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When I saw that David Dean Bottrell had written a book I immediately ordered it, delighted for the opportunity to hear the voice of my beloved acting coach ANYTIME I wish. In all my years of study and training, I'd never seen a more compassionate, NOT CYNICAL, never condescending, gifted coach anywhere. Sometimes I'd see a scene and think, "what is David going to say?" Even when an actor fell flat on their faces, David would find the beauty in their effort, and I would watch that actor transform, over the series of classes, and become AMAZING! His gift for teaching is pure magic. Even I was able to develop some real chops working in his classes. Though I'd acted in college, and my mother thought I had real talent, I've always been a musician and songwriter. I studied with David to develop my stage presence. Training with him I fell in love with acting all over again. This book is as easy to read as listening to David speak. It is an invaluable resource for actors of all stages in their careers, with funny and real insights on every aspect of show business life. This book will be your friend and companion, like the man himself. Don't leave Kansas without it!
What can I say that others who have critiqued this book haven't already said? It is definitely for actors at ALL levels. It's not only chock-full of valuable information and guidance, but the memoir aspect of it is inspirational. David's honesty in how challenging it can be to become a working actor is spot on. There are no easy shortcuts. There is hard work and a commitment to never give up! I know David personally because, like others have mentioned, he was my former acting coach. I had studied in New York City in the late 90's with some very significant teachers, but it wasn't until I was under David's wing that my work progressed to the next level. He truly is one of the kindest people you will ever meet in Hollywood, and he truly cares about his students as well as other actors. His comedic wit both onscreen and off make him a joy to be around and no matter how much he accomplishes, he always remains humble. I enjoyed every single chapter of this book and soaked up its contents like a sponge. I also purchased 2 additional copies and gave them to two of my other acting friends who could benefit from its content. Who better to learn from than someone who has not only been a working actors for years, but is STILL a working actor and then some??? If you want to learn from the best of the best, pick up a copy or two or three today!!!
I am not an actor, but I have always been interested in the process. When David Dean Bottrell announced that he was writing a book, I was really enthused about it because he is truly one of those actors who stands out in every performance he does. How does one sustain such a long career as an actual "working" actor in Hollywood? We all know the stories. It's rare that someone becomes a superstar; the nuts-and-bolts actors are the ones who drive the industry, in my opinion. This book is something I would consider to be required reading for ANYONE interested in an acting career. It's a how-to and a cautionary tale all in one, written engaging and in a fantastic manner by a true artist in the field. Whether you're interested in stage, screen, or summer playhouses; if you're a teenager who's the high school superstar in every play your drama department puts on, and you've begun to consider that acting may just be for you: read this book. Not everyone can make acting their bread and butter, but DDB has, and he illustrates it well.
Oh my gosh is this a breath of fresh air! We need a new book on the ins and outs of the acting profession as it currently stands. And from both coasts! DDB has been a working, successful actor and teacher in Los Angeles and New York City, in film TV and the stage, as well as traveled to other locals to work in the entertainment business. I applaud his honestly, his insights and his humor! You'll love this book, whether you want to be an actor or not! However if you want to be in that world, or ARE an actor, this is a MUST READ! It's organized in such a way it's a perfect textbook for getting started, staying vital, and pursuing a profession as an actor. Along the way you'll laugh along with Botrell though his personal experiences and cringe worthy stories. My friend is enjoying Working Actor as a voyeur into the world of TV and film. I am so happy this book is out there and I will send it to all my friends who ask about this business. Well DONE!
David Dean Bottrell takes the gleam off the acting profession, and replaces it with a unforgiving mirror image of yourself. You'll have to take a cold, hard look at yourself and decide if you have what it takes. Or, a better question, if you even want to have what it takes, to be a professional actor. Sure you have talent, but talented people don't always get the gigs. Sure you have ambition, and that might keep you in the game longer than you should stay. Just read the Chapter "Death by Resume: Jealousy and Competitiveness" to have a taste. Bottrell is smart, funny, honest, insightful, kind, and did I say funny? -- because I meant to. This book will go on Theater Departments' reading lists for a long time. You can dream about being a movie star, but Hollywood ain't what you see on the Oscars (Harvey Weinstein? Kevin Spacey? Bryan Singer? And and and?) and the more you know, the more prepared you can be. Aspiring Actors: READ. THIS. BOOK. (If Bottrell himself reads it for Audible, then listen to that, as well. I'd honestly pay cover to hear that.) ps. He doesn't kill your dreams. He tells you what happens when they come true.
Working Actor is a very helpful and enjoyable book for people pursuing or considering a career in the "business of show." Written by veteran TV & theater "character actor" David Dean Bottrell, the book benefits from Bottrell's unique and diverse talents not only as an actor, but as a writer and teacher/instructor as well. Clear, concise, and easy to read, the book walks you through many key stages of life as a working actor, including preparing your resume and headshots, finding an agent, landing auditions and roles, joining a union, connecting with producers and directors, and navigating and surviving a highly risky and competitive business with zero job stability and security. Funny, honest, and filled with juicy anecdotes, this book was a true pleasure to read. Highly recommended!
David Dean Bottrell has written an extraordinary book about making it as a working actor. Writers and any creative person will find much that rings true in his account of working for 35 years as an actor/writer/director/producer both in the theater and on camera. He had me rolling on floor with the parrot story and pondering our unrecognized interconnectedness in his story from the grocery aisle. Not since William Goldman has an author taken us behind the scenes of what life is really like in Hollywood and New York. I give his book five stars!
I'm not an actor and I'm not in the Industry, but I live in Hollywood which apparently to the unfamiliar, qualifies as a talent agent or casting director. The next time this happens, I will go directly to Amazon and send them this book. "Working Actor" is fabulous. It's a textbook for the do's and don'ts; highs and lows; and ins and outs on the quest for stardom.
I purchased this book because I know David. He goes to my church and his scripture readings are as engaging and compelling as the characters he plays on television. His writing is equally impressive. What I wasn't expecting was how relatable his advice is to those of us with "regular" careers. When writing about the importance of a network, David writes, "So I decided that instead of trying to be a networker, I'd become a supporter. And if I was going to approach somebody, I wasn't going to ask; I was going to offer."
Working Actor is a great read. It provides insight to what goes on behind the scenes both from David and from actors, agents, directors, producers and showrunners that contributed to this book. I give it five shining stars!
I sat down to read this book in a quiet moment and found myself putting it down somewhere between midnight and sunrise. Not that it took me all those hours to read, but because I had gone back to read dog eared pages that resonated with me.I so enjoyed the twists and turns, ups and downs shared with humor and a touch of tears. This is not only a book about acting and breaking into the business. It is a fabulously written outline for those of us who are lucky enough to sit on the sidelines and be entertained by those who fight the fine fight and who endure the hardships they face to share themselves so openly in their craft. This is a book about life lessons applicable to all.
It gave me a sneak peak behind the curtain and left me in awe of a world I have thought little of. Certainly not past my television screen or a crowded theater. This book is so much more then learning how to break in to New York theater or Hollywood, it is a journey of learning about oneself. Accepting ones truth regarding their strengths and their flaws, and knowing that both are beautiful. They make us innately who we are, and that everyone we meet along the way in our journey of life, leaves a mark, whether they or we know it at that moment
Success is not measured by awards, whether you be an actor or a plumber. Our interpretation of success is measured in the ability to find a way to do what we love and pay the bills. Life is about getting past ourselves and out of our heads. Learning that other peoples opinions do not change who we are or what we are unless we allow it to. Life for any of us doesn't just happen, it is created. My experience in life is what I are willing to do to create my own journey.
This book will stay on my shelf unlike others who live on on the dusty shelves of my local goodwill. Thank you Mr Bottrell for years of incredible entertainment as well as your candid insights in this book
I have been a fan of DDB since his Lincoln Meyer days on Boston Legal. I could have used this book when I made the decision at 47 to come to Hollywood and give it my best shot. David offers so many valuable lessons that can help from day one to series regular and beyond. A must read for new comers and seasoned vets who will nod their heads in agreement as David recalls important moments and lessons he has learned along the way. This is a smart purchase and a fun read.