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A Star is Found
Our Adventures Casting Some of Hollywood’s Biggest Movies

by Janet Hirshenson and Jane Jenkins with Rachel Kranz

      A Star is Found takes the reader on a whirlwind tour through the movie auditioning process with two of Hollywood’s top casting agents who are partners in The Casting Company. They share the secrets behind casting some of the most popular movies directed by A-List directors and starring some of today’s top actors. Want to know how Tom Cruise, Julia Roberts, and John Cusack got their starts in show business? How the Harry Potter kids were selected? It’s all here, along with dozens of other behind-the-scenes stories of how actors began their impressive careers.

The book often addresses the wannabe actor directly, offering specific advice of what to do and what not to do when submitting head shots or responding to a request for an audition. Although the book sometimes defines basic terminology for those not working in the film industry, its back-room detail and attention to little-known actors (as well as superstars) seem directed more towards industry professionals than the casual movie fan.

Jumping back and forth through time and offering plenty of diversions along the way, the book leads the reader through the casting process, which begins with a call from the director’s production company and eventually concludes with a combination of all the elements (casting, directing, acting, costuming, special effects, sound and production design, etc.). The book’s format divides information into what Janet says and what Jane says, which leads to occasional confusion and repetition in an otherwise interesting and informative presentation. People working in the industry (or longing to work in the industry) will benefit from reading A Star is Found.

The Book

Harcourt, Inc.
November 2006
Nonfiction Film
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The Reviewer

Leslie Halpern
Reviewed 2006
NOTE: Reviewer Leslie Halpern is the author of Reel Romance. The Lovers' Guide to the 100 Best Date Movies and Dreams on Film. Coming Soon: A Writer's Guide to Fearless Interviews.
© 2006