Bettina Stories; Tilly Bulle

Everyone’s motivation for joining this exciting industry is different, for some they simply want to see their name up in lights and their face on billboards around the country. For Tilly’s mum however, she just wanted to see her little girl get her confidence back. After attending many auditions and booking some amazing campaigns, Liz has seen her daughter come to life again and has been kind enough to share their story.

Tilly
How long have you been with the agency?
Almost 2 years
What was your first job?
Bulla – which was really funny as my last name is Bulle (said the same as Bulla)
What was it like going to your first casting?
It was scary but exciting at the same time and I had to eat meringue and crackers and sour cream
How did you feel when you were told that you booked the job?
I was in the car when Bianca rang Mum and it was on speakerphone and I cried because I was very very happy and shocked
How did you learn your lines?
My first lines I had to learn were for the Xbox One S commercial and Mum and I practiced them in the car
What was the best part of working on set?
I got to meet lots of new people
What things did you find difficult or challenging on set?
Getting to know everyone because I was shy at the start
How did you feel seeing yourself on TV for the first time?
Very very excited
Liz
Why did you decide to join Tilly up to an agency?
 
Because Tilly’s younger brother has Autism and for four years she spent the whole time waiting at Paediatrician or therapy appointments and the confident happy little girl was losing her confidence.  We had been told more than once that she was so photogenic and could be a model and one day I just googled child models and applied to Bettina after reading lots of reviews.  We had hesitation and received lots of comments about signing Tilly up initially but anyone who knows Tilly and our family see only the joy it brings.
What was it like taking her to her first casting?
I think I was more nervous than Tilly.  Thank goodness for the emails from Bettina especially the Castings Guides that tell you what to do, what to wear etc.  It is very strange as you are there only a few minutes and I don’t usually go in so have no idea what happens.  Tilly was very lucky in that she got the job on her first casting.  Now she just loves going to the castings and meeting people and having fun.
What is the best part of seeing Tilly working on set?
Seeing her come alive.  For all the stress we have sometimes getting there – either on time, or without spilling drinks down our white tshirts – it makes it all worthwhile seeing her having fun, doing what she loves and so naturally.
What do you find challenging about having Tilly working in the industry?
After Tilly’s Xbox commercial we received lots of media feedback about her being dressed up to look like a mini adult and wearing makeup which was hard to take as a parent and a little confronting and my instinct was to comment and protect her.  They seemed to miss the whole concept of the ad was to make her look like a mini adult.  However I’m glad that happened right at the beginning as it made us so much better at what we do, it made us realise that this is what happens when people judge someone without knowing and what celebrities go through all the time, that you need to be thick-skinned but with a smile and a wonderful heart.
What is it like seeing Tilly on TV?
It’s funny.  It’s still a bit surreal, even now.  Tilly’s Dad is worst he googles and YouTube for weeks searching for her commercials etc and he usually finds them first.  The longest wait was for the AHM Medibank ad which was played throughout the Big Bash when all Tilly’s friends parents were either calling or texting saying we’ve just seen Tilly on telly and we still hadn’t.  In the end we set the TV to record all night and ended up forwarding through the cricket and just watching the ads.  We always get great feedback from her friends and they say it’s so lovely and weird having Tilly on their TV in the front room with them.  But what I love best is how Tilly is just Tilly – there is no bragging or drama about her, it’s just her “job” and we are so lucky to have found her dreams early on and help her to realise them.

Watch their interview here:

Is Boutique really Better?

When looking for an agent for your child, you will probably come across a lot of contradicting information about what is and isn’t better for your child. One of the most common phrases you will come across, used to promote smaller agencies, is that they are ‘boutique’ and therefore able to offer a more personalised service because they only represent a small group of talent.

 

As one of the largest agencies in Australia, it would be remiss of us to gloss over the fact that this might sound as though we are trying to promote why we would be a better choice over a smaller agent. But bear with us, as there are some solid facts that you should consider when deciding what type of agent you go with.

 

First off, there is no real definition of a ‘boutique’ agency, so an agent could still have millions of children on their books a promote that they are ‘boutique’. There is no regulation on this and as such it is not a really a factor you can rely upon when making your decision.

 

When sourcing talent, clients like plenty of options to choose from. This gives them greater chance of finding the right talent they are looking for rather than trying to cast from limited options. They also prefer to source talent for multiple roles from one agent, as obviously this significantly cuts down on the administration time. If boutique agents really are boutique, then they would likely not have a healthy enough talent pool to provide clients with options and a range of choice like a larger talent agent can. This is why clients tend to go directly to larger agents for their campaigns, and as such larger agents end up with the most work for their talent because they are able to best service the industries clients.

 

But what about recruiting talent? Isn’t there a set criteria for what type of children will gain work in the industry, and as such only those that fit should be offered placement? Well, as agents, we know that sometimes the shiniest gems are hidden in the most unlikely places! So whilst we can be extremely picky and stick to a certain criteria when recruiting new talent, and as such limit our talent pool, we are aware that there is a plethora of work available to talent of all shapes, styles, looks and skills. We also know that sometimes children just need to be given a chance to develop and shine, and we love seeing new talent blossom from one opportunity to the next. The only criteria required to succeed in the industry is passion and patience!

 

One of the main fears among new talent and their parents is that they do not want to ‘compete’ with lots of other children for each job. This is typically what steers them towards smaller, boutique agencies. But the reality of the industry is that if you are right for the job, you will get it. It doesn’t matter if there are 5 or 500 other talent going for the same role, if you’re it, you’re it! What you really need is an agent that will expose you to the most opportunities possible, and that is what you will get at a larger agent. As explained before, because of their healthy and varied talent pool they are a one stop shop for clients and typically attract the most work. You will always be submitted for roles with other talent, whether they are from your agent or with other agencies. But with maximum exposure you will (hopefully) find the role that is perfect for you, irrelevant of how many other talent they had to choose from!

 

At the end of the day you need to find an agent that you feel comfortable with, but don’t be scared away from approaching larger agents and don’t be sucked in by common buzzwords. Only you can decide what is right for your child but if you are armed with the right knowledge and expectations you can rest assured that you will make the right decision.