For years I was really at a loss about the whole actor's electronic press kit (EPK) advice that I constantly saw all over the web. These posts from experts have been around since 2011, maybe earlier, and here they are as a reference:
- S.O.S. Studio (2015) - How to Build an Electronic Press Kit - EPK - that Works
- Backstage (2013) - 8 Items You Need In Your Press Kit
- Brains Minerva (2011) - An Expert's Tips on Assembling Your Press Kit (Yes, You Need One!)
I spent a couple of hours reading through all of these and many others, and researching the web to find more information and examples of actual actor press kits, and for the life of me, I couldn't find a single actor out there using such a thing. I've done loads of research over time. Loads. In fact to this day, every time I come across an actor's resume I download it to take a look at it, and since 2013 I've collected over 11,000 actor resume files. Not a single EPK.
If I was to state my own opinion from things I've seen, I'd tell you that building a professional actor website that lists all your credits, videos, photos, press mentions and awards is in fact a press kit on it's own. Reading all this expert advice, I thought I was being one sided, if you feel like this might be the case, please let me know in the comments below and provide a link to your electronic press kit and let us know how you've built it and how you're using it. I would really love to know.
For all I know, maybe most actors do indeed secretly keep electronic press kits hidden somewhere and they don't list it anywhere I could find them, but the few actors I've asked, had no idea these things even existed and after I explained the concept to them, they agreed that it's something they wouldn't be able to do on their own. So the question stands - do all actors really need a PDF document with their achievements, or is it just a long lasting fad?
Finally, earlier this week I came across another Backstage article that confirmed my feelings about actor's electronic press kits: Backstage (2016) - Why Every Actor Needs a Press Kit. In short, Rick Krusky says that you do need a press kit, but don't need to spend hours on creating a fancy looking PDF file with all of your information, just so that you'll have to recreate it each time a new thing needs to be added to it. That's what your actor website is for.
Is it important that you have a place to list your achievements? Absolutely. Do you have to pay some designer a small fortune to build one for you in a read only PDF file format that needs to be downloaded on a compatible computer and then reviewed? Absolutely not.
Based on the blog post above we'd like to recommend these two additional reads. If you'd like to write a guest post on our site, feel free to reach out to us at any time.