After nearly 40 years, the Casting Society of America is opening its membership to commercial casting directors. Previously, membership was limited to casting professionals who worked in the fields of film, television, live theater, reality, and short form.
“Commercial casting directors apply their craft to effective storytelling, and we know their insights and experiences will add depth to membership of the Casting Society of America,” said Zora DeHorter and Caitlin Jones, vice presidents for communications and affairs Cooperation between the CSA Chair of the newly formed Trade Committee. “The artistic value of our commercial colleagues contributes to the broader mission of CSA to represent and promote the profession of casting in all its forms.”
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CSA said its new trade committee has compiled a database of established commercial casting directors across the country and initiated targeted contact with them to invite them to join the company. Part of their reach is to guide potential applicants through the application process. The committee will also plan commercial-specific initiatives later this year.
The requirements for joining commercial casting professionals are the same as theater members. 75 weeks worked as associate casting directors within two years and 100 weeks over five years as casting directors. Commercial work can count towards these weeks, so commercial casting directors can apply for CSA membership if they are just doing commercials, or an applicant can use commercial weeks along with their work in film, television, reality, and theater to get involved to qualify.
The CSA’s new trade committee consists of Alex Amsellem, Terry Berland, Danielle Demchick, Rikki Gimelstob, Katie Griffin, Sherrie Henderson, Caitlin Jones and Patti Kalles. Rebecca LaGore, Liz Lewis, Angela Mickey, Erica Palgon, Nina Pratt, Rachel Reiss, Michael Sanford and Alison Twardziak.
Founded in 1982, the CSA currently has almost 1,000 members. Its stated goal is to establish a recognized standard for professionalism in the casting field and to provide its members with a support organization to promote their goals and protect their common interests.