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Casting About (2005)

Not Rated | | Documentary | 11 May 2007 (USA)
2:40 | Trailer

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A lyrical documentary about the experience of casting actresses for a dramatic film.


Barry J. Hershey
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Wendy Elizabeth Abraham Wendy Elizabeth Abraham ... Herself
Mädchen Amick ... Herself
Jeannette Arndt Jeannette Arndt ... Herself
Solveig August Solveig August ... Herself
Nina Bagusat Nina Bagusat ... Herself
Kristina Bangert Kristina Bangert ... Herself
Silvana Bayer Silvana Bayer ... Herself
Emily Behr ... Herself
Amalie Bizer Amalie Bizer ... Herself
Elizabeth Bogush ... Herself
Tina Bordihn ... Herself
Hannah Bourne Hannah Bourne ... Herself
Jennifer Bradley ... Herself
Brigid Brannagh ... Herself
Julia Bremermann Julia Bremermann ... Herself


A lyrical documentary about the experience of casting actresses for a dramatic film.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis




Not Rated


Official Sites:

Walden Woods Film Company




English | German | French

Release Date:

11 May 2007 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

Berlin, Germany See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$893, 11 May 2007, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$6,922, 12 August 2007
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

audition nerve
11 May 2007 | by petershelleyauSee all my reviews

I had a negative reaction to this film and submit an opinion that may be unpopular, but I think still valid based on the fact that I have auditioned a lot of actors in my time.

I think Mr Hershey errs in ways that for me make the film a painful experience. He misrepresents what it is to film an actors audition in any standard industry fashion, by using inappropriate and counter-productive camera-work.

Most film and TV is shot in long and medium shots. Close-ups are used, but extreme close-ups rarely. Why then does Mr Hershey shoot these actors in extreme close-up? By doing so it robs the actor the opportunity to present themselves in a practical way, and refocuses the attention to the camera and the director. This technique also obliterates any pretense of an objective documentary. One would think that the very nature of observing an audition would allow for an easy objectivity. If ever a film-maker needed to use simple photography, it is here. You just want to be able to see the actor act. One is reminded of what Fred Astaire demanded - that his movement only be filmed in long shot. But Mr Hershey fails us.

This technique is particularly shoddy when the actors are asked to move. I've seen certain actors perform with their backs to the camera, effectively, but you have to be darned good to do it. And have a darned good director. But to show someone acting in extreme close-up in an audition becomes a laughable device. One can imagine the footage being reviewed and the question raised - Who's ear was that, again?! I also reacted against a montage of hand gestures, robbed of their context, unnecessary shots of cleavage and teeth and hair, and footage of actors preparing to act. The latter is particularly disturbing because it is something that directors are not privy to and should not be privy to, because it is ultimately irrelevant to the result. Yet expressions of anxiety, bravado, examination of the text, and the natural dislike of the monologue form to audition with are presented as if to score points off individuals.

I would like to think that Mr Hershey's motives were noble, and that he did not intend to deliberately mistreat the actors that had agreed to show their work to him. He could have been accused of being naive, if not for the fact that this is not his first credited directing job. But intended or not, he does these women a disservice, in my opinion. To be fair, I point out that the person I saw this film with did not have the same reaction as me, though that person is someone who has never held auditions.

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