Acting Advice From The Greats
If you want to get better at your craft, it’s always a good idea to see how the best of the best do it.
We collected a few very important points for you today, including some techniques and mindset tips that will help you on your journey as an actor.
They talk about having doubts, being self-conscious, doing your prep work, overacting and more. Sounds relatable?
Keep reading and see what they had to say:
‘The last thing you ever want in front of the camera is doubt’
The viewing audience on the other side of the camera are like circling sharks, but instead of smelling blood in the water, they smell doubt in the performer. Jackman says the last thing you ever want in front of the camera is doubt. A performer who is unsure of themselves, who has not made choices, who cannot take direction is going to really struggle. What this comes back to is doing the preparation. It is great to be spontaneous, but not so great to be unsure of yourself.
When it comes to that prep work, Kidman goes back to something she learned on “Eyes Wide Shut” with filmmaker Stanley Kubrick.
“I was taught really early on to always read the whole script from beginning to end, and the first time you do it, to write everything down because you’ll never have that first response, you’ll never have that first reading ever again. You’ll have different ways of approaching it when you reread it. But the first time, you get an immediate response. And so quickly write your feelings down so that you can capture that. Stanley Kubrick was the one that said that to me, and it was just wonderful, I’ve never stopped doing it. That always has a wealth of information in it.”
Robert De Niro
De Niro believes in underplaying parts because that’s what he says people do in real life. “It’s very important and at the same time extremely difficult for an actor to pretty much not do anything,” he said. “It is much simpler than you may think. A lot of actors, including I, get caught up in it. We want to do something to show the audience what the character is feeling. But if you think of it, people in real life do not always react dramatically to tragedies. They are more often not stunned by it. And, more than trying to show their feelings, people always tend to hide their feelings. So it is important not to indicate. Let the audience read into your expression rather than you showing them what they should feel. You just have to stop thinking too much about it and it will take care of itself.”
“Actresses can get outrageously precious about the way they look. That’s not what life’s about. If you starve yourself to the point where your brain cells shrivel, you will never do good work. And if you’re overly conscious of your arms flapping in the wind, how can you look the other actor in the eye to respond to them?”
“I’m not interested in playing characters who see the world through my prism; I think the journey of understanding any character is to see how they tick and how they differ from you.”
We hope you found inspiration in their words!
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