Director From Lukas Gage’s Zoom Audition Apologizes for ‘Unprofessional’ Comments
Lukas Gage received an apology from the rude director who shamed him for his living space during a Zoom audition.
In a letter published to Deadline on Monday (November 23) titled, “Zoom and Doom: An Online Audition Goes Awry,” TV director Tristram Shapeero came forward to take responsibility and publicly apologize to the Euphoria actor.
Last week, the 25-year-old actor shared an awkward recording of a virtual casting he had been a part of. Before his webcam audition began, an unmuted director made a snarky comment about the actor's apartment.
In shock, but still willing to be in good grace with the director, Gage admitted that he knows his apartment is “s---ty” and pleaded for the acting gig so that he can get a better one.
“Despite what is probably wise advice, to say the least possible and let this pass, I have decided to come forward, take responsibility, make the apology Mr. Gage deserves, and offer some background for my unacceptable and insensitive remarks. I am Tristram Shapeero, a 20-year veteran television director, half in the UK, and the second half here in the US,” the director began his apology note.
“First and foremost I offer Mr. Gage a sincere and unvarnished apology for my offensive words, my unprofessional behavior during the audition and for not giving him the focus and attention he deserved. My job is to evaluate performers against the part I am trying to cast. Lukas deserved better.”
“This Zoom audition took place in August, after four months of lockdown. A number of my co-workers were also on the auditions which happened over several days. It was emotional to see actors work so hard to win the few parts available and we were deeply moved by the passion of these young people under the extraordinary circumstances,” Shapeero continued.
“I was using the word ‘poor’ in the sense of deserving sympathy, as opposed to any economic judgment,” he explained. “My words were being spoken from a genuine place of appreciation for what the actors were having to endure, stuck in confined spaces, finding it within themselves to give a role-winning performance under these conditions.”
The director, who has worked on such series as The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Brooklyn Nine-Nine and Never Have I Ever, vowed to be better in the future.
“As I say on the video, I’m mortified about what happened. While I can’t put the proverbial toothpaste back in the tube, I move forward from this incident a more empathetic man; a more focused director and I promise, an even better partner to actors from the audition process to the final cut.”