First to begin to understand what makes an actor marketable, we must understand what “marketable” in the acting world means. In Hollywood, it means whether the actor can be “packaged up” and sold to the film executives and later on, to the public. It’s the way an actor is presented to make them desirable which helps on securing future roles and the promotion of the film when it is later released. So what makes an actor marketable? Well, it all comes down to a few key pieces that will make the actor whole.
Talent: It is the most obvious part and the most important! It’s the ability to present themselves as an entirely different person on camera and for the audience to believe it. The aim of a film is to make the audience forget where they are and to be fully immersed in it. It can be in the form of escapism from everyday realities or a piece of work that makes them explore a different way or how they think and their approach to life. Of course there are many elements that go with film making (i.e. direction, script, cinematography, costume/set design, editing etc.) to make a film have that effect on the audience, but acting is a very important part too, as they are the ones who guide the viewers through the journey on screen. No theatre goer wants to sit there and see the actor rather than the character as it detracts from the film. Actors need to have the ability to create and bring to life a fully rounded character. However, there are a few actors out there that may not have enough talent to do that, yet are still marketable. Those actors tend to be very good at the next few parts.
Dedication: Actors need to have motivation. They tend to be constantly honing their craft and spend time to properly research their roles. This helps with the quality of the film and it helps the audience to understand the film when promotion comes round. When working on set, the hours can be long and can be in some bad weather or difficult locations. Having the dedication to not moan and to be part of the team, helps tremendously with crew moral, making the work a bit more pleasant and tolerable. Dedication is what lets other people know (both in the industry and the public) that they are serious about their craft. It brings a positive reputation which can take them far in the industry.
Presentability: There are many good looking actors in Hollywoodbut that is not 100% necessary as there are many types of characters to be played. What counts is how they present themselves to the public. Whenever and actor goes out into the street, they are working and must have a normal to good appearance and act professionally. Walking around looking dirty and being rude doesn’t help the image that the studios are trying to sell at the time. Plus they are interacting with the public which is essentially the actors “customers”. Any shoddy and ill presented product in a store, with rude sales people isn’t going to sell and will ultimately get a bad reputation. Unfortunately for the actor they are the product and the sales person, so they have to be presentable in both parts of their life. It is unfair but that is how Hollywood works. This also applies to when they are working on set or doing the promotion rounds. Acting like diva is going to get you a bad reputation in the industry, the one place you do not want to annoy! Being able to be professional and well-spoken goes a long way.
And finally the X Factor: This is something that sets apart the actor from the others. Often it is hard to describe but it’s usually a personality trait (i.e. humorous, intelligence, sensitive, hardworking etc.) or a presence. This unique quality can help their performance and connecting to the audience. Whatever this stand out trait is, it is usually what makes the actor shine.
So if an actor possess these four elements, they are most likely to be very marketable. This will be able to help them sustain long and successful careers with admiration from the industry and the public!