Now, apparently, there are numerous posts about this on the net, but I didn't know, so I am writing another post, so that no one gets scammed into this.
I was browsing the StarNow website with extras and modelling jobs, and there's nothing wrong with that site. But I saw an advert for a casting call. At first I didn't apply, just added them on my watch list as I always do. But they must have seen that I looked through their ad, so I got an email prompt that I've been shortlisted. I was curious and a bit excited, as I was thinking of getting some modelling jobs. I contacted them, and got an automatic reply to quickly book a photoshoot as places were limited. I tried to call them, but it was already the weekend, so I got the answering machine. I forgot about them for a week, but then got another email remainder saying a similar thing - 'places are limited so book now!", so I called them, this time the phone got answered by an "Ally", a booking agent, she was talking so quick that I barely could make out the main points - she mentioned names such as Zara and Topshop, promising me work with them. I was not impressed, but still was curious. Then she asked for a 50 pound deposit 'to secure a test photoshoot'. I tried to google their "website names (they have 3) + scam" and at first nothing came up, so I paid the money. They "booked me for a photoshoot' for next Tuesday. When I told one of my friends, she said it was probably a scam, I kind of kept hoping that it was legitimate. I even received a welcome pack by post. And didn't tell my parents until yesterday. They got worried. I resisted their advice not to go, but googled some more non the less. And I found out that apparently this scam has been going on for decades. Here is a similar post on a student forum. And here's an article from the Guardian about similar scams. They invite you for a photoshoot, then demand 2000-3000 ponds for the photos. I cancelled my debit card and I am definitely not going anywhere tomorrow.
These are their websites: http://newlinestudio.co.uk/ http://the-fashion-lounge.co.uk/ http://thespotlightstudios.co.uk/ The websites look legit except they're a bit similar to one another. And the "agency" will even send you links to happy customer reviews. Do not believe them! No real agency will demand money from you up front!