13 January 2011 10:08 AM, PST | backstage.com | See recent Backstage news »

Has this ever happened to you at a commercial callback? It's a car insurance ad. The 30-something director, who's wearing all black because that shows everyone what a hip, edgy guy he is, asks the actors to pick an animal. Now, he says, play out the scene—involving a car crash and the subsequent conversation with the insurance adjuster—as that animal. No, this isn't on the storyboards. Sure, he just took the Acting Exercises class in film school. Do you do it, however unlikely the commercial will be shot that way? Or do you think, "I'm not playing along with this crap!" and refuse? Well, if that's what the young-hip-edgy director wants to see, do you think you stand any chance of getting cast if you don't play ball? Even if he's an idiot, you've got to make him believe you'll be nice to have on the set all day. »

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