Creating a Killer Audition Tape for Reality Show Casting

Woman cleaning her social media profile before going on reality show

Want to make a killer audition tape for your next reality show casting call? Look no further! Our comprehensive guide covers everything from what casting directors look for in a self-tape, to how to stand out in a crowded field. Learn the dos and don’ts of self-taping, discover tips for staying calm and focused, and get the inside scoop on what it takes to make a truly amazing audition tape. Don’t miss out on your chance to shine – read our blog post now!



Explanation of the importance of a strong self-tape in the reality show casting process

The first step in landing a spot on a reality show is to make a great first impression with your audition tape. A well-crafted self-tape can set you apart from the competition and showcase your unique personality, talent, and potential as a reality show contestant.

Overview of the topics covered in the blog post

In this blog post, we will be diving deep into the process of creating a killer audition tape for reality tv shows. We will be answering questions such as “How do you stand out in a self-tape?” and “What do casting directors look for in a self-tape?” We will also be providing tips and tricks for making your tape stand out and giving you the inside scoop on what it takes to make a truly amazing audition tape.

Purpose of the blog post

Our goal is to provide you with all the information and resources you need to make a great self-tape and increase your chances of getting cast on a reality show. Whether you’re a first-time auditioner or a seasoned reality show veteran, this guide will give you the tools you need to make a self-tape that stands out and impresses casting directors.

How to Stand Out in a Self-Tape

Be authentic and yourself

One of the most important things you can do to stand out in a self-tape is to be yourself. Casting directors are looking for contestants who are genuine and relatable let your unique personality shine through and show them why you would be a great fit for their show.

Show off your talent or passion

If you have a specific talent or passion, make sure to showcase it in your self-tape. This could be anything from singing and dancing to cooking or extreme sports. Showing off your skills will help you stand out and give casting directors a sense of what you would bring to the show.

This can also be a great way of showing that you’ll connect with a specific audience base. I always seem to be drawn to nerdy smart people. Especially if they are awkward or neurodivergent.

Show off your energy and enthusiasm

Energy and enthusiasm are key when it comes to making a great self-tape. Make sure to speak clearly and confidently, and don’t be afraid to show your excitement about the opportunity to be on the show. Remember, casting directors want to see contestants who are excited and ready to be on the show.

Be unique and creative with your self-tape

One way to stand out in a self-tape is to be unique and creative with your approach. Instead of just filming yourself speaking into the camera, try to come up with a concept or storyline for your self-tape that makes it more interesting and engaging. This could be anything from a short skit or a day-in-the-life type video.

Show off your sense of humor

A good sense of humor is always appreciated, and it can help you stand out in a self-tape. Don’t be afraid to inject some humor into your self-tape, whether it’s through a funny skit or a clever one-liner. Just make sure that it’s appropriate for the type of show you’re auditioning for.

What to Say at the beginning of a Self-Tape Audition

Introduce yourself

The first thing you should do in your self-tape is to introduce yourself. Give your name, where you’re from, and a brief overview of your background and personality. This will give casting directors a sense of who you are and what you’re all about.

State your purpose

Make it clear why you’re making the self-tape and what show you’re auditioning for. This will help the casting directors understand your motivation and give them a sense of what you’re hoping to achieve.

Show enthusiasm

Make sure to express your enthusiasm for the opportunity to be on the show. Let the casting directors know that you’re excited about the opportunity and that you’re ready to take on the challenge.

Provide a brief overview of your relevant experience

If you have relevant experience or skills that would make you a great fit for the show, make sure to mention it at the beginning of your self-tape. This could be anything from previous reality show experience to a specific talent or hobby.

Be sincere and confident

When introducing yourself and your purpose, be sincere and confident. Let casting directors know that you believe in yourself and your ability to be a great contestant on the show.

What Casting Directors Look for in a Self-Tape


One of the most important things that casting directors look for in a self-tape is personality. They want to see who you are as a person and get a sense of your unique character. Be yourself and let your personality shine through.


Casting directors also look for confidence in a self-tape. They want to see that you believe in yourself and your abilities. Be sure to speak clearly and make eye contact with the camera to show that you’re comfortable in front of it.

On this topic, you will want to enunciate so that you are very easy to understand. Contestants who understand or require closed captioning can be a drag on ratings for the whole show.


Casting directors also look for relevance in a self-tape. They want to see that you understand what the show is about and that you’re a good fit for it. Be sure to highlight any relevant experience or skills that you have.

Show preparation

Casting directors will also be looking for how well-prepared you are for the audition. Make sure to show that you’ve put effort and thought into your self-tape by having your hair, makeup and clothing look polished and appropriate for the show.


Casting directors also appreciate creativity in a self-tape. If you can think outside the box and come up with something unique, you’ll stand out from other contestants.

Should You Sit or Stand in a Self-Tape Audition?


Standing up in your self-tape can help you convey energy and confidence. It can also make you appear taller and more commanding on camera. If you choose to stand, make sure to have good posture and use gestures to convey your emotions and personality.


Sitting down in your self-tape can help you appear more relaxed and approachable. It can also help you focus on your delivery and make it easier to speak clearly. If you choose to sit, make sure to sit up straight and use your hands to convey your emotions.

Depends on the scene

The decision of whether to sit or stand should be based on the scene you’re performing. For example, if the scene requires you to be in a formal setting, standing is more appropriate, whereas if the scene is more casual, sitting is more appropriate.


It’s always a good idea to experiment with different poses and angles when self-taping. Try standing, sitting, or even moving around during the tape to see what looks and feels the most natural to you.

Show preparation

Make sure to have a clean and organized background. Think about how you want to present yourself in the audition tape, what message you want to convey and how you want to be perceived by the casting directors.

Should You Use Props in a Self-Tape?

Props can be helpful

Props can be a great way to add depth and interest to your self-tape. They can also help you convey emotions and actions in a scene. For example, if you’re auditioning for a cooking show, holding a chef’s knife or a pot can add a lot of authenticity to your performance.

Props can be distracting

However, it’s important to use props sparingly and only when they are necessary to the scene. Too many props can be distracting and take away from your performance. Additionally, make sure that the props you use are appropriate for the scene and are not too large or cumbersome to handle.

Be mindful of background

Make sure that your props don’t blend into the background, it should be visible for casting directors to notice.

Show preparation

Before you start filming, think about how the props can help tell your story and enhance your performance. Also, practice using them before filming so that you feel comfortable and confident with them during the self-tape.

Keep it Simple

Props can be great, but they are not necessary. Sometimes the best performances are the simplest ones. So, don’t feel like you have to use props to make your audition tape stand out.

What Not to Do in a Self-Tape?

Avoid background noise

One of the most important things to avoid in a self-tape is background noise. This includes everything from traffic noise to barking dogs to the hum of appliances. Make sure that you’re filming in a quiet location where there’s as little background noise as possible.

Avoid bright or busy background

Additionally, make sure that the background of your self-tape is not too bright or busy. A plain background is best, as it will help keep the focus on you. Avoid filming in front of a window with bright sunlight or a busy patterned wall.

Don’t use a filter

Another thing to avoid is using filters on your self-tape. Filters can change the color or lighting of your video and can make it difficult for casting directors to see your true appearance.

Don’t film in a low light

Also, avoid filming in low light. This can make it difficult to see your face and can also affect the overall quality of the video.

Don’t use autofocus

Make sure that your camera is in focus before you start filming. Avoid using autofocus as this can cause the camera to refocus during the take and can be distracting. By following these tips, you’ll ensure that your self-tape is as professional and polished as possible, making it more likely to catch the attention of casting directors.

What Colors are Good to Self-Tape in?

Neutral colors

When it comes to what colors to wear for your self-tape, it’s best to stick with neutral colors. This means sticking to shades of black, white, gray, and beige. These colors are classic and timeless, and they won’t distract from your performance.

Avoid bold colors

Additionally, it’s best to avoid wearing bold or bright colors, as they can be distracting on camera. Bright colors can also wash out your skin tone and make it difficult for casting directors to see your facial expressions.

Avoid patterns

Another thing to avoid is patterns. Busy patterns can be distracting and can make it difficult to see your face. Stick with solid colors and simple patterns, if any.

Consider lighting

Consider the lighting of the room where you’ll be filming your self-tape. Different colors may appear differently on camera under different lighting. So, it’s a good idea to test out different clothing options to see how they look on camera before filming your final self-tape.

Avoid Logos and Branded Clothing

Many shows will air the audition tapes for people who finally make it on the show. Especially if they end up making it to the finals or winning. For this reason, you want to make sure that you don’t have a logo shirt that could pose problematic if they want to air part or all of your audition tape.

Should you look at the camera when self-taping?

Maintaining eye contact

When it comes to self-taping, it’s important to maintain eye contact with the camera. This will help to create a connection with the viewer and make your performance more engaging. By looking directly at the camera, you can make sure that casting directors see the emotion and intensity in your eyes.

Avoid looking down

It’s also important to avoid looking down or off-camera when self-taping. This can make it appear as if you’re not confident or engaged in your performance. Instead, keep your eyes trained on the camera lens to give casting directors the best possible view of your acting abilities.

Find a focal point

If you find it difficult to maintain eye contact with the camera lens, try finding a focal point on the camera or nearby. This will allow you to keep your gaze steady and focused.


Lastly, practice makes perfect. The more you self-tape, the more comfortable you’ll become with maintaining eye contact with the camera. So, take the time to practice your self-tape before filming the final version.

How do you make a good audition tape?

Show your personality

A good audition tape should show off your personality and unique qualities. It’s important to be yourself and let your character shine through in your performance. This will help casting directors see the real you and will make it more likely that they’ll remember you when it comes time to make a decision.

Be confident

Confidence is key when it comes to making a good audition tape. Whether you’re sitting or standing, make sure to hold yourself confidently and assertively. Speak clearly and project your voice to show that you’re comfortable and in control.

Dress to impress

Your appearance is also important when it comes to making a good audition tape. Dress in clothing that makes you feel confident and that you would wear to a real audition. Keep in mind the type of show you’re auditioning for, and dress appropriately.

Preparation is key

Preparation is key to making a good audition tape. Make sure to practice your lines and blocking beforehand, so that you’re comfortable and confident when it comes time to film.


Rehearse with someone, if possible, it could be a friend or a family member, so you can get feedback, it will help you to know if you’re on the right track.

Can you read off a script for self-tape?

You can read off a script for a self-tape audition. However, it’s important to make sure that you’re not just reading the words on the page, but that you’re also bringing your interpretation and emotions to the performance. Make sure to practice your lines beforehand and make them your own.

Use cues

When reading a script, it’s helpful to use cues to help you remember your lines. These can be physical cues, such as marking certain spots on the script, or mental cues, such as thinking about a specific emotion or action.

Use your imagination

Also, use your imagination when reading a script. Try to visualize the scene in your mind and let that guide your performance. It will help you to feel more connected to the script and make your audition tape more authentic.

How long should a self-tape audition be?

The length of a self-tape audition can vary depending on the specific casting call and the role you’re auditioning for. Typically, self-tape auditions should be between one to two minutes long.

Follow the guidelines

It’s important to follow the guidelines provided by the casting directors. If they request a specific length, make sure to stick to it. Going over the time limit can make it difficult for casting directors to watch all the submissions and can make it less likely that they’ll consider your audition.

Make it concise

When creating your self-tape audition, it’s important to be concise and make the most of the time you have. Choose the best scenes or monologues that showcase your skills and make sure to deliver them with energy and passion.

Do casting directors look at every submission?

The reality is that casting directors receive a large number of submissions for each role they are casting, and they can’t look at every single one. Casting directors look for the best talent for the role, so it’s important to put your best foot forward and create a high-quality self-tape audition. This will increase your chances of standing out from the other submissions and catching the attention of the casting directors.


Networking is also an important aspect of getting your self-tape seen by casting directors. Building relationships with industry professionals can help increase your visibility and give you an edge over other actors who are also competing for the same roles. By focusing on creating a high-quality self-tape audition, networking, and making connections with industry professionals, you can increase your chances of getting your self-tape seen by casting directors and landing your dream role.

How do you not feel dumb out in an audition?

Remember that everyone is nervous

It’s important to remember that everyone gets nervous in auditions, even the most experienced actors. It’s normal to feel a little bit of anxiety or self-doubt, but it’s important to acknowledge these feelings and not let them take over.

Prepare, Prepare, Prepare

Being well-prepared for your audition can help ease some of the nerves. Make sure you’ve thoroughly rehearsed your material and are familiar with the character and the story you’re auditioning for. The more comfortable you are with your material, the more confident you’ll be in your audition.

Focus on the present

During the audition, try to focus on the present moment and not let your mind wander to negative thoughts about the past or future. By focusing on the present and the task at hand, you’ll be more present and less likely to get caught up in self-doubt.

How do you deal with nerves when making an audition tape

When it comes to self-taping for reality show auditions, nerves can often get the best of us. It can be difficult to shake off the feeling that you may come across as foolish or unpolished on camera. However, it’s important to remember that casting directors are not looking for perfection, but rather an authenticity and potential.

Another tip is to go through your video at least 10 times. Your wording wil be far smoother after you’ve done it several times. If you have a video editing program, you can splice the best parts of each take together.


Creating a killer audition tape for reality TV shows can be a daunting task, but by following the tips outlined in this blog post, you can increase your chances of standing out to casting directors. Remember to be yourself, practice your delivery, and make sure your video is well-lit and of high quality. Additionally, pay attention to the little details such as what to wear and what to say at the beginning of your tape. With the right preparation and mindset, you can create an audition tape that showcases your unique talents and sets you apart from the competition.

It’s also important to remember that casting directors receive a lot of submissions and may not be able to watch every tape. But don’t let that discourage you. Keep practicing and perfecting your craft and be open to feedback. Remember, you are unique, and you have something special to offer. So, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, and take a chance on your dreams!

Creating an amazing audition tape for reality TV shows requires a combination of proper preparation, a good attitude, and a strong understanding of what casting directors are looking for. By following the tips outlined in this blog post, you can increase your chances of standing out and getting noticed. And always remember to believe in yourself, stay positive, and have fun with the process!

Emma Smith

I have been a fan of reality shows for more than a decade. I love all genres of shows, and I really enjoy sharing my thoughts on them.

Learn how to create a killer audition tape for reality show casting with this guide what to include in your tape and how to make it stand out