FAQ : Production

Welcome! We’re glad you are here.

In this everchanging production environment of decreasing budgets and uncertain industry futures, we have to increase productivity while working smarter and more efficiently. No doubt you are searching for simplicity, economy and ways to streamline those processes which have become the most challenging.

Casting is no exception. You can have the most ingenious creative, a top-flight director and dp and the best camera and optics to fit your budget, but cast the wrong talent and things go south quickly. It’s painful paying professional rates for simple “slice of life” performances or just a particular look or worse yet, for inexperience. Find the perfect talent and too oftentimes once you factor in talent/agency fees, holding fees, additional fees and union contributions, residuals and expenses, your “perfect talent” is cost prohibitive. Let’s face it, the politics of casting sure can suck the fun and too much of the profit right out of your production. Working through a reliable and proven talent agent generally provides a sense of security but there will always be instances when you wish there was a more simple and cost effective option. We’ve been investing our time and resources to create that alternative for you. Long ago, we recognized the need for change and long ago, we began planning solutions to overcome the many challenges we faced when casting talent.

My name is Philip Barbour. As a child in the 1960’s and 70’s, my parents enrolled me in an acting workshop. It was the best thing they could have done. The experience channeled my creativity, built confidence and brought me out of my shell as I learned to communicate better with others. I performed in plays in junior high school, I landed leading roles in high school and college productions and primary roles in films, industrials and television in Florida in the 1980’s.

Then everything changed. I took a course in film at Florida State University.

My degree led to employment behind the camera with area production companies and ad agencies and ESPN. Twenty years ago, a good friend and I began writing and producing commercials for national syndication. We cast our talent from a local talent agency and I sold those campaigns to business owners in markets all across the country and abroad. Although I had come from an acting background, as I licensed those campaigns over and over, I was surprised how much I was spending on “professional” talent residuals.

As I began to write and produce more campaigns, I started the practice of scouting potential talent at shopping malls and sporting events, farmers markets and art shows. Anywhere I found large groups of people, that’s where I went to cast. I had such success, in time, a local production company requested I cast for them, then I began casting for local agencies and agencies with productions in Charleston, St. Louis, Green Bay, Miami, Dallas, Atlanta, Nashville, Jacksonville, Orlando, Charlotte, Washington D.C., Richmond, Birmingham, Montgomery, Mobile...

In time, I began thinking about the many ways casting could be improved upon for both the agency/production company and the talent. For our talent, without cost we provide all the tools to easily create a profile on our site. Their profiles list clothing sizes for wardrobe and filterable physical features and skills, age categories and ethnicities to aid you in your search. Of course, you have access to current photos and their video introduction as well.


    For you, our clients, we provide a fully automated and intuitive casting workspace with economy at the forefront. Here we are featuring a range of available talent offered to you free from residuals and added agency fees. Here you can search for talent and save your selections. Our one of-a-kind Lightbox feature gives you the ability to save your options onto a page where you can move people around for side by side comparison and review and approval among your team, wherever they may be.

    Once your selections are made, you simply complete and submit a basic invitation form to the talent identifying the client, production, scene and role and outlining the date, time, location and money offered. Remember, there are no residuals. Our talent may be taking time off work or traveling some distance or may be forced to hire someone to watch their children. We expect our agency and production company clients to extend offers which will compensate them generously for their efforts and for their time and good work. A generous offer will go far toward ensuring their acceptance.

    If the terms are accepted, NIKO Casting agreements will be presented for signing, the credit card you have on file with STRIPE, our secure third party ecommerce provider, will be charged our small casting fee for each of the talent you cast and the total talent fees agreed upon will be processed. (NOTE- We have very little access to the financial information you provide to Stripe, only enough to troubleshoot payment issues, i.e. last 4 digits of your card and the card’s issuer. Of course, some talent may prefer you issue a check instead. If so, both parties will need to make those arrangements in advance.). Those funds will automatically be released to the talent the next business day after completion of their last scheduled scene. After agreements are completed and monies secured, the talent’s contact information will be released for communication and planning. Regular reminders are automatically sent to the talent in the days leading up to your production. Upon completion of their scene, both you and the talent will have the opportunity to rate one another. And as an added bonus, we maintain a detailed project by project billing breakdown, very similar to what you see before you pay, in the billing section of your account's settings for your YTD records.

    We have instructed our talent to get permission prior to taking any photos while on set and to be respectful of the production at all times. Certainly no flashes and never any photography while about to film, filming or reviewing. When possible, we do encourage our talent to find a quiet place away from the set and out of view to film a brief cell phone video testimonial about their experience with some signs of the production in the background. In this way, we hope to share their experiences with others on our platform. Such testimonials will heighten awareness of your company and cultivate future talent for our mutual benefit.

    Well this is a quick overview of the many features and benefits we have created.

    We look forward to supporting your productions with a diversity of talented and cost-effective casting options.


    The whole purpose here is to streamline the process and make casting a more enjoyable and affordable process. Your cost will be dependent upon the size and scope of your project. Our fees are minimal. Casting for print will be less than casting for television campaigns. Local campaigns are more affordable than regional ones and regionals more affordable than national ones. There is additional economy in numbers, so the more talent you cast, the smaller our fee will be.

    When it comes to hiring talent, remember, there are no residuals. It’s up to you to have the budget and make an acceptable offer to secure the talent you have chosen. Our talent may be taking time off work or traveling some distance or may be forced to hire someone to watch their children. We expect our agency and production company clients to extend offers which will compensate them generously for their efforts and for their time and good work.

    A generous offer will go far toward ensuring their acceptance.

    A complete talent rate card will be available upon completion of your registration.


    If a talent’s booking is cancelled or rescheduled within 24 hours of the talent’s call time, talent shall be paid the full rate of the agreed upon talent fee.

    If a talent’s booking is cancelled within 48 hours of the talent’s call time, talent shall be paid half the rate of the agreed upon talent fee.

    If a talent’s booking is postponed within 48 hours of the talent’s call time and the booking is rescheduled within 7 days, there is no charge. If it is postponed and rescheduled within 7 days a second time, talent shall be paid half the rate of the agreed upon fee. If postponed and rescheduled a third time, talent shall be paid the full agreed upon talent fee.


    We’ve gone above and beyond to provide you with a highly efficient service. Naturally, we go to great lengths to stress to our talent the necessity of being prompt and dependable. Our talent base has invested significant time and energy toward this venture and in creating their profile. They have signed agreements with us and will have signed an agreement with you. But people do get sick. There are emergencies. Life happens to us all.

    Through our years in production, certainly we each have stories we can tell about the crazy things we’ve witnessed and experienced. NIKO Casting is not responsible for a talent’s conduct in any way, nor will we be liable for any loss or damage to or claim against the client. Through all the years, conduct has never been an issue. We encourage you to have backups if there are ever any doubts and we further encourage your due diligence in sending out reminders prior to your scheduled production.

    Having said that, we will never leave you hanging. We will always do everything within our power to ensure your casting goes without a hitch.


    Again, we are in the business of introducing our clients to motivated and able talent. We do not manage them. Good directors know how to work with actors and actresses to draw out the best performances. Oftentimes the climate on the set has as much to do with performance as does the actor or actress. We feature video clips of our talent to provide you with insight into their potential, their personalities and mannerisms. The majority of our talent will be suitable for “slice of life” portrayals. Those who have professional experience and experience in speaking roles have identified their experience in their profiles. We advise against casting someone who is inexperienced in a speaking role. We always encourage our clients have prospects do a Skype/Facetime audition or reading.

    Any cause for complaint should be reported to us immediately. Complaints in retrospect will not be addressed.