Actor Seeking Advice! What Can I Do to Stop Getting Typed Out of Police Lineups?

greyscale photo of woman between two man

Actor here. Looking for advice regarding getting typed out since moving to the big city. I’d like to book something and show my parents I can make it out here, but I can’t seem to make it past the first round type-out. And even though I’ve only been called in for police lineups, this is pretty frustrating.

Back home, I got called in for everything. In high school, I got called into the counselor’s office all the time. When I was nineteen I got called in for jury duty, which, by the way, I booked. And right before I moved here my dad called into question my ability to do anything right. So I’m familiar with this process. What I’m not familiar with is getting typed out so often. Every week I get called in for a different role, and every week I’m not the one selected out of the police lineup.

I know what you’re thinking. The big city is different than the rural Midwest. I can’t expect to have the same success here that I did there. I was a big fish in a small pond and now I’m a categorically suspicious-looking person brought into precincts several times a month. I understand that.

What I don’t understand is what these other guys have that I don’t. Am I too short? Do I not work out enough? Have I not committed grand larceny? I don’t know.

Acting is where my passion lies. Love acting. But to spill the tea, I sometimes fantasize about being on the other side of that one-way mirror. To be the person saying, “Him. Number six. He’s the one who gave me these black eyes.”

I like to imagine I’d pick someone who hasn’t worked in the industry much. Give someone new an opportunity to shine. But ultimately you have to give the role to the best person, or you’re just not doing your job. You might be sentencing an innocent person to a long time in prison, too, which is also bad.

Do I want my parents to be proud of me? Of course. And when I finally book this, they will be. In my dreams, I often see them standing on the other side of those cold, grey bars, crying, my mom blaming herself for raising me this way, my dad too choked up to say much but unable to conceal the twinkle in his eye that I know is pride even though it looks almost exactly like disappointment.

Any advice is appreciated. But please don’t be like the last person I asked about this. They said actors like me were a dime a dozen, which is rude. But also, I don’t need the reminder. I know there’s a lot of actors out there who look like me. I see them almost every week.

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