He entered the lobby and immediately sized up his competition. The first guy was just not right for the part, no chance. Too clean cut and foreign. The guy could have been Sean fucking Penn and he was not getting that part. Them's the breaks, thought Van Man. But the second guy, there was something there. With a receding hairline and a fat, bushy mustache, the second guy had the perfect look. Could he deliver, though? A few moments later and the First Guy was inside the room, doing his thing. Van Man listened, intently. Next.
In the lobby, it was just Van Man and The 'Stache, clocking each other. The 'Stache looked at him and he looked at The 'Stache. Brutal competition. First, the mental challenge from fellow actors as everyone judges one another, waiting for their turn to audition. Not giving in to insecurities about how they look or sound, compared to the other players. Was their choice in attire correct? Did they approach the character the right way? Is there a right way? Then the actor must step in to do the physical part. Van Man developed his own process of dealing with the lobby challenges. He did not bother to converse with anyone and tried not to look. But in the business, looks mattered most.
It was The 'Stache's turn and Van Man was alone. He went over his lines, then listened through the thin wall. The 'Stache was good. Robust voice and mastery of the dialogue. 'Stache had a decent twang, too. Van Man now had respect for this actor, but he was not giving him the role. It was Van Man's and only Van Man's. He went over the lines again.
The 'Stache exited into the lobby. Van Man looked away even though 'Stache glanced at him, as though to say, "Good luck". Fuck off, thought Van Man. Not this day. The casting director called his name and he went into the audition room. And he motherfucking nailed it. But hopefully, The Van Man looked the part.