What is a talent agency? A talent agency is a company that finds jobs for its clients. Talent agencies place principal talent in feature films, movies, TV, commercials, voice-overs, internet, video games, modeling, etc. A talent agency hires talent agents who represent their talent/performers on a talent roster (it’s basically a list of their clients). As I’ve heard it explained best, a talent agency is like a store. And that store’s products are it’s talent. Just think of aisles and aisles of interesting looking people instead of shampoos and conditioners. In our case, we’re interested in performers, but not singers, musicians or models. We’re going to zero in on the film industry and actors in particular.
Now, back to the store. Casting directors (CD’s) are the buyers. They are hired by production companies (the producers) to find talent. The casting directors go to the store shelves of the talent agency looking for talent. They either ask for the actors they know, go online and search for talent matching the description of the characters they’ve been hired to find or talent agents search for breakdowns online and submit their actors to the casting directors. In any case, it’s imperative for an actor to have a talent agent and thus belong to a talent agency.