Tag Archives: modeling jargon

The Key Terms You Need to Know As an Actor or Model

Max Agency is a successful model and talent management agency in Toronto. Max places it’s talent with a wide spectrum of companies such as Nike, Coca Cola, Sony, McDonald’s , Hugo Boss,  and L’Oreal  just to name a few.

With so many talent auditioning and being booked daily, we wanted to share some definitions of the jargon that gets used on a daily basis within the agency.

These terms are extremely valuable to understand for every working actor and model in the business.

Self Tape or EcoCast

A self tape audition (frequently referred to as an EcoCast as well) is essentially a video audition. This is not done in person but rather the talent films their audition from home on a camera or phone to be submitted electronically. The self tape audition is growing in popularity so chances are you will have to do one at some point. For tips on how to create the best self tape, check out Max’s Top 5 Tips!


In almost every audition scenario, you will be asked to slate. What this means is to introduce yourself, which agency represents you and often times your role. This is the first impression you make on the casting directors so you must always be clear and professional. You may often times be asked to show your profiles or your hands during this time as well. Simply follow direction while staying calm and confident.

SOC Roles

SOC stands for Silent-On-Camera. What this means is that you are auditioning for a role that has no lines. You will simply be using your facial expressions or physical actions for the role. This is very common in commercials especially. Even though you do not have lines for an SOC role, still make sure to practice your facial reactions before the audition!

PP Roles

PP stands for Principal Performer. What this means is that you are the star. You will be the main performer in the centre of the commercial and have a lot of screen time. Often times this performer will be the ones with important lines or the one demonstrating the product/service.

Callback or Recall

A callback audition is a second audition for the same role or project you previously auditioned for. What this means is that the casting director/clients liked you and want to see you again before they make the final decision. It is like making it on to the next round. Perhaps you did a self tape the first time and now they want to see you in person, or vice versa? Either way, it is a very good sign to get a callback, however there’s still a chance you won’t be booked.


If your agent calls to put you “on hold”, this is a very good thing, however it does not mean you are booked quite yet. Being put on hold means the clients like you and might want to book you but are not 100% sure yet. It might mean they are still deciding between you and someone else for the role or perhaps you are the backup incase their first choice is unavailable. This also means you must keep the shoot dates open and available for them in the case that you are booked. They will either release you from the hold or book you once a decision is made.


When you are released from a hold, it means the producers have decided to go in another direction and do not wish to hire you. You are free once again on the hold dates to do as you’d like. While this is disappointing, you should still be proud to have been put on hold in the first place because that means they did like you and you were close to booking the part.


Getting a booking means you are getting hired for the part. You may have been put on hold first or they may have booked you right away. This means you were available for the necessary shoot dates and they liked you the most. From here you will attend any fittings required and then the actual shoot! Your agent will be in touch will all the details on location, wardrobe, makeup, etc.


A buyout is a flat payment made to you for a job (commercial/photoshoot/etc.) instead of getting paid residuals every time they use the work. In other words, you are only paid once up front for your work which they are free to use for a certain length of time. This payment is normally quite high for a short amount of work since they are able to use the commercial or stills as many times as they want within the time frame they paid for.

We hope these definitions helped any new actors who may have been confused when hearing these terms.

If there are any other words or acronyms that confuse you, let us know and we’ll be more than happy to explain!

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To see our awesome talent check out our roster at http://www.maxagency.com/

If you want to become one of our talent, apply here! http://www.maxagency.com/application.php