Navigating the modeling and acting industry can be difficult at first. It's helpful to understand terminology and basic roles of the industry, and understanding the difference between an agent and manager is a key factor. To help, we have outlined the roles of both and agent and manager below.
The agents main goal and focus is to submit talent or models they represent for jobs or castings. Agents receive casting notifications and create relationships with industry professionals to place the talent they represent in jobs. Agents will take anywhere from 10 - 20% from each job they submit you for and you book.
You may have multiple agents dependent on your contract with them. If your contract is exclusive, you are not permitted representation from another agency. You may also have a regionally exclusive contract which may mean you are not permitted another agent in California but may also have a different agent in New York. As a general rule, if you have multiple agents, they should not be in the same region or market.
A manager takes on different responsibilities than an agent. While they are still permitted to submit you for jobs like an agent, they assist more with your development and shaping of your career. A manager works more on the promotional side of your career, and often will help you obtain an agent.
A manager will lead your development process. In other words, they get you ready to present to the industry. Development may include such tactics as getting you in physical shape, taking test shots, finding the right style and look for you, sending you to modeling/acting classes and introducing you to industry pros. A manager works closely with your agent and will help to oversee your scheduling.
A manager will also take a commission from the jobs you book while under contract with them. Just like your agent, their commission may be 10-20%. So if your agent takes 10% and your manager takes 15%, 25% of the money you make from each job will be taken out of our earnings. While you do not have to have a manager, it is common to have both an agent and manager.
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