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The Acting Podcast

Ep. 34: April Webster: Galactic Casting Director

Show Notes: Season 1!

Show Notes: Season 2!

Show Notes: Season 3!

Often we think of successful Industry folks as out of reach and fancy and intimidating- especially after decades of huge success. And here at BGB and on the Acting Podcast we try to dispel that belief and remind ourselves that we are ALL human in this, we all face challenges, we are all figuring it out day to day.

Steve and I had great privilege to zoom this week with brilliant, acclaimed casting director, April Webster, and talked with her about the amazing work she has done over decades, how she approaches and has always approached the work- including the iconic franchises of Star Wars and Star Trek, how that’s all changed in the world of self-tapes and zoom auditions, what advice she has for actors, and what means the most to her about the work we do TOGETHER. We love the heart, humanity, intuition, deep love of the work, and a powerful mind-heart-body-spirit connection that April brings to her casting, and we’re thrilled to bring this inspiring conversation to you.  

Listen in, and stick with it; there is so much wisdom here from one of the greatest casting directors ever.

“I just grew up at a time where I couldn’t name one female director…or not a single woman would get on stage to accept a producer award at the Oscars…representation matters because if you don’t see it, you don’t know that you can do it. Being a woman on the other side of the camera was not something that I ever saw.”
-Ellyn Jameson

“Then the desperation went away and I had an ease in audition rooms that I’d never had before because I had a life outside of wanting someone to pick me.”
-Dominic Burgess

“It happened entirely because I was following the path that was put in front of me without a tremendous amount of judgment around it. And I’m a judgy motherfucker…if I can do this, anyone can.”
-Johnathan McClain

“Walk into every room, and everything you ever write, and everything you create, and just make it you, just authentically you. And most of the time, the people who’ll respond to it will love it because you’re being yourself and there’s only one of you in the world. And it feels amazing when you put yourself forward and people reward you for it.”
-Caroline Lindy

Guests & Resources:

April Webster is one of the most prominent and successful film and television casting directors in the world, and has been for decades. As an independent casting director she loves working on an eclectic mix of film, television, and theater projects that challenge and inspire her. She comes from theater and returns to it with such passion and to fill her tank. April has also directed extensively in the theater; she is inherently a director, which makes her an even better casting director.

In the film world April has worked on incredibly high end and iconic projects with amazing filmmakers, including collaborations with J.J. Abrams, Carlton Cuse, Roland Emmerich, Brad Bird, and most recently Jon M. Chu. And to mention a few films -- there’s Star Wars, Star Trek ‘Beyond’, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Mission Impossible III, Tomorrowland, The Patriot … the list goes on. And she has cast so many TV pilots and series we love- including Lost, Bates Motel, Criminal Minds, The Strain, the new series, Clarice, and shows for Netflix and Amazon, including Stephen King’s Lisey’s Story, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan, Altered Carbon and Umbrella Academy. And… Stephen King’s 11/22/63 for HULU and BAD ROBOT.

April has received two MEDIA ACCESS AWARDS, Casting Society ARTIOS awards for the pilot casting of C.S.I., LOST, and the films STAR TREK and STAR WARS: The Rise of Skywalker. And she has won an Emmy for LOST.  April is also the proud recipient of the CSA HOYT BOWERS award for Excellence in Casting. She serves on the Equity in Entertainment Committee of the Casting Society of America.

And most of all, April Webster loves, gets, and advocates for actors. Collaborating with actors, as a fellow artist, is her superpower and her greatest joy.

April has an IMDb page that you can check out here!

Credits:

Producer:
Steven Kovacs
Tech + Design:
Steven Kovacs
Music:
Sam Dewees + Andy Abelow
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