Casting agent hunts for authentic Boston "tawk"

​Casting agent Angela Peri, center, talks with prospective actors at a casting call.
CBS News

BOSTON -- When a director needs a real Boston accent, their first call is often to casting agent Angela Peri. She says her ears are always open.

"Everywhere I go. Everywhere I go," Peri told CBS News.

Tax incentives have made Boston a hotbed of moviemaking. And directors want actors with the right look -- and sound.

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Casting agent Angela Peri, center, talks with prospective actors at a casting call. CBS News

"Y'know, it's like sifting. It's a diamond search," she said. "Y'know, I'm sifting through the city."

At a recent casting call, 400 people showed up hoping to "tawk" their way to stardom. Many have no experience, like sprinkler fitter Eric Galgay.

Boston accent "expert" keeps it real

"This is just how I talk, and everybody I know talks like me," he said.

"That's the kind of guy I want, because I just want him to be authentic," Peri said. "So I'll meet them and instantly I know, I know who's gonna be good."

Like "The Fighter" -- Remember Mark Wahlberg? Remember Wahlberg's sisters? Nearly all were locals discovered by Peri.

It was Erica McDermitt's first audition, ever.

"Oh, I was very fresh to Angela. I think the way that I was able to swear,' McDermitt remembered.

Jill Quigg's South Boston accent got her her first job in "Gone Baby Gone."

"This is how I am. This is how I was raised. This is how I was brought up," Quigg said. "I'm not acting. I'm me."

It's a business that has come full circle for Peri, whose own accent cut short her acting career. Now, she says Bostonians should be proud of how they sound.

"I am. I am,' Peri said. "It's done me well."

Now, it's that accent that brings Hollywood to her.