They began arriving early Saturday morning at the Killeen Arts & Activities Center — people of all types, sizes and ages. Filing into the foyer, some were hesitant and shy, others extroverted and confident. It was an open casting call for what’s described as a “major motion picture” by the organizer of today’s event, Austin’s Vicky Boone.
Boone, owner of Vicky Boone Casting, was accompanied by seven or so assistants, in their first talent search in the Killeen area. “We’re looking for all types of people,” she said. “Very expressive individuals with a good personal story that they’re pretty easy sharing with others.”
The aspiring actors were not required to read from scripts. “Just telling us their own experiences is what we ask,” Boone said. The parts she needs to cast are “not walk-ons — they’ll be speaking roles.”
Resolutely tight-lipped about specifics, Boone only said the production she’s working for is “a feature-length motion picture for theatrical release.”
Slender and bearded, Steve Salak, 52, said it’s his first audition. “I came on a lark,” he said. “I saw it in the paper and thought it would be a fun thing to try.”
Tyler Lumpkins, 22, is from Copperas Cove and his dark good looks and smile were noted by the sign-up staff. “I’m not nervous,” he said. “I’ve got no experience — this is a first for me — but I decided, hell, why not?”
Petite and perky, 18-year-old Malika Buzaubayeva, a cheerleader at Killeen High School, has participated in beauty pageants and modeled on the runway. “I’ve studied theater arts and I’m hoping to get into acting,” she said. “This is exciting for me.”
Not all of Saturday’s auditionees were novices; wearing a black cowboy hat, white-haired Bob Ritchie, a veteran of Temple Civic Theatre shows and Salado’s Tablerock Festival, said he had a reason for attending the open casting call. “I was in ‘Stars Fell On Henrietta’, a film with Robert Duvall back in 1984,” Ritchie said. “I had only one line, so I’m hoping for a little more screen time.”
After a videotaped interview with Boone, some hopefuls were assigned a second interview with another member of her team. The videos will be shown to the producers of the movie and those designated as “keepers” will get a phone call or email notifying them of their status. Then, a call-back taping will be scheduled and, perhaps, a shot at stardom.
“People are amazing,” Boone said. “When they show that they can get in the right emotional space for the scene — that’s the most important thing.”