When you’re auditioning actors for a role, the scenes as scripted are sometimes not especially useful.

For example, if most of a character’s scenes are with groups of people talking, the auditioning actor probably won’t to have enough lines to really make an impression. And in television, you may need to cast a part that isn’t especially big in its first episode, but becomes more important later.

Knowing this, casting directors will often try to cobble something together. But a smart writer should also volunteer to write special scenes just for auditions. Sometimes they’re cut-down and rearranged versions of scenes from the script, but it’s also an opportunity to just come up with something new. On movies and shows in which I’m involved with casting, I’ll generally give the casting director specially-prepared sides a few days before auditions begin.

In the Library, I have an additional audition scene from Go for Mannie, whose character didn’t talk much but was crucial to the first act.

And I just added three audition scenes from The Remnants:

Chas, Mia and Wallace auditions

And all the casting sides for the Alaska pilot.

One added bonus of writing new scenes for the audition is that you don’t get completely burned out on the real scenes. After you’ve heard fifty actors read the same ten lines, they become meaningless. You don’t want to be on set hearing them again.