Hawaii Five-O: Getting local actors in the show

Eric Elizaga
Eric Elizaga
Rachel Sutton
Rachel Sutton

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Eric Elizaga made his screen debut on Hawaii 5-O this past season as a child protective services official.

He had some TV experience as a former sports anchor for KHNL. He's also done some work in commercials.

But according to him, none of that compares to this.

"It's Hawaii Five-0 and you kind of have this thing in your head where it's bigger than anything you've ever auditioned for," says Elizaga.   "You just really don't know what they're looking for  'cause it could be, I don't know if they're looking for a certain look... if you read the lines correctly."

So we asked the powers-that-be to walk us through the process so that you can see what it's like... and what they are looking for.

The first thing everyone does when they come in is sign in.

Then you wait around for someone to call you.

It's a good time to practice your lines.

Casting Director Rachel Sutton estimates that she auditions about 10 people for each new part and she wants them to be on their game.

"If one of those 10 comes in and their totally unprepared, it's a waste of my time," says Rachel.  "It's a waste of their time and they've taken a spot away from another actor who maybe would have come prepared."

Still she knows this isn't L.A.

Actors in Hawaii are not full-time actors... and most have families and other commitments.

Once Rachel's ready she takes you into a room and takes a snap shot for the record.

Then the audition begins and she records as you recite your lines.

Even if you mess up Rachel promises to take the best clips edit them together and ship them off to Los Angeles where a group of producers and directors make the call.

"I think that's another misconception," she says.  "Everybody thinks that I'm the one that actually picks these people.  I just pick an initial group of people to come in and work with me.  After that, everyone's kinda on their own."

Now to be honest, 90 percent of the decision is based on your look.

"The first thing that's on a break down for a character is their sex, male or female, their ethnicity and their age range," says Rachel.

But keep in mind they have a wide range of characters from kids to adults to different races and she says there's a reason for that.

"We need to paint a realistic picture of Hawaii for the show to be good."

If you want more information on how to get on the show check out Rachel's website, rachelsuttoncasting.com.

Copyright Hawaii News Now 2011. All rights reserved.