Are Reality Shows the New Soaps?

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I was talking with some friends recently about two recent films Fruitvale Station and Lovelace and the fact that the stars of these films used to play star-crossed teens on “All My Children”. So many stars got their start in the soaps, but now the soaps have virtually disappeared. Where is the new training ground for young actors?

The theatre has always been fertile soil for growing actors, but the soaps used to be the on-camera boot camp for actors. With a demanding schedule and rapidly changing dialogue, the soaps whipped young actors into shape and prepared them for careers in film and television.

Now, with many soaps canceled, opportunities for young actors have dried up and more and more we see reality stars parlaying their popularity into acting success. So what does that mean for young actors? Should they try to get on reality shows? Where else can they turn for experience?

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There are many routes to success. Two stars from America’s Next Top Model are starring in major Hollywood movies. Jennifer Hudson went from American Idol cast off to Oscar winner and big personality stars like Nene Leakes have worked their way into sitcoms and films.

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I think young actors need to take opportunities that come but remember that the recipe for true acting success includes training whether it is on the job or in the classroom. Whether your path resembles Amanda Seyfried’s or Jennifer Hudson’s you can carve out your own road by taking advantage of the opportunities that come into your life.

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