C’est la vie, acceptance and resignation, it wasn’t meant to be, it wasn’t on the cards, the stars didn’t align, fate had other plans for me. All these cliches went through my head recently when I auditioned for, WON, and then lost 3 roles within hours of each other. I learned a song (in Hindi!), screamed at the top of my voice effing and jeffing at an imaginary abusive husband, tracked down and called a prospective client who LOVED me and wanted me for the job (and to be fair, I would have been perfect for it)…. and then… one-by-one… all these job prospects collapsed due to scheduling conflicts. They couldn’t move the days they were filming, and I couldn’t move my other filming/family commitments.

Location filming, Dudley, West Midlands, 2022

So, we take a deep breath, spend 1/2 a day thinking, “That’s a shame, I was looking forward to that AND I WOULD HAVE BEEN PERFECT for it”. And move on.

I suppose, that’s business. You pitch, spend a lot of time understanding the client’s needs and the details of their project, and then you don’t get the gig because you lose out to another bidder. Or you DO get it, and then their budget changes. Or just being cynical for a moment, does it really change? Or do they decide to take your ideas and run with them using a different contractor?

So I have allowed myself a little bit of wallowing. But now it’s onwards to the next things (which I also may not get). After all, I’m not Tom Cruise and clients don’t delay whole productions just to fit around me, more’s the pity. They SHOULD, I know, I hear you say?!

I’m sure there are algorithms for how much effort you should spend pitching, versus the reward. And some sectors will be worse than others. These particular jobs were #acting #presenting #videoProduction and #journalism respectively. And these are notoriously precarious. We all know the stories of famous Hollywood stars who didn’t get key roles – they auditioned and the producers picked soemone else. Idris Elba auditioned for Beauty and the Beast, Eddie Redmayne wanted to be in Star Wars, Matthew McConaughey went up for Leonardo DiCaprio’s role in Titanic. So I’m in good company. What I always do, if I can’t make the dates/logistics work for me, is I pass it on to someone I know. I reccommend another person who might be able to take the job. And they do the same for me. It’s no skin off my back, I already can’t do the job, so at least I can do a favour to a friend. And the client might have something for me in the future and will remember me as helpful and proactive.

Here endeth the lesson. Just a few tips, as always 🙂

Sarah Lockett

Sarah Lockett is a former BBC News / Sky News anchor who currently presents a variety of content for corporate clients and delivers media training.
She has presented on BBC News and Sky News, plus reported for Channel Four News, 5 News, Reuters and others.
She now hosts webinars and conferences, chairs corporate/academic panel discussions, hosts award ceremonies and events. She writes, presents and produces training videos, as well as voiceovers (both factual and drama/comedy). She has written two books and is also working as an actor.

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