As actors, we are vain creatures. We want to be seen. We want to work. We want to learn.
We want reel footage. Side note: Not everything you do needs to be on your reel. But that's for another post. (But...put only the really, really, really good stuff. Better to have 30 seconds of really, really, really good stuff then 2 minutes of "meh". And there's a lot of "meh" out there which people think is the really, really, really good stuff...)
But I digress.
Not every project which comes your way is the right project for you.
I have learned this the hard way. And it took a few times to actually learn it.
When considering a project I pose a few questions to myself...
1. Am I passionate about the project?
2. Do I trust the people involved are as equally passionate and will place egos aside?
3. Do I connect to the story/character?
4. Is this something of which I can be proud in five years time?
5. Is the subject matter something I want to be associated with?
And then I do my vetting. I research the production team, review past work, chat with those with whom they have worked before. Do my due diligence.
Honestly, a LOT of actors will take whatever is offered to them because, as mentioned before, they want to work. Regardless of the consequences.
Be selective. Be honest to yourself. If you are focusing on a certain type of film, or find the majority of your work is of a certain genre, then you will be known as that genre actor. Jamie Lee Curtis has made some great films, but will always be known as the Halloween Girl. When you think of Tony Perkins, you think of Psycho.
You can pass on projects. There will be others.
Careers are made just as much by the 'No's' than the 'Yesses'...