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Job Roles

Explore Job Roles: Actors

Learn about the average salary, relevant studies, related questions and common path after college to becoming an Actor.

What is an Actor?

Actors are people who portray characters in different mediums like TV, film, or theater. They can portray fictional or historical characters and can work in many different places in many different roles.

Where does an Actor work?

  • Film production companies
  • Theaters
  • TV studios
  • Radio stations

How much does an Actor make?

Based on real new grad salaries reported through Handshake, the median annual salary for an Actor is $54,208.

What majors are typically interested in becoming Actors?

A few example majors with a disclaimer about how one’s major doesn’t necessarily determine their career, but these are some common majors who pursue acting jobs.

  • Theater majors
  • Drama majors
  • Dance majors

Actor skills and competencies:

On top of a relevant degree and formal training, here are some professional skills that can help aspiring Actors succeed in their work:

  • Comfortability in front of the camera
  • Ability to work with different types of people

What are some common questions about Actors?

Q: What is a day in the life of an actor like?

A: Depending on the type of acting you do, you will prepare each day differently. For example, voice actors don’t need makeup or costumes, but actors going to shoot in front of the camera do. Usually you’ll arrive to set for your call, which can be anywhere from late at night or early in the morning. Depending on the day, you could be blocking your scenes, rehearsing lines, or actually performing.

Q: What advice would you give someone that is trying to break into acting?

A: As a new actor, it's important that you build a reel/portfolio. If you want to one day have an agent that represents you, it’s key to have examples of your work for them to pitch and distribute. Try getting involved in some student films around your school to start building a portfolio and gain experience at the same time.

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