Mad Dog Casting

With the fast paced nature of the film, television and commercials industries, and the demands on Extras Casting Agencies growing, here at Mad Dog 2020, we are increasingly reacting to tight briefs with quick turnarounds.

From time to time, our team of Casting Executives will receive a phone call from someone who has been let down for a very specific requirement. We are a go-to agency when this happens, as we are renowned for finding the right person, or people, for a brief.

We have even had to replace and find artists for featured roles; recently for a US TV series where we had to find three artists with the right look that can speak in an American accent, for a shoot the very next day. We are able to do this, as we draw on our extensive books. We have a diverse library of fantastic artists, and a large community of people who can help us track down the right person(s) to fit the brief.

Often the phone will ring at 5.45pm as someone is looking for extras, sometimes as specific as a sumo wrestler required to be in Swindon the very next day or even on the morning of a shoot, as happened recently. Two models were recently needed that would be happy to be made up with horror makeup and contact lenses in front of the press for a Halloween press event. This was in support of the Giff Gaff ‘End the Nightmare’ ad campaign.

giffgaff Halloween 2016 Ad Campaign

We work directly with Second Assistant Directors, Crowd Seconds or Production Managers depending on whether it is a feature film, TV series or commercial, but it is the Director’s job to oversee the visual and creative direction for the film, and the Mad Dog 2020 project manager is an extension of the production team, helping to deliver the Director’s vision.

Most of our team come from a TV, film production or drama background. This helps when understanding the creative process and dealing with some of the last-minute requests we receive.

Often on a feature film or TV series, the idea is evolving and it can be the night before the shoot, when planning the next day’s production, when the realisation is that a much bigger crowd of extras are needed to create the desired look, or that the look needed is slightly different from what was originally envisaged.

Recently we were sourcing ‘student’ looks for a series, and as this developed, the demographic required became slightly older. This needed re-casting, as well as getting the artists to send in photographs of themselves with business suits on so that the Director could see what the artists looked like.

Commercials are often one-day shoots, and on average, cost some £200k to make. The Director will want to make sure that they have more options than are needed, rather than too few. This goes for any shoot to some extent, which is why many extras never see themselves on camera.

The Director will often want to get a lot more footage than the storyboard details to assist with the editing process. They may want to try additional things on the day which depart from the story, or add to it. Sometimes a film emerges which can be a cost effective cut-down, or it might be used for another media which grows the campaign and makes it more versatile.

With artists from all walks of life and communities, we are committed to finding the perfect face(s) for you. Mad Dog 2020 offer a vast and diverse library of artists for film, television and commercials.

To find out more about casting extras for film, television and commercials, call Mad Dog 2020 on 0207 269 7910 or email us via the Contact Us page on our website.

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