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Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Should You Walk Away from a Bad Voiceover Job?

Procuring work is one of the most important elements of a job in the voiceover industry.  Because most of us work as independent contractors, we must work hard to market ourselves, to get our demos in front of the right people, and to appeal to those who are hiring.  However, there are times when all of the hard work lands us in possession of a less-than-desirable voiceover job.  Whether it is a truly bad script, a disrespectful producer, or a list of responsibilities that does match the original job description, you may find yourself wondering whether it would be wise to walk away.

Recently, an article published by The Independent told the story of voiceover artist Matt Chapman, who was hired to play the part of commentator for Ireland’s Dancing On Ice.  It was reported that the Irish voiceover star decided to leave the position after just one show.  For some, this was a wise decision given that the pre-recorded work was not appealing to the audience.  Chapman decided to leave, in favor of work with ITV Racing.

Though some would find it crazy for a voiceover artist to walk away from a job, there are times when it is the best decision for all involved.  While you must remain humble in this industry, if you hope to be successful for years to come, and you must realize that not all clients will be easy to work with, there are instances when it is simply necessary to move on.  In this case, Chapman knew that he was out of his element and his work just wasn’t going to jive with the vision of his client, so he opted to return to the type of voiceover work that he is more familiar- and comfortable with.  He, of course, had another job lined up before he walked away, which is something that should be considered if you are thinking about making a similar move.


  1. Having another job lined up is pretty sweet, but depending on your workflow, not always so predictable. In fact, that can make the decision to walk away all the harder. Bad rate? Unreasonable client? It's a true test when you decline even though there's nothing there to take its place.

  2. I think what you're saying is each of us has to determine at what point we feel we can sacrifice work while we uphold standards. This is true. It takes guts.. and a bit of "weighing" to determine that. Guess I've become a bit tough as a businessman with all the crazy choices I've made.. From the music biz, the photo studio biz I had for 20 years, the acting pursuit that cooled off... and just an inborn stubbornness to have a creative career. But we all have to make a choice!