Bogus scam       (planned scam)
 Demographics  Real fashion agencies have real fashion models.  Tall, skinny girls; tall, thin men.  Real commercial agencies have a wide variety of people of all ages.  Real talent agencies also have a variety of ages.  If the “agency” site shows that they concentrate on young women who are not very tall and skinny, to the point where few others are present, it’s a scam.

All of these things are easy to spot.  It doesn’t take enormous experience or skill, and it doesn’t take much time.  Anyone can apply the tests above and get 95% confidence that any “agency” that is described above is a scam.  In case of doubt, make the “agency” prove they are legitimate.

  

Quality of Presentation  If the “agency” has a website full of cheesy pictures, it’s a certainty that professional casting directors aren’t working with them.  It’s also a certainty they won’t produce smashing, professional pictures for their models, so getting them to shoot pictures for you will be a waste of money.  Spend some time looking at the websites of good commercial, fashion and talent agencies.  Study what their pictures and sites look like.  If this “agency” doesn’t have shots like that, they can’t compete in the real professional market – and you won’t be competitive going through them.

 

Products and Services  All too many of these “agencies” offer to sell you something:  training, pictures, portfolios or whatever.  That’s the real way they make their money, not getting you work.  The purpose of an agency should be to get work for its models.  If it is charging them for something else, it’s a scam.

Time  Casting on movies can take quite a while, but print jobs are almost always cast within 2-3 days (at least for initial callback decisions) of the time a casting notice is sent out.  If an agency asks you to go through any process that takes more than a day to be submitted for a job, it’s a scam.  If you have to send them something in the mail to be submitted, it’s a scam
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