The Casting Society of America has announced that they will be hosting an international open call for transgender actors as part of their initiative for more transgender inclusion in TV and film. The Hollywood landscape is shifting and therefore demanding more diversity and the CSA has a commitment to inclusion within the entertainment industry to challenge unconscious bias, empower casting directors to lead the inclusion conversation, and discover, educate, and promote the next generation of extraordinary talent within a wide range of diverse communities.

Over 30 CSA members around the world will be opening their offices to union and non-union trans actors, including non-binary (gender identities that are not exclusively masculine or feminine‍), gender non-conforming (a person whose gender behavior or appearance does not conform to social expectations), and genderqueer actors (a person who does not subscribe to conventional gender distinctions). Actors who are professionally trained, as well as those actively pursuing professional careers, are welcome to attend.

Russell Boast, CSA Vice President and head of the Inclusion and Diversity Committee says that they are requesting actors to bring a scene of their choice that best represents them as artists. They will be given an opportunity to the prepared scene in front of panel of two to four CSA casting director members.

“Trans people have worked hard to hone their craft, but rarely get the chance to be seen since so few are represented,” said Ann Thomas, founder of Transgender Talent, thanking the CSA for the opportunity.

There are about 1.4 million adults in the United States identifying as transgender, according to an analysis based on new federal and state data in 2016. There are only eleven transgender actors in television and unfortunately, most trans actors are passed for transgender characters and aren’t given the opportunity to play non-transgender roles.

When the news was announced internally, the first of four LA locations filled up in less than 24 hours. The open call will offer underrepresented actors the opportunity to perform in a professional environment, while introducing casting directors to undiscovered gems and a pool of talent who, with the right training, could become the next generation of diverse film and television stars.

Offices will be open on Sunday, October 22 in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Portland, Toronto, Montreal, and London from 11 AM to 1 PM and 2 PM – 4 PM based on respective location time. Barcelona will also be conducting open calls on Monday, October 23 at the aforementioned times.