From the book:
Let me start this book by answering a question that I get asked a lot by other casting directors and actors: “Why do you care?” or “Why make such a big deal?” Yes, I could stay silent or uninvolved. Even taking the position that I could never personally engage in the racket that I am about to talk about here, why should I care what other people decide to do, even if it is illegal, unethical, or unprofessional?
The answer is because I believe that as a casting director, and has someone who has been a member of the Casting Society of America for over 25 years, the payola scheme in Hollywood directly affects me - and not in a positive way.
I love my profession, I love the art that so many of my colleagues create with their talent, I love the actors without whom I would not have a career or a livelihood, and I personally believe that casting directors and actors deserve much more credit than they receive from their peers.
I think that along with actors, casting directors are being hoodwinked. They are being led down a path of ethical and professional doom by an insidious and unscrupulous swindle which has learned how to manipulate both the casting and acting communities for its own gain. In all of this, everyone suffers. Actors, who work so hard to get on the radar of those who can hire them are now paying a hefty sum to pass through the pay-for-access toll booth. Misguided casting directors and their staffs are being exploited in an ugly and greedy undertaking that is pushing our profession further down the road of ethical failure and even further away from recognition by the entertainment industry for our legendary accomplishments as casting directors. When casting remains the only main title profession not recognized by the Hollywood Foreign Press for a Golden Globe and the Academy for an Oscar®, do we need to create more obstacles?
I am writing the book as a wake-up call to the industry as a whole. I want people to see how damaged the current state of our profession has become and how those who can step up to make a change have ignored the problem for far too long, with the sincere hope that we can make the changes that will put us all back on the right track.
UPDATE, January 2018: When the final draft of An Actor Grovels was sent to publishers in January of 2016, we didn't anticipate the game changing article from Gary Baum and The Hollywood Reporter in March of that year, an article which we can now safely say blew the lid off the scheme and exposed it to the studios, the unions, production companies and law enforcement. A lot has transpired in the past 2 years and because of the current charges, ongoing prosecuction and convictions of 18 casting directors in Los Angeles, and all of the attendant media this issue has received, the release date of the book has been postponed pending the results of all those being prosecuted.
AN ACTOR GROVELS
From veteran casting director and Hollywood insider, Billy DaMota