Just like Richard in 2004, I am taken a big portion of his writing here (Thanks Richard, unfortunately I read it AFTER the scam, not BEFORE as I should do, my only hope is that NO ONE ELSE fall into this rip-off never again).
I am also writing to report about New Faces in Hicksville. They are running a complete circus show at that company at the expense of hundreds of people's hard earned money. The worst part of all, is that these people are "specialized in kids, so they corner you playing with your own and your kid's emotions, ambitions and/or expectations. It's an ugly job, using parent's love for their children to ripping them off money. Let me tell you how their entire operation works.
First they find a way to pull you in so they send out scouts to malls, beaches, or any other crowded area where there are a lot of young people. These scouts have no special training and usually know nothing about the modeling or acting business themselves but are told to just bring anyone and they get paid based on how many people sign up.
In my case, they called me up to come in for an interview. So you go in and meet a "director" who is nothing more than a salesman (James) and convinces you that you need comp cards or headshots or any kind of photo shoot, and he works with his "employee" (Omar, "senior development director") who has told you James could give a discount if you do enroll on spot (a cheap and old sales pitch). They charge you a ridiculous amount of money and say that you have everything it takes and once you get your pictures taken you will get your $800 back or whatever they happened to charge you. That never happens. What they don't tell you is that they own the photo studio and the photographer and if it were legit you would be able to take your photos anywhere and get much better quality.
After your photos are taken you meet with them again with the "marketing manager" (Isabel) who also knows his job very well (7 years of people's ripping off experience), but sleekly, they tell you to come back after 3 business days to review the pictures -time they need to null any intent to cancel the contract you've sign in the beginning- and find out that you need to get copies of all of them and after discussing that you need about 5 photos for a good comp card you end spending about $550 or so on 100 comp cards. They happen to own the printing place also that makes the comp cards and that is more money in their pocket. Then they explain that agents and casting directors go ti gigacomps.com and you need your comp card on the site and you will get more work that way and they charge another $800 for a 1 year membership. Well, surprise surprise...they happen to own the website as well.
So for me, that was not a surprise, it's a medium type agency, mostly average should I say, with steady regular expenses and operation's cost. So they MUST to get something to carry on with that. And that's OK with me, they sell you promises. But they DON'T tell you the truth from the beginning. It's an elaborated sales process with different levels of processing, with a lot of smiles and "warmers" to keep you up and excited, but NOBODY explains you from the beginning and in clear English how much ALL the process will cost you. They allow you to go paying for one thing first (photo shoot), then, once they get you all excited (and your kids as well) with the photos and warm promises, they charge you again (photo cards) and finally, they try to charge you again to "promote" your file with a "membership" in what they claim to have (250 or so) companies/agent/casting directors, etc.
I felt like a blind folded cattle being driven to the slaughter-house.
After I told them I will not pay for anything else we did agree-on from the begging, I've try to contact them again to get my money back. Yeah, that's gonna happen. They never in, they're busy interviewing (ripping off) people or they have Donald Trump-like schedules, a harder-than-a-fish catch. So, money: Bye, bye.
My advice to you. Stay as far away from these people as possible. They are crooks and do not deserve to bring in another penny!! Spread the word! Only with your help can we put these crooks out of business. Trust me. I have learned the hard way to stay away from these kind of crooks.