the industry's obsession with youth, it's more difficult for them to compete against established actors who are in their 40s and 60s and still maintain their star power. This means fewer opportunities for new actors to build a diverse body of work and establish themselves as seasoned performers.

While building a body of work has never been an easy task in the entertainment industry, new actors today face unique challenges that their predecessors from the '90s did not. The oversaturation of the market, shorter attention spans, pressure for instant success, lack of original scripts, and ageism in Hollywood all contribute to the difficulties new actors encounter. Nevertheless, talent, determination, and adaptability remain key factors in overcoming these challenges and building a lasting legacy in the ever-evolving world of entertainment.

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