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boyscout

Question about constant entry and re-entry

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I am an Australian actor. I want to go the the USA for a period of time so I can seek out an agent, then hopefully start getting some work down the track while going back for larger auditions. I have a friend of mine from Sydney who now lives in LA. What he basically did was fly to LA for 3 months at a time, and then spend three or four months back home and go back again. During his three months in the country he was staying there, doing acting lessons, working out and then going to auditions. He got a business visa once he landed a major production.

 

My question is nowadays with things being the way they are, what would be the best way to fly in so frequently.. I'm sure I'd be flagged... if I was doing 2 - 3 visits a year to the same place. I know I can take a letter with me showing the studio I'm doing acting lessons with. Does anyone understand what my concerns are ? I'm not sure if this is making sense.

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VWP will always be the "maybe problems" entry. A rule of thumb is always "stay the time outside the US, that you have been inside the US". Maxing out the 90 days can be ok for once or twice. I did it myself last year but it will for sure cause trouble if they start to see a pattern and depends so much on the CO and if he is buying your story. Because it did with your friend, will not mean it will with you. Since I am am musician I do understand your situation, although my path was different. I studied in the US and after graduation moved back to my home country, where after successful years there, I had enough credits to apply for an EB1A right away.

 

I have friends though who did a long year visa marathon, most of them through O1-B visas.

 

I would try to keep as much agent pre-work online as possible and then come to visit and keep the stays as short as possible NOT maxing out the 90s. Once you have an agent go for an O1 or consider an acting school, if you can afford it.

 

Good luck!

 

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Because I will be staying outside of LA, I already have an acting coach there so I can get a letter from him about paying him for lessons. I was going to go 8 weeks at a time then spend a few months back home working and saving up again. Then head back over again. I was more concerned about immigration asking me why I'm there all the time.

 

I guess I could be honest with them? and show them the letter about acting lessons?

 

So I think right now, finding an agent won't be too bad because I already have a good demo reel and I can easily send that online. Most of the movie companies will hire a lawyer to help you process once you land a part - the thing for me is just avoiding trouble while I am doing 3 or 4 visits per year.

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On 4.1.2017 at 2:51 PM, boyscout said:

I guess I could be honest with them? and show them the letter about acting lessons?

My opinion? ALWAYS the truth is the best answer! Those guys are trained to hear through made up stories and the consequences for future visa applications can be disastrous with a refused entry because of not being honest.

 

That said under VWP there is an amount of hours of training you can attend (I think it is 18 hours per week, but please check yourself again!) as long as it is not towards college credit, then a student visa would be required. So having a letter/ invoice proofing your training would certainly help to convince the officer I would say.

 

In my last case it was 87 days without anything in reference, except about housing and savings. I just explained what I do and what my plans in LA are and I was granted access. Was a nice officer though and maybe I was just lucky. I haven't been in the US at that point for a longer time before. Like I said, it really depends on the situation and officer and maybe also POE. That´s why I went directly to LAX where I was expecting the officers to see artists coming through all the time rather then an airport elsewhere.

 

On a long run only an O1 visa will give you some freedom and I would assume also boost up your chances for auditions and landing a gig since you are in the country and somewhat ready to go rather then the production company having to wait for the application outcome, which can be delayed as well due to RFEs or a USCIS backlog. There is an example of that in another topic here.

 

The GC lottery of course is always worth to play but nothing to plan with. Even if you are extremely lucky and win it still takes up to 2 years till the process is finished and you can either file for AOS or enter the country.

 

I very much understand your desire and frustration.. all in the same boat! ;-)

 

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