Snip-snip: The truth about having your scenes/roles cut

Let me start by saying the silver-lining we’re going to get to here does not mean that this doesn’t indeed blow. Because in all honesty, it blows. Hard.

That being said, having your lines, scenes, or even entire role cut from a show or film is so freaking normal! The thing is no one talks about it…publicly. [Insert 1 Broke Actress Here]

My first experience with this happened a few years ago when I booked a role and on the same day (after a writers meeting) it was cut from the show. I wrote about it HERE if you want to read more. I laughed so hard when this happened because…what else was I supposed to do? I nailed the audition, the callback, everything. But for time or budget, some things had to go.

Cut to this past week when I had a co-star on an NBC show. I vacillated on whether or not to post about it on my social media or send out one of those actor-emails telling people I was in a show. I shot and booked it 5 months ago so I figured, what the hell. So I made the post and sent the emails. And then the show aired…and I did not. Was I bummed? DUH. Was I upset or embarrassed that I had publicly shared this? Nope.


The thing is, it’s just not personal. There are so. many. jobs. that go into getting an episode of anything on-air. There are only so many minutes to get a story told (while satisfying all the big league players) and only so many dollars to spend doing it. My role in that show was so small and truly did not move the plot along, so I actually understand why it didn’t make the edit. Could I spend hours wondering if the director didn’t like me or if my acting sucked or any other random thing that I can’t control? Sure. Is that helpful to me whatsoever? Negative. And having that birds-eye view on something I worked hard for is really important in this business. I’ll say it again IT’S NOT PERSONAL.

Now as for the sharing of the ep before it aired, I am actually really glad I did, even though I wasn’t featured. And here’s why: how often do you see actors posts or emails about something airing and think, “oh so cool for them, success!” and then don’t actually tune in to watch? If we’re being honest, it happens a lot (frankly there’s just so much content). If I had known I wasn’t on TV, I may not have shared this big victory with the world!

Plus I wouldn’t have a reason to write/share this article on a topic we should talk about more. So many actors reached out to me when I told this honest truth on Instagram, so to you all, I challenge you to share YOUR OWN “cut” stories here or on this IG post. I can’t wait to take some stigma away from this side of the world.

-Sam