Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Three Catagories of Actor

Actors who play President Lincoln (or any other role) fall into three categories. Using the Gettysburg address as an example:

  1. This actor is just a step up from a high school student reciting the address in U.S. History class. Not sure how this actor even got considered, let alone cast. DO NOT be this actor! Excellent memorization skills might be all that is needed for the high school student, but the actor without the emotional commitment might as well botch the lines. The audience is going to be disconnected from the performance. (This is the performance unprepared actors deliver to casting directors at auditions.)
  2. This actor is at the intermediate level. This is the actor who embodies Lincoln so well that the audience walks away feeling as if they actually met Lincoln himself. While the audience might be drawn into the performance, be it stage or screen, they are still on the outside witnessing the life of the characters. (The he did a superb job pointing to the moon performance.)
  3. This is the best actor. BE THIS ACTOR! What sets this actor apart from the the second actor? His delivery. Both he and #2 embody Lincoln superbly. However, #3 draws the audience in emotionally. The audience walks away with the understanding of how those at who were actually at Gettysburg must of felt. The audience in this case is going to be drawn into the performance on a personal level. They will ponder how it must of been to be there hearing the address. (The when he pointed to the moon I had to refrain from turning around and looking performance.)

My goal is to always strive to fall into category #3. This is why the bulk of my acting time next week is going to be committed to going over my scenes for a film I am shooting next Saturday. (No, I am not playing Lincoln. Totally wrong body type.)

No comments: