Billing for In-Class Scene?

Here’s a question about billing. You said to list experiences you may have had while in school. How would I list credit for being in a student-directed scene taken from a mainstream feature film? I was in a joint actors-directors class at USC where student directors gain experience working with actors and student actors gain experience working on camera. Since the scenes we did were from hit films with very recognizable titles, should we list them under Student Films or combine them with other Film and TV credits?

Great question! When you’re first building your resumé and including credits for things that will soon drop off your resumé (as you add more traditional credits), you will include things like in-class taped scenes, as this shows you do have experience working with directors on-camera.

But how should you list that in-class work? That’s going to depend on what other credits you have on your resumé. If you been in a few student films already, you can simply group this in-class scene with those films, using the title of the scene (rather than the title of the film from which the scene came) and parenthetically noting that it was an in-class scene.

For example, if you did the scene from Jerry Maguire that includes the line, “You had me at hello,” you could title the scene exactly that. So, in your three columns, you would have this:

You Had Me at Hello (in-class scene) || Lead || USC directing lab/dir. Joe Smith

Obviously, people will know that a scene with that title most likely came from the hit film, and they’ll also understand what you mean by “in-class scene.” Only if you have demo reel-worthy tape from the project should you call it a true student film. Even then, if you are doing a scene from an existing blockbuster, you are best served by correctly identifying it that way.

Bottom line with all of the specific questions I keep getting about billing and listing credits on an acting resumé: be forthright in your representation of the work you did. Know that your resumé is expected to change as you build credits and that many of the earliest credits you use should bump off the resumé altogether, as you amass more mainstream credits. As long as you are honest about what you’re including on your resumé and continually updating to reflect your most-recent work, you should be in great shape!

Bonnie Gillespie is living her dreams by helping others figure out how to live theirs. Wanna work with Bon? Start here. Thanks!

Originally published by Actors Access at Please support the many wonderful resources provided by the Breakdown Services family. This posting is the author’s personal archive.

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