Demo Reels

With the Headshot and Resume, the Demo Reel is one of your most crucial marketing materials. You need to keep it updated and make sure that at all times. The purpose of the demo reel is not to show all of your roles but to show the very best of your acting. You have to nail it. If you already have the material, you need to edit it. If you don't have the material, you should record it in a professional studio. If you have no budget, then you have to get crafty.

Demo reel editing services

If you have the material from your past work, some companies in British Columbia will montage the demo reel together for you and ensure you have the best reel possible.

Astral Video


Are you representing a demo reel editing company from British Columbia? We'll be happy to include you in the list above. Please send us an e-mail with a brief bio and a short list (3 to 5) of imdb-registered actors you've worked with before to 

Demo reel recording services

In many cases you'll not have enough material or the material will be of not the best quality. Then there are several production companies in British Columbia that can create a Demo Reel for you. They'll provide you with a specific scene, arrange the recording session and ensure the whole material looks professional. If you have the budget, you should certainly consider it as an option.

Are you representing a production company from British Columbia that provides the demo reel recording service? We'll be happy to include you in the list above. Please send us an e-mail with a brief bio and a short list (3 to 5) of imdb-registered actors you've worked with before to 

Demo reel on a budget

If you're a teen actor or just starting, you might only have a limited number of scenes from your acting classes or on-screen appearances. If you're on a budget, you have to get creative and get the scenes recorded yourself. To achieve this, you need the following:

Sides for the scene

If you're on a budget, you can write a scene yourself. It'll be a great learning experience. Just make sure that all elements described in the Scene Breakdown are in place, and you should be good to go. A better option is to hire a professional screenwriter to write a scene for you. If you're not feeling comfortable writing a scene yourself, there are Sides on our website that you can use free of charge for this purpose. Make sure that the scene you select matches your character type and headshots.

Another actor

Face the truth monologues might be as engaging, and while they might still be trendy in theatre acting, they're passe in the camera performance. Acting in front of the camera is a group exercise. Face the truth, yes, to record a scene, you need another actor. Best if the actor is of a different casting type than yourself. Think if you're a brunette, record with a blonde. If you're a male, record with a female. If you're older, record with someone young. Make sure both characters are different. The last thing you want to do is to upstage each other. Find another actor through the acting school or your network of connections. You're guaranteed not to be the only one in this situation, and if both of you love acting, why not do it together? 

Recording equipment

It is completely possible to record a demo reel with a mobile phone off-hand. It is also completely possible to write a whole novel on a typewriter, but ... no one said that it is easy. Even though mobile phones are improving, you'll still need a proper rig and lighting to get the cinematic look you should aim to achieve. It might be more practical to rent a proper camera with a good lens, ask a colleague that has appropriate equipment, or take the camera you use for self-taping out into the open space. You can save on the rental cost if you record a number of scenes together. 


One week before filming, you should select a location. The best time is about a week before. At that stage, you should be able to get the weather forecast if you're planning to film outside. If you live in Vancouver, you're lucky as you live in a city that can pretend to be any other city on Earth selected by the leading filmmakers as their prime location for filming for decades. In other words, here in Vancouver, there are limitless possibilities. Make sure that the location is not too crowded as if there's lots of traffic or noise from the nearby playground. You'll have quite a bit of trouble in post-processing to get that sorted out. In each case, find at least 3 possible spots for filming on a location to have alternatives to select from. 

Time to record

During filming, you'll need to record the scene from 3 different points of view. First, from a distance. Then from the perspective of each one of the actors. You should take about 3 takes. One take with all the setup will take 5-10 minutes. Therefore you should reserve at least 60-90 minutes for a 3-minute scene recording. Of course, as you get more experienced, it'll get faster and faster. But don't rush yourself. Get it right, try different things and remember about continuity - in each take, you should make identical moves. 

As for the time of the day, if you're shooting outside, avoid noon. If it's very sunny then the sun will be high, and you're either going to have to be blinded, or the camera will be blinded, both cases are challenging to handle. Better to shoot in the morning or late afternoon. If you have no other option and you have to shoot when the sun is high, then move to a shaded location, under a tree, or at the side of the building where you're not exposed directly to sunlight. A professional cinematographer with proper screens and the help of the team will have no problem dealing with that, but you're not a professional cinematographer, and you do not have a whole team. You're just trying to do your best - and have some fun.

Regarding the sound, avoid random folks with lawnmowers, leaf blowers, barking dogs, helicopters and airplanes - these are just a few things that can ruin the recording. It is possible to filter some stuff out, but you do not have professional audio processing plugins that can reduce noise at specific frequencies. And you'll not be buying one for one shoot. So make sure that the source material is of the best quality. If you're using a directional microphone, then make sure you have a dead cat, otherwise, a slight blow of wind will ruin the whole take. 

Master Shot

First record the whole scene from a distance

Left Close Up

Then from the right hand side

Right Close Up

And finally from the left hand side

Post-processing software

Even if you have the best camera, the scene is not ready yet. You're barely halfway. The recording is just a raw material that has to be cut into separate takes, put together, and colour graded. For that, you need appropriate software. If this tells you little, don't worry. Plenty of free YouTube tutorials describe the topic. One scene will be a great learning experience for you. You'll learn and admire the work of all those that put the whole movie together. 

And if you wish to get more advanced, longer training, you can always try one of the Udemy courses. They have a great sales occasionally, so watch out for a deal. 

Recording equipment rental in Vancouver

Camera rental might be an option for you when you're considering recording your scene. Remember that more advanced cameras are not easy to set up correctly and operate. Always ask the advice of a professional at a rental shop about what would be the best model for your skillset and needs. 

Are you representing a camera rental business in British Columbia? We'll be happy to include you in the list above. Please send us an e-mail to