Actors must take meetings to advance their careers. Seeking representation, management, auditions, or work in specific projects, they meet with agents, managers, producers, and casting directors. However these important meetings are often unsuccessful because the actors present themselves inadequately. Lacking self-awareness and authenticity, actors frequently conduct themselves as victims or manipulators, which leads to their being seen as undesirable working partners, regardless of their acting abilities and credits.
The Actor Takes A Meeting is the first book to address the actor’s self-presentation at an interview or meeting. It shows the actor how to be the host of a meeting and the initiator of an exciting experience that may lead to offers of representation, auditions, and project participation.
In The Actor Takes a Meeting, actors will learn startling, myth-busting truths: They'll learn that they will "blow it" if interviewers look at their résumés during meetings or if they answer questions with prepared riffs about themselves or if they are on their best behavior! Most importantly, they will learn how applying Stephen Book's practical teachings can bring about remarkable transformations of their meeting skills.
Stephen Book is an International author, teacher, director, creative consultant, and heads a professional acting workshop in Hollywood since 1985. His students and clients have won Oscars, Emmys, Tonys, Obies, and Grammys. He is a former long-time faculty member of The Juilliard School and the University of Southern California. He co-designed with Viola Spolin, the Spolin Theater Game Center, and served as its executive director and principal teacher. He has also taught at Stanford, Brown, UCLA, the Bread Loaf School of English at Middlebury College, Globe Shakespeare Center in London, GITIS (the state theater school of Russia) in Moscow, and the Esalen Institute.A theater director, his productions have been seen Off and Off Off Broadway and in Regional and university theaters, including: Circle in the Square, Los Angeles Actors Theater, Washington Theater Club, Stanford Repertory Theater, Equity Library Theater, New Dramatists, Princeton, Brown, Sarah Lawrence College, U.S.C., and the Theater of Dionysus in Athens. He was Creative Consultant: to the director, Vincent Ward, on the Oscar winning film, What Dreams May Come, starring Robin Williams; to Melissa Manchester on her album, Don’t Cry Out Loud, including her Grammy nominated Best Pop Female Vocal Performance for her top 10 hit title song. He is the author of BOOK ON ACTING Improvisation Technique for the Professional Actor in Film, Theater & Television. In 2006, Silman-James Press also published his THE ACTOR TAKES A MEETING How to Interview Successfully with Agents, Managers, Producers, and Casting Directors. In 2007, BOOK ON ACTING was translated and published in Poland as HANDBOOK FOR ACTORS.
“Book so beautifully articulates the psychology behind the interview process that I heartily recommend his book to every actor I know—and to anyone else who interviews often but wonders why his or her success rate is so darn low.”
“If I hadn’t learned how to interview from Stephen Book, my career would not have taken off so quickly. This book is indispensable for actors on the way up.”
—David Boreanaz (Angel, Bones)
"As someone who has worked on both sides of the business, I can tell you firsthand that Stephen Book gets it exactly right. If you want to walk into a meeting or an audition with the kinds of tools and knowledge that give you the confidence to be your absolute best, The Actor Takes a Meeting is a book you should study and enjoy."
—Grant Heslov, Academy Award-winning Producer of Argo
"If you are not happy with where your career is at, it might not be your talent; it might be your meeting skills. The Actor Takes a Meeting is the first complete and comprehensive guide to insure a successful meeting. Bravo!"
—Mary Goldberg, Manager, former Casting Director for New York Shakespeare Festival/The Public Theater
"Until Stephen taught me how to take a meeting, I was always shooting myself in the foot. His technique has cleaned up all that self-destructive behavior and smoothed the way for making the transition from stand-up to acting and starring in a series. Now, I can be in a room with the most powerful people in show business and shine."
—Christopher Titus (Titus)
"The Actor Takes a Meeting is an innovative and exceptional book about losing one’s fear and learning how to take charge of any meeting. It gave me tremendous insight into the actor’s process."
—Barry Josephson, former President of Columbia Pictures, Producer (Men in Black)
"I applaud another valuable Book book. Stephen gives great advice to actors about not falling into the victim trap, owning the space, and finding the right attitude for success."
—Rick Pagano, Casting Director (X-Men: The Last Stand, "24”)
"If you’re not getting the representation or acting jobs you deserve, this is the book for you. Stephen Book illustrates exactly what you’ve been doing wrong and how to correct it. As a former agent, manager, and producer I’ve taken countless meetings with actors who desperately needed this advice. He even paints a clear picture of how I’ve been reacting to what you’ve been doing wrong. I had no idea it was that transparent."
—Bruce Smith, President, OmniPop Talent Group
"This is a wonderful book—filled with valuable information that every actor needs in order to participate within the industry without losing ones sense of self."
—Peter Levine, Creative Artists Agency
"The Actor Takes a Meeting is a guide to changing the actor’s fear into authenticity and presence. This book is a gift to the actor."
—April Webster, Casting Director (Lost, Mission: Impossible III)
"Stephen Book’s interview technique is one of the most valuable tools for the actor. It is a "how-to” for making an authentic connection. I vividly remember one of the best general meetings I had: It was easy, fun, and the time just flew by. As we were saying goodbye and I finally glanced at her résumé, I saw that she had indeed studied with Stephen Book. I was not surprised."
—Liz Dean, Casting Director (Nip/Tuck, Everwood)
"This smart, practical guide to getting what you want gives the actor invaluable tools for climbing the show-biz ladder."
—Gene Parseghian, Parseghian Planco Management
"Powerful! Most actors don’t even know that they blow it in meetings. Read this book and see what you are doing wrong and how to fix it."
—Tom Parziale, President, Visionary Entertainment
"Through reading Book’s book and doing the exercises you develop the confidence to own the meeting."
—Bernard Carneol, COO, Progressive Artists Agency
"Finally, a guide for any actor who is having difficulty with the all-important meetings that are essential for a successful career. Whether it be feelings of insecurity, victimization, or second-guessing oneself, guidance and exercises can be found in this book to gain confidence and ease the stress in meeting with agents, producers, and casting directors."
—Terry Berland, Commercials Casting Director
"This is a revolutionary book. To teach actors how to get what they want through honesty, presence, and self-empowerment is not only bold and daring, but also healthy for the soul."
—Todd Black, Academy Award-nominated Producer of Fences