Acting Tech – Film Genres by Gayla Goehl

If you are auditioning for a film, you better know what GENRE it is.  I have had more than one client come in thinking they were auditioning for a drama when they were really auditioning for a comedy!

What is a Genre anyway?  

Film genres are specific film categories that have very similar forms. Something about them must be easily identified within these groups.

Major Film Genres:

  • Animated
  • Action
  • Adventure
  • Comedy
  • Crime/Gangster
  • Documentary
  • Drama
  • Family/Kids
  • Historical
  • Horror
  • Musical
  • Science Fiction
  • Silent
  • War
  • Western

Then you can even classify films into a smaller group. This is known as Sub-Genres.

Film Sub-Genres:

  • Biographical
  • Chick Flicks
  • Disaster
  • Fantasy
  • Mystery
  • Road
  • Romance
  • Sports
  • Supernatural
  • Thriller

Now here is where it gets fun! You can also then break them down into even smaller categories called Sub-Genre Types or mix and match them and get Hybrids.  So cool!

Here are some of my favorites.

Film Sub-Genre Types & Film Hybrids:

  • Action Adventure Sci-Fi: Pacific Rim
  • Action Crime Drama: The Negotiator (My Top 10)
  • Action Crime Drama/Comedy: The Long Kiss Goodnight
  • Action Surf Crime: Point Break
  • Biography Drama: Searching For Bobby Fischer (My Top 10)
  • Comedy Western: Blazing Saddles
  • Drama History Mystery: All The President’s Men
  • Horror Comedy: Shaun of the Dead (My Top 10)
  • Fantasy Horror Comedy: Constantine (My Top 10)
  • Romantic Comedy: You’ve Got Mail
  • Fairy Tales Comedy Fantasy Family: Enchanted

You get the picture!

There are a lot of resources online to learn more about film genres, film sub-genres and film hybrids.  I think a great resource  is on  However, get ready to learn because that site has so many listed that it will blow your mind!

Genre. The first thing you should ask yourself about every script!