Moving Forward After the SAG-AFTRA Strike:

The Actor's Must-Have Essentials

Post Sag-Aftra Strike Essentials

Picture this: The SAG-AFTRA strike concludes, and the industry reawakens with a wave of fresh opportunities. Those who’ve diligently prepared will leap ahead. They’ll have the audition slots booked and casting directors’ attention, all while you’re still playing catch-up. It’s a stark reality, but one you can change.

During the SAG-AFTRA strike, it’s wise for actors to plan for what they’ll need when the industry restarts. As the entertainment world awakens post-SAG strike, the race to be noticed will resume. Audition spots fill quickly, casting directors receive many emails, and the competition heats up.

Actors who’ve used this downtime wisely are enhancing their skills, perfecting their reels, and expanding their networks. They’ll be at the front, grabbing casting directors’ attention and landing desired roles. If you’re unprepared, you might end up playing catch-up, and feeling anxious about missed opportunities. The good news is you can change this. With guidance and dedication, you can lead the way when the industry reawakens. Your journey to success begins now, ensuring you’re at the forefront and not haunted by missed opportunities.

Not sure where to start to be ready for the return to work? In this guide, we’ll explore the essential steps to prepare.

I. Refresh Your Resume and Headshots

  • Reflect Your Current Readiness

    Your resume should be a living document that reflects your most recent accomplishments and experiences. Ensure that it accurately portrays your skills and achievements in the context of post-strike readiness.
    Make sure it is formatted to industry standards, to make a professional first impression.

  • Professional Headshots

    Invest in updated headshots that present you as you currently look, and are an accurate reflection of the type of roles that you will most likely be called in for. 

II. Prepare Your Demo Reel

  • Updating Your Demo Reel

    Your demo reel is your calling card to the industry. Start by reviewing and editing existing content, removing outdated scenes, and ensuring that the remaining clips are polished and showcase your best work.

  • Diversify Your Reel Content

    Add fresh, diverse scenes that highlight your range and versatility as an actor. Include recent projects and reel-worthy moments to capture the attention of casting directors.

prepare reel
  • Take Your Reel to the Next Level

    Is every clip edited to showcase your very best moments, without any fluff that is going to distract (or worse yet bore!) the viewer? The limited time available in your demo reel makes every second precious, are you maximizing each moment and showcasing your talent in the most concise and compelling package possible?

III. Reconnect and Network

  • Rebuilding Industry Connections

    Get in touch with your old friends, agents, and industry contacts. Reconnecting with them can bring opportunities and insider information in the time after the strike. When the industry becomes very busy again, people will be super busy trying to catch up. So, make the most of this calm period by building your relationships now, while casting directors and other professionals have more time and energy to spare.

  • Engaging Online

    Utilize social media platforms, industry-specific forums, and virtual networking events to stay engaged and informed. Building an online presence can also attract new opportunities.

acting classes

IV. Enhance Your Skills

  • Attend Acting Classes and Workshops

    Brushing up on your acting skills through classes or workshops can help you stay at the top of your game and adapt to changing industry demands.

  • Stay Updated

    Keep yourself informed about industry trends and new projects that will be casting to ensure you’re well-prepared for the ever-changing entertainment landscape

  • Practice, Practice, Practice

    Regular practice is essential for maintaining and honing your craft. Whether it’s monologues, improv, scene work,  or self-tapes, practice helps keep your acting skills sharp.

V. Stay Informed About Casting

  • Casting Calls and Platforms

    Regularly check casting websites, platforms, and social media groups for casting calls and audition opportunities. Staying informed is key to seizing the right roles.

VI. Prioritize Self-Care

  • Maintain Mental Well-Being

    The entertainment industry can be demanding, so taking care of your mental health is crucial. Consider mindfulness techniques, meditation, or therapy to stay resilient and focused.

  • Work-Life Balance

    Striking a healthy work-life balance is vital. Make sure to take time for yourself, your loved ones, and interests outside of acting. Don’t forget, in acting, you are portraying characters that are living their lives… if you don’t have a life of your own, how can you relate?!


As the industry rebuilds itself after the SAG-AFTRA strike, actors have an incredible opportunity to reestablish themselves and grow. By updating your demo reel, refreshing your resume and headshots, reconnecting with industry contacts, enhancing your skills, staying informed about casting, prioritizing self-care, and embracing new roles, you’ll be better equipped for the industry’s future. But here’s the reality: the countdown is on, and the stage is set for your comeback. The industry is reawakening, and the early birds will catch the worm. Don’t let the curtain rise without you. Get ahead now, before it’s too late, and seize the spotlight!

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